Ongoing Series: The SM7B and the Artists that Use It

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The SM7B is my favorite Shure microphone.

Not only is it extremely versatile, but it is inexpensive. It has been used on so many Grammy Award winning recordings and to this day, remains to be a favorite among artists and engineers alike, both live and in the studio. It was originally called SM7 and then some enhancements have been made internally over the years and it has now called the SM7B.

From Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” to Sheryl Crow’s “The Globe Sessions” and so many more in since, engineers and artist have chosen the SM7 over microphones several times its cost.  Why? Plug one in and try it – you will understand why.

Not only is it warm and rich on vocals, it shines on just about anything you put in it on.  Guitar cabinets, Brass instruments, Leslie Low, Bass cabinet, and even as a Hi-hat mic. Just this week, I saw 2 of them on drummer Chris McHugh’s kit – one on the Hi-Hat and one under his ride. In both cases, the windscreens were removed!

Here’s a great video with Sammy Hagar on an SM7B with Chickenfoot in the studio tracking their latest record (about 4:50 in):

John Paul White of The Civil Wars mentions in an interview for us that he used it to track his vocals for their Grammy Award winning album Barton Hollow.  See that interview here (about 7:28 in):

Country Artist Hunter Hayes also uses it to track demo vocals while on the road.  We can thank producer Dan Huff for recommending it to him early on.

Serj Tankian of System of a Down fame and solo work talks about his use of Shure mics including the SM7 for vocals in the studio (about 2:13 in):

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So why it this going to be an ongoing series?  I constantly run into artists that share my love for this mic and I love hearing about its many uses.  I am also inviting you to send in your pictures and tell your stories if you currently use this mic in any way.  Please join in and tell us how the SM7 has helped your sound! Until then, I leave you with another great Blog post on the story of the SM7B:

SM57 on Steroids: The Shure SM7(B) Story

8-23/13 update: Here’s a link to Part 2 in this series of posts about the SM7B and artists that use it.

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Ryan Smith

Ryan is a Regional Manager of Artist Relations at the Shure office in Nashville, TN. He started at Shure in 1993 in Customer Service and joined the AR team in 1996. Ryan has over 30 years of performance experience playing drums and percussion in various groups and genres. In his spare time he enjoys woodworking, watching movies, videography, and camping with his family. His Twitter handle is @ryan_smith1969.

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