Anyone involved in professional pop singing in the Netherlands inevitably meets Babette Labeij. The singer and vocal coach looks back on an impressive artistic career as a highly sought-after backing vocalist, with her own band Babette & Friends, and as a vocal coach and music consultant on The Voice, X Factor and Dutch Idol. She is also a judge on Popstars and Next Boy Girl Band and is even the founder of the Babette Labeij Music Academy. Babette is a bundle of creative energy with a great deal of charisma and even more talent. Her latest project is also her most personal: ZING! (in English: Sing!). The book describes Babette’s unique approach to vocal coaching and also provides an intimate insight into the musical life of the Dutch woman.
In mid-October, Babette Labeij presented ZING! at the Amsterdam branch of the Scheltema chain of bookstores. Naturally, she didn’t pass up the opportunity to punctuate the presentation musically with a small acoustic accompaniment. The experienced singer has discovered a PA system that not only impressed in the bookstore, but that she will also use in the future for TV coaching appearances as well as in her own music academy: The MAUI 28 G2 column PA from LD Systems.
Babette Labeij explains in interview why she chose the compact sound system and the advantages the medium-sized version of the popular MAUI series offers her for her diverse projects.
How did you come across the MAUI 28 G2?
Babette Labeij: I was looking for a compact PA for the opening of the Rotterdam branch of my music academy this year. In doing so, I met Erich Romer from the music shop KEYMUSIC. He recommended the MAUI 28 G2 to me and it was love at first sight. The sound is fantastic. Not only that, the system is extremely easy to use – an important factor if you are always working with different students and teachers in different rooms.
Which of your many projects will feature MAUI systems in future?
Babette Labeij: We have already used the MAUI 28 G2 as part of the presentation of my new book ZING! at the famous Scheltema bookstore in Amsterdam. The systems will also feature at later dates. The MAUI 28 G2 will be used for lessons and live sessions at the academy and will be seen on TV in the future as a flexible sound system for coaching workshops on The Voice of Holland and The Voice Kids!
As an experienced singer, what do you require from a sound system?
Babette Labeij: I appreciate a transparent and precise sound that also produces a lot of warmth at the same time. The MAUI 28 G2 pretty much nails this combination perfectly. And as I mentioned before, the PA must be able to adapt easily to a wide range of vocal types, musical preferences and situations. Here, the Bluetooth mode is an enormous help to quickly and easily play backing tracks. The MAUI 28 G2 also performs impressively with live instruments – a highly rare combination in my experience. Personally, I have never worked with a system that delivers the goods both in the classroom and when performing live.
How important is the design of the MAUI series for you?
Babette Labeij: It’s a factor that shouldn’t be underestimated! The MAUIs are extremely chic and elegant and their sleek, modern design doesn’t detract from the performance of the singers and musicians. At the same time, they produce a sound that you usually only get from larger PAs.
Can you also see yourself using the MAUI 28 G2 for rehearsing or for spontaneous jam sessions?
Babette Labeij: Definitely! We already have … I’m really happy to have discovered the MAUI series and I’d recommend the systems to anyone who’s looking for the perfect price/performance ratio.
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