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International Sound Check Day

Check one two, one two, one two. It's International Sound Check Day! First held on one two, one two, one two (12/12/12), International Sound Check Day is a play on the date it is held and celebrates the sound check. On its first observance, the organizers called it the "3rd Millennial International Soundcheck Day," since the previous times the date was 12/12/12 in this millenia were the years 12 and 1012. So, technically, International Sound Check Day is only held every 1,000 years. But, in practice, it is observed every December 12.

The phrase "check one two, one two, one two" or some variation of it is often said in microphones during a sound check, a time set aside to check and adjust the sound on the venue's public address system or sound reinforcement system before a concert, speech, or similar event. Sound checks are usually held before the audience enters the venue, and often begin with checking the rhythm section—such as drum mics—then the melody section—such as guitars—then the microphones of instrumentalists and vocalists. The performers may play each of their instruments individually, and then run through a small portion of their performance together. They work with audio engineers, who make sure the front-of-house and stage monitors are producing clear sound, are at the right volume, and have the correct mix and equalization.

How to Observe International Sound Check Day

If you are in a band, play a show and do a soundcheck before it. If you don't have a show booked, do a soundcheck anyway, in your practice space, or at a venue if possible. Make sure to say "one two, one two" during it. If you aren't in a band, find a space that has a microphone and say "one two, one two" into it, or spend the day greeting everyone you meet with "one two, one two" before continuing your conversation.

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