Re: Any suggestions for PA Gear?
The number one thing I'd advise (after 25+ years of experience playing gigs):
There are a variety of excellent, not too expensive, integrated and powerful PA Boxes from companies like Mackie, Yamaha, Peavey, Carvin, Beringer and others that provide for both Main and Monitor Mixes (some with onboard EQ and effects).
Using one of these is much easier, more convenient and poses less of a load in/out challenge than going hi tech and having to schlepp a power amp, mixer and outboard eq/preamps etc. I own the latter and the former is much easier to manage.
This being said - I'd also reccomend getting one of these with as many low-impedance inputs as you can afford.
I play in a six piece band with 3 singers and we've found that 8 channels is not quite enough to provide us with what we need so we are on the hunt for what I described above with at least 9 Low-Z inputs.
Otherwise - a good pair of Mains that aren't too heavy to handle, decent monitors and a set of SM57s and SM58s would be a very good starting point (plus cables, stands and mic clips).....
Mandolin, Guitar, Bass
Acoustic, Electric, Eclectic
Swing, Boogie, Bluegrass,
Psychedelic, Blues and Rock