May 02, 2013
Honky Tonk Central, a new three-story music venue, bar and restaurant in the heart of downtown Nashville, has installed a QSC AudioKLA active line arrays in its first-floor performance space, along with QSC K12 loudspeakers for monitors
The venue, one of the latest to spring up in the Lower Broadway neighborhood, has also installed two systems comprising K12 loudspeakers as mains and K10 loudspeakers as monitors for smaller stages on the second and third floors.
The equipment was purchased through Scott Schwartz, account manager based at the Washington, D.C. location of Guitar Center Professional (GC Pro), the outside sales division of Guitar Center that focuses on the needs of professional users.
“On the main floor we have six flown KLA12 modules with two KLA181 subs on the floor, and five K12s for monitors,” explains Michael Mills, chief engineer for Honky Tonk Central. “Upstairs, for mains we’re using K12s, but for monitors we’re using K10s, because the stages are considerably smaller. We’re running little Allen & Heath MixWizard consoles on the two floors upstairs and I’ve got a Midas console downstairs on the main floor. It’s a pro-sounding rig and just what I wanted.”
He continues, “I really like the QSC speakers; they sound good and they’re not bright like some of the other boxes. They put out a lot of sound for a little box. The system sounds great.”
John Taylor, operations manager for several venues in downtown Nashville, including Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge and Rippy’s, hired Mills, a touring front of house engineer, after he relocated to the city from Hagerstown, MD.
“John hired me as a sound engineer, and two months made me their lead engineer,” reports Mills. After Taylor discovered that Mills had experience with installed sound systems in stadiums, churches and other venues from his work at a sound company, he put Mills in charge of sourcing and installing the three systems for Honky Tonk Central in time for its opening earlier this year.
Installation of the QSC line array modules was simple and straightforward, says Mills. “The KLA’s are very easy to hang. The M10 fittings are very handy. The boxes aren’t heavy, so it makes it easy to fly them. Once I had my fly points, man, I had the boxes hanging in just a couple of minutes.
“Having decided upon self-powered speakers for all three stages, wiring was also kept to a minimum. We didn’t have to worry about amps, so it worked out pretty well.”
In addition to the QSC products, GC Pro helped source a Midas VeniceF 24 analog console, two M-One XL dual effects signal processors and a D-Two multitap rhythm delay from TC Electronic, and the following products from dbx: one DriveRack 260 loudspeaker management system, two 1231 dual-channel 31-band equalizers, two 1046 quad compressor/limiter units and a 1074 quad gate.
Mills, who recently toured as FOH engineer for up and coming country music artist Katie Armiger on her first headlining national tour, reports that the reactions from artists playing at Honky Tonk Central have been very good. “The local musicians really like playing there; it sounds amazing. It has become one of the premier places to play on Broadway in Nashville now,” he says.
Unique among the Lower Broadway venues for its three stages, which can often feature simultaneous performances, Honky Tonk Central has become a major attraction in the downtown area.
The venue is also ideally located to take advantage of visitors to major Nashville attractions such as the annual CMA awards ceremonies, which take place a block away at Bridgestone Arena, and is also only a couple of blocks from Music City Center, a major new convention center scheduled to open in early 2013.
“Honky Tonk Central is in a great spot, and we get 500 to 1,500 people through there a day, depending upon what’s happening in the area,” says Mills.
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