— Sprawling Ocean City, Maryland entertainment venue Seacrets renovated their music stages over the winter in preparation for a big summer, and GC Pro was their go-to source for audio, video and lighting —
WESTLAKE VILLAGE, CA — Seacrets is a nightclub, bar, restaurant and concert venue located in Ocean City, MD, beside the Isle of Wight Bay. Opened as a “locals only” bar in 1988, it has since grown exponentially, now consisting of 16 bars, four performance areas, a clothing boutique, and an FM/Internet radio station located on the property, all with its “Jamaica USA” theme still intact. And the aesthetics of the place match that: live reggae DJs start at 10 a.m. every day, the restaurant features plenty of jerk chicken, and every year dozens of palm trees are planted and maintained for the summer season. In fact, summer is Seacrets’ biggest season, running each year from St. Patrick’s Day through Halloween, and this year’s summer sounded and looked better than ever, thanks to audio and lighting systems sourced through Guitar Center Professional (GC Pro), the business-to-business (B2B) division of Guitar Center providing highly customized service for professional accounts.
Using GC Pro’s extensive inventory and resources, AV Manager Jason Cruz was able to acquire all new systems for the Beach, Old Main Bar and Pier stages. These include a 64-channel Soundcraft Si Performer digital console, four new Crown XTI 6000 series amplifiers to beef up the existing PA systems, JBL Control series in-ceiling speakers and ASB subwoofers to extend the reach and range of the music, a Shure ULXS wireless microphone system and wireless PSM in-ear monitors, dbx® DriveRack DSP, Chauvet Rogue spotlight, Elation moving-head fixtures and American DJ Vortex moving washes. It’s a long list, and only GC Pro was able to provide a one-stop source for all of it.
“I have to replace some products and systems fairly often because the sand gets in there and it’s brutal on some pieces of gear,” says Cruz, who started at Seacrets in 2009 as a DJ and now supervises the AVL for the entire operation, even as he keeps his hand in spinning records at times. “Having GC Pro as a partner is a necessity, to be able to get what we need, when we need it, at a good price.” But GC Pro is more than that for Seacrets and Cruz. “I totally trust Mitch to let me know what the best product and system choices would be for any of the venues,” he adds, referring to GC Pro Account Manager Mitch Shaivitz at GC Pro’s Baltimore-area office. “As the AV Manager, I’m expected to know everything about everything, and that’s impossible, so I rely on Mitch to fill in my knowledge gaps.”
One example of how GC Pro made a difference instead of just a sale is Shaivitz’s recommendation of the Shure in-ear monitors to replace stage wedges at the Beach stage. That not only eliminated another piece of equipment that would be exposed to the wear and tear of sand but also helped bands keep their stage volume in check, keeping the sound inside the venue and away from neighboring houses. “He also helped us make the transition to LED lighting, which resists sand better than conventional lights,” he says. Seacrets’ next season will also see a trip to GC Pro over the winter for new Crown amplifiers for the main concert hall. “GC Pro has made my life easier and Seacrets’ experience better,” says Cruz. “It would be hard to be this good without them.”