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Setting up equipment at Hart Bar, first real venue played in NYC

Found a venue to play at after talking to 2 bars

Played first real venue in NYC last night. It was awesome. I went out to talk to some bars to see if they would have a night in the future to play. I didn’t think I’d be able to play anywhere, but I brought my USB and my laptop just in case (not my mixer or cables).

I talked to one club who said they played only live Jazz music. The second bar I wandered to was Hart Bar, which I ended up recognizing as a place I had been with Heather, when I saw the hawk and lion statues by the apartments outside.

I went in, had a seltzer water at the bar, and was going to ask the bartender if I could play some night. Another bartender came in and they were talking about how the DJ tonight cancelled.

I told them I could play, and I could run home and get my gear. I told them they could kick me off if they didn’t like it. The bartender said “I don’t care”. The downstairs was going to be empty anyway.

I sped off onto my CitiBike and back to Bed-Stuy to pick up my mixer and wires. I almost forgot my Mixer -> Laptop cable, a kingpin cable. Had to go back and get it.

I was so excited, I was peddling like an olympic champion to get back to the bar.

Setting up the equipment

I had a crash course in setting up DJ equipment last night when I was at Hart Bar. It reminded me of being with Heimer at the Green House in Stockholm University. That was the last time I was dealing with setting up hardcore sound equipment like that.

I was having a hard time trying to figure out how to connect these properly. There was some kind of board with many inputs on the ground, but I couldn’t figure out how to work it.

I ended up using my Pioneer SB2, and connecting it to the right speaker with the RCA -> RCA cables. I then used the DMX -> 1/4″ to connect the right speaker’s Line Out to the right subwoofer. I somehow connected the right speaker’s output to the left speaker, but I don’t even remember how, and I can’t really see how I did it from the picture of the back of the right speaker below.

Backside of the right-hand speaker (stage right)

To recap:

  • Mixer RCA Out -> to Right Speaker RCA In
  • Right Speaker DMX Out -> Subwoofer 1/4″ In
  • Right Speaker -> Left Speaker (I don’t remember how I did this).

Playing

I was down there alone for a while. No one even came down to supervise me at all. I asked the bartender if I could try using their CDJs that they had in the closet, but the connections and controls were too foreign, and I was lacking the proper cables, so I gave up.

I plugged in my SB2 and got it set up to the speaker. I started playing without being able to connect to the sub. Some people came down while I was half-playing, half trying to connect to the sub still. I messed up a transition and felt stupid. They left. I feel that you can’t multitask when DJing. You either gotta do the setup, or do the DJ. There’s not alot of down time between transitions.

Later on, I did get the sub connected. I was playing, and I was happy to just be playing to an empty room. It was amazing to be playing at all. Later on, some group of people came down and they were dancing and we were all having a great time. There was 4 main people, but there were probably like 8 people that cycled in and out of the basement that night. It was wonderful.

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