906 Cocktail & Cigar Lounge: Jazzed Audio and Lighting Retro Renovations
Updated: Jan 31
In 2018, 906 Lounge owner Sammy Fiori faced extensive renovation decisions for a 3,000-square-foot portion of the 100-year-old former Goins Furniture building located on Fort Smith’s downtown Garrison Avenue.
What came first? Air, audio, or lighting?
One of Fiori’s foremost concerns at the onset was air quality, and he invested heavily in a special air ventilation system. Other amenities would include comfortable conversation seating, an elaborate walk-in cigar humidor, a big-screen viewing room, an avenue-facing heated outdoor patio, an elegant bar that exceeds expectations, and an intimate jazz stage!
Fiori’s air quality concerns were put to rest with a state-of-the-art air replacement system that replaced 3,000-square-feet of air every four minutes. Not recycled air, but fresh air!
The spacious, upscale social lounge was spectacular! The mid-January 2019 opening was featured in Cigaraficionado and the 906 became the choice cocktail and cigar lounge and quickly established itself as a premier jazz music venue.
Take a deep breath: 906 wanted spectacular to be better!
Shortly after opening, 906 general manager Buddy Kell contacted Annidale Sound for help. Before we could work on a permanent solution, we needed to make some temporary audio adjustments. For this, we brought in a pair of JBL MRX512M portable, two-way monitor speaker systems designed specifically for sound reinforcement stage monitoring applications. These tripod-mounted speakers would provide accurate audio reproduction and blend into the stylish ambiance of the lounge while we performed an audio and lighting site survey.
The lounge promotes relaxation, enjoying the company of friends along with fine food, a favorite beverage, a good cigar, and intimate conversation. How do we maintain this mood while a two- or three-piece acoustic ensemble, a piano solo, a bit of the blues, or all that jazz is on stage entertaining this upscale audience?
The right balance is crucial in this environment. Great sound that acclimates and never interferes with 906's classic, comfortable environment called for some specific equipment.
To help us determine the best audio solutions, we use JBL Pro system design software for the audio calculations in our site surveys. This allows us to input room measurements and other variables, including "what if" scenarios to model the project, submit our quote, and get busy.
We installed JBL AC28/95s speakers for their wide range of applications, high fidelity, and flexibility, and added Crown XTi Series Power Amplifiers to deliver this intricately balanced experience.
A set of Yamaha Club Concert series floor monitors assure even and accurate response for acoustic instrumentalists and singers and provide a precise and clean sound. We chose Allen & Heath's ZED-16FX Mixing Console for its flexibility, project recording capabilities, and small venue live sound reinforcement applications. Additionally, it's easy to use, integrates with both Mac and Windows, and delivers up to 16 high-quality live sound and recording reinforcement effects.
Rounding out all this equipment, of course, were microphones, mic stands, cables, and other odds and ends!
Stage lighting sets and controls the environment and establishes the mood and the manner in which an audience responds.
In keeping with the calm, relaxed ambiance of 906, we chose from Elation Professional and installed a warm white light tone LED KL Fresnel 4 to wash a soft-edge beam of light over areas of the stage (without making the talent sweat).
Two SIXPAR 200s, each equipped with 12 RGBAW+UV LEDs, electronic strobe and dimming, flicker-free operation (and more), added versatility, and mood control. We chose the Elation Pro SDC12 light controller for its 12 DMX channel faders, DIP switches, and handheld or mounted use options.
The Blizzard Lighting LightCaster W-DMX wireless receiver, with its reputation as the most dependable product available for transmitting lighting control data wirelessly, was our choice to round out this lighting project.
ANNIDALE is pleased and proud to be part of the 906 Cocktail and Cigar Lounge project and bring professional audio and lighting solutions to Fort Smith’s Downtown Entertainment District.
To quote Fiori's early vision statement for the lounge, we agree "that Fort Smith deserves nice things, and so we tried hard to make this a great, unique place to come in and truly relax."
Our thanks to 906's website gallery of photos that will get you in the mood.