Since 1935, the Comet Tavern has been a fixture of Seattle’s storied Pike/Pine corridor. The well-worn wood bar of this venerable Capitol Hill pub has bent the elbows of generations of locals and visitors, and its stage has played host to multiple decades of Seattle music and culture.
When the Comet was shuttered late last year, many long-time Seattle residents feared it was another nail in the coffin of what local entrepreneur Dave Meinert refers to as the city’s “black hole of gentrification.” But thanks to Meinert and partner Jason Lajeunesse, the Comet has opened its doors once again. The landmark pub’s atmosphere remains relatively unchanged, though the club has added a food menu, and the old sound system has been replaced with a new distributed system featuring Mackie’s DLM Series loudspeakers.
As Lajeunesse explains, the new owners placed a high priority on continuing the Comet’s legacy. “The Comet has always served as a living room and gathering place for a lot of the local community, including musicians, artists, writers, actors, and other creative people,” he says. “We had the opportunity to step in and restore the club, and in doing so we knew we really wanted to pay homage to its history, including games, pool, and hosting live music. It was important to us that the Comet still resonates as a cultural gathering place for the community, and I think we’ve embraced that. It’s still a neighborhood living room.”
The Comet’s new sound system, designed and installed by Kelly Berry of Seattle-based K Berry and Associates, includes ten Mackie DLM8 full range powered loudspeakers. “We’ve configured the system into three zones, covering the bar, balcony, and main seating area,” Berry explains. “It gave us a really great distribution of sound. Right out of the box, it sounded great.” A pair of DLM12S powered subwoofers provide more than enough low end for the room. “The system was really easy to install, too,” Berry adds. “The SWM300 wall mount brackets made it a breeze.”
Versatility was an essential demand for the new sound system, and the DLM Series more than delivered. “We’re open from noon to 2:00 AM, seven days a week,” Lajeunesse explains. “We needed a system that could deliver great sound and consistent coverage 14 hours a day, at times when there are only eight people in the room, and when there are 250. With the new system, we’re able to consistently bring up the volume as needed, as the room fills up, without ever being too loud for one single person or table.”
Lajeunesse says the new DLM system has upgraded the Comet’s sound without affecting the club’s personality. “We were really pleased with the DLM8,” he concludes. “The speakers provided us with all the coverage we needed, but they’re low profile enough that we were able to tuck them into corners and areas where they didn’t interfere with the look and the vibe we were after,”