Check out some Harder Beat interviews from the past.
Found a few others as well, but mostly from:
Avalon Sound’s Jim Wright
Meet Jim Wright of Avalon Sound By Gabby Martinez
Ok, your band has gotten good enough to cut a CD. You’ve got your 10 or 12 songs ready and found a studio that will charge an arm and a leg. Five hundred dollars later, you have one CD with six songs that sounds good but could have been mixed better. If you want better sound you discover it will cost more money – and your budget is already blown. What’s there to do? Maybe you should have gone mobile – as in a mobile studio like Avalon Sound. Avalon is the anti-studio, because owner Jim Wright brings the studio to your rehearsal space and cuts your CD on the spot. He hits the streets of D/FW with a 16-track digital studio, an army of microphones and over 80 pounds of cords. He uses top quality mics; Shure 57’s and 58’s. Wright has had his company running for about six months. Prior to that, he was playing the D/FW area with bands like Gibson Cemetery and Hanger 18. He knows the ends and outs of the local scene. “I want to make every band I work with comfortable when recording,” Wright says. “In a studio you’ve got five guys looking at you through glass and, with that pressure, you don’t play your best.” Wright points out other aspects of Avalon Sound that make his mobile studio stand out. “I produce quality recordings, provide excellent customer service, convenience, low prices and moralistic values. And when I mix the CD, I have the band approve the final product.” A 12-hour session with Avalon Sound will set you back $250. Since there’s no overhead for rental on a permanent studio, it equals less money for musicians to record. Local bands that have used Avalon Sound are Damnasty, Enemy Within and Disorder. In addition to embarking on mobile recording, Wright wants to expand with video production and setting up web sites for up and coming artists.
Southwest Blues Magazine
Monte Carlo’s: — Great food, cool bands, cold beer
By Kathy Utorka
Look westward local musicians. Nestled in between UTA and the Parks Mall, you’ll find a new live music venue to showcase your material. Monte Carlo’s — a great hangout with a bar and grill, pool tables, video games — has quickly gained a reputation of hosting some of the best bands in the Metroplex.
In the former location of Polki’s, Monte Carlo’s opened its doors in October 2003 and soon began showcasing live entertainment. The club has an inviting atmosphere, due in large part to club owner Shani Shehu, who greets his guests with an old world European charm that reflects his Albanian heritage. At first it was a challenge to offer live music — finding reliable booking management, a pro-audio system and soundman. Enter Jim Wright of Avalon Multimedia. Jim came to work at Monte Carlos almost by accident. Back in November, by hook and by crook, Shani offered Jim the opportunity to make it happen for the club.
Jim was the perfect choice. After being in bands for many years (Gibson Cemetery, Hanger 18, and a founding member of Rugburn), he turned his talents to recording. Told it absolutely wouldn’t work, Jim started up Avalon Multimedia — with the new concept of a mobile studio. In other words, he goes to the band’s gigs, rehearsal studio, wherever. The price is also right — with 32-track digital recording at a mere $20/hr. His second year sales quadrupled (Jim gives credit to HB, saying one-third of those sales are generated by his monthly ad).
Monte Carlo’s is a 21+ venue that offers bands the chance to perform under the best conditions. “We host up to four bands on Friday and Saturday nights, there’s free parking and no pre-show ticket sales that bands have to meet,” Jim states enthusiastically. “This is not Los Angeles or Seattle — this is Arlington, Texas. Bands deserve the chance to have their music heard, and we stand by any band that believes in what they do and promotes that belief with the same drive.” Jim has a great deal of integrity (a rarity in this business), and believes in treating bands fairly.
Bands always play on weekend nights, working their way up. Once they bring in over 30 people, they get to headline, getting 50% of the door plus 15% of bar sales from 10 – 2 AM.
Shani has plans to expand the club by leasing the adjacent space, which will nearly double its size. Hopefully that will happen within the next year, creating a larger live music venue in Tarrant County.
Grinning, Shani announces that Jim has shaved the three hairs on his chin for the HB picture. Patrons watching Monte Carlo’s soundman/booker pose atop a pool table, knew it was all in good fun. But Jim is serious about the club’s support of the local music scene. “We want bands to have the things that I didn’t have when I was playing — access to a great place to play and showcase their music. Great food, cool bands, cold beer — that’s what it’s all about, folks.” (Kathy Utorka)
Desecrate – Self Titled demo, Avalon Multimedia
Aiming to be a “heavy-as-sin metal band,” the tag is definitely within reach for this group. Profound intensity and dark gothic undertones run crazy in this bad ass Avalon Multimedia release. Ricky Casas’ singing style can only be described as a powerhouse, ripping sky-high with intensity and feeling. Jeremy Norvelle and Kevin Law (guitars) bring forth a melodic element, with J.V. Whitman (drums) and Greg Garcia (bass) helping punch up this unique record. “Murder” and “What You Want” showcase the band’s versatility without undermining their overall style. Desecrate rocks you hard, punches you in the face and leaves you there to figure out what happened. (Kathy Utorka)
Various Artists – Thank You From, Avalon Multimedia
Jim Wright of Avalon recorded this compilation as a special thank you to four bands that went above and beyond the call of duty. They filled in at Monte Carlos at the last minute for a cancelled act. The album features four tunes widely varied in their musical style – ranging from the melodic and crisp acoustic ballad “The Difference” by Chris George – to 80’s flashback “Wheels of Steel” by Muthalode. There’s also the grooving guitar licks and melodic harmonies of Paradigm’s “Friend” and Cold Fury’s hard hitting “Non-Serviam.” One thing for sure; this compilation is an excellent way to showcase the diversity and quality recording of Avalon Multimedia- while promoting a few of the bands who have helped Jim out. (Kathy Utorka)
May 2005 GC Magazine
Avalon Multimedia, Club Monte Carlo’s, and Jim Wright
By Jerry Flores
I have known Jim Wright over 14 years. We met when our bands were each playing in a rehearsal space adjacent to another band’s room. The place was rather large, square footage wise, but the rooms were small and most of us had hung our own ceilings and carpeted the walls. Now 14 years later, Jim has gathered the resources, kept with a plan to work in the local music scene, and more. With Avalon Multimedia, Avalon Rehearsals, and bookings and live sound for Monte Carlos in Arlington; Jim is keeping himself right in the middle of the local music scene.
I managed to go out to Monte Carlos and see some of the live bands, maybe get one to send in a press kit . . . the club is located in Arlington on South Cooper Street. After talking to Jim for a little bit, I realized that I would rather get his side of things. He has, after all, gone from playing in a band, busting his rear to get work, to the one who gives bands the avenue in which to ply their craft, still busting his rear working. In all aspects – bookings, recording, mobile recording, web design, video to DVD, rehearsal space, and all with a smile on his face.
***Jim had the following to say, when asked about Avalon Multimedia and what kinds of services they could offer:***
Avalon Multimedia is based on the idea of synergy (the value of the whole is greater than the sum of its parts). We provide a wide array of services to local musicians and small businesses in the Dallas-Fort Worth area such as: 32 track mobile recording (we bring the studio to you!!), Avalon Rehearsal Studio. CD and DVD duplication, DVD/video production, website design, Booking and live sound for Monte Carlos in Arlington, and I am currently in negotiations with the Hard Rock Cafe in Dallas to provide their live sound. My first gig/audition for the Hard Rock will be on May 21st. We are currently completing construction on a recording studio located at Avalon Rehearsals and I believe we have just built the largest jam room in Tarrant County (12×27). This company began as a mobile 16 track digital studio in late 2001(we are now a 32 track studio). Since then we’ve added related services in order to consolidate our position in the local marketplace. In other words, if you are a local musician who needs quality promotional products and services, but doesn’t want to pay “professional” prices, you’ve come to the right place!
***What are some of your thoughts on the music scene; mainly, the bands and clubs that make up the scene?***
The bands currently in our scene are as talented as they’ve always been in DFW. I think the problem is that people don’t seem to support local music the way they used to and as a result many of the clubs and radio stations have either switched formats or just started ignoring local music altogether. As for the clubs that still play local rock, many of them are located in bad neighborhoods which discourages patrons from coming out to the show. In addition to this some venues have decided that we should follow suit with LA and Seattle and make bands “pay to play” or “pre-sell tickets”. I’m proud to say that at Monte Carlos we don’t do pay to play and we never will.
***What are some of the key suggestions you can make to aspiring bands out there who want to be a part of the local music scene?***
Network and make friends. Treat every gig as if would determine the course of your career. Remember that if you cultivate a reputation for canceling gigs or acting like a prim Donna, most of us sound guys talk to each other and compare notes. In public we claim to be in bitter competition but in private there’s generally a professional courtesy that exists.
Jim definitely makes some good points, take it from him, the sound guys talk . . . any band, who plays live knows, the sound guy can be your best friend or your worst enemy! Some of them are just plain hard to deal with, others just may not like you or someone in your band. Or in all fairness, your band may be hard to deal with. At Monte Carlos you are given the avenue in which to play loud in front of an audience, an air conditioned building, well lit parking, in the center of the metroplex, a nice bar, and nice people who work there . . . “if your band can’t bring the people into a “no cover” club, then there’s a networking problem and that is not what we are about. I want bands that will work with each other, keep the crowd there to see all the bands play, and to enjoy the evening as a whole instead of the “grab some money and run” type bands”. Friday nights the evenings usually consist of cover bands, country, and pop. Saturday is more reserved for the local heavier rock bands.
You can learn more about the rehearsal spaces and the studio at www.avalonmultimedia.com drop him an email and say you read this article, he’ll be extra nice! And for bands who want to see about getting a gig at Monte Carlos in Arlington, 3701 South Cooper (behind the Jack-in-the-box) or call him at 817-465-4747. They have satellite TV, pool tables, pizza, and more. Or you can also go to www.clubmontecarlos.com for more information. Saturday, May 7, 2005 – Staggercrawl will be playing there.
Shut Up and Shred! CD review Harder Beat Magazine
Live Wire – Shut Up and Shred!!, Avalon Sound
No, you haven’t discovered an EP of long lost Motley Crué demos or early album outtakes. These are brand new, original songs from Dallas’ premiere Motley Crué tribute band, Live Wire.
Remember when rock-n-roll was fun? When big hair, bandanas and spandex were “in,” and guys wore more makeup than their girlfriends? Harry Macgruder (vocals/guitar), Jim Wright (guitar/keyboards), Taylor Dennis (bass) and Tommy Willuhm (drums) sure do. Their five–song EP is full of fist-pumping anthems (“These Are the Times,” “She’s All Alone” and “Gypsy’s Tears”), a big power ballad (“Parted Roads”) and the infectiously fun (“Shut Up.”) Sure, it’s a little cheesy, but the songs are catchy, and there’s some killer guitar work. There’ll be some “critics” who’ll automatically hate this because it’s not angry, “edgy” or modern enough. To them all I got to say is … Shut Up and Shred!! For more info go to www.myspace.com/txtribute 2crue (Andy Laudano)