Tourists come from all over the country just to visit the honky tonks in downtown Nashville. But the noise coming from one bar on Lower Broadway is causing complaints from some who live and work in the heart of Music City.
After spending more than 40 years in his guitar shop on Broadway, George Gruhn of Gruhn Guitars says the noise from Honky Tonk Central is ear splitting.
"Now they are blasting music onto the street from windows that open from floor to ceiling," Gruhn said.
And he isn't the only one complaining about Honky Tonk Central, which has been open just three weeks.
The bar is unlike any other downtown, with three levels and sometimes three different bands playing at once, with open windows.
"What that does is ends up being the music flooding out toward the street," said Metro police Capt. Jason Reinbold. "And the complaints that are coming are in are from other establishments or residents that we have."
Police have also received a few noise complaints about Margaritaville and Rippy's.
"That music you hear, that noise you hear in the background, that's your tax dollars not going up, because people are coming to Nashville to enjoy it," said Adam Dread, attorney for Honky Tonk Central.
But the bars aren't breaking any rules. Nashville's noise ordinance exempts live music downtown.
"People complaining about music in downtown Nashville is like somebody who moves into the middle of Disney World and complains about the noise from an amusement park," Dread said.
"I can't function this way, and neither can anybody else if this continues," Gruhn said.
Metro Councilwoman Erica Gilmore, who represents downtown Nashville, plans to meet with residents and business owners before deciding whether new legislation is needed.
"Nashville is known for its live music, but at the same time, we do want things to be reasonable," Gilmore said.
Copyright WSMV 2012 (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
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