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Old 07-24-2014
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Music Etiquette at the Dock

Ok, the day at sea is over, you've pulled into a marina for the night, button up the ship, pour a cold one, light off the BBQ and put on some good tunes... and everyone around you stares at you like your from Mars.

Is there an unwritten rule concerning music in a marina? This actually happened to me last week. The tunes were from inside the boat and barely audible in the cockpit, but folks were straining to see where the music was coming from.

Here's the funny part. The group who was doing all the looking from accross the fairway did the evening wine drinking thing and the ladies were cackling in no time. You could here them 6 boats away.

Do any of you have speakers installed in the cockpit?

Dave
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Old 07-24-2014
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Re: Music Etiquette at the Dock

You make a good case for anchoring.
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Old 07-24-2014
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Re: Music Etiquette at the Dock

I have no speakers in the cockpit, but the sound from the surround sound system in the boat carry a very long way across and through the water, therefore, I don't play them louder than whisper quiet at an anchorage or at the dock. Keep in mind that while anchored, there is essentially nothing to absorb the sounds coming from your boat - nothing!

Additionally, not everyone enjoys the music styles that you enjoy. Some folks only want to hear the sounds of nature, or the sounds inside their minds while enjoying a day on their boats. You might like hip-hop or rap, but personally, I cannot stand either. I don't consider them music - I consider them irritating.

Some folks can only get into a song when it's played at ear-bleed volume. As a full-time musician/singer/entertainer I think that's insane. It drives me nuts when I'm sitting at a traffic light and some teenaged adolescent-adult pulls up behind me with his sub-woofers blaring so loud that my van shakes. Sometimes I want to get out and take a hammer to his speakers. Unfortunately, the DB laws are rarely enforced. If they were, this kind of thing wouldn't happen.

The next time you're out on your boat, walk 50 feet down the dock and listen to see if you can hear the music. If you can, it's way too loud. Additionally, most men loose a lot of their high frequency hearing by age 35 so have a young woman walk with you and ask if she can hear it as well. If you can, it's too damned loud!

Gary
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Old 07-24-2014
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Re: Music Etiquette at the Dock

Maybe they were looking to get invited over to the party where the excellent music was playing. Or maybe the wine-drinking ladies think you're hot.

Life is better when you assume the best in the poeple around you.

If I was your marina neighbor and you were listening to music I liked and I could see that you were drinking beer, I'd probably come over and introduce myself.
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Old 07-24-2014
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Re: Music Etiquette at the Dock

Gary-

If you have a young woman with you, and can hear her speak, then you haven't lost your high frequency hearing.

Marinas are inherently noisy.
People blabbing while walking past, bars blaring music until 2am, cars in the parking lot, and lots of boats and people in close proximity.
I say that in marinas, it's not rude to play music at a respectable volume, until a reasonable hour. If people don't like it, tough sh*t.

Anchorages are where people go for peace and quiet.
I won't run a generator.
I won't play music that can be heard outside of my cabin, at ANY hour.
I keep conversation in the open cockpit at a low volume.
No "wine cackling".
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Old 07-24-2014
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Re: Music Etiquette at the Dock

I think it sort of depends on the atmosphere at your marina. Ours is small with only a handful of permanent slip holders scattered along two docks.

We have cockpit speakers (came installed when we bought the boat). We rarely use them in the slip (rarely use them at all, really) but when we do, we make sure that anyone standing on the dock looking down into the boat can barely hear the music.

Our slip neighbor directly opposite likes to play his guitar in his cockpit when he returns from his sails. He's OK. No Joe Satriani. We know that his time on his boat is his break from being primary caregiver of his wife so we turn off our music when he's plucking away just out of respect and on the off chance our music would interfere. He probably doesn't care and we never asked if he can hear us, we just do it.

Two slips down our other neighbor plays reggae from his iPhone in his cockpit. Unless we're sitting in his boat, we can't hear it.

The only time we muttered amongst ourselves was when a power boater was there for the week to repair his boat. Boat name "Mad Dog" or "Big Dog" or some such name in two foot letters on his transom and rock music blaring across the marina. We all decided that we'd let it go unless he became a permanent slip holder. No need to cause a fuss if he was leaving eventually anyway. Which he did.
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Old 07-24-2014
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Re: Music Etiquette at the Dock

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave_E View Post
put on some good tunes... and everyone around you stares at you like your from Mars.

...

The tunes were from inside the boat and barely audible in the cockpit, but folks were straining to see where the music was coming from.

Here's the funny part. The group who was doing all the looking from accross the fairway did the evening wine drinking thing and the ladies were cackling in no time. You could here them 6 boats away.
Music tastes vary.

"Barely audible" means different things to different people.

Sound travels very well over water.

Someone on the next dock may be hearing your music AND the music from another boat that you can't hear that, together, is really bad.

Boisterous talking, laughing, and "cackling" is just as rude as intrusive music.

Most marinas have quiet hours that should be respected. 10p to 8a is common but you should check the regulations at your own marina.

Those who engage in activities that impact others (music, other noise, smoking, barking dogs) have no organic right to intrude on others. I can't think of anyone ever accused of being too quiet.

Good for you for noticing - the easy next step is to ask "is this too loud for you?" That certainly puts you on the high moral ground when the cackling starts.

My opinions are my own and YMMV.
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Old 07-24-2014
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Re: Music Etiquette at the Dock

I have cockpit mounted speakers, but don't use them in the marina.

Here in the PNW I rarely hear music being played inside marinas. I've spent the last week in the San Juan Islands staying in state parks, anchored out, and in marinas (right now I'm in Rosario Resort). Last night I was surrounded by lots of big boats since they put my 28' sailboat in a 40' slip, but I still haven't heard any music.

I like it this way.
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Old 07-24-2014
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Re: Music Etiquette at the Dock

When I was about 19 one of my budies pointed out that it was inherently rude to play music loud enough that others had to listen to it, as though you had some right to expect them to listen to your tunes. That was the last time I played music with the windows down. How would you feel I came over and changed the channel, since we share the same air and I'm forced to listen to them too? Don't I have a right to chose your tunes? I bet you wouldn't like that.

Unless the cabin is closed up, or at moderate volume when well separated from other boats, I don't think there is a place where it is polite to play music. As for the notion that marinas are inherantly loud, you are only perpetuating the problem.
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Old 07-24-2014
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Re: Music Etiquette at the Dock

I try to keep my music at a level where I can't hear it at all one slip away if played on the cockpit speakers. Since there are music styles I do not like, I assume nobody likes mine either and find it selfish to force others to listen. I sometimes wear a set of Bluetooth earbuds if I am going to being working on the outside of the boat and want some loud rock and roll to keep me going!

Some marinas are strict about outside grilling too.

I installed cockpit speakers in this boat and my previous one.
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