ONE of the signs of a healthy music scene is the availability of good rehearsal spaces.
And with your average rock band generating sound levels of about 120 decibels, the rehearsal space is a very specialised structure.
It has to allow the band to rock out, usually at night, while keeping the neighbours happy.
Lismore musician and promoter Darren "Sideshow" Bridge believes it's vital to have good rehearsal spaces available for young bands.
"The only way to get good is to get up there with microphones and a full PA," he said.
"You can't rehearse in your lounge room and expect to cut it at a gig.
"People really want to see bands take it on live and have some stage craft."
A new rehearsal space in Ballina looks set to be just the place for young bands to hone their act.
Daniel Hancock has spent close to $10,000 setting up his Ballina Rehearsal Studios.
He and his father, Phillip Hancock, together with his mates, Dr Bob Walton and Steve Nossiter spent 6 months getting the construction just right.
"We corrugated the outside and then insulated the inside with 2 layers of Soundcheck plaster board and 2 layers of insulation," he said.
The rehearsal space opened officially this month and so far he is getting 2-3 bookings a week including local music legend Marshall, from Marshall and the Fro.
"I wanted to get a band together myself but needed a place to rehearse so I took some time out to build the space," he said.
"As far as I know this is the only public rehearsal space available in Ballina, the nearest one is in Byron Bay."
In time Mr Hancock plans to install a mixing desk in an adj-acent room and set up as a recording studio.
Ballina Rehearsal Studios comes equipped with microphones and a sound system and is fully air conditioned.
The studio costs $60 for 3hrs or $50 for 2hrs. For bookings phone Daniel on 0412 120 960.