Morrison residents want Red Rocks to crank down the noise

MORRISON, Colo. — A dispute about the volume at Red Rocks Amphitheatre has been going on for months, with some residents complaining about window-rattling sound levels.

The problem has to do with the bass levels from EDM concerts. Some Morrison residents who live more than a mile from the amphitheater say they’re being held captive in their own home.

Live music at Red Rocks is as big as the rocks themselves and a big reason why people in Morrison chose to live nearby.

But it’s the noise from electronic dance music concerts that have neighbors raising their voices and they’ve been doing so for quite some time.

“It’s the bass. You feel it more than you hear it,” resident Gerry Smith said. “It’s like the Earth is shaking. It’s vibrating. The pictures are moving on the wall.”

Complaints from numerous residents forced Red Rocks to implement new limits on volume and duration. The rules went into effect Jan. 1.

Concerned about enforcement, Morrison’s mayor wrote a letter to Jefferson County commissioners that says in part, “The people who are impacted are all residents of Jefferson County.”

Citing comments from a recent town hall meeting, the mayor writes, “We feel like prisoners in our own home. It is like Guantanamo with loud, pulsing music and sleep deprivation.”

But not all residents agree.

“If you’re living here you know that the venue is here, so you should be prepared for the loud noise anyways,” a resident says. “It’s a historic venue where many of the greats have played. There’s no reason to turn down the music.”

Under the new rules, performers will be fined up to $10,000 for volume violations and curfew limits. Town leaders are scheduled to meet with Jefferson County commissioners on Friday morning.