Trading in the Man Cave for a Music Room in The House That Blues Built

House that blues built

As the basement of The House That Blues Built continues to take shape, we can start to envision what the space will ultimately look like.

Fourth-generation custom builder Albert Cummings splits his time between the world of residential construction and the music industry, so it only makes sense that his personal home includes a customized music room

Not only is Albert Cummings a music industry veteran who has worked alongside Buddy Guy, Johnny Winter, Sheryl Crow, Susan Tedeschi, and B.B. King, among others, but he’s also a renowned custom builder. His personal home, a custom build in the Berkshire Mountains of Massachusetts, is fittingly named “The House That Blues Built,” and unsurprisingly, his lifetime dedication to music is integral to the home’s design. 

Along with his wife and business partner Christina, the musician/custom builder is turning the home’s lower level, a finished walk-out basement, into a state of the art music room that Cummings calls “a man cave with guitars instead of cigars.”

Rather than adding a recording studio to the home, Cummings opted for a casual practice space separated from the rest of the house. Though not as high-tech as a recording studio, the home’s music room does include soundproofing and more specific humidification settings for proper guitar storage.

“It’s not a recording studio, but it will include soundproof insulation from Owens Corning in the ceiling and the walls to muffle the sound,” says Albert. “That specific room also has a humidification system that will keep the environment at the proper moisture content, which is really important for all of the instruments.” 

Apart from the music room’s technical design considerations, Christina, who initially came up with the idea for a practice space, handled the interior design. She incorporated moody colors with a display of Albert’s guitars and memorabilia. Along with a relaxed seating area, Christina decided to add a more extraordinary feature to Albert’s music cave: a stage.

“Anytime someone else in the industry comes to visit, we’ll have a designated place in the house to hangout, plug a guitar in, and actually play on a stage,” she says. “It’s perfect for both of us because it’s a fun addition for him but it looks aesthetically the way I want it to be.”

While he has no plans in the works to perform for his soon-to-be neighbors, Albert does hope to put the stage to good use, whether entertaining guests, hosting band practice, or live streaming gigs from the comfort of his own home. 

“During the COVID-19 pandemic, we learned that Albert needed a space where he could livestream, and we really didn't have that space available,” Christina says. “The hope is to be able to send out a full concert video if he chooses to, and while it’ll look to viewers like it’s happening at a cool little venue, it’ll actually be in our home.” 

Beyond late night practice sessions and live streamed concerts, Albert envisions the completed music room as a secluded space for inspiration, collaboration, and creativity where he can delve deeper into his passion for music both as a hobby and a career.

“I think the new music will originate in this space,” he says. “That's how I see it. This is a place where I can spend time with friends or be alone, write songs, and keep making music.”

By: Layne Deakins

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