Sound System Makes Electric Meters Spin

yardman

With such large cabinets of speakers known as Houses of Joy projecting waves of boogie woogie sound down the block, it’s no wonder that sound systems were known to sap an amp or two. This article from the Star Newspaper, May 28, 1964, tells of one sound system that made bills fly. What was even more interesting about this sound system is that it appears it may have been taking that electricity from a nearby government office that was attached to the same meter. The article reads, ” . . . In his memo, the MO(H) [Minister of Health] said that the bills for electricity used by the Health Office, Port Maria, appeared to be very high, although during this period November 1963 to March 1964, very little use was made of the electric fans and there had not been any need to use the lights. He wondered whether the sound system used by the yardman or some member of his household was not responsible for the excessive amount of current consumed, and he, the MO(H), suggested that the Health Office be metered separately from the yardman’s residence.” Sure enough, they agreed to install a separate meter so that the yardman’s sound system didn’t get put on the health department’s tab!

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