Music brings people together. It creates memories and makes friends of strangers. Memories such as this are being made at Good Vibes Events, LLC, because of Matt Lockhart. Able to hold 1,100 people, Good Vibes is a multi-use event hall with a 150+ VIP lounge, a private bar housing more than 50 taps as well as craft beer and cider, along with a kitchen serving a variety of food. Add to this a state-of-the-art sound system and a 40-foot stage with a piano, organ and LED screen.
Lockhart owns the venue and is a musician himself, with a career of working alongside movers and shakers in the industry. Opening the business in December after being friends with the previous owners, Lockhart partnered with the City of Newport News and received an economic development grant.
Lockhart has a decorated career as a free-spirited musician and wants to host events for all musical genres. Some of his event ideas, such as hosting block parties in City Center, are rather new to Newport News. Lockhart’s dreams of what Good Vibes could be encourage him to persevere. His goal is to create the “[Norfolk] NorVa of the Virginia Peninsula” that brings national talent to Newport News and gives locals a stage show to remember.
Good Vibes is known for its Sunday brunch, featuring a world-class Bloody Mary bar. The bar includes about 250 items including 50 hot sauces, 20 pickles and 20 olives, to name a few. This Sunday feature has appeared in the Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s biggest Bloody Mary bar.
Lockhart was excited to host his biggest event in February with the appearance of George Clinton, the Godfather of Funk.
Lockhart has had a love of music for as long as he can remember. He began playing violin at four years old. He says it runs in his blood, as his father and grandfather were musical as well. Lockhart proudly displays on the wall at Good Vibes a mandolin from the 1850s owned by his great grandfather.
Born and raised in Newport News, Lockhart is no stranger to the area. He is well known because his father, Dr. John Lockhart, delivered many babies in the area.
Lockhart attended the University of Oregon, where he was a guitar major. In college he was an independent musician, and shortly after graduating he moved to Los Angeles, where his career reached new heights.
During his time in Los Angeles, Lockhart released several albums and began generating music for film as a sound media producer. He worked under the legendary Michael Boddicker, who was his studio mentor. Lockhart also worked at Hans Zimmer Studios and wrote music for the renowned Michael Jackson. “L.A. was a great place to be in my early 20s. I got to rub elbows with stars!” Lockhart says.
Lockhart moved to Nashville to work on a movie with Jason Mewes of Jay and Silent Bob. He had planned to move to New York, but after receiving recognition for his work in film, he was offered a position with Southern Auto Group producing commercials. Throughout his career, Lockhart has established his own production company, creating more than 1,000 television commercials and four feature films, along with many other media projects. He is also a real estate investor and a Class A contractor.
“I really don’t know what not working is,” says Lockhart, who spends most of his days at Good Vibes. When he is not working, he enjoys spending time with his wife and two daughters. His family is an active part of his business, with his wife handling the marketing aspect of the business and his daughters “sometimes sweeping the floors,” Lockhart says with a smile. Lockhart has continued the tradition of having a musical family. His children play music and his wife’s family is part of the Virginia Symphony Orchestra.
Throughout his life Lockhart has used music as an escape from the world. When he is playing music, he relishes in the joy it brings him. Lockhart’s goal with Good Vibes is to bring that same energy to his customers, creating what he calls a “pain-free zone.”
“Good Vibes is here for the community,” Lockhart says.
TO THE POINT:
Good Vibes Events, LLC
Address: 11800 Merchants Walk, #100, Newport News, VA 23606
Contact: Matt Lockhart