Really cool experience at a local guitar store

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by naveed211, Dec 12, 2019.

  1. naveed211

    naveed211 Tele-Holic

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    Yesterday I had a really cool experience at a local guitar store. I frequent the local stores a lot, and had stopped into one on my way to pick up my kid from school, had some time to kill.

    I’m in the acoustic room playing and this guy is standing in the room and I can sense he’s watching me. I stop playing after a while and look at him and say “This one sound really good.” He is very complimentary of my playing.

    We get to talking and he’s looking to buy an acoustic for his 14 year old son (who plays piano and has an electric guitar, but wants to play Elliot Smith style acoustic stuff....kids still listen to Elliot Smith?? Cool!) but has no idea what to get. He starts asking me a lot of questions, what to look for, what I’d recommend. Gives me his budget.

    I direct him back to the 70s Alvarez Martin dread copy I was playing. I felt it was the best sounding and best playing guitar in the store for anything less than $2000, and it was under the budget he gave me. I have solid knowledge of MIJ guitars and Alvarez from that era in particular (have owned a few). I compared the quality to the lower end new Martins and Taylors and Yamahas in his range. I inform him of some upkeep/maintenance, things to look into when considering guitars, etc.

    We talked for around 45 minutes about guitars. He asks me if I work for the store to which I reply no. He thanks me and offers to buy me a beer should we cross paths again, and we part ways as he finds a worker to discuss the guitar I pointed out.

    Hopefully he bought it, but either way I feel I should get a little something from the store for my work! Just fun talking guitars in general and cool to share what knowledge I do have.
     
  2. Toadtele

    Toadtele Tele-Afflicted

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    Good on you man.
     
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  3. Whatizitman

    Whatizitman Friend of Leo's

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    NO! Don't let them sink their claws into you! Once a guitar store employs you in any shape or form you immediately lose all knowledge of the instrument and brands, and become a cocky jerk with automatic disdain for all potential customers.
     
  4. rcole_sooner

    rcole_sooner Poster Extraordinaire

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    ^:lol:^
     
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  5. zeedoctour

    zeedoctour Tele-Meister

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    I've sold a few guitars for stores via the "help a buyer out with info they lack" method. It's just a natural help others thing. Most of the time the store's sales people don't know all that much about their products and certainly don't want to waste a bunch of time making sure buyers get what suits them best. That's a sweeping generalization undoubtedly but not highly inaccurate at the same time.
     
  6. Preacher

    Preacher Friend of Leo's

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    I had a lady once who had an Alvarez Masterworks (I don't remember if it was a Yiari or not) guitar that her son found behind a dumpster. I did tell her that she should file a report with the cops as it might have been stolen and the thieves decided to ditch it.

    The guitar was grimy and out of tune but appeared to have no damage. I tuned it up with the old strings on it and once tuned up the action was good. So I played a little bit with it, big open chords rang forever, little runs up the neck were crisp and bright. I probably played it about ten minutes and then asked her what she was going to do with it.
    She hemmed a little and said she would probably let her 10 year old learn guitar on it. I told her that was a great idea and that the guitar would suit him for years to come, but if she wanted to sell it I would like to buy it. She asked what I would give for it and I told her I had a C note in my wallet ready to go (half joking) as I had not done any research on those guitars.

    I saw her a week later and asked if she wanted to sign her son up for guitar lessons which I was teaching at the time. She told me that her son decided to play drums instead of the guitar. I then asked what she was going to do with the guitar and she told me she sold it to a guy in her apartment building for $100. I was pretty shocked and I am sure that it was written on my face as she followed up saying I told her it was worth $100. I decided to let it go and chalk it up to my not flashing that C note in her face earlier.

    That was a great sounding guitar! The alvarez models are highly under valued.
     
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  7. naveed211

    naveed211 Tele-Holic

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    I have a totally unreasonable offer that if I could make my own hours and only work 10 hours a week, I’d totally offer up my services to a guitar store. Too busy with my main gig and life stuff, otherwise.

    Maybe after I retire. But it is nice to just share my knowledge and not have the potential to have my soul crushed by making it a day job instead of a fun hobby.
     
  8. beninma

    beninma Friend of Leo's

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    Great job helping him as long as it turns out his 14 year old isn't 5' tall and can't get his arms around a dread...
     
  9. Skydog1010

    Skydog1010 Tele-Afflicted Platinum Supporter

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    Last Christmas Season I sold several amps, while shopping. While talking to several customets I got considerable flak from a particular employee that exuded nothing but animosity towards all customers in the store as he bounced around looking for quick quarry.

    Manager at checkout gave me an unsolicited discount on my selection. Yay.

    All I did was answer questions for bewildered parents and make a few suggestions. Which included online sources with discounts available. Clearly I was not an employee.
     
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  10. Whatizitman

    Whatizitman Friend of Leo's

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    *music stops. record scratch. all eyes turn...*

    Buzz kill. I bet you're fun at parties.
     
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  11. naveed211

    naveed211 Tele-Holic

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    We’re good! Sounds like he’s average sized. We discussed nut width too!
     
  12. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Helping someone helping their child get into more music ... IS the reward. 45 minutes of sharing knowledge is priceless. The guitar store could never compensate you enough for the help you volunteered. Be satisfied with being a good person in our music community.
     
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  13. Bob M

    Bob M Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

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    I notice that in Guitar Centers there seems to be a lot of non-musicians buying stuff for their kids. Not to paint it with a broad brush but at least in my area the GCs don't have a lot of knowledgeable folks and steer people to stuff they don't need. Good for you to help. I do it all the time. I figure if someone starts out with the wrong guitar they will probably quit. We need more guitar players!
     
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  14. Papa Joe

    Papa Joe Friend of Leo's

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    That's an important,maybe main , obligation of a seasoned player..Passing it on..
    I feel good when I get that opportunity..
     
  15. Whatizitman

    Whatizitman Friend of Leo's

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    One part not knowing enough about guitars, and one part being pressured by corporate to sell X amount of certain brands/models. Not sure how it works with music retail specifically, but my experiences working in and around other specialty retail suggests to me it can't be much different.
     
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  16. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Exactly, and isn't this what we mainly do here on TDPRI on a daily, if not hourly basis?
     
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  17. Dan German

    Dan German Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    Good on you!

    I know I’ve probably told this story here at least once, but that won’t stop me. My grandparents wanted to buy my 15 year old sister a guitar. They had friends who owned a large music store. They told them to sell them the best guitar they had up to $125. What they came up with was an Alvarez dread. Solid spruce top, spectacular flame maple sides and back. I love that guitar to this day. I have played others just like it, and none matched it. If that guy bought it, and it’s anything like my sister’s guitar, that is a lucky kid. Hell, he’s a lucky kid anyway, because someone wants to buy him an instrument.

    (Side Note: my sister still has it, she still can’t play, and she won’t give it to me. I even wrote a song about that fact. Not that I’m bitter).
     
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  18. Controller

    Controller Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Good on the OP. I have instances of asking shoppers for help on products I am unfamiliar with and getting a cold/hostile response. I never want to be that person. It feels good to help someone out.
     
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  19. beninma

    beninma Friend of Leo's

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    Totally although I can see their being "spiffs" on selling those packages that have the $99 starter solid state showman amp + a Squier strat that you see parents buying their kids.
     
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  20. nojazzhere

    nojazzhere Poster Extraordinaire

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    WOW!...I haven't heard the term "spiffs" since my days as a commission salesman at Monkey Wards forty years ago. ;)
     
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