Where Have the Music Stores Gone?


There’s nothing like a real brick and mortar music store. It’s the kind of place you don’t see too often anymore now that so much shopping is happening on the Internet. Everyone knows all about how music sales moved online while music itself transitioned to non-physical digital formats. What is less well-known is the current state of musical instrument sales.

It isn’t quite as simple as sales having moved online. There have been huge shifts in the way people create music. In a way, the digitalization of music has made performing and recording more democratic processes. People can now compose music without having professional training, and they can record it on their own computers for free. However, there’s still nothing like chords and solos played on a real guitar. You can’t replicate the sound and feel of a real piano on an electronic keyboard.

The loss of music stores isn’t seen only in the lack of CDs on shelves. There are also far fewer places to test and buy instruments. You used to be able to pop into any mall and play a quick solo on a demo guitar. There were entire shelves devoted to sheet music and theory books. Today’s instrument stores are largely devoted to instruments for orchestras and marching bands; children play physical instruments more than adults do. The stores are full of rentals that are given out in the beginning of the school year and returned at the end. It’s the cycle that instrument retail has settled into.

There are still some classic music stores if you look hard enough. You might have to go to live music hubs like Nashville, Boston or New York City. The stores are still open because they are supported by dedicated musicians. True music fans would be remiss not to check out the stores where their favorite musicians buy their equipment and seek out instrument repair boston.