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View Full Version : Gryphon Stringed instruments is an AWESOME place.



gyosh
08-10-2011, 09:54 AM
I had questions about the set-up of my Kala. I always had trouble forming clean barre chords on the first fret and I didn't know if it was my lack of skill or something with the ukulele. I posted on the "uke talk" section of the forum and had many helpful tips on "how to check" and suggestions for causes and possible repairs. One member (thanks again chiefnoda) suggested that since I live in Silicon Valley, that I should take my uke to Gryphon Stringed Instruments in Palo Alto, CA. I did, and they were super friendly and super helpful. Much more knowledgeable than the big-box guitar shops in the area and way more personable. Anyhow, they fixed my uke while I waited, for a nominal fee (I thought it would be more) and now it plays (and therefore sounds) much better. A big thank you to Gryphon Stringed Instruments and to UU forum members for the help.

-gyosh

PoiDog
08-10-2011, 09:57 AM
(The local music store was) super friendly and super helpful. Much more knowledgeable than the big-box guitar shops in the area and way more personable.

Amen, brother. At this point, you couldn't get me into a GC, or other mega instrument emporium for love nor money.

SailingUke
08-10-2011, 10:12 AM
Amen, brother. At this point, you couldn't get me into a GC, or other mega instrument emporium for love nor money.

I remember simpler days, when I would ride my bicycle to the neighborhood music store.
Instruments hanging on the wall and racks full of sheet music and books. You could find all the accessories (capos, strings, picks, etc.) you needed too.
The staff (usually the owner & family) was all knowledgeable and friendly.

Oh those were the days, no big box stores or internet. Oh wait, I like the web, else I would not have all my GREAT UU FRIENDS !!!!

PoiDog
08-10-2011, 11:01 AM
I remember simpler days, when I would ride my bicycle to the neighborhood music store.
Instruments hanging on the wall and racks full of sheet music and books. You could find all the accessories (capos, strings, picks, etc.) you needed too.
The staff (usually the owner & family) was all knowledgeable and friendly.

The web is great, but honestly doesn't compare to a comfy, neighborhood, INDEPENDENT, music store.

I'm very lucky being in Santa Monica. McCabe's is in walking distance, and Boulevard Music is only a few miles away in Culver City. My (admitedly limited) experience with each would rate McCabe's as having the best selection, but Boulevard Music as having the most laid-back and friendly staff. Heck, they even have a store dog who wanders about and interacts with you.

I'm sure there are more stores in the area, too, like Truetone, Marina Music, etc that I haven't experienced. But at least there are still some places like this around.

RichM
08-10-2011, 11:06 AM
Gryphon is one of the best stringed instrument shops in the world, and that's no hyperbole. And the most incredible thing is, despite carrying high-end instruments and having a well-heeled clientele, they don't have even the faintest whiff of attitude. Can't say enough good things about them.

PhilUSAFRet
08-10-2011, 01:42 PM
Wow, lucky!!!! Wish I could drive over to Gryphon easily.

erivel
08-10-2011, 02:26 PM
Yes Gryphon's repair staff is the best!

itsme
08-10-2011, 02:52 PM
The web is great, but honestly doesn't compare to a comfy, neighborhood, INDEPENDENT, music store.
But sadly, they're losing ground to the "big box" stores and online retailers. It's a catch 22... they can't always offer the lowest prices, so people go elsewhere to save a buck and their business goes down and then they can't afford to stock as much, so more people go elsewhere to find what they want.

I used to love going to my local independent music store, would always spend a lot of time pouring over their sheet music section and chatting with the employees or even the owner. Even when there wasn't anything I needed/wanted, I'd usually at least buy a set of guitar strings so I felt I was supporting them. They went out of business a couple years ago. :(

mds725
08-10-2011, 06:39 PM
I've bought three of my four Kamakas from Gryphon Stringed Instruments, and they're all great instuments. Gryphon is a really friendly place where the staff lets you play the instruments as long as you want to and is otherwise very helpful. Gryphon's co-founder, Frank Ford, maintains a website called Frets.com (http://www.frets.com/) that's kinda cool.

TCK
08-10-2011, 07:15 PM
20 years ago, I walked into Gryphon with a Martin 3M someone had handed me... bless them for telling me it was in good knick and special, because I kept it around for 20 years, and now I finally play it. Best music store ever, even if it took that long to figure it out.

chiefnoda
08-11-2011, 06:00 PM
I had questions about the set-up of my Kala.......

Hi Gyosh

Glad this worked out. Yes, Gryphon is the place to go. You can get info on guitar building and repairing classes (and you ca apply the techniques to ukulele very easily). And if you visit Boston, go to Music Emporium in Lexington, MA. Ad Cotten Music in Nashivlle, TN.

Cheers
Chief

chiefnoda
08-11-2011, 07:23 PM
Boulevard Music as having the most laid-back and friendly staff. Heck, they even have a store dog who wanders about and interacts with you.

Yes!!! A store dog is a really good sign (to me). I goota go visit this store. I would even bring a bag of doggie treats.

Heck, I would take a store cat, rabbit, hedgehog, guinea pig.....

Happy Pickin
Chief

chiefnoda
08-11-2011, 07:27 PM
But sadly, they're losing ground to the "big box" stores and online retailers.

Sad indeed, but I'm holding on to support my stores. And that's important for us to be aware of great stores. ON-line stores are nice, too (MGM!) and retails stores, too. We at UU discuss stores and I'm hoping that will help keep these "good" people in business.

Keeping my fingers crossed.
Chief

PS: Hi "itsme", I'm almost done with "Bach's Air on the G String". Finally....

PoiDog
08-13-2011, 10:13 AM
Yes!!! A store dog is a really good sign (to me). I goota go visit this store. I would even bring a bag of doggie treats.

Heck, I would take a store cat, rabbit, hedgehog, guinea pig.....

Happy Pickin
Chief

Chief -

In case you need it, Boulevard Music is located on the east side of Sepulveda, just south of Culver Blvd (right after the Animal Hospital). Good peeps, and a pretty cool place. Not as rich in either history, hipness, or instruments as McCabe's, but then again, what is?

itsme
08-13-2011, 11:32 AM
Yes!!! A store dog is a really good sign (to me). I goota go visit this store. I would even bring a bag of doggie treats.

Heck, I would take a store cat, rabbit, hedgehog, guinea pig.....
I haven't been there in a few years, but Old Town Music in Pasadena used to have a store cat, a huge longhaired black/silver guy named Igor (after Stravinsky). They had signs on the doors that said please don't let Igor the cat out.

pdxuke
08-13-2011, 03:11 PM
My Martin 0(1948) and Kamaka Concert are both from Gryphon. You may recall I had finish problems with the first Kamaka concert they shipped. But Gryphon made it right.

My Martin is in their museum of ukes:
http://www.gryphonstrings.com/instpix/33126/Extra.php