Psst... Ready to join TalkBass and start posting, make new friends, sell your gear, and more?  Register your free account in 30 seconds.

Californian (good) music shops

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by pantografo64, Jul 30, 2001.


  1. Hello Californian bassmen,

    do you want to give me an help?
    In ten days I'll have a couple of weeks to spend from San Francisco to San Diego.
    Can you suggest me the best music shops you know: I mean not only GCs but especially the little weird shops, hard to find usually.

    Thanks in advance, I'll give my feed-back at the end of august!
     
  2. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    California
  3. I used to live in the LA area. Up in Tarzana, which is a few miles north of North Hollywood, there's a boutique bass shop called the LA Bass Exchange. I only went there once, but most of their merchandise was at least $2000. But at least they had stuff that you won't find at a GC.

    Usually, where you find a GC, you'll find some smaller guitar stores. There's a GC on Sunset Blvd in Hollywood. Right across the street, there's a Carvin store and there are some smaller stores within walking distance. Same goes for the GC in Sherman Oaks, which is around 20 minutes or so from Hollywood.

    Every time I travel somewhere, I always try to look for the guitar stores myself. Have fun!
     
  4. Hi Alexssandro,
    I have been one time in those shop some years ago, I remember a '66 Jazz in lake placid blue faded in gold, almost. With today prices I had to buy it.
     
  5. Originally posted by Big Wheel
    OK, there's Real Guitars on Lafayette street, about ten blocks from GC. It's also where Gary Brawer's repair shop and Ransom guitars are located. In the Haight is the Haight-Ashbury music center. Near GC is a store called Rocker guitars. If you have time, go to Redwood City, where Gelb music is located. I went there once, saw more Ken Smiths, Zons and F basses than I've ever seen in my entire life! I have vowed not to set foot in there again until I can afford to buy one, which may take a while.



    Hi Big Wheel,
    I followed your advices:

    - Real Guitars: real nice people, the nicest ones. And just the kind of shop I like.

    - Ransom guitars: perhaps a "random" type of shop. Kind guy but little choice of basses.

    - Haight-Asbury: typical middle size shop, I'd like to go in once in a while. I was almost buying an Hamer Cruise bass. Too bad I took a fine because of my park meter with too little coins, or too much time spent in the shop.

    And about Gelb, I passed in Redwood city after the shop working hours, but from the window I saw a good array of Laklands and Cirruses.


    If you ever pass in my region I'll be pleased to do the same for you! See you. :)
     
  6. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Yep, L.A. Bass Exchange on Ventura Blvd. in Tarzana is a must. Also, it would be worth it to drop by the GC in Hollywood at 7425 Sunset Blvd. They carry pretty much everything, including Lakland and Eden. Also a HUGE selection of vintage instruments. Then visit Mesa right across the street.

    Down in San Diego, be sure to hit Bass Alone on Voltaire in Ocean Beach. John DiMaggio has some really fabulous high-end basses there, and he'll let you play 'em, too. Guitar Trader on Ruffner (right behing the Arby's on Clairemont Mesa Blvd.) is OK ... lotsa Fender guitars, not too many basses.
     
  7. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    California
    Grazie, Pantografo. Hope you enjoyed SF.
     
  8. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Oh, yeah, you might want to visit the Carvin Factory on World Trade Drive in Ranch Bernardo (San Diego). They have a lot of beautiful instruments there. You may get hooked.
     
  9. Sure I did, Big Wheel!
    Oops little mistake, you have to read my previous post as:

    - Rocker Guitars: real nice people, the nicest ones. And just the kind of
    shop I like.

    - Real guitars: perhaps a "random" type of shop. Kind guy but little choice
    of basses.



    Munji,
    I knew John Di Maggio, very good guy, and I liked his shop full of "clever" basses.
    About the Carvin factory I hope to see it in the next travel.
    But I had a tour of Ernie Ball / Music Man factory in San Luis Obispo ;).
     
  10. yeah?? i live there (here), that's amazing... where is the factory at??
     
  11. Yep, it's a possible to have a tour. Better with an appointment.
    This is the address: 151, Suburban Road (no EB sign on the building).
     
  12. Thanks.
     
  13. you want weird? Big Dawg (or is it mad, or somthing like that) music, in berkeley, the weirdest music shop you'll ever see... possibly.

    If you're gonna be in San Rafel, i recomend going to "Banana's At Large" not so odd as to have freaky instruments, but according to my dad's friend who works there, Les Claypool is a regular there. He said on any given day, Les will show up, and play EVERYTHING in the shop, fiddling around with all the new stock, and toying with the old stock too. They have a web page, but i dont recall what it is.
     
  14. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    California
    Fat Dog. He's the proprietor of Subway guitars, which does have a website.
     
  15. Eh, i knew it was somthing dog, i just couldnt think of it. Crazy place.
     
  16. Max

    Max Supporting Member

    Feb 14, 2000
    Bakersfield, CA
    Here are some offf the beaten path.

    Fresno: Archer's in the Tower district.

    Bakersfield: Front Porch music. HUGE collection of vintage Mosrites.

    Atascadero (South of San Luis Obispo) Lightning Joes.
     
  17. I just thought of somthing... If you chose to go to a GC *grunt* IME the El Cerrito (across the bay) GC was much better than the SF one, Simply because it had more space, and wasnt as crowed. Then agian, it doesnt have the best basses. Big Wheel might know better than me.

    Gelb music i think is a very good shop. From what i've heard over the phone, they've got EVERYTHING and have recomended coming down simply to try everything out. They sounded like very nice people. Who ever delt with me on the phone one day, put up wiht me asking about their entire enventory of Peavey Cirrus basses. (which they had a lot of, at the time, they had every wood combo except one, i dont recall which)
     
  18. Starving Musician - Santa Clara, Sant Cruz, and San Jose. Rocker Guitars - San Fransico. Guitar Showcase - San Jose (They have a good selection and a great collection not for sale in cases. All sorts of rare guitars and basses) That's all that's coming to me.

    Oh, and someone mentioned the guitar shop on Haight... NEVER buy anything there. The people who work there are the biggest jerks I've ever dealt with.
     
  19. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    California
    You obviously haven't been to Black Market music. They relocated from SF to LA. They can have 'em.
     
  20. Gabu

    Gabu

    Jan 2, 2001
    Lake Elsinore, CA
    Doh! Why do we have to have them. We have enough! Can't we send them to Atlanta and let John have to worry about them?