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Music Stores Scare Me

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Casting Thunder, Dec 2, 2012.

  1. Casting Thunder

    Casting Thunder

    Oct 7, 2012
    I love playing bass, but I hate going into any guitar store, chain or mom and pop shop. I feel like every time I step into one I'm just glared at and/or totally ignored. I'd be lying if I said I haven't walked up to a register stood around for ten minutes until I had to ask/yell if anyone would like to sell me whatever. If anyone does speak to me it's normally something along the lines of "Shame you can't be a real bassist being left handed."

    I get it, I'm young and I look younger, I don't know much, but I can only learn so much from the internet. Oh yeah and I have money I want to blow at your store.

    Am I the only one who has issues like this? Is there anything I can do about it?
  2. SactoBass

    SactoBass There are some who call me.......Sactobass Supporting Member

    Jul 8, 2009
    Sacramento CA
    Somebody needs to contact Paul Mc to let him know that he will never be a real bassist.
  3. You're going to the wrong places. The mom 'n pop guitar shop in my town has great service. Their prices are within dollars of the bigger stores and no one is on commission, so they'll talk to you till closing.

    Where are you located?
  4. snappytom


    Aug 17, 2005
    Forget about music stores for a minute, how do you feel when you walk into other stores ? Take an Auto Parts store for example, I am not a mechanic but have a decent knowledge of vehicles. I expect the staff at the store to help me out if needed. I should not be ignored or looked down on because of a lack of knowledge. You mention being young. I am 50+ and years ago sometimes felt like you do. Now there are 2 major changes, I really don't care anymore and I refuse to take any crap or attitude from someone who is supposed to be providing a service or product that I am paying for. That makes me sound like a cranky old man ..... I am not. Treat everybody fairly but do not take crap when you are paying the bill.
  5. bluewine

    bluewine Banned

    Sep 4, 2008
    I'm not big on chains, but Milwaukee has several great "mom & pop" music stores.

  6. Big Brother

    Big Brother

    Feb 13, 2011
    San Diego
    Roving sub-demon
    He's that guy from Wings right? They were pretty good.

    Regarding the topic, I think a lot of people get that feeling in music stores. I used to sometimes but I buy online now, it isn't an issue.

    I think it is on purpose as an unspoken business model, they make you feel inadequate and not worthy of their time so you inevitably buy something to get your self-esteem back. I am only half-kidding. :smug:
  7. dtripoli

    dtripoli SUSPENDED

    Sure you're not just misinterpreting annoyance for fear.
  8. pacojas

    pacojas "FYYA BUN"

    Oct 11, 2009
    heyyy,.. quit yer whiney, whinnin'!

    when i was yer age, we didn't music stores. we had to go out back, cut a tree down, and wait for Santa Claus to bring us a guitar. ask yer Gran Maw! they would give us a Sears Catalog and we'd pick from the two choices we had. :(

    it was AWFUL,.. :bawl:
  9. BigEarl

    BigEarl Supporting Member

    Sep 29, 2003
    Austin, TX
    I hate music stores too, the vibe always feels to me like a headcutting session. Only after a considerable amount of jonesin' will I set foot in one ...or when I actually have money to buy something.
  10. davidjackson


    Sep 10, 2011
    bad sales people are all the same -whether in music shops or not. One of their failings is massive over generalisations based on your appearance.

    I wear a suit and tie for my job and sometimes call into music shops when I am working in different cities. When I am dressed like that the sales people couldn't be more helpful encouraging me to try out Rickenbackers, Deluxe Fenders etc. that I have no intention of buying. They even insist that I run them through a Mesa Boogie or top end tube amp too rather than the normal 100w combo that is set up for people to try basses through. They never hassle me and couldn't be more helpful.

    Conversely, I went shopping for my new bass a couple of years back with £1,000k to spend and every intention of ending the day with a new bass. The problem? I was wearing jeans, a scruffy t-shirt, a baseball cap and I hadn't shaved. Nobody wanted to deal with me and they were terrified handing me anything other than a Squier bass.

    I ended up buying online...
  11. I've been in plenty of stores with "DO NOT TOUCH" signs on $500 guitars and full of attitudes/sneering... I've also been in stores with $10,000+ guitars & had loads of polite, professional, courteous, helpful, and generally enjoyable conversation with staff/owners. Some stores I can't understand how they stay in business ripping people off.... others, I wish I had that PowerBall ticket so I could just become the "owner" of that type of collection..
  12. I never have a problem with any music store I go to. If they don't treat me like a valued customer then I never go back. Simple. Customer service is #1 in retail, no matter what the product is. Lousy customer service, no customers. No customers, no store.

    To the OP - if they ignore you or give you a hard time because of your age then ask to see the store manager, and tell him that you have cash to spend, and if his store is not interested then some other store will be. Then watch their attitude change in a heartbeat!
  13. mrbell321


    Mar 26, 2012
    N. Colorado
    Guitar Center tends to be the worst on this point. Local shops are USUALLY less judgmental, but sometimes they're less likely to help.

    But another part of music stores that annoys me is when you go in and some jackass is in there shredding away w/ the amp set at 11. For some reason, music stores put up w/ that, even when it makes everyone else go "eh... I'd rather not be here or buy anything because I can't hear ANYTHING else"
    Another thing is I'm not very good so I don't want to play a high volume to complete with others who are trying out things... but that's not really the store's fault.
  14. bassbully

    bassbully Endorsed by The PHALEX CORN BASS..mmm...corn!

    Sep 7, 2006
    Blimp City USA
    People knock GC all the time but some of the most ego filled ass's are in Mom and Pop type music stores. Allot of owners I have came across are know it all's, do it their way, never listen to customers and are nasty to some of them.

    On the other hand some are great. The nasty owners I really don't know how they stay in biz. A few sale used gear and cheap guitars so it must pay the bills.

    I have never had a bad experience in GC, some ego's but no rudeness since most know it would be reported and there butts out if they get complaints. Some Mom and Pop's if you don't like it get out or they will throw you out.
  15. pkstone

    pkstone Supporting Member

    Apr 13, 2011
    Don't worry, the chances of them having a left-handed instrument are infinitesimal, anyway! Hang in there....
  16. Gearhead17

    Gearhead17 Supporting Member

    May 4, 2006
    Roselle, IL
    I have to agree on this point.

    Don't let a music store get to you. Do not get involved in ego games or what not with other customers. Try out the gear you want to, try gear you have never tried, and be respectful to those around you. Go on some off hours (not after school or a weekend) and you can really try out some gear and avoid the crazy loud guitarists. If the store has a snobby attitude, try out the gear you came to try and politely walk out. You don't NEED to buy anything. Buy it online!

    You will feel much smarter in a music store if you visit this site and read the manuals for the gear you want to try out. It will give you ideas of what to listen for, how to adjust controls. You can make a more informed purchase.

    Don't worry about what you play in there either. Most of what I play is meandering garbage on the bass while I try out gear. I am not trying to be musical, I just want to see what the gear can do.

    It's not as bad as you think. I think your fears are taking over your perception of reality. It's a tough lesson to learn, believe me.......
  17. The store is there to provide a service, and you are the customer. Ignore/dismiss the attitude and help yourself. When I go to a music store I usually take my bass and a cord or two with me, sometimes I roll in my whole rig. I get some funny looks, but F 'em. It's my money, I hate having buyer's remorse, I'm going to try this **** out and try it out loud if I need to. I only need to run into problems once to cross a store off of my list. Maybe I'm lucky to be on the east coast, but I am also not above driving an hour or even two, one way, to get to a decent store. Be decisive and know what you want and people will conform. Be indecisive and wavering and they will fill the vacuum with their own BS.
  18. jbednarski

    jbednarski Supporting Member

    May 31, 2010
    Chicago area
  19. MatticusMania

    MatticusMania LANA! HE REMEMBERS ME!

    Sep 10, 2008
    Pomona, SoCal
    I can't remember the last time Ive stepped foot in a music store.
    I buy most music related items online (ok, I buy most everything online), including strings, pedals, and yes - even basses! :eek:
    I havent had any problems with my online purchases, so I'll continue that route. Im not scared of the stores, I just dont like dealing with sales associates.
    Thinking about it, the last time I went into a GC was when I bought my XioSynth, maybe 4+ years ago.
  20. This is just amazing to me. People don't expect musicians to look scruffy? What has the world come to?

    I haven't had horrible experiences at GC, but if I'm there it's generally because I know what I want and I intend to get in, sanity-check the product, buy it and get out. If I need to do any critical listening, I'm going to do it somewhere else.

    My local very-high-grade mostly-acoustic shop (Buffalo Bros.) has a largely-soundproof closet for people to try out amps in. It wouldn't scale to something like a GC, but for a smaller shop it's a perfect solution.