Going to New York? Need gear? Of course you do. Even if you don’t, here’s a detailed guide to some of the best music shops in Gotham (and beyond).
The better half and I decided to escape the Olympics and hit the States for a month. Perfect synth hunting territory I thought. And it was. Here’s the highlights…
I’ll start briefly with the big boys, Sam Ash and Guitar Centre. Much like Tin Pan Alley in London, 48th Street has suffered with the music industry but being the behemoth that it is, Sam Ash soldiers on, having bought up Manny’s and most of the street by the looks of it. How long they’ll stay on 48th is another matter (there’s rumours of the buildings being sold for development and Sam Ash moving near B&H).
The shop itself is divided across various buildings on the street and the range of gear is suitably impressive. It’s fairly standard stuff – current synths and tech as opposed to vintage but you can easily try most things and prices are good. The shop nerds are friendly and knowledgeable.
Definitely worth a visit if you’re in need of summat new or an accessory or two. I bought Maschine from them a few years ago – painless and good value.
Guitar Centre is not dissimilar, with the shop I visited down on 14th Street. GC has a slightly friendlier vibe but slightly less stuff. A good range of (new) synths and associated toys, all hooked up ready to play. I bought Komplete 8 from them a few years ago and this time round a second hand Slim Phatty and a Minitaur which they slightly discounted. Again, all very easy and good value.
These two are standard fare though. Let’s move on to some more exotic fare starting with Rogue Music…