More people learn to play instruments

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. – An owner of an instrument repair shop in Louisville told Spectrum News 1 he noticed something during the pandemic: an increased demand for people needing to repair stringed instruments.

For 16 years, Ryan Scott has repaired stringed musical instruments such as violins, cellos and guitars.


What would you like to know

  • Local music store sees increased need for instrument repair
  • Ryan Scott owns Scott Guitar Works
  • He had to hire additional help to meet the demand
  • The store owner says it’s a good deal to have.

“I love bringing things back to life,” said Ryan Scott, owner of Scott Guitar Works.

In this store, details matter. Every meticulous cut. Every slight adjustment to an instrument means something to someone.

“He’s about 40 years old and has stories to tell that are older than me,” Scott explained.

One of Scott’s most memorable stories happened some time ago when musician Billy Gibbon’s guitar arrived in his store. Gibbons is a legendary member of ZZ Top.

Scott recalls, “It was… oh man, that was invigorating. God, I would mention that every ding and nick tells a story. All the more so when it comes from a group that has opened up much of what we know about our modern rock ‘n’ roll.

But, there is something else Scott and his shop have to deal with. A big commercial boost.

Scott repairs instruments all over the state. He says his store is busier now than it has ever been before.

Scott explained that it is not easy to meet the demand.

“It’s a good problem to have, but it’s still a problem. It’s not entirely new, but it’s probably to a capacity that I was not prepared for. So it is. … To have to think a little more than we had before, ”explained Scott.

Scott said his store saw a 30-50% increase in the number of customers wanting repairs, compared to the same time last year. Why? He says more people bought musical instruments and started playing during the pandemic.

“It’s kind of an inspiring thing to be able to help someone play their instrument really well and feel good about letting them continue,” Scott explained.

This is one of the reasons Spencer Corbin was hired to help. He started in March of this year and repairs instruments.

Corbin said, “In today’s world where everything is so collected, use it and throw it away. Very just kind of a throwaway world, it’s one of those things where every time people see us doing this job, they’re like ‘Oh my god, how do you do that?’ ”

The boutique breathes new life into instruments, one restoration at a time.

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