Satisfy THE BAND: (Prime, from remaining) Choir director Jeffery Thyer, store operator and guitarist Jason Schlusser and guitarist Jeremy Renner welcome new music fans in to shop, engage in and master. (Photographs by Ryan Morrill)
Southern Ocean County is distinctive in that it harbors a thriving tunes scene, stuffed with a diverse myriad of whole-time musicians. Bars, coffee shops and audio venues abound, but what assets do musicians have to obtain, offer, trade or repair their equipment? Until December, the closest outlets ended up Russo’s Tunes, found all the way in Monmouth County, or Guitar Centre, down in Atlantic County, which has been demonized by most music buffs as a corporate monster.
Fortunately, Jason Schlusser, who is a Surf Metropolis resident for 50 percent the 12 months, was delighted to fill that void when he opened Waterview Tunes, found at 690 East Bay Ave. in downtown Barnegat. “The whole function is to be the anti-Guitar Heart,” he reported with candor. He proudly styles his small business right after that of How You Brewin? café in Surf Town. The standards he borrows intend to create a community place that is clear and spouse and children welcoming, and focuses on top quality about amount. Understanding the have to have for a musician’s source, Schlusser explained, “This was a circumstance of ‘if you construct it, they will come.’”
Schlusser is a guitar player with an schooling in jazz percussion and music know-how.
“Over the years I have owned recording studios, a booking agency, a different (tunes) retail store, did are living sound …” he defined. “Anything you could potentially do in this marketplace, I did.” When not residing in Surf Town, he commutes in from Hoboken. “Let’s just say I expend a whole lot of time on the Parkway.”
Some many years back, Schlusser acquired a put up-Sandy house in Surf City and renovated it from the ground up. That practical experience worked in his favor when he observed the vacant storefront in the historical downtown part of Barnegat. The room previously housed Tobacco Road, owned by former mayor Jeff Melchiondo.
Like lots of other seasonal residents, Schlusser’s spouse and children hibernated in the course of quarantine in Surf Town, in which he homeschooled his young ones. He used most of the adhering to 12 months renovating the shop.
“A good deal of the time it was just me with a sledgehammer and a crowbar, due to the fact what else was I heading to do?” He credited Dover Building, stationed just across the street, for helping him with what responsibilities he could not deal with by yourself.
During the pandemic year, Schlusser’s Surf City neighbor Jeffery Thyer also stayed put on the Island relatively than returning to his principal residence, in South Philadelphia. Throughout the bleaker months, they manufactured the most of the time at household by taking part in new music collectively. When Schlusser opened his music store on Dec. 1, Thyer was the to start with employee, or “bandmate,” as Schlusser described, to arrive on board.
In Philly, Thyer sings in the Singing City Group Refrain, of which he belongs to the programming committee and choir council. He and Schlusser hope to develop a neighborhood choir inside Waterview New music.
Among the numerous instruments adorning the walls is this Warwick 30th anniversary version W Rockbass, signed by Excessive, Winger and King’s X. Take a look at Waterview Songs to inquire about devices, items and lessons.
Thyer, which he joked rhymes with “choir,” is, fittingly, a choir director who would make his residing as a audio journey agent. His enterprise designs worldwide concert excursions for choirs and orchestras. It arranges every little thing from flights, buses and hotels to the promo and marketing, to substance variety, all the way down to the final detail of the live performance alone. “We are a tunes travel agency, and almost everything we do focuses on the mission of that team and how we can market that mission.”
Schlusser expounded, “The takeaway from me in his total background is that, from the real assortment of the content to the rehearsal to the efficiency to basically physically moving a choir all around – that led us to say Ok, why really do not we start an grownup local community choir here, and place all his instruments to use?”
Schlusser realized he would need a single much more guitar-savvy worker, but did not publicize for a person. As a substitute, he stood by an instinct that told him the correct man or woman would stroll in. As serendipity would have it, Jeremy Renner (acknowledged as the guide guitarist for Buddy Holly tribute band the Rave-Ons) strolled in that quite 7 days to test out the shop. Renner is now a further “bandmate” who is pleased to communicate store and give unintimidating lessons and explanations to clients with an interest in songs.
Waterview Music aims to provide the wants of the community new music local community as a go-to hub for profits, companies and classes. Nevertheless the shop focuses on guitars, it also sells good quality string, percussion and keyboard devices of all costs. Cables, strings and other songs extras can also be identified, including reeds for horns and PA extras.
Waterview also presents a safe and sound and dependable hub for persons to sell their instruments on consignment for really aggressive costs.
Every guitar invest in will come with a basic setup, and each guitar and keyboard buys occur with two totally free lessons to accommodate any participant. Outside of the very first two lessons, all lessons are taught in a realistic, band-like placing.
“Music is interaction,” Schlusser stated, introducing that any man or woman can observe enjoying licks by yourself in a area all working day, but will in the long run absence the skill to be in a position to engage in on phase with other individuals. “To engage in with other folks, you have to use your ears.”
The shop delivers a entire menu of guitar providers this kind of as stringing and re-stringing guitars, sprucing, routine maintenance, modifications and repairs. Schlusser and Renner are joyful just to show prospects how to use their equipment, which, as several players know, can conserve folks great time and cash because, as the indicating goes, “We never know what we really do not know.” Renner’s lessons are customized-customized to each and every client’s exceptional scenario.
All guitars (like bass) are repaired in house, but other instruments are despatched out to K&S in Millburn for repairs. “They are the gold typical,” Schlusser claimed. “They’re in fact doing work with us to established up a scholarship system. So, obviously, we want to be in a position to lease clarinets to middle and significant faculty college students, and a part of these rentals will go into our scholarship fund,” he spelled out. “We’re listed here to assistance the group, and hopefully give them a services that some faceless national corporation just cannot.”
The shop also rents out band orchestra devices for learners as properly as beater guitars for individuals on holiday vacation who may well have forgotten to provide one particular, or an individual who would like to take part in a Waterview jam, but doesn’t have a guitar handy.
Schlusser’s small business choices are pushed by particular practical experience. He recounted a journey to Spain, when his guitar did not make it from Heathrow into Spain. “I experienced to go into some mad minor store and get a $350 guitar for the reason that there was no way I was paying out all my time on a sailboat with pals devoid of a guitar!”
In the back again of the store is a multi-purpose ensemble space, which can be rented as a exercise or recording room. PA, drums, keys and amps are all incorporated for 1 rental price.
With local community in intellect, Schlusser also hopes to host a wide range of every month, all-amount local community jams, such as a achievable doo wop jam, a bluegrass jam, perhaps a Grateful Lifeless evening and even an exploration into jazz, depending on curiosity. He’d also like to see month to month drum circles arrive to fruition. Thyer will lead an adult vocal ensemble on Wednesdays and Thursdays, traversing a assortment of substance from classical to Broadway. They will also hold in season, singing Xmas carols and other vacation tunes all through December and Irish folks music close to St. Patrick’s Working day, for illustration. The hope is to offer a non-spiritual choir practical experience for vocal enthusiasts.
Waterview Audio does not cater only to the demands of grownups. “I have two youthful daughters. I’m pretty delicate to building items kid friendly, female friendly, loved ones helpful and beginner friendly!” A children’s steel drum workshop is currently in the performs. For toddlers, Waterview New music has Thursday early morning “mommy and me” tunes lessons offered as perfectly.
Some will argue that a brick and mortar shop cannot compete with the world wide web. Pretty the contrary, said Schlusser.
“You will normally see goods in here (for) more affordable than you can uncover them online – and even on our web page.” This is because there is a minimum promoting rate associated in listing items for sale on line. “And if you have to return something? Ignore it. You lost what ever cash you saved (by buying on line) and then some.”
The real gain of a brick and mortar store, Renner and Schlusser included, is that it permits men and women to appear in and request issues. This makes certain they get the right merchandise for the suitable selling price. “And you get to participate in the steel drum whilst you’re in this article,” Schlusser quipped. “We never have every single nut and bolt, but we have very good, strong stuff.”
Non-musicians can also appear in and acquire a present for the songs lovers in their life, even if they have no tech understanding. The retail outlet is a fun location to purchase Waterview merchandise, such as trucker hats, shirts and hand-thrown mugs by Matt Burton of m.t. burton Gallery in Surf Town. (Enjoyment actuality, Burton and Schlusser attended the similar significant university.)
The reality that so numerous places to eat and bars are dedicated new music venues demonstrates “people genuinely care” about are living tunes, shared Renner. As a result, he added, “having a hub is actually wonderful.”
“This is a business that offers back,” Thyer stated, to which Schlusser included, “And becoming a little store, we have some leeway to be innovative.”
Waterview New music is open up from noon to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday and midday to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Stop by the retail store website, waterviewmusic.com, on Fb at @WaterviewMusicNJ or phone 609-300-4301 to continue to be up to day with the newest happenings and classes.
— Monique M. Demopoulos