By Andrew J. Yankay
The Sam Ash Music Store, located on 178 Mamaroneck Avenue in White Plains, features dozens of guitars, percussion instruments, electronics, accessories and other equipment, all to be drooled over by the starving artist. Its convenient location is enough of an incentive to drive in the musically inclined from Purchase.
Students can travel to Sam Ash via the White Plains Loop and walk a few blocks to reach the local music haunt.
“We get a lot of Purchase students that come in here,” said Joe Norady, a Sam Ash employee. Campus musicians don’t need to worry about making a dent in their fledgling bank accounts—according to Sam Ash staff, most Purchase students aren’t dropping curious amounts of dough on an average run to the local guitar shop.
“A majority of the Purchase students are guitarists, just coming in to replace strings, or getting minor work done to their guitars,” said Norady.
Not only do Purchase guitarists frequent the store but a number of percussionists do as well.
“I know of Purchase students that come in here to replace (drum) heads, sticks, buy books,” said EJ, another Sam Ash store worker. According to him, the average Purchase musician is not a novice.
“I’d say that most of the students that come here are advanced level musicians, studying jazz,” he continued.
Attaining that upper-level capacity does come at a price, at least in terms of “free time.”
“I don’t see the same Purchase students all that much, they can get pretty busy with studying and working on projects,” EJ said. One student who seems to make time to visit the store is Raul Cosue, a guitar major in the music conservatory.
“I go there once or twice a month to buy new strings,” said Cosue.
Cosue isn’t looking for any run of the mill replacements either. “I like to get Ambassador strings,” he said.
Once Purchase students get through the doors, they might stick around for a while, even after they’ve picked up their gear. The White Plains Sam Ash puts a priority on their lax vibe and there is no time limit on posting up and enjoying the merchandise.
“We’ve got a drummer that comes from Purchase. He sometimes shows up and plays—he hangs out as long as he wants to.”