Detroit Guitar Opens its Rockin’ New House in Downtown Birmingham
Guitar fans … you are worthy.
So says guitar aficionado Eric Wolfe, who, with wife Tracey, teamed up with friends Charlie Lorenzi and Claudia Leo to open Detroit Guitar in downtown Birmingham last month. The two couples met a few years ago at a guitar store in Ann Arbor, where musicians Lorenzi and Leo also own the label No Fun Records. Mutual interests led them to morph their passions for great music and well-crafted guitars into a unique guitar boutique.
Geared toward every level of musician (or wannabe), Detroit Guitar is a playground for the music fan. Its broad range of electric and acoustic guitars, amps and accessories include offerings from Fender, Gretsch, Schecter, Hamer and Michigan-based Heritage, made in the old Gibson factory; it also is the only dealer in Michigan to carry Carr Amps, a specialty maker in North Carolina.
Each guitar and amp in the shop has been vetted and personally selected based on characteristics desired by guitarists of different experience levels and tastes — and many have been designed exclusively for Detroit Guitar. Even the lighting and seating is specialized, designed to make customers feel at home to both shop and just hang around.
Detroit Guitar was created to make the customer king, focusing on customer service and quality products in a way only a mom-and-pop shop can.
“We feel the pendulum is swinging back in the direction of the specialty store, which is part of the neighborhood, and where patrons are treated like they are important,” says Wolfe. “We created a store that we would want to shop in and that reflects our personal taste and style. And as a custom store, we focus on each instrument and its particular qualities of sound and design.”
Posters, art, clothing, jewelry and more fill the 2,000-square-foot space that also includes lesson rooms for private and group lessons (for all ages) and a stage for special appearances by touring musicians. The offerings and multipurpose use of space is near limitless: used and vintage gear, a record section, VIP events, music-industry personalities, band endorsements, rock band-university classes, live in-store performances, rock-art and live band photography exhibitions and in-store product demos; even instrument repairs will bring visitors to the front row of the world of music.
“Charlie and Claudia have years of experience and contacts in the music industry,” says Wolfe, who also lives in Birmingham. “Tracey and I have attended hundreds of concerts, we both play instruments and our home is filled with paintings and posters of our favorite bands, as well as more than a dozen guitars.”
Their 14-year-old son is an accomplished guitarist — even their 1-year-old daughter is strumming. “We are passionate about guitars, and we’re excited to impart our love for guitars and music to the community,” he adds.
Detroit Guitar, 243 W. Maple, Birmingham. (855) 540-9900; (248) 540-9900; detroitguitar.com. Find Detroit Guitar on Facebook and Twitter for up-to-date info on concerts and special events.