Recording Spotlight: Thrift Store Scores

Hello. My name is Marwood W. And I am a Thrift Store Addict….

Thrift Stores can be a great resource for the self-recording musician. I have found some wonderful treasures rummaging through thrift stores in the Seattle area. Aside from finding useful cables and patch cords for dirt cheap, (For example, Monster Cable products for under a buck.) I have found some other gems that have helped me in my music creating process.

Here’s a breakdown of some of my favorite Thrift Store Scores:

I found this 1960’s or 1970’s “Granada” Japanese made Classical Guitar for under $25.00 at a local Goodwill Store. After replacing the old and mismatched tuning pegs and strings, I ended up with a very playable and good sounding gut string guitar for under $50.00.

Next on my score list is this basic mountain dulcimer I picked up for about $20.00. When I bought it, the thrift store clerk asked, “You want to buy that musical thingy?” While he didn’t know what the instrument was, I knew I found a gem. This dulcimer is not much to look at – in fact, I suspect it was a kit that someone put together. The inside label reads, “Hughes Dulcimer Co. Denver Colorado” with a date stamp of March 20th, 1981. I really enjoy the “droning” sound this produces. Keep a look out for Check out my song, “D-Day,” (which I hope to release very soon) to hear it in action.

Next up on my Thrift Store Score list is an old instrument – We’re talking a late 1890’s Zimmerman Autoharp. This old and beautiful sounding instrument was had for a $25.00 at a local Goodwill. (Some Google searching helped me date this over 100 year old instrument.) There are some scratches on the face of the instrument, but it functions flawlessly, with a warm tone.

Here’s simple Radio Shack 1 Watt Amplified speaker I got for $3.99. This little speaker actually puts out some kick-ass distortion when you crank up the volume. Add the right microphone and you have just the right thing to get some nasty sounding distorted guitar. This is a recent score that I hope to integrate into the right recording.

Last – but definitely not least – are these excellent rhythm toys.
These noisemakers can add just the right amount of seasoning to your
music and they are always the easiest to find at your local thrift store. I like keeping an assortment of these noise makers laying around the studio for recording and impromptu jam sessions.

In closing, don’t overlook your local thrift stores for hidden treasures. Taking the time to rummage through bins sometimes produces the most interesting discoveries.

This is a repost of an article from my website.

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