Exploring the Guitar Junkyard: A Cool Guitar Store
The Guitar Junkyard is a one of a kind guitar store in Lasalle, Illinois. It provides a unique experience for guitar junkies who are always searching for interesting and unusual instruments. It is well worth a visit if you are traveling on Interstate 39 in Illinois. It is a couple of hours southwest of Chicago.
The Guitar Junkyard
I am a professional guitar player who spends lots of time on the road. One of the perks of traveling so much is that I get to visit a number of interesting places. Since I am a guitarist it should be no surprise that guitar stores rank high on my list of things to do when we visit a new town or city. One the one hand, major guitar retailers such as Guitar Center are a good place to if you know exactly what you are looking for. The prices are hard to beat, they have all the major brands of guitars, amplifiers, and related items in stock. On the other hand, major guitar retailers hold very few surprises. Like any major chain, the interior décor and the items the stores carry tend to always be the same and there always seems to be an annoying teenager sitting in the amp section playing a loud guitar with tons of distortion. Consequently, I am always on the look out for more unique guitar stores that hold forth the promise of unexpected finds and discoveries. Perhaps the guitar store that fits the bill more than any other I have come across in my travels is The Guitar Junkyard and String Instrument Museum.
When you first walk into the store it is clear the "junkyard" was an aptly chosen name. There are old guitars, toy guitars, guitars in various stages of repair, one-of-a-kind-homemade guitars, and a variety of other stringed instruments literally littered all around the store in what seems like a completely random and chaotic character. It takes a few minutes to get your bearings because everything seems in a state of disarray. However, once you become oriented it becomes obvious that there are many gems in the Junkyard. The store's owner is Terry. Terry has owned and operated the Guitar Junkyard for over thirty years. He explained that the store has three functions. It is a place to store his private collection, it is a place to sell unusual instruments, and it is a place to have your instruments or amps repaired. I purchased two old Oahu guitars on my first visit to the Junkyard. One was a six-string guitar and the other was a square neck lap steel guitar. They were both built in the 1940s. Terry had recently finished resetting the necks and tweaking them. He wasn't interested in selling the guitars individually but insisted on selling the two guitars as a set. I purchased both for $300.
The Guitar Junkyard is located in Lasalle, Illinois. Lasalle is located at the intersection of Interstate 39 and Interstate 80. The address of the Guitar Junkyard. The web address is guitarjunkyard.net. The Junkyard is open Monday to Friday12:00 to 5:30 and Saturday 10:00 to 4:30. It is closed on Sunday. It is also possible to make an appointment by calling Terry at 815 223-2005.