Torquay is about to get its first specialist music store in about 20 years with the opening of Waves Music.
The boutique music store in the West Coast Business Park will have its official opening, featuring live bands and special deals, on Saturday (March 5) from 4-7pm.
Along with the shopfront, Waves Music offers music lessons in bass, drums, piano/ keyboard and guitar, as well as recording and production services.
There are also two rehearsal rooms with professional recording equipment, and a jam room.
Owner Chris Hay started giving guitar lessons while pursuing his own music career.
Waves Music now has between 30-40 students and four different teachers (with a fifth coming soon), and Hay sees the business as a hub to spread knowledge and passion of music.
“This is not just a music school, it’s to push local musicians to reach that professional level, and the best way to do that is to have good teachers teaching the right stuff, making sure students have the correct techniques so people will come watch their live shows at some point.”
Hay said there was a ready market of musicians in the Torquay and Surf Coast area.
“I used to have to drive to Geelong to get strings – that’s 12 bucks for a pack of strings, an extra 10 bucks for the drive, so that kind of thing’s pretty tricky.
“There are a lot of keen youngsters and a lot of talent down here, too. With the type of people who are down here – quite laidback and very easy going, a lot of the kids the wave of music embody that – they’re willing to focus and ready to learn.”
Although the rise of the internet has made it easier than ever for people to learn and produce music on their own, Hay said professional advice was still an important part of the process.
“I think the main thing is having someone behind you to push you and do the practice. I find even on my own, if I don’t have a mentor in any form of work, even if it’s just this business stuff, I don’t really focus as much.
“So the youngsters, I find, when they come in, they can do all the learning on their own but they haven’t got someone to continue to help them during the week, to set goals and to enable them to hit them.”
Waves Music is at 2/8 Winki Way, Torquay. Head to wavesmusic.com.au.