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Music shop is calling it a day

PUBLISHED: 17:08 10 January 2008 | UPDATED: 10:15 03 July 2010

Dominic Bareham

A FINE cast of famous faces have visited a Great Yarmouth music shop over the years, but now the business is closing the curtains after 32 years.

Not many small independent retailers can claim to have welcomed the likes of quiz show host Tom O'Connor and comedians Russ Abbott, Cannon and Ball, Jim Davidson and Joe Pasquale through their doors, but Soundgear Music has played host to all of them, as well as Danny La Rue, who opened the store on August 28, 1976.

A FINE cast of famous faces have visited a Great Yarmouth music shop over the years, but now the business is closing the curtains after 32 years.

Not many small independent retailers can claim to have welcomed the likes of quiz show host Tom O'Connor and comedians Russ Abbott, Cannon and Ball, Jim Davidson and Joe Pasquale through their doors, but Soundgear Music has played host to all of them, as well as Danny La Rue, who opened the store on August 28, 1976.

Mike Easter and wife Linda, who jointly ran the shop, have decided to retire so they can pursue their love of travelling.

Soundgear Music closes at the end of this month.

Mr Easter said the VIPs used to drop in while they were performing in shows at either the Britannia or Wellington Piers.

“We are one of few guitar shops in the town and that is why they used to come here, to buy instruments and also as a meeting place to sit and have a cup of tea and meet each other,” he said.

He recalled some of his favourite memories of his time in charge, such as when well-known Yarmouth personality Tony Edwards played sea shanties on his banjo as he moved guitars and other equipment to avoid potential flooding when the river threatened to breach in the

1990s.

On another occasion an elderly man dropped in to ask if the shop stocked the book Play in a Day by Bert Weedon only to be told by a YTS employee that the book was outdated and no longer trendy.

The inquiring customer proved to be the legendary guitarist himself!

In previous guises, the shop was an auction house, pharmacy, cafe, bakery and hairdressers before becoming a music store selling guitars, drumkits, amplifiers and violins among its goods.

Mr Easter thanked his customers for all their support over the years.

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