Wednesday, February 23, 2022

Back from the sun, more fun this weekend

 JUST GOT BACK from six days in the Arizona sun. My brother lives near Phoenix and hosted the first "Arizona Golf Bender" at several area courses. I dunno .... I guess somebody had to stand in the 75-degree weather and flail away. 

We're baaaaaack .....
Now it's back to cold weather but a huge weekend ahead. First of all, Second String Music officially celebrated 11 years in business yesterday. Everything in the store is 11 percent off the rest of the month, so you need to check out what stuff has come in and stock up. There is no official store party this year due to the pandemic (I've had several students out this month with Covid) but we'll be in a celebratory mood.

Friday night, HartLess plays at Revelry, starting at around 8 ish. Cori moved to St. Louis in November so we are not playing nearly as much, but every month or so she'll come back up to do a little hooting and hollering. My cousin, Roland Hart, is coming down from Michigan with wife Amy and I'm hoping to con him into playing a bit with us. I'm calling us "Just Be Cuz." Get it? Well, it's a good attempt.

On Saturday night around 8 The Second Stringers are also at Revelry. Brad, Dave, Jim and I haven't played for more than two months so it will be good to get back in the saddle and make some noise. 

Hope to see you this weekend!

Tuesday, February 8, 2022

RIP, John Roope

WE ARE SADDENED to hear of the passing of John Roope, a Second String Music Hall of Famer for sure. John was one of our first and best customers at the old location at Eighth and Washington, an excellent strummer and singer who loved to play the guitar and tell stories. John had a dry sense of humor and always had a kind word for us.

John Roope and Kevin Sullivan, Store Party

I hired him to perform in Washington Park maybe five years ago, and he was so excited to be there. You could see the joy and delight in his eyes and his voice as he played on a hot summer day in the shade.

John was head of Cheerful Home back during my reporter days, and later worked for DCFS. We had many discussions about "Welfare Deform" and challenges faced by low-income parents. He had a heart of gold. He loved to travel to his various conferences on his motorcycle and he had great stories about all the interesting and strange people he'd meet along the way.

Prayers for his wife, Sherry. She has been his rock for the past few years. John had been struggling with his health and it's been a while since I've seen him, as he moved to Rushville a few years ago. Sherry says John had a stroke last month and had to be hospitalized, and he died from Covid complications. It is heartbreaking to hear of another covid death so close to our musical community. Our most medically fragile are dying and the death toll is overwhelming.

John Roope and Connie Guthrie playing great music in Warren's lesson room!
John Roope and Connie Guthrie playing great music in Warren's lesson room!

We are celebrating our 11th anniversary this month, and I think fondly of those early days at our original location. John is prominent in those early recollections, as fuzzy as they may be today.

Rest in peace and ride on, John. I'll play a song or two for you this afternoon in guitar lessons and remember your friendship and support of Second String Music and Quincy music fondly.

Tuesday, February 1, 2022

Music Store for Sale

SECOND STRING MUSIC is officially for sale. We have been in business for 11 years and it's been a great ride, and we are thankful for all the loyal customers and crazy times.

We are in no hurry. We are looking for a local buyer, and we'll look for a broker later in the year if necessary.

The store is in a good financial position. The location is amazing at Fifth and Maine and we'll encourage the new owner to stay downtown. We love our location and having a music store on Maine Street is historically accurate for Quincy.

If it works out, I'd love to stick around and do my guitar lessons here, but we are open to any and all options. 

If interested, give Sheryl a call at the store at (217) 223-8008, or email us at and we can get a conversation started.

Until then, we'll be here at the store and we have no plans to close. We know this can be a long process, much like selling the building over the last two years (yes, it took that long).

As always, shop local and support local music. We hope to see you soon at Second String Music!