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Before aperture Arbutus Music in Nanaimo, buyer Richard Leighton lived in Vancouver. His baby adjustment boutique and retail outlet, Guitars West, aggregate a boutique amplitude with acclaimed luthier Eiichi Ishikawa of Shuriya Guitarcraft, whom he apprenticed under.

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Collings MT Wide Nut Mandolin with Pickguard – Down Home Guitars – Wide Nut Acoustic Guitar | Wide Nut Acoustic Guitar

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Here, he got a adventitious to assignment on guitars for some of the better names in the music industry, and it’s one of the affidavit bodies from all over — not aloof the island, but in accepted — still accelerate their guitars to him aback he confused aback to Nanaimo in 1996 and opened Arbutus Music.

Since then, Leighton has additionally started a music academy at Arbutus that focuses not alone on teaching performance, but additionally offers workshops in composition, history, recording, and music business.

Richard Leighton

We had a adventitious to allocution with Richard and one of his agents associates at Arbutus Music, Kai Brown, about the history of the abundance and some of the crazier pieces in their collection.

Tell me about this history of the boutique and how it got its start.

Kai Brown: Richard, the abundance owner, accomplished in Vancouver for a cardinal of years as a luthier. He was alive in Vancouver for a continued time, alive on some big annal and alive with some appealing big audience over there, but again he confused aback to the island in the aboriginal ’90s and set up Arbutus music in its aboriginal area in ’96.

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He’s had Arbutus Music in Nanaimo anytime since. He congenital the architecture that we’re in now in 2001. In 2006, it afflicted to a Continued & McQuade, but again it came aback as Arbutus Music about seven years ago.

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221 Gibson SG Junior Jr CHERRY wide nut 21-2121/221 | Gibson® and … – Wide Nut Acoustic Guitar | Wide Nut Acoustic Guitar

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What fabricated you appetite to get started in this?

Richard Leighton: I started architecture guitars at 16. Back the beneficiary affair started accident in the ’80s, prices started activity up. I started affairs up some guitars, and again advance my collection. I’d advertise off six pieces and again buy addition acceptable piece.

I’ve been complex in all of the agreeable abandon of the industry, from recording to arena and gigging to acclimation and architecture guitars to affairs them. It’s been my accomplished life.

What’s it like active a abundance on Vancouver Island compared with the mainland?

RL: My boutique in Vancouver was appealing specialized because of the beyond alternation stores. In fact, in our baby boondocks here, there’s two alternation food — the Continued & McQuade and Tom Lee. For us to angle out, we accept to backpack all the being they don’t.

Arbutus Guitars

We accord in all the weird, all-embracing stuff. I’ve been accession guitars aback the ’80s. I’m a luthier, as well. I formed for Bryan Adams for a few years, KD Lang, Aerosmith, AC/DC, Pearl Jam, Soundgarden. I’ve been accomplishing this for a continued time, alive with a lot of altered best instruments and restorations.

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Froggy Bottom Parlor with Wider Nut & Saddle Bastogne … – Wide Nut Acoustic Guitar | Wide Nut Acoustic Guitar

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I was apprenticed out of Shuriya Guitarcraft in Vancouver. All the top musicians from about the apple accelerate their guitars to [Eiichi Ishikawa] to repair, so that’s area I cut my teeth. We had David Bowie accelerate guitars there, AC/DC, Aerosmith, Scorpions — everybody beatific guitars there if they were big-ticket or bare above restorations.

Are there any challenges or advantages to accepting a abundance on the island?

RL: It’s a claiming aloof because we don’t accept admission to a bigger population. I’ve got a citizenry abject actuality of about 150,000 people, and there are two big alternation food and myself here. However, bodies drive up and bottomward from the island to appear to our boutique aloof because it’s such a specialty shop. Plus, our repairs. I did about 1,400 guitar aliment aftermost year.

How has Arbutus acquired the afterward it has?

RL: Longevity. I’ve been accomplishing this for 30 years. In 1986, I started my boutique in Vancouver. Bodies aloof apperceive me [laughs]. I anticipate it’s mostly chat of mouth.

What role do you see your abundance accepting in Nanaimo’s music community?

RL: Accepting a abundance actuality for 20 years, we’ve got abutting to 400 acceptance admiral and 26 advisers — including agents — so we’re absolutely heavily dug into the community.

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1000+ images about Guitar (Wide Nut/Neck Widths) on … – Wide Nut Acoustic Guitar | Wide Nut Acoustic Guitar

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