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  • Writer's pictureOEV BIA

Strings Guitar Shop - A Space for Music and Community

Strings Guitar Shop has continued cementing itself as an inspiring establishment in Old East Village for several years now. In fact, their recent move to a larger space next door to their original shop marked the business’ five-year anniversary, to the day, on October 1, 2022. The husband and wife pair, Phil and Natasha, have built upon their dream from quaint café and music shop, to a bigger space, with bigger plans, that opens its door to the music community at any chance they can.

Photo by George Henry

Formerly Strings Cafe & Guitar Shop, their move marked the new name and ushered in more programming for all ages. Of course such brands as Yamaha, Epiphone, and Gibson are available amongst the variety of acoustic, electric, and classical guitars along with basses, ukeleles, amps, pedals and more. In addition, Phil uses his immense experience to offer lessons to all ages and the duo run a growing array of ongoing and popup music events, guitar clinics and more.

Photo by George Henry

They have been seeing growing interest in the weekly popups that include the Open Mic Sundays, which has been carried over from the previous space and now, their Open Jams. The difference between the two, Natasha confirmed, is that traditionally an open mic is acoustic and features one musician performing from their own repertoire. However, an open jam involves multiple people coming together and creating a song as they go - fluidity is key and visitors have been embracing it widely.

Photo by George Henry

Most recently, a little star has been born at Strings when a 7-year-old Londoner started frequenting the Sunday gatherings, charming attendees with his electric guitar skills. Because of this, Strings has started touting their music events as well as lessons as appropriate for anyone 7 to 77! I However, all ages are welcome and it goes to show this growth in this welcoming community space can be enjoyed by all.

Photo by George Henry

Amidst the conversation about the shop and how they’ve grown and continue to do so, there was lively conversation with a regular and engagement with a new customer who came to explore - something very much akin to a previous interview done with Phil back in 2020 in their space next door. Looking forward, both Phil and Natasha spoke with excitement about expanding their repertoire of offerings at the space including outdoor music events, a possible patio, and other ways they can maximize the want and need for musical spaces and community right now.

Be sure to stay tuned to Strings’ new website ( Facebook, and Instagram for merchandise info as well as information on weekly happenings, pop-ups, and new endeavours to come!

Don’t forget to follow DIGOEV’s website, Facebook, and Instagram for info on all this great neighbourhood has to offer!

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