Best Musical Instrument Store – Eugene Weekly


McKenzie River MusicPhoto by Todd Cooper

1. McKenzie River Music 455 West 11th Avenue. 541-343-9482.

2. Shopping and sales center 410 E. 11th Avenue. 541-344-9273.

3. Lighthouse music 791 West 8th Avenue. 541-653-9929.

No one in Eugene has a better selection of stringed instruments than McKenzie River Music. McKenzie River Music owner Artie Leider says the store specializes in premium instruments for beginners, collectors or professionals. With 50 years of guitar experience, he says he’s here to walk someone through the guitar buying process. But that’s not all of the store’s offerings. The store also has a world-class guitar and violin repair staff. The name of the store is known the world over, Leider adds, so McKenzie River Music has become a stop for well-known guitarists. Recently, jazz guitarist Pat Metheny stopped by the store, but Leider says he’s had other big names like Joe Bonamassa, Jackson Browne, and Rick Nielson of Cheap Trick. And, back when Pixie frontman and solo artist Frank Black (who also goes by a bunch of other names) lived in Eugene, he frequently stopped by the store before going on tour. But Leider says the best joy he gets is selling a guitar to a young beginner: “It’s much better than anything else. – Henri houston


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