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NYC – West 48th Street – Music Row

Music Row – Endangered

I recall going to 48th street during the late sixties and going in and out of several music stores. Yesterday, I walked down the street and couldn’t believe the shuttered up store fronts. Manny’s Musical Instruments, a Midtown landmark, since 1935, is gone and the remainder of the Music Row—as the block of W. 48th Street between Sevent and Sixth Avenues is affectionately known—is falling  like a row of dominoes.

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Over the years, Manny’s has serviced such clients as Benny Goodman, Charlie Parker, Buddy Holly, lks from Rockefeller Center have apparently been buying up parts of the block and aim to level the entire street so that the Center can expand across Sixth Avenue. Put simply, Music Row, one of the last real vestiges of Old Times Square, will cease to exist.

sam ashand the Beatles to Jimi Hendrix, U2, Eric Clapton and Nirvana. This almost hurts even more than the recent news that Tin Pan Alley might be torn down, while Music Row still exists. It’s alive and functioning.

From the 60s through the 90s, 48th street between 6th and 7th Avenue was a mecca for music stores. In fact, these were arguably the best music stores maybe in the world, always with the latest gear and the best prices. The famous Manny’s Music would battle it out with cross-street rival Sam Ash while Alex Musical Instruments, Rudy’s Music, We Buy Guitars, 48th Street Music, Colony Music Center, New York Woodwinds and Brass, and a few others that I can’t remember picked up the crumbs.

mannys pictiures'Beatles, Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, and the Rolling Stones: Almost every major musical act of the last 75 years has a signed photo hanging on the “Wall of Fame” at Manny’s Music, the longest-standing store along fabled Music Row on West 48th Street in Midtown.

While there are several music stores on the western end of this block between Sixth and Seventh avenues in a cluster that feels frozen in time, many fear that the volume will soon be turned off completely.

The famous and beloved Music Row will soon be just a memory. Goodbye, Music Row. Some of us are going to miss you!

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