At Fogt’s Music, Sarasota’s music community thrives

To area musicians, Fogt’s is more than a store — it’s the best clubhouse, support system, music school, repair shop and social hub in town.

by: Marty Fugate
Article originally posted on The Observer website

Fogt’s Music is a storefront music shop on the South Tamiami Trail in Sarasota. I’d driven by it for years but never gone inside. But recently, my musical friend had a birthday party. During the course of the celebrations, somebody jammed the sections of her flute together. That somebody had a fierce grip. I figured the folks at Fogt’s could fix it. Now I finally had a reason to check out the place.

Outside, the display window reveals a euphonium and a vintage Kasuga guitar, hand-painted to resemble the Woodstock poster. Inside, guitars and rainbow-colored ukuleles hang like Christmas ornaments from the walls. Amps, music gear, songbooks and instruments of all descriptions beckon from all sides. Not only that …

This music store is actually filled with music. Not a recording, but a real live guitar player: J.T. Click— short for James Theodore.

Nearby, guitarist Al Fuller is discussing the arcana of chord changes with another musician. Others are sharing deep thoughts and investigating instruments in clusters around the store. It’s more like a music symposium than a shop.

So I approach the front counter. After dropping off the flute and discussing its symptoms, I ask the beatific woman behind the register if this kind of personal engagement is normal.

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