Exciting Announcement!

Mark and Maggie O’Connor are coming to Downtown Music!



Mark O’Connor’s talent is legendary. He has won three Grammy’s and was CMA “Musician of the Year” for 6 consecutive years.

We are lucky enough to have not one, but two O’Connors doing demonstrations at Downtown Music during SummerFest, as his wife Maggie joins him!

You may remember we were able to attend their performance at the McCelvey Center back in March. The crowd gave several standing ovations to the Mark O’Connor Band that were well deserved. (Those Grammy’s didn’t win themselves after all!) This couple never seems to take a break between their musical performances with the band, writing lesson books using the O’Connor Method, serving charity, and having Charlotte as the home for their 2018 String Camps.

Join us at Downtown Music Aug. 25 @ 12PM!

Also, during SummerFest, we will have packaged ice cream treats available for sale, and as always free mini lessons for anyone interested in making music! If you haven’t already, now is a great time to check out our new location and teaching rooms!

Now Teaching New Instruments!

The move to the new location has come with lots of great changes, and we are happy to announce yet another!

We now offer lessons for:

Flute, Sax and Clarinet!

Lessons with these instruments will be with Amanda Bernard.

If you are interested, give us a call so we can tell you how to sign up for a FREE mini lesson!


Important Lesson Announcement

We are so thrilled to (finally) announce starting Monday, June 25th, all lessons will take place at the new location: 71 N. Congress St.!

We hope you all love the new rooms.

If you have any questions, send us a message or give us a call.

Thank you all, again, for your patience throughout this process.

Happy Father’s Day

I would like to take a moment if I may to wish my dad the happiest of father’s days.

I have to be one of the luckiest people to call Joe Hardin my father (a small club of 3 people!). I’m so proud of all he has done to make his dream come true. He is an absolute inspiration.

But you all know him as a music teacher and business owner, I know him as the place to run when answers are hard to find. He is the safety net to catch every fall and the spring board to keep reaching for your dreams. He is laughter on the hardest days and easy conversations on the best ones. He is the one who let me think I got the big fish all by myself and the one who showed me life is only limited by imagination. He is fiddle lullabies and breaking into song for absolutely no reason. He is my first dance. He is daddy/daughter dates even though I am 30 now.

He taught me the mind can do amazing things. It can turn everything negative or everything positive–all depending on the attitude you choose to face each day.

I still have so much to learn from this man, but I am grateful for all he has already given to me.

So Happy Father’s Day, I love you Daddy.


Lessons for week of June 4th

We have made a lot of progress with the move this week, but our teaching rooms are not yet ready.

We want to make sure they are perfect for our students and that takes time!

All of Joe Hardin’s students will be at the new building 71 N Congress St. this week.

All other students will be at 22 N Congress St.

We will let you know as soon as we will be switching to the new rooms!

If you have any questions just let us know.

Thanks again for your patience as we transition.

Here are some things you can look forward to once the move is finished:

  • Plenty of parking
  • Larger rooms
  • More store space
  • Drum lessons to be available
  • More lesson slots
  • Same great quality instruction!

We can’t wait to show you all the ways we are working to make Downtown Music the best store possible for our teachers, students and community!


There will be no lessons on Monday for Memorial Day and no lessons Tuesday through Thursday because of 5th week.

Also, store hours may be interrupted as we will begin moving to our new location! We will keep you updated as we make this transition and apologize for any inconvenience.

If you need anything please give us a call.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend and be safe!

DM is Here to Help


There are so many instruments available to learn and each has their own advantages and drawbacks. Here are some things you can consider when deciding which instrument is right for your child.

We are firm believers that there is no age limit to music education. That being said, for formal lessons, you want to make sure your child is able to pay attention and sit (relatively) still for about half an hour. There’s really no point in spending your hard-earned money if your child won’t be able to follow along with the lesson. (Luckily, we offer free mini lessons to give you a chance to test how your child will do with them!)

Once you are sure your child is ready to learn, how do you decide if they should learn guitar, banjo, ukulele, piano, violin, cello, drums, voice…well the list goes on.

Most kids seem to gravitate towards guitar because it is such a common instrument in modern music, but if they are very little (3-4 years old) they may not have the hand strength to actually push down the strings. We want kids to enjoy their lessons and if they are struggling with the most basic parts they will most likely give up. Instruments like the violin are great for small hands because they come in such small sizes just right for even the tiniest players. There is also a lot of payoff with getting a lot of sound out of a long sweep of the bow versus just a pluck of a guitar string.

Another wonderful starting instrument is the piano. For a lot of children, the keys don’t seem as intimidating as strings and it’s much gentler on the finger tips.  The patterns in piano seem to be easier to recognize as when the sheet music notes shift downward, you simply go to the left on the keyboard and upwards sends you to the right.

My experience is that children are ready for piano when they can read.  They need to be able to track music from left to right just as they would when reading text from a book. The ideal age to begin lessons is around 8 years old. That being said younger students can be successful if they have the right balance of maturity and attention span.

–Ann  Bailes (Piano Teacher)

Lately, the ukulele has been more popular with artists such as Twenty One Pilots making covers with them. It’s a pretty great instrument to start on and fairly simple to learn. If you think your child may be overwhelmed by a larger instrument, a ukulele may be a great stepping stone.

The other big (probably biggest) factor is just your child’s personal preference. If they hate an instrument, they just aren’t going to practice. If your child loves bluegrass, they may just find their heart lies in a mandolin or maybe they just really want to jam like their favorite rock stars on an electric guitar. It’s all about expression and having fun.

If you still have no clue which one is best, you can stop by our store and let your kid try a couple out with one of our teachers and see what connects!