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!

Night at the McCelvey with the Mark O’Conner Band

We were fortunate enough to spend our Saturday night listening to the musical genius of the Mark O’Conner Band. Each member is talented and successful in their own rights and together form a spectacular show.

We were glad to see so many of our students were able to attend. It’s amazing to share an instrument with any one of those performers, though perhaps we all feel we may need a bit more practice!

Our thanks goes out to the McCelvey Center with their efforts to lock in such high quality performances. We look forward to more shows in the future.

We also encourage people who may be interested to check out the O’Conner string school in Charlotte. You might recognize the name if nothing else by many of the teaching books used in our very own store!

After the show we even had the opportunity to meet with the performers and get a few autographs and a photo. Genuine people and he even said he would like to come by and see our store! How amazing would that be. You just never know who may walk in the doors in our little York music shop–Elvis to Mark!

If you weren’t able to make the show and cheer along with us in FOUR standing ovations, you can still purchase their Live CD recorded in 2016 with the same set list as last night (though without the double encore). You may think it’s just bluegrass music, but truly it is music for any fan of talent.

Major Announcement!



We have some big news and we couldn’t be more excited to share with you!

We know many of you have heard the rumors, but we are happy to say we have officially purchased a new building!

It will take a couple months to finish renovations and to get everything settled at our new location: 71 N Congress St. (The old Guardian Fidelity Bank)

We hope you will bear with us during this transition and the changes it brings. We feel this larger space with bigger and more teaching rooms will help us to serve our community.

Without the support of our friends, family, teachers, students and customers we wouldn’t be able to take this next step and so it is with deepest sincerity we say thank you.

We have recently celebrated our 3rd year in business and we can’t believe the encouragement we have received and are humbled to brace our success against the family we have grown as part of Downtown Music.

For more updates on our progress, please follow our page or check in with our website.

In Remembrance for Mrs. Helen Hudson

We’d like to pay homage to a close friend who passed away Sunday, Mrs. Helen Hudson.

Mrs. Hudson was the woman who first put a violin in Joe’s hands. It is from her that the passion of music has spread and it is the greatest gift and a wonderful legacy.

She enjoyed 94 years of life and love and truly left something of herself behind in everyone who knew her. She will be greatly missed.

Our hearts go out to her family.


For anyone who wishes, memorials may be made to Beersheba Presbyterian Church Cemetery Association at 130 S. Beersheba Rd. Clover, SC 29710 or to a charity of one’s choice.


Thank You!

We just wanted to take a moment to give

loads and loads of thanks to all the people

who helped make the Music Crawl a success!


A million thanks to all of our wonderful students who showed up and showed off! We are so proud of you and all the progress you are making and hope you had as much fun as we did.

A big thanks to all of the stores in Downtown York who graciously gave us their sidewalk space  for the event. 

We love being a part of such a wonderful community and are beyond blessed to share our passion with the City of York and its neighbors.

Thanks to the generous donation by Dan and Devorah Barringer, we were able to raffle off a guitar to benefit Nina Blades and we are happy to know we could help our former student as she battles Leukemia.

Congratulations again, to Wes for winning the raffle!


Hoping you all are enjoying your holiday season

and may your every day be filled with the gift of music.