355 West 17th Street, Merced Ca I’m not really sure but I think the original Record Rendezvous dated back to the mid 40s at that address.
It was the classic small town music store. When I discovered it in the early 60s they had instruments on the left had side as you walked in. Guitars and amps up front. horns after that, drums then pianos and organs. In the center was a counter. To the right was a couple of long aisles of vinyl records and behind them 2 or 3 little cubicles with record players,with really uncomfortable, terrible sounding hard Bakelite headphones.
You would hear a song on Sullivan, KYOS or late at night on XERB or somewhere else and go down to the Rendezvous and listen to the whole disk. I don’t remember anyone looking at you funny even if you stayed an hour. If you had some money you could buy it. I think the Meet the Beatles was $2.39.
I was already a guitar hound. I had a Harmony F-Hole and the Silvertone Jupiter but I really wanted a real guitar. In 66 the Rendezvous had a really sweet 64 Gibson SG Special with P90s. I would play it everytime I was downtown. I don’t really remember if it was used or still new but I just had to have it. Somehow I put some money together after playing the 8th grade graduation and a few dates with Bob Caywood at the non-commisioned officers club and then somehow they let me made some payments.
Maybe I should call this post “guitars I whish I still owned”.
After Record Rendezvous Rick Jackson moved Middle Earth in from it’s previous digs on J st (fitting isn’t it).
Then he worried the whole town with Middle Earth Ballroom upstairs in the old dance studio.
Eventually it became the current Gottschalk Music Center. (now named 355 W. Main St.)