Ok, this is a total bummer, if true — another great brick and mortar retail location will be a thing of the past.

The article linked below make it sound like Sam Ash, in its 100th year of business might be tapping out.

Two months ago, it was announced the chain was preparing to close nearly 41% of its stores.

The newest Guitar.com article makes it sound like unless the chain finds a buyer, all 44 of its physical locations may be gone. The question is whether they would continue to exist online, or if everything would be liquidated.

More Tragedy for the Company

These March and May 2024 rumors follow on previous bad news for the company. In September of 2023, Sammy Ash, the company COO and namer of the Tube Screamer, died at a relatively young 65. Sammy Ash was named after his grandfather, who founded Sam Ash Music 100 years ago in 1924.

I may drive by our local Sam Ash tonight or tomorrow to see if there are any signs of its demise. It’s a bummer, because as a hobby musician, it’s not the type of place you go by often for big purchases. Our local Sam Ash is even less visited as directly across the street is a Guitar Center. I prefer Guitar Center, but have bought guitars and accessories at both stores. In theory, it’s nice too to have the ability to jump from one store to the other if you can’t find what you want, or just want to compare prices.

Continued Shift Away From Brick and Mortar

abandoned large retail storeWe’re getting closer to the point where nearly everything you buy will be online, and I’m guilty of frequenting the convienence of online shopping, but things like guitars and other musical instruments are the type of things you really want to try in person. Shipping can be hard on guitars and basses especially, though most companies have figured out the best packaging to protect the instruments, their necks, etc.

That being said, my two main guitars were both bought online decades ago.

Source: Guitar.com: Sam Ash rumoured to be closing all of its stores unless it can find a buyer

Sam Ash, Raleigh, NC May 2024Update: Here in Raleigh, NC the store is definitely on the chomping block. The evening of May 2, 2024,I spent around 30 minutes walking around the store — mainly focusing on the guitar area. Both guitars and the pedals I looked at were a measly 5% off. Cables and accessories were 10%. The store wasn’t completely picked over, but stock is definitely dwindling, and areas were cordoned off that were no longer in use — like the guitar repair area.

It’s sad to see it go, but if you’re looking to take advantage of a deal, it’s too early. The employees said the store would be around until July 2024, and as we get closer to that date, prices will dwindle — but obviously so will the selection.

There’s also a banner now on the top of SamAsh.com that says, “ALL SALES FINAL No Returns accepted for items purchased after 5/1/2024”

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