Part of the Manchester, CT community since 1954.

Ray Beller was considered one of the best clarinet and saxophone players in the country and an alto saxophonist for some of the top band leaders of the big band era including Benny Goodman, Ray McKinley and Glenn Gray, until he retired from life on the road. In the early 1950’s, the legendary Ray returned to Connecticut where, from his store on Main Street in Manchester, he encouraged and inspired future generations of aspiring musicians.

Dean Kincaide, Bill Ainsworth, Ray Beller, Peanuts Hucko, Pete Terry, Vernon Friley, Irv Dinkin, and Jim Harwood at the Hotel Commodore Century Room, New York, NY c Jan 1947

Dean Kincaide, Bill Ainsworth, Ray Beller, Peanuts Hucko, Pete Terry, Vernon Friley, Irv Dinkin, and Jim Harwood at the Hotel Commodore Century Room, New York, NY c Jan 1947

Humble beginnings on Main Street.

It was not uncommon for young people to gather at Beller’s to hear and purchase the latest releases on vinyl, to try out a new guitar, or to hear stories told by Ray. In 1983, the store moved from its original location on Main Street to Purnell Place. There, the store continued to offer music instruction, instruments and accessories, and repairs.

Ray and Spike hanging stock.

Ray and Spike hanging stock.

Enter the DuBaldo Family

Several years after Ray’s passing, the store was purchased by the DuBaldo family, owners of DuBaldo Music Center in Manchester.  With an eye toward meeting the needs of families, the DuBaldos expanded the selection of instruments, accessories, rental programs, and  instrumental lessons. Beller’s Music, in conjunction with sister store DuBaldo Music Center, brought world-famous musicians to Manchester for clinics, performances, master classes and meet-and-greet sessions.  John Petrucci, Steve Morse, Dave LaRue, John Myung, Guthrie Govan and Johnny Hiland have all shared their expertise with the area’s musicians and admirers.  Beller’s Music brought back summer concerts in Center Park, providing a venue for a variety of local musicians to be showcased.    Outgrowing the space after 29 years, the store was moved in August, 2013 into a beautiful new space – 881 Main Street, back into the heart of Downtown Manchester.

 

Grand Re-Opening

Ribbon-cutting ceremony, May 9, 2013

Ribbon-cutting ceremony, May 9, 2013

Beller’s Today

 

To this day, we still strive to inspire musicians as Ray did, be it through private instruction, our free concerts in Center Park in July and August, the Ray Beller Scholarship, in-store performances, and on-street musicians the first Thursday of each month. We promise to give you personal attention when you shop in our beautiful sunlit store. We offer reasonable prices and honesty in service.   You’ll notice the difference when you come to Beller’s Music