Bringing music to Wauchope is a joy for guitar expert, Troy White.
Four years ago, he chucked in his job as a kitchen hand to open Valley Guitars in Bransdon Street. It’s a music store where Troy gives lessons, and repairs and restores instruments.
Troy had spent his early years in Cronulla in Sydney, his family moved to Port Macquarie when he was seven. After school, he moved back to Sydney, then relocated to Byron Bay and studied music in Lismore.
After that, Troy moved to Perth for a few years, and finally came back to Port Macquarie when he was 30 and he loves his life now.
He says the music store and guitar school is great fun, and much better than being a kitchen hand. Pupils are aged from six to 69.
“Some of the oldies have been playing for a while but playing badly and could never play a song from start to finish. I just help them to get where they want to go to,” says Troy.
“Or if they’re interested in blues, they want to know how to do it properly. Usually, it’s their timing that’s bad because they’ve never played with other people.
“That’s been really good where their guitar-playing goes from something that’s not pleasant to hear to a song people recognise,”
Troy grew up listening to Guns and Roses, Motley Crue, Abba and the Bee Gees, and he loves the Beatles.
He plays in a band called The Burning Sands.
“We have a great time, none of us do it for a living. We just get out there and have a blast.”
“A couple of my kids have gone out busking and they can sing and play songs and make money doing it. It’s going to take a while for all these kids I’m teaching now to do gigs,” he says.
“For any good musician it’s just practice. People have this myth that it’s a gift handed down, and it’s 90% practice.”
Troy writes his own stuff, just for his own pleasure, and has recorded a bunch of songs with local singer Angus Gill last year.
His daughter, Skylar is three years old and she loves music. She sings all the time, and has a drum kit, a baby piano and a ukulele.
“She’s bashing on all of them, and dancing around. I think she’ll be great,” he says.
Troy has dozens of students, and sells instruments and strings, tuners capos, plectrums and songbooks.
He loves rescuing guitars and says he could do that all day.
If you wander down Bransdon Street in Wauchope, and you hear sweet music, it will be Troy on his guitar, teaching, singing and sharing a tune with anyone who pops in.