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In Issaquah, Beautiful Music Comes From Wood, Patience, And Attention To Detail

At one end of the long building that houses Hammond Ashley Violins in Issaquah, five students are getting ready for a violin class.

In the middle of the building, luthiers are repairing violins and cleaning string basses.

And up front, behind a door marked “Suite 100,” customers are coming in to buy or rent violins, and get them repaired.

“In this industry, people work until they can’t drag their butt to work anymore,” says Bryce Van Parys, general manager of Hammond Ashley. “There are plenty of people in their 80s and 90s, and just like musicians, they just go until they physically can’t keep up, because we love it. We can’t do anything else.”

88.5’s Ed Ronco paid a visit to Hammond Ashley Violins for the “Suite 100” episode of Sound Effect, where violins, cellos, basses and more are sold, taught, repaired and built.

This story originally aired on March 18, 2017

Ed Ronco came to KNKX in October 2013 as producer and reporter for KNKX’s Morning Edition. Ed started in public radio in 2009 at KCAW in Sitka, Alaska, where he covered everything from city government, to education, crime, science, the arts and more. Prior to public radio, Ed worked in newspapers, including four years at the South Bend (Ind.) Tribune, where he covered business, then politics and government.