Walls plastered in colored guitars, hand-made wooden flutes and other instruments now occupy the basement of the building at 305 North Main St.

A couple of floors above, open lesson rooms stand with doors ajar, waiting for eager students to walk through for a piano lesson, drum instruction or even a voice lesson.

The unique atmosphere housing a variety of services belongs to Andover's newest business — Smash Music.

After the business was in Derry, New Hampshire, for four years, the duo behind Smash Music moved it to Andover, a place they expected would help meet their goals and allow them to expand.

Scott Graves, founder of Smash Music, and Jeffrey Prescott, are the two people behind the musical masterpiece. The goal of their business is to develop a fine arts and performing arts school, while also better situating their music merchandising company.

The merchandise shop, located on the basement floor of the building, offers a variety of instruments for rent and purchase. From guitar picks to saxophone mouth pieces, and everything in between, the store is there to meet the needs and desires of musicians in and around Andover.

The space on the second and third floors of the building, called the Arts Innovation Center, includes lesson rooms, a recording studio and a ballroom. That is where music lessons, ensembles and other classes will be held.

Smash Music offers more than just lessons to beginner musicians and an array of instruments. Graves said the business also aims to help and grow artist entrepreneurs by offering up their resources.

"It's unique because it's multi-disciplinary," Graves said about the space. "It's also unique because in addition to our own in-house music faculty that is part of Smash Music, we are encouraging artist entrepreneurs on a membership basis to utilize the space and other resources we have to offer."

Graves said the space will offer resources to entrepreneurs looking to draw up a strategic plan for the businesses they are creating, or to improve an already existing business.

Graves and Prescott are not unfamiliar faces in the music world. They said their business is the culmination of their work and efforts over more than 25 years.

"It's a palette in which to create what we have been talking about creating for a quarter century," Graves said. "There's a significant opportunity here, from a business standpoint and a creative standpoint."

The duo said they are not only excited about their prime location in Andover, but also about what they have to offer.

Both Graves and Prescott kicked off their music careers as students at UMass Lowell. Graves earned a degree in music business and has spent his entire career — more than 25 years — working as a performing artist and an educator. He said Smash Music brings together his entire background.

His area of specialty?

"I'm a reed guy — saxophone, flute, clarinet, that kind of thing," he said.

Prescott studied music education at UMass Lowell and has been teaching and performing for the last 30 years. He is a vocalist, and also teaches piano, guitar, bass, drums and trumpet.

With the opening of Smash Music, Prescott said he is excited to have a space to bring together all parts of the music world.

"The unification of all of these disciplines, to have music and dance and art and theater all in one place, and getting them to work together, instead of closed off," he said, describing what he and his business partner hope to accomplish.

Smash Music will have an open house Saturday, Sept. 14. The owners also plan to spread the word about their new business at Andover Day on Saturday, Sept. 7.

 

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