After 50 years of business, Ridglea Music is closing its doors for good on Wed., June 30. Joe Fritz, who co-owns the place with his wife, Cheryl Fritz, say they never recovered from business lost during a long and drawn-out relocation from the Village at Camp Bowie to a retail space of roughly the same size (7,000 square feet) behind nearby Ridglea Theater. The Fritzes say their landlord claimed he had all of the right permits, but in actuality he did not. “This has been the hardest thing I’ve ever done,” Joe said. “Moving a store and then ending up having to close it. This has been my life for almost 20 years, and I’ve loved every minute of it” –– the Fritzes bought Ridglea Music in 2001; Joe had begun working there in sales in 1991.
Ridglea Music is currently having a storewide clearance sale, with discount prices on guitars, amps, sheet music, and orchestral instruments.
Joe says he plans on staying involved with music, perhaps through a local charitable organization. Interacting with people was his favorite part of the job. “I loved dealing with customers,” he said. “And I enjoyed the fact that there was always something new happening. One minute, you’re selling a PA system, then you turn around, and you’re selling a band instrument or sheet music. It was always an interesting, fun job. It’s something that I’ve done my entire adult life. … We weren’t the ‘metal’ store. We weren’t Guitar Center. We did a lot of lessons. There were a lot of educational aspects to it.”