March 04, 2021

 

Back in 2010, when I was first hired at Ohana, Louis took me on a little field trip to a few of our more local accounts.  First on that list was Shirley at Island Bazaar.  

I was completely overwhelmed.  What an amazing space for the community of Orange County and the surrounding area.  Shirley was a wealth of information about not only the ukulele and community surrounding the instrument, but also about the groups and clubs that were located all around Huntington Beach, Newport Beach and the area in general.

If you happen to take a vacation in SoCal, drop by Island Bazaar for one of their group jams or to check out a huge selection of ukuleles (and a fine spread of Aloha shirts for your next trip to Hawaii!)


Company: Island Bazaar
Name: Shirley Orlando
Position: Owner
Years at Company: 18
Main Focus: Ukulele sales,
teaching, groups & community participation.

 

How long has your company been in business?

Island Bazaar has been around for 18 years. Before that I owned Huntington Music for 25 years.

Shirley Orlando of Island Bazaar

The woman, the legend, Shirley Orlando!

What makes your store stand out?

The personal connections with customers is what makes our space stand out.


Community programs you’re involved in?

Locally, I teach children at Huntington Beach Library to play ukulele.  Several groups formed at Island Bazaar perform on a regular basis for civic functions and at senior facilities.


How did you get started in musical instrument sales?

I started my career in music back in 1967, just out of high school at Wallach’s Music City in Lakewood.


Any favorite tales from retail?

I could write a book!Once a gentleman called ...  He asked if we had banjo heads.  “Let me check inventory”, says I.  Realizing I hadn’t asked him for the banjo head size I went back to the phone…gee, was it line 1 or line 2?  I picked up line 1 and said, “Sir, what size is your head”?  There was a pause at the end of the line, then… “I don’t know what that has to do with piano lessons!”

I was also fortunate enough to meet personally many great pioneers of musical instruments such as Leo Fender, Les Paul, Mel Bay, and others.


Favorite age to teach to, and instrument to teach?

Love to teach anyone who wants to learn!

I hate teaching someone that is being dragged in by a parent or other person.  Also love to teach anyone who will actually put in a genuine effort at practicing.  I have taught guitar, saxophone, clarinet, etc., but ukulele is my favorite;  the most social musical instrument ever.


Any Studio Space/Performances/Regular Community-Open Events?

We host 7 musical groups per week.  We have monthly Blues/Country/Folk night, and also a monthly Open Mic Night.


Ukulollo at Island Bazaar

Friend of Ohana Ukulollo at the Island Bazaar Stage

What makes Ohana Ukuleles a good choice for Island Bazaar and for your community?

Because they offer CONSISTENT quality at a reasonable price.

The good folks at Ohana NEVER balk when it comes to customer care.  I’ve seen Ohana fix instruments out of warranty and accommodate whenever they can.

It’s hard to beat that little cedar top Willow uke (-50WG series).  Whether the soprano or concert, the tone is sweet and the volume is incredible -- best bang for the buck!

Kamaki, Louis and Shirley of Island BazaarLocal Legend Kamaki, Shirley of Island Bazaar, and Louis of Ohana Ukuleles.


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