What got Roland Belloir waltz to send the comfort of his expatriate life of Thales in Orange County? Spacious house, generous salary, good schools for their children. “It’s boring. I liked what was coming to Los Angeles music scene, “he replies. More alluring than the gloomy corridors of the financial service group’s aerospace, in his view, the underground scene of Echo Park neighborhood of musicians from the City of Angels. Around Sunset Boulevard, next to the trendy Silver Lake, small concert halls there bud.
Increasingly known, these places of worship in the bohemian youth are still preserved from the crowd and pretend that fill the clubs of Hollywood. At Echo Park, no limousines or BMW brand new, exit the suit and tie, remember fifteen years in big business. Now part of a rock’n'roll scene at the corner of Sunset and Alvarado, this “perfect product of the French Beaux Arts: School of Business, banking and management control,” as he describes himself, features the style Local: long hair, jeans, sunglasses with plastic frames.
Such a metamorphosis was not built in a day. After two years in Orange County Roland Belloir breaks his expatriation contract. “Doing this is frowned upon in a box,” he said. Result, upon his return, things fester. A year later, in April 2009, Thales thank him. On the floor with redundancy and memories of Echo Park full head, this music enthusiast embarks on a project with high risk, extremely dicey. ” “When I was financial, I would not have supported a project like this,” he joked.
And for good reason, did not wait Fretted Frog (name of his shop) to get its credentials in the music industry. The most famous musicians live there. And not the worst guitarists. He knows for example that Ben Harper is just not there in the corner of Los Feliz arty. Competition is fierce among retailers of six-strings, dominant among the shops in West Hollywood that are Guitar Center, and to a lesser extent, Sam Ash, and those of the west side of Santa Monica and Westwood. Its advantage: it is only on the east side. In addition, it offers music lessons.
“I have studied the ground. I hope to attract customers in Glendale, Burbank, Pasadena and Los Feliz, “he said. He knows that Echo Park, the musicians are quite penniless. Moreover, his rivals have settled “where there is loot, not necessarily talent,” says he. He’s the opposite. Local artists “are living the shop with small concerts or just repair their equipment, but not buy expensive guitars.
Major point on which the Toulouse set to get a place in the sun: to be a specialist in rare guitars, sharp. In the jargon of guitar players, “Gibson’s not here.” Reseller acoustic, but also amps, banjos and ukuleles, Roland Belloir is betting on little-known makers of quality, the French brand in the Irish Lag Lowden. A long-term bet as if he has to sell a guitar a day to “live well”, he is still “far off the mark.”