One place pawnshops get respect

Pawnbrokers — including Kamaaina Loan blog — often lament that the image of pawnshops with the public is generally low. But there’s one place where we rank high. In fact, as far as we know, the highly-regarded Fender company is the only business that uses “pawnshop” as part of its branding.

Fender has just announced an addition to its fairly new Pawn Shop Special series, a small amp called the Ramparte that

looks the part of the perfect pawnshop prize.

Who knows how many now-famous musicians would never have been heard of if they hadn’t scored cheap used amps and guitars and mixing boards from a pawn shop when they were starting out poor, hungry and working gigs for free? Many, we think.

Tools 086

Maui, whose tourist business supports a high concentration of talented players, is awash with quality instruments (and some of middling goodness), and there are always a few in our retail store at 98 North Market Street.

There are even more in the warehouse, but most of those you’ll never see in the store. They go back to the owners, who have pawned them. Not because they needed money but because they are off on a tour or for a recording date — as the pros so often are — and the akamai ones have figured out that it’s a whole lot cheaper and safer to pawn their instruments with us than to put them in storage.

Our bonded and insured warehouse is climate-c0ntrolled.

The musicians may have come on this cool trick on their own, or they may have learned it from Jerry Clower’s Uncle Versie Ledbetter.