When music arrived in the downtown

In the old days, shopping and doing errands considered a form of socializing

Haney Music and Art moved to Lougheed Highway in 1947.

Haney Music and Art moved to Lougheed Highway in 1947.

It was not so long ago that running errands or going shopping was thought of as a form of socializing, and it became an activity that brought the community together.

The interaction between customer and owner went beyond a simple transaction, it was more of a shared experience.

And much like the general store, deli or even barber shop, the record store was a place that brought the community together to discover new things.

The first mention of the Haney Music and Art Store in the Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows Gazette dates to 1945, when they were moving locations to a new store, “operated by John S. Pearce and Miss Joan Pearce, temporarily located in McGeachan’s Hardware and Plumbing Store on the Lougheed Highway, three doors west of the Pacific Stages bus stop.”

The store supplied “local music lovers from classical to boogie-woogie in sheet music and records, as well as with musical supplies, the newest books, magazines, gifts, etc.” (Gazette, 1945).

The store also had a lending library, from which customers could sign-out records similar to the library.

They also participated in record exchanges throughout the community; an early take on the mixed tape.

A shortage of building materials kept Haney Music and Art in its temporary location until 1947, when adapting to the growth of Maple Ridge, it moved to another spot on Lougheed Highway between 7th and 8th Avenues, in the Harris block, which was fast becoming Haney’s newest shopping district (Gazette, 1947).

This would be between 223rd and 224th streets today.

The new move brought a new slogan, “Say it with music”, which was used in many print advertisements during the late 1940s and early 1950s for the store. This was very fitting, as the owners had purchased a high quality home recording machine, which was displayed in the store. The portable machine made it possible to record a song and make arrangements on the spot.

Not only could you visit the store to purchase products made by others, you could walk away having made your own piece of art.

Testing out new technology and having the latest music, weekly chart lists, along with art and stationary supplies made Haney Music and Art an integral part of the downtown shopping experience. The store changed hands a few times during its life, and was last owned by the Matheson’s, until it closed in the 1980s.

Although the store is no longer part of the downtown shopping area, its impact is still felt within the community. The sharing and fostering of new music and art that was experienced within the walls of Haney Music and Art can be seen today, outside, in the artistic community of Maple Ridge.

This year marks the 15th annual Music on the Wharf summer concert series. The concert started with a local band offering to play a one-time concert and has become one of the Maple Ridge Historical Society’s most popular events.

The society is currently seeking musical groups to submit applications to perform.

Full details along with the dates of the concert can be found at mapleridgemuseum.org or by calling 604-463-5311.

Although we may not be able to visit Haney Music and Art anymore, the shared experience of discovering something new, and “saying it with music” is still alive and well today.

Allison White is curator at Maple Ridge Museum.