Northern Liberties talent behind new TV show

North­ern Liber­ties’ own Larry Freed­man — chair of the North­ern Liber­ties Neigh­bors As­so­ci­ation’s Zon­ing Com­mit­tee — has be­gun a new melod­ic ven­ture.

It’s a tele­vi­sion show called Danny’s Gui­tar Shop, something he cre­ated in har­mony with two friends and busi­ness part­ners. The pro­gram, which first aired on Oct. 1, now airs weekly on Sat­urdays at 6:30 p.m. on WM­CN-TV. 

The whole pro­ject is the dream child of Danny Gold of Broomall, who had an idea for a tele­vi­sion show while he was work­ing as a sales rep­res­ent­at­ive for Fend­er, a man­u­fac­turer of elec­tric gui­tars.

“I had the idea about five years ago,” Gold re­called dur­ing an in­ter­view on Monday, Oct. 3. “I saw that there were whole chan­nels ded­ic­ated to food or to golf, but there was noth­ing ded­ic­ated to gui­tars.” 

He de­cided to try to put to­geth­er a show of his own, and left Fend­er in 2007 in pur­suit of the dream. But, he hit plenty of road­b­locks and even­tu­ally brought the idea to his long­time friend, Freed­man. 

“He got the idea for Danny’s Gui­tar Shop, but, it’s very dif­fi­cult to sell an idea,” said Freed­man. “You could talk to someone un­til you’re blue in the face, but you’ve got to go and do it.” 

After some time dis­cuss­ing how to make Gold’s idea a real­ity — he al­ways wanted to have a pro­gram that fo­cused on a vari­ety of as­pects in­volving mu­sic, from the cre­ation of in­stru­ments to the mu­sic­al her­it­age of dif­fer­ent loc­ales — the two de­veloped short au­dio pieces that aired on WX­PN ra­dio. 

These four-minute au­dio shows were well re­ceived, but Freed­man said they nev­er grew in­to any­thing lar­ger and, for a time, the idea for Danny’s Gui­tar Shop as a show died. 

“It was dead. It was ly­ing there with no pulse,” re­called Freed­man. 

But, with the show seem­ingly hal­ted, Gold turned the idea of Danny’s Gui­tar Shop in­to a phys­ic­al, bricks and mor­tar build­ing, open­ing his own mu­sic store at 102 For­rest Ave. in Narberth, in June 2009. 

And Freed­man nev­er let the idea for a show com­pletely dis­ap­pear. 

“He kept bug­ging me not to let it die,” said Gold. 

Real­iz­ing they needed a little more help, the friends reached out to Ron Stan­ford, who had an ex­tens­ive back­ground in video pro­duc­tion.  

With Stan­ford’s back­ground in video and Freed­man’s long his­tory in pro­duc­tion for au­dio — he runs his own busi­ness, Second Street Pro­duc­tions, out of his North­ern Liber­ties home — and Gold’s win­ning per­son­al­ity and ex­tens­ive know­ledge of gui­tars and the mu­sic in­dustry, the three found they could cre­ate beau­ti­ful mu­sic to­geth­er.

“We’re lucky, be­cause each of the three of us has dif­fer­ent tal­ents that fill in where the oth­ers leave off,” said Stan­ford in an email. “But, we’re all en­ter­tained by the same kinds of mu­sic, hu­mor, and char­ac­ters. If we en­joy what we’re pro­du­cing, I think we just as­sume that there are oth­ers out there who will feel the same way.”

“We got to­geth­er and that was it,” said Freed­man. “We star­ted shoot­ing, Danny star­ted talk­ing, and then, we had a show. And, it’s a pretty good show.” 

For the first epis­ode, the three friends traveled to Mar­tin Gui­tar Co. in Naz­areth, Pa., the com­pany, which, to many gui­tar­ists, cre­ates the finest acous­tic gui­tars money can buy. 

With one epis­ode in hand, the friends began shop­ping it around to tele­vi­sion sta­tions, both loc­ally and across the East Coast, hop­ing to get the show put on TV. 

But, Freed­man said, even with a show that many found to be en­ter­tain­ing, find­ing a chan­nel to air the pro­gram was also a long pro­cess, un­til they met John Gorchow, pro­gram dir­ect­or at WM­CN-TV. 

The chan­nel, Freed­man said, was be­ing transitioned from an all-in­fomer­cial format in­to host­ing its own pro­gram­ming. Based in At­lantic City, Freed­man said, the chan­nel reaches homes from as far as Cape May, N.J. to Read­ing, Pa., mean­ing the show could be broad­cast to over three mil­lion homes. 

Freed­man said that Gorchow was im­me­di­ately in­ter­ested in the show. 

“It’s not Wayne’s World. It’s not pub­lic ac­cess. This is a real chan­nel,” said Freed­man.

The three con­tac­ted loc­al busi­nesses to help spon­sor the show — the new Uni­on Trans­fer mu­sic ven­ue, Onion Flats and Old City Pub­lish­ing are the show’s core spon­sors — and now Danny’s Gui­tar Shop can be seen every week. 

“If you like watch­ing stor­ies about people who are pas­sion­ate about what they do, you’ll love our show,” said a smil­ing Freed­man. 

Gold said the show is shot “guer­illa style,” with the three part­ners do­ing everything needed to bring each epis­ode to life. But, so far, the show’s go­ing strong and they have even been able to use the real Danny’s Gui­tar Shop in Narberth in some of the foot­age. 

“Now, we can use it as a sound stage,” said Gold. “We are hav­ing a great time. That’s why we are do­ing it.” ••

Check loc­al list­ings for WM­CN-TV. For more in­form­a­tion on Danny’s Gui­tar Shop or to view full clips of the show or listen to the ori­gin­al ra­dio seg­ments vis­it www.dannys­gui­

Re­port­er Hay­den Mit­man can be reached at 215-354-3124 or hmit­  

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