In 1939 Roy O’Brien opened the doors of O’Brien’s Music at 278 Water Street in downtown St. John’s. Newfoundland was still its own country, Roy and his wife Nellie waved their national pride high, becoming one of the first retailers of Newfoundland and Irish music. The store quickly became the biggest seller of accordions in Canada when Newfoundland joined confederation. Roy and Nellie raised six children in their home upstairs from the store, which had become a magnet for music-lovers.
In the ’70s two of their sons, Roy and Gord O’Brien, started working in the store and eventually took it over. Roy left in the 2000’s to pursue another career and the shop continued on with Gord and his children.
Currently owned and operated by Dave Rowe, nephew of Gord and Roy, Dave’s mother was one of the O’Brien kids raised above the old store. A musician himself, Dave grew up working part time at O’Brien’s Music, visiting his uncles and grand parents, and is very proud to be carrying on the family tradition as the third generation owner. He has moved in upstairs and is looking forward to a long life serving music-lovers with the best selection of Newfoundland music and everything you’ll ever need to make that music for yourself.
Meet the boys
05:33 PM Aug 09
07:07 PM Jun 05
A huge selection of mandolins, bouzoukis, and more.
If you understand terms like “Claw” and “Shrugg” then we have the Banjos you need.
New, used or vintage we have a huge selection of great guitars for all levels of players.
They might be small and only have four strings, but Ukuleles have a lot of heart and sound great!
For 70 years accordions and harmonicas have been our biggest sellers.
Newfoundland spoons, ugly sticks, shakers, tambourines and other rhythm makers.
Capos, strings, drum sticks, metronomes, kazoos, tuners… you get the idea.
Books & DVDs on how to play your new instrument as well as sheet music books for Newfoundland songs.
We ship anywhere and take orders over the phone. Let us know how we can help.
|278 Water Street
St. John’s, NL