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Claremore music store mural

Creative financing, coupled with creative ability has resulted in a make over for a long time Claremore music store. The financing arrangement is one of the oldest in the books. Trading a little of your talent for something you want.

News on 6 reporter Rick Wells says this whole new look for Claremore Music, is the result of a barter deal for a new guitar. Local musician Bill Holden came in to get a new guitar said he wanted to trade something for it. "Well, what can you trade?" Said Jim Robbins the owner.

Turns out musician Bill Holden is also an artist, he showed the Robbins' some of the murals he'd painted in the guest rooms of a Branson Hotel. "I said man this isn't murals this is wall art." And the deal was done. Originally, the mural was not going to cover the entire store front. Bill Holden: "When I sort of committed to it, I figured Claremore has gotta have Will Rogers."

So that was the beginning, a saloon with Will Rogers out front and a couple of musicians on the porch. Town needs a jail; in this case, the marshal is John Wayne. There's a big reward for Willie Nelson. Bill Holden: "It's only respectful humor; I think Willie'd get a kick out of it." The mural features a cattle drive, a blacksmith shop a church. The new look's confused some regular customers. Cathy Robbins: "They thought we'd turned into a Western store." Nope, still music, and after all, music is the heart of this whole deal.

The entire arrangement was over a new guitar. Bill Holden played in Tony Orlando's show for 7 years, did a pretty good Roy Orbison back then.

If you'd like to have a look for yourself, Claremore Music is located at the corner of Lynn Riggs Boulevard, and West 8th, by the railroad tracks.
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