Jerry Grote grew up in Minnesota and began playing guitar after seeing the Beatles on the Ed Sullivan Show in February 1964. As a high school student, Jerry began visiting local music stores and discovered music retail. One of the stores he visited was called The Guitar Center, not related to the chain, but ironically, some years later Jerry did work for that Guitar Center when the chain opened a store in the Twin Cities. He may be the only person we have interviewed who has worked for both The Guitar Center and Guitar Center. As his passion for music developed, Jerry was asked to join Schmitt Music Company in 1980.
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