Tick Tock Why The Clock?
A lot of people ask us why we call ourselves Clock Tower Music.
In 1983 Alex Kimmel opened a small music store on the ground floor of a Clocktower building located on Highway 1 in Half Moon Bay. When the business started to grow he moved into a bigger place just around the corner.
In 1993 Alex moved his store to San Carlos since Wickersham’s Music had just gone out of business and moved away. When Alex decided to retire in 1995 he offered his son Brian the opportunity to keep the business going.
Brian had grown up helping his father since the store opened in 1983 and was hopeful that he could make the business grow even more.
Brian bought the business from his father in 1995 and has been running it ever since.
Alex Kimmel Founder of Clock Tower Music
R. Alex Kimmel, 76, passed away peacefully at his home in Half Moon Bay on Nov. 7, 2015. He is survived by his wife, Patricia, son Brian, daughter Pamela and grandson David Jr.
Born in Greensburg, Pa., in 1939, to Mary and Edward, he was the youngest of three children. Following in older brother Ed Jr.’s footsteps, he began playing drums at an early age. His passion 66 and settled down in Half Moon Bay. He worked as a Prudential Insurance agent for thirty years. He also opened the local music store at Shoreline Station in 1983.
He was very active in the community, joining the Coastside Writers Group and the Sons in Retirement. His passion for music continued through his retirement. He played with several bands including the San Mateo Elks Concert Band, the Senior Friday Night Band and the Half Moon Bay Sit-Down Marching Band. He was loved and will be missed by many.grew and he became a part of many bands. The first group he was in, the Gay Tunes, played backup for Connie Francis, Frankie Avalon, Bobby Rydell, Dion and the Belmonts and Trini Lopez. In 1962 he moved to California to pursue his musical dreams. There he met Patricia, and they married in 1966 and settled down in Half Moon Bay. He worked as a Prudential Insurance agent for thirty years. He also opened the local music store at Shoreline Station in 1983.
He was very active in the community joining the Coastside Writer’s Group and the Sons in Retirement. His passion for music continued through his retirement. He played with several bands including the San Mateo Elks Concert Band, the Senior Friday Night Band and the Half Moon Bay Sit Down Marching Band.
He was loved and will be missed by many.
“Clock Tower Music has the feel of an old neighborhood store. You get personalized service from their very knowledgeable staff. Brian, who does the repairs, has been exceptional! I cannot count how many times he has tightened a screw or tweaked something on a sax to make it sound like a new instrument, often for nothing. Compared to other music stores, Brian has always given honest estimates, going over the whole list of recommended repairs and pointing out which are most necessary and which can wait. He has never overcharged for repair work. In fact, I find Clock Tower to have the most reasonable repair pricing out of all shops we have tried between south San Francisco and Redwood City. It probably helps that he is a sax player.”
M T. San Carlos, CA
“It’s a really small place so not the greatest selection, but really great prices. The lady behind the counter was nice and helped my inept ass with guitar strings. She even gave me a discount on an electronic tuner (like i said, inept). Now I’m all excited to go home and actually learn how to play guitar rather than just collect them…”
Geryon R. San Francisco, CA
“A great place for we peninsula ukulele players, the folks there are really interested in what you’re learning-playing etc and are knowledgeable. Please patronize your local independent shops instead of the big online megamarts!”
Paula T. Redwood City, CA
“They have become an amazing resource for my family’s evolving music needs. They referred us to a piano teacher for our eight year old as well as a piano tuner. We needed some Christmas sheet music and then for some other familiar songs for our burgeoning Chopin. Then, my wife turned to them to get her violin restrung. It might not be very big or well stocked, but they care about the community of which they are an important part.”
David P. San Carlos, CA
“Clock Tower Music is exactly what I’m looking for in a neighborhood music store!! The owner was so sweet and amazingly helpful. I’m debating whether I want to pick up an instrument, and he let me try some out. He also gave me a free flute fingering chart, which was a bonus! I’m used to going to the Guitar Center near Union Square NYC — which is large, impersonal, and filled with people running around — and leaving a bit stressed. Clock Tower Music was the opposite. All in all, it was a wonderful experience. STORE The store occupies a long space. Guitars and ukeleles hang on the walls, as well as instrument accessories. There’s a rehearsal/instruction space in the middle and then there seems to be an open space in the back. CTM just started offering its first ukelele group lessons.”
Elle W. New York, NY