Top Shelf Guitar

February 1, 2012

Jeff Benske owns Top Shelf Guitar. Benske also plays guitar in the band Five Card Studs along with fellow Thomas More High alum and Tonic Tavern owner Paul Jonas. ~photo Michael Timm

1. Did you open the shop from the start or purchase the business?

I opened the shop from the start in May 2003 in what used to be a tattoo shop.

2. Why did you focus your business on guitars?

I’m a guitar player myself and have worked on instruments at other stores in town. I figured, Why not open my own place?

3. Do you sell acoustic and electric?

We sell acoustic, electric, basses, amplifiers, and accessories.

4. Do you sell other stringed instruments?

We stock ukuleles in addition to guitars and basses. We do sell the occasional banjo or mandolin.

5. Do you play guitar?

I’ve been playing guitar for 31 years. I started in high school at Thomas More where I was in a traveling jazz ensemble and never stopped playing. I do a hundred shows a year with the Five Card Studs.

6. Which guitarists to do you admire? Which guitars?

Any guitar player from the British Invasion. Guitars—American-made: older Fenders, Gibsons, Rickenbackers, Gretsches. Guitars that are my age.

7. What other services or merchandise do you provide? Do you do repairs?

Full and complete guitar repair, amplifier repair, and lessons. Our bread and butter is repairs.

8. Do you do instrument set-ups?


9. What are some good starter guitars for beginners?

You don’t have to spend a lot of money to get a decent guitar these days. Many of our used instruments are set up before they are hung on the wall and play better than some new instruments that were never set up.

10. Does Top Shelf Guitar provide lessons?

I have two very qualified teachers, Todd Richards and Will Branch, who will teach students ages 5-105.

2358 S. Kinnickinnic Ave.
Jeff Benske
(414) 481-8677

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One Comment on "Top Shelf Guitar"

  1. Marshall on Thu, 2nd Feb 2012 3:24 pm 

    Top Shelf is one of the best guitar shops around and hands down THE BEST for set up and repair. Great small environment. Jeff is the only guy I will trust to set up or repair my instruments right.

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