On June 1st 2014, Buddy Hale began operating The Library Of MusicLandria.
Inspired by Berkeley’s Tool Library, Buddy enrolled in Sac State’s Business Program to learn about Social Entrepreneurship. On his very first day at Sac State, he decided to start a nonprofit. The idea was simple, create Sacramento’s first library completely dedicated to musical instruments. He used every class assignment to build the library one step at a time, and by the time he graduated, MusicLandria had a solid foundation to grow from.
To launch the project, Hale donated his entire life savings as well as his entire music instrument collection. With the help of Rachel Freund, MusicLandria opened its doors out of a tiny apartment on 11th and S and began lending out music instruments for free.
Since then, MusicLandria has completed thousands of loans, signed up hundreds of members and expanded their catalog to include over 700 musical instruments.
Our Founder’s Story
By: Vanessa Villanueva
The Library of MusicLandria is a non-profit music instrument library based in Sacramento, Calif. Unlike any other, MusicLandria offers a variety of music resources for free or on a donation basis to the public. Buddy Hale, the founder of MusicLandria, opens up about how this business was started, the idea behind it and what he envisions for the possibilities of this unique type of library.
“When I was growing up, my father battled with dementia, I went through the foster system and ultimately became an emancipated minor. I really struggled with isolation, a lack of personal identity, and had no helping hand to show me how to navigate the world. My life would have been very different if I had access to musical instruments and resources earlier. Musical exploration helped me define who I am in this world. It allowed me to identify my interests and passions and ultimately helped me create family-like bonds with a community of other music enthusiasts. Now that I’m in a place where I can create a resource that I wish existed when I was growing up, I can be the change I wish to see in the world. I can create a resource that provides opportunities for youth that didn’t exist when I was young, which is very rewarding” said Buddy.
When Buddy got older, he came up with the idea of creating a free music instrument library. With this idea in his mind, he worked towards a business degree at Sacramento State University. Buddy put every class project or assignment towards the creation of this library. After earning his degree in business with a focus on social entrepreneurship, MusicLandria was born.
“We really want to empower local musicians to learn and explore music through a hands-on experience. By breaking down the barriers to musical exploration, we want to impact people from all walks of life by allowing them to identify their voice, develop professionally, and build a tightly knit community of musicians,” said Buddy.
Upon the startup of this new business, Buddy donated every instrument that he owned to the library. Although it wasn’t much, it was enough to allow MusicLandria to begin testing out his idea to see what the impact would be. It is now two years later and the library provides free access to over 400 items; guitars, recording gear, synthesizers, effect pedals and beyond.
A lot of people ask where the name of the library came from. Well, MusicLandria is inspired by the Library of Alexandria, which was one of the largest and most significant libraries of the ancient world. Buddy explains that “when we launched MusicLandria, our intention was to build the largest musical instrument library in the world, which we still plan to do, one step at a time.”
Buddy continues to address the needs of Sacramento’s music community as the business develops. He regularly sends out surveys to local musicians and music enthusiasts to fill out. In doing so, Buddy strives to identify the greatest needs of the music community and develop a plan to solve the biggest problems. His immediate goal is to build a music hub to house MusicLandria’s library, a recording studio, practice rooms and a main room for workshops. MusicLandria is currently seeking funding for a permanent location to house these free and donation-based services.
2. Prior to borrowing items, all Members must (a) complete a Membership Application; (b) sign the Waiver and Indemnification Form; (c) sign our policy form; and (d) have their residence confirmed by a Library volunteer or member of the staff. Completing a Membership Application includes the completion of the Membership Application form and verification of the Member’s identity. Presenting a valid government-issued photo ID and a second form of identification that includes a current address will accomplish verification of the Member’s identity.
3. Library staff is available to assist in explaining proper use and operation of all items. However, by taking possession of any item, the Member is certifying that he or she is capable of using that item in a safe and proper manner.
4. Only the Member is authorized to use Library items. The Member shall not permit the use of items checked out to him or her by any other person unless by the express permission of the Library.
5. Members will not specifically be charged for borrowing any item, but will be advised as to the suggested donation for the items that they are borrowing.
6. All items borrowed are to be returned to the Library by close of business on their due date. Items may only be returned before their due date at an agreed upon time. To schedule a return time, contact Buddy Hale at 510 705 3567 or firstname.lastname@example.org
7. If an item is returned late, the Member will be responsible for a late fee. This late fee will be $5 per day for every day the Library is open until the item is returned. Late fees are capped at the full replacement cost of the item plus a $5 administrative fee per item. The Library may replace severely delinquent items, holding the Member responsible for the full replacement cost plus a $5 administrative fee. Fines must be paid in full before borrowing additional items.
8. The Library reserves the right to use appropriate steps to retrieve delinquent items or unpaid fines and fees, including the use of a collection agency and/or legal action and assess the delinquent Member with the cost of any such action. The Library also reserves the right to forgive fees due to special circumstances.
9. Items may be reserved only on the actual date of checkout. All reservations must be confirmed by a Library staff member, volunteer, or automated response to be effective. All reservations will be nullified if you do not pick up your item by the time we close on the day you reserved the item. MusicLandria reserves the right to make an exception to this policy for large, community events. No exceptions will be made for individual lending.
10. Members may renew each item once if (a) the Member contacts the Library by noon on the day that the item is due, and (b) no other Member has reserved the item. The Library reserves the right to refuse or limit renewals and will do so based on demand.
11. The Member agrees that the Library is not responsible for any manufacturing defects in quality of workmanship or materials inherent in any borrowed items.
12. The Member agrees that if any borrowed item becomes unsafe or in a state of disrepair, he or she must immediately discontinue use of the item and notify the Library of the issue on return, if not earlier.
13. All items are to be returned in the same (or better) condition as they were issued, barring normal wear and tear. All items must be returned clean. The Member agrees to pay for the loss of or damage to any item and further agrees to accept the Library’s assessment of condition of items and to further agree to the Library’s assessment of fair restitution for damage, dirtiness, delinquency, and/or loss of items in part or in total. This restitution amount could equal the full replacement cost of the item plus a $5 administrative fee.
14. The Library reserves the right to refuse the loan of any item at its discretion.