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Dealers’ Choice Electric Guitar • Electric Bass • Acoustic Guitar Amplifier • Recording • Sound Reinforcement
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Lighting • DJ • Print Music • Accessory • Best Supplier Website
29th Annual 50 Dealer/50 State Review & Forecast
America’s Top Chains
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Contents DECEMBER 2012 VOL.171 NO. 12
We celebrate 20 years of DCAs! This year brings back old standby brands in important categories, but also unveils a few surprises…
Cover design by Laurie Chesna.
20 Stats: U.S. Musical Instrument Imports for Consumption – Quarterly Data for 2012
28 Report: 29th Annual Fifty Dealer/Fifty State Review & Forecast
MI retail operations from across America share their perspectives on the past year’s business, the Lacey Act, the growing role of e-commerce, and the outlook for 2013.
56 31st Annual America’s Top Music Chains 72 Print: Print Music’s Top-Sellers for 2012
A year-end roundup of some of the best-selling titles from leaders in the print music market.
In every issue: 4 6 16 80 86 90 96
Editorial Upfront People New Products Supplier Scene Classifieds Advertisers’ Index
76 Anniversary: Pender’s Music
The family-run Texas sheet music chain marks 45 years since Harold Gore took over the former campus bookstore and grill and helped transform it into a regional hub for music of all kinds.
MMR Musical Merchandise Review® (ISSN 0027-4615) founded in 1879, is published monthly by Symphony Publishing, LLC, 21 Highland Circle, Suite 1, Needham, MA 02494 (781)453-9310, publisher of School Band and Orchestra, Choral Director, Music Parents America and JazzEd. All titles are federally registered trademarks and/or trademarks of Symphony Publishing, LLC. Subscription Rates: U.S.A., US possessions, one year $32; two years $40. Canada one year $80; all other countries one year $159. Single issues $5 each. May Supplier Directory $35. Periodical-Rate Postage Paid at Boston, MA and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER/SUBSCRIBERS: Send address change to Musical Merchandise Review, P.O. Box 8548, Lowell, MA 01853. Periodicals circulation is directed to music dealers and retailers, wholesalers and distributors, importers and exporters and manufacturers of all types of musical instruments and their accessories, related electronic sound equipment, general musical accessories, musical publications and teaching aides. The publishers of this magazine do not accept responsibility for statements made by their advertisers in business competion. No portion of this issue may be reproduced without the written permission of the publisher. Copyright ©2012 by Symphony Publishing, LLC, all rights reserved. Printed in USA.
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Editorial Sidney Davis
Volume 171 Number 12 December 2012
Hail To The Chief
PUBLISHER Sidney L. Davis firstname.lastname@example.org
To this observer, the third rail of trade publishing is to express a political opinion. However, based purely on musical talents, the pendulum has to swing towards our current president and his rendition of Al Green’s “Let’s Stay Together” which, incidentally, helped the Reverend sell 16,000 downloads of the song the following week. Governor Romney did not fare as well in his attempt to sing “America The Beautiful” during a Florida campaign stop, but not to worry: the apparently tone deaf challenger was not precluded from Pennsylvania Avenue based on his ability (or lack thereof) to carry a tune. President Ulysses Grant was somewhat proud of his musical inabilities, telling all who would listen, “I only know two tunes, one of them is ‘Yankee Doodle Dandy’ and the other isn’t.” While President Obama ran unopposed in the primaries, there was no lack of Republicans with musical backgrounds. Two potential candidates who did not enter the race were former Governor Sarah Palin, who played the flute in the skills competition when she competed in the 1984 Miss Alaska pageant, and NAMM favorite Mike Huckabee, who ran for the high office in 2008 and often appears on the NAMM stage and on his television program with bass in hand. Former Ambassador Jon Huntsman played the keyboard with a rock band after high school and put his talents to good use during the campaign, performing the Charlie Brown theme song at a music store in Manchester, New Hampshire while trolling for votes. Texas Governor Rick Perry demonstrated his musical prowess at former President Bush’s inaugural ball accompanying ZZ Top on the drums and keyboard. However, if I were to cast my vote based on musical talent for the Republican presidential wanna-bes, it would be Mr. 999 himself, Godfather Pizza executive Herman Cain, who recorded a gospel album, Sunday Morning Watchdog. Who had the most talent among our nation’s leaders? I cast my ballet for our 29th Commander in Chief, Warren G. Harding (according to historians, he had other social skills which will remain unstated). Harding actively organized and played in the Citizen’s Cornet Band and, in his words, “played every instrument but the slide trombone and the E-flat Cornet.” While it could not be substantiated that the Father of our Country played the zither (evidently his wife Martha did), both Calvin Coolidge and Ronald Reagan were familiar with the harmonica, while Chester Arthur was the sole occupier of the Oval Office with a penchant for the banjo. William Jefferson Clinton stands alone representing the saxophone, as does flute-playing John Quincy Adams. The violin was the instrument of choice for several heads of state: Thomas Jefferson, Richard Nixon, Woodrow Wilson, John Tyler, and Abraham Lincoln among them. Several of this group were multitalented, with Jefferson also proficient at the cello and clavichord, Nixon the piano (he accompanied Pearl Bailey at a White House concert) and the accordion. The piano was the instrument of choice for most of the musically gifted leaders and beyond those already cited were FDR and my favorite, Harry Truman, who once threatened to kick a music critic in a sensitive area when he rendered an unfavorable opinion on daughter Margaret’s musical talent. Looking ahead to the 2016 contest, my early favorite for the GOP is former Secretary of State Condaleezza Rice, a classically trained concert pianist. One bit of unsolicited advice, Madame Secretary: If you invite Clint Eastwood to the Convention, request he bring his drums and leave the chair at home. Representing the Blue States, I will stick with the office of Secretary of State and its present occupant – while her own musical talents are unknown, the potential First Mate can carry the tune!
ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER Rick Kessel email@example.com EDITOR Christian Wissmuller firstname.lastname@example.org ASSOCIATE EDITORS Eliahu Sussman email@example.com Matt Parish firstname.lastname@example.org CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Chaim Burstein, Dennis Carver, Kevin Mitchell, Dick Weissman ADVERTISING MANAGER Iris Fox email@example.com ADVERTISING & MARKETING EXECUTIVE Matthew King firstname.lastname@example.org CLASSIFIED & DISPLAY AD SALES Steven Hemingway email@example.com PRODUCTION MANAGER Laurie Guptill firstname.lastname@example.org GRAPHIC DESIGNERS Laurie Chesna email@example.com Andrew P. Ross firstname.lastname@example.org CIRCULATION MANAGER Melanie A. Prescott email@example.com SYMPHONY PUBLISHING, LLC Chairman Xen Zapis President Lee Zapis firstname.lastname@example.org Chief Financial Officer Rich Bongorno email@example.com Corporate Headquarters 26202 Detroit Road, Suite 300, Westlake, Ohio 44145 440-871-1300 www.symphonypublishing.com PUBLISHING, SALES & EDITORIAL OFFICE: 21 Highland Circle, Suite 1, Needham, MA 02494 (781) 453-9310 Fax: (781) 453-9389 www.mmrmagazine.com
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Upfront Hurricane Sandy’s Impact on MI Operations in the Northeast With over 90 lives lost due to effects of “Superstorm”/Hurricane Sandy, as well as billions of dollars worth of damage and considerable disruptions in power, travel, and other services, MMR decided to check in throughout the
Trojan Steps Down as CEO of GC
On October 29, it was announced that Guitar Center CEO, Gregory Trojan, will become president of BJ’s Restaurants Inc. in December and will replace Jerry Deitchle as chief executive early next year. Trojan will first join BJ’s as president and as a director on Dec. 3. For roughly the past five years he served chief executive of Guitar Center, and prior to that served as chief executive of House of Blues Entertainment Inc. A former PepsiCo executive, Trojan also served as chief executive of California Pizza Kitchen for two years while it was owned by PepsiCo. Since March 2010, he has been a director of Domino’s Pizza Inc.
Guitar Center Holdings, Inc. has a reported total annual revenue in excess of $2 billion. Guitar Center currently operates 232 Guitar Center stores in 43 states and 109 Music & Arts stores in 22 states. Trojan initially joined Guitar Center as president and COO and became its CEO in November 2010. In an internal GC memo, Trojan explained that he took the post at BJ’s in order to fulfill a goal of heading a public company. He noted that, “although it is likely that GC will be public again, it is probably a couple of years away… The future of [GC] truly has never been brighter.”
week immediately following the storm with our friends in MI retail and supply who were directly in the path of the destruction. When we touched base with Sammy Ash on October 30, he noted that, “15 [Sam Ash] stores are closed and the office is shut down. I could complain, but I know a lot of people in worse shape.” D’Addario’s John D’Addario III said, “Fortunately we are OK. While we lost two days’ worth of production, our three Long Island facilities are in good shape. It is the residential areas which are a mess here on Long Island, with over a million people without power.” “As we are learning from the aftermath of this storm, nothing is for certain,” observed Connolly Music’s Jake Connolly on the afternoon of November 1. “We had phones and Internet yesterday. It went down last night at 7:30pm and came back on at about 11:00am this morning. We are fully back up and running again – hopefully for good this time… but time will tell. Having employees in separate areas of the country which can keep the customer communications and orders flowing, telecommuting when possible, et cetera has been a real benefit.” Tech 21 also weathered the (literal) storm pretty well. VP Dale Krevens told us: “We were very, very lucky – we didn’t lose power or have any damage. We have a few important suppliers in some of the hard hit areas, but they’re all fine and it’s business as usual. It could have been disastrous for our production if that wasn’t the case. Of course, each of us is hit hard by the devastation all around us. I just keep shaking my head and feeling sick to my stomach when I see the photos and hear so many tragic stories.” “Our N.Y. offices have been closed since the storm due to lack of power,” said Carl Fischer’s Chris Scialfa. “As soon as
power is restored, we expect to re-open those offices for those employees who can safely make it in… During this time, our warehouse was only closed a short period and has been shipping orders for a good part of the week. Naturally there will be some delays in getting orders shipped, but under the circumstances, we feel very fortunate. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all our industry friends, as well as anyone who was affected by the storm. We hope any damage was minimal and that all of you are safe.” On Halloween, we heard from AP International president, Andrew Papiccio, who said, “We are all OK, but the situation is still not good. Tomorrow will be four days [without] electricity [and no] business or stores operating. Basically the middle and southern part of the state is closed down… As much as this is an inconvenience, we have far less to worry about then those who have lost everything.” Other N.Y./N.J. area MI suppliers reported having to temporarily close offices due to power outages and transportation delays. Several retailers remained closed and out of contact during the days immediately following the storm, suggesting that some were, indeed, negatively impacted by Sandy. Retailers whom we were able to reach had come out of the storm largely unscathed. Brooklyn’s Southside Guitars closed down on the Monday and Tuesday immediately after Sandy (though ownership was at the store on Tuesday, just in case), but suffered no damage or power outage. “Everyone around here seems to be fine, honestly,” said sales and repairman Trevor Stokkers. “No flooding and just one broken branch on this street.” Further up the coast in the port town of New London, Conn., Caruso Music also suffered no significant damage, despite its location just a few hundred feet from the water. Owner Larry DECEMBER 2012
Upfront Caruso said there were no adverse affects at the shop, although blocks in the immediate area dealt (or are still dealing) with nearly 100 percent power outages. “We were very fortunate in terms of the storm affecting us,” he said. The company also runs a piano moving business, which he says was brought to a halt, and Caruso reported that
his own home was flooded with three feet of seawater. “We did close the shop on Monday and Tuesday. Although we had power, you weren’t allowed to be on the road on Monday.” All of us at MMR extend our best wishes and hopes for a speedy recovery to those who work and live in areas hit hard by Sandy.
Hal Leonard to Distribute Aquarius Entertainment Merchandise Hal Leonard Corporation has entered into an agreement with Aquarius Entertainment Merchandise to exclusively distribute artist-branded gift items to music stores in North America, Australia, and New Zealand. The deal marks the first time that Aquarius products will be available through the MI channel.
Headquartered in Valencia, Calif., Aquarius licenses name and likeness rights from famous musicians, bands, and pop culture icons to produce a variety of popular gift items tailored to music fans. Their products include playing cards, puzzles, magnets, calendars, lunch boxes, pint glasses and more. Aquarius holds rights to artists such as The Beatles, Elvis Presley, Bob Marley, Rush, Pink Floyd, Kiss, the Grateful Dead, and many others, plus Fender-branded gift items. Hal Leonard will distribute playing cards and puzzles initially, then expand its offerings to retailers for NAMM – with new products and new artists. For more information or to place an order for Aquarius gift items, call the Hal Leonard E-Z Order Line at (800) 554-0626, email sales@halleonard. com, or visit www.halleonard.com.
Zildjian’s DeChristopher to Retire
The Avedis Zildjian Company has announced that after 24 years at Zildjian and 30 years working in the percussion industry, John DeChristopher, VP of artist relations and events marketing worldwide, has decided to retire from Zildjian and take a break from the music industry, allowing him to spend more time John DeChristopher. with his family. “While we are saddened to see John leave the Zildjian family, we are very grateful for his many years of loyalty, dedication and significant contribution to the Zildjian brand. We are extremely proud to have had John represent Zildjian over the past 24 years!” said Craigie Zildjian, CEO, Zildjian Company. DeChristopher noted, “This has been my world for nearly half of my life. But, I feel it’s time for me to take a break and hit the reset button.” DeChristopher will remain through Winter NAMM 2013 to help the Company with the transition.
Yamaha Entertainment Group of America Launches Record Label Yamaha Entertainment Group of America, a new division within the Yamaha Corporation of America, is building a boutique, one-stop-shop record label. Yamaha Entertainment Group of America has devised a completely new business model for rising and established artists, and has built a fullservice recording and video production studio in Franklin, Tennessee to support the new venture. The new division will work with artists to record, produce, brand, publish, license, market, publicize, and sell original audio and video content. Yamaha En8 MMR
tertainment Group of America will employ the services of Alternative Distribution Alliance (ADA) – a leading distributor of independent labels – to market, promote and distribute its releases. “For nearly five decades, Yamaha has been the world leader in artist endorsements. It was a natural progression to take the next step and provide what our Chris Gero. artists needed at a critical time in music history,” said Chris Gero, founder of Yamaha Entertainment Group of Amer-
ica. “Our goal is to significantly enhance the services we provide, while maintaining the level of quality our artists have come to know us by. Not only do we stand behind the instruments our artists use to make music, but we also stand behind their talent.” Currently recording in the Yamaha Entertainment Group of America studios is London-based rock band LEOGUN, affiliated with Elton John’s Rocket Entertainment Group. The band released single, “Let’s DECEMBER 2012
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Upfront Be Friends,” in September and performed at the Yamaha Entertainment Group of America launch party at the historic Whisky A Go Go in Los Angeles that same month. LEOGUN released a five-song EP through Yamaha Entertainment Group of America in October with a full-length album on the way in February 2013. Yamaha Entertainment Group
of America plans to release five records per year, including upcoming projects in queue such as an album celebrating renowned bassist Nathan East. The new Yamaha Entertainment Group of America division oversees Yamaha’s artist relations departments in New York, Nashville, Indianapolis, and Los Angeles, which will continue manag-
ing the company’s affiliation with 3,600 artists and providing them with instruments, including grand pianos, for major motion pictures, national television shows, major award ceremonies, and concert performances. Longstanding Yamaha artists include Elton John, Alicia Keys, Jason Mraz, Paul McCartney, Michael Buble, and Sheryl Crow.
AMS Named Australian Distributor for Zildjian The Avedis Zildjian Company has announced that Australasian Music Supplies (AMS) will be its new distributor for Australia.
AMS will assume exclusive distribution duties for Australia effective immediately. Founded in 1975 by Kevin Hague and based in Melbourne, AMS is one of
Zildjian regional sales manager Asia /Pacific - Kim Pang; AMS general manager sales & marketing - Bradley Willats; Zildjian CEO - Craigie Zildjian; Zildjian VP of human resources - Deborah Zildjian; AMS president & CEO - Kevin Hague; AMS director - Devlin Hague; and Zildjian vice president global sales - Bob DeLorenzo.
the largest volume distributors in the Australian marketplace. The company is well known for its comprehensive catalogue of products, stocking levels, and customer support. Zildjian’s line of cymbals, drumsticks, and its Gen 16 Acoustic Electric product line will be represented by AMS throughout Australia. CEO Craigie Zildjian commented, “AMS’s approach to the market and the excellence of its operations are an excellent fit for our company. We are equally impressed with the dedicated team who will be charged with representing our brand and managing our distribution throughout Australia.” For more information about Zildjian products in Australia, contact, Bradley Willats, AMS general managersales & marketing at 61-3-9549 1500 or firstname.lastname@example.org/au.
Larry’s Music Center Gives Former Instructor – and ‘X-Factor’ Runner-up – Fender Strat We were contacted by the good folks at Ohio’s Larry’s Music Center (locations in Wooster and Millersburg) about some recent events of note at the store. During last season’s run of the television program, X-Factor, former Larry’s Music Center guitar instructor Josh Krajcik was a contestant who wound up being runner-up in the competition. During the season finale, Larry’s tweeted that the store would be giving Josh a Fender American Standard Stratocaster, win or lose. Ultimately, Krajcik didn’t win that night – but he did get that guitar. “It was just a crazy idea we came up with while watching the finale,” sales manager Gabriel O’Brien told MMR. 10 MMR
“Josh is a longtime Fender player and we knew he could use a new guitar. The initial photo we tweeted was of storeowner Brad Shreve holding the same guitar with a maple neck, though we remembered that Josh liked rosewood, so we gave him that one instead. This wasn’t a free guitar from Fender or anything – it was just one off our wall. We were just all very excited for Josh and pleased to see him doing so well. After spending years seeing him play locally it was a great way to celebrate his success. Josh has bought plenty of instruments from us over the years, as has his dad who’s bought a couple guitars in the last year. We’re very happy for him and can’t wait to hear [his new] album when it comes out.”
Gabriel O’Brien and Josh Krajcik with the Strat that Larry’s gave to Josh. DECEMBER 2012
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Upfront SHS International Opens West Coast Operation SHS International has opened a distribution warehouse in Chino, California. This additional distribution point allows SHS to provide stock to their dealers at pricing that can be more “cartage fee” friendly than the previous “single distribution point model.” This brings the following opportunities to dealers and distributors: • Reduced shipping charges • Quicker procurement • Better Margins, especially for items that tend to be expensive to ship.
SHS International continues to fulfill the majority of orders from Indianapolis, Indiana, but as western U.S. dealers
are discovering, West Coast distribution makes sense in many cases. This location also offers western U.S. dealerships the opportunity to enjoy better pricing on the powered and non-powered audio equipment that, until now, had been cost prohibitive.
8th Annual Physicians’ Talent Showcase Presented by Steinway Piano Society The 8th Annual Physicians’ Talent Showcase, was presented at The Sugden Community Theatre in Naples, Fla. by the Steinway Piano Society. Twenty physicians, nurses, and other members of the health community set their stethoscopes aside for the evening, opting for a different method of healing: the arts of music and comedy. Steinway Piano Society founders Greg and Sara Billings produced another fantastic line-up of talented doctors and raised nearly $50,000. They touched the hearts of many in the room when they presented a Lifetime Achievement Award, in the form of a
gold ukulele signed by the entire cast, to Neighborhood Health Clinic founder Dr. Bill Lascheid. Dr. Lascheid and his wife, Nancy, founded the clinic in 1999 for the purpose of providing quality healthcare to low-income, working but uninsured Collier County adults. The goal of the Neighborhood Health Clinic is to break the cycle of poverty and give hope to future generations of patients. The clinic is run entirely by a professional, volunteerbased staff. Over 700 physicians, nurses, dentists and dental hygienists have volunteered to provide quality health and dental care to over 14,000 patients.
Ultrasound Amps Purchased
Ultrasound Acoustic Amplifiers has been purchased by a private equity firm. Original designer and engineer Greg Farres will remain on hand to
assist in the transition and to design a new line of amplifiers built in the USA. Additionally, all staff will remain in place at the current location. This is the second acquisition this year for the private equity firm. Their first purchase of Dean Markley Strings was finalized last May.
Sara Billings presenting a Lifetime Achievement Award to Dr. Bill Lascheid, founder of Neighborhood Health Clinic. Photo by Rochelle Shucart.
GC Backs Out of Plans to Buy AMG Australia’s Allans Billy Hyde musical instrument stores are now reported to close after Guitar Center decided not to go ahead with a plan to buy the struggling MI retailer. Ferrier Hodgson, the receivers of Allans and Billy Hyde, say the music stores will close by December. Allans Billy Hyde had employed 613 people across 25 company-owned stores, four franchise stores, and the firm’s head office in Melbourne. Tim Mason, the joint managing director of the failed retail group, sent an email in mid-October to several interested parties that read: 12 MMR
“We have been told by Guitar Center that they will not buy AMG. That news is very disappointing for us all. We believe that Guitar Center were seriously interested in the business and we know that a number of senior executives spent many long hours including several weekends on the proposal… This probably marks the end of our efforts to sell the whole business. We understand there are a number of offers to buy single or multiple sites and no doubt Ferriers will explore those opportunities… We want to thank
you all for your friendship and help during our time together and particularly over the last few weeks. We have both formed lasting friendships with many people during the time we have spent together and we value those friendships”. As previously reported by MMR, Australian Music Group (AMG), which owns the two retail brands, went into administration in late August owing more than $40 million to creditors. The four franchise stores, which are independently owned, will remain open. DECEMBER 2012
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Springsteen Makes Surprise Appearance at Little Kids Rock Concert That same evening, Van Zandt received the “Big Man of the Year” award from Little Kids Rock, a David Wish’s nonprofit group that provides free music education and instruments to school children.
Bruce Springsteen recently made a surprise appearance at New York’s Hammerstein Ballroom to support to his E Street bandmate and friend of 47 years, guitarist Steven Van Zandt.
Hohner Launches New Sites Hohner’s new websites have an improved look and feel and offer many new features, including video work-shops and tutorials for harmonica service, a section dedicated entirely to harmonica customizing from the leading customizers in the world, artist videos, free harmonica lessons, Hohner news from around the world, interactive galleries, and much more. The new website allows users to filter news, artist bios, videos, and other media by instrument,
country, topic, and year. It also introduces a brand new media database to which dealer and distributors can log in and download high-res product images, artist’s photos, videos, catalogs, and more. Global social media activity has been integrated into the new site in order to help Hohner stay in closer contact with its customers and to keep them better informed. For more information go to www.playhohner.com.
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People Symetrix has promoted Zak Dewey from project coordinator and test engineer to engineering manager. In his new position, Dewey will report to Syme- Dewey trix CEO Paul Roberts. He will coordinate company efforts to ensure that the engineering team has all of the resources it needs to research and develop innovative new products while maintaining high quality and value. Chauvet recently appointmented Grant Goodson as national sales director. Goodson brings nearly a decade of experience Goodson in sales strategy, process, automation and implementation to Chauvet & Sons Inc., which markets four main brands: Chauvet® DJ, Chauvet Professional, Trusst®, and Iluminarc®. Goodson directs sales strategies and operations in the U.S. for all four brands. He previously held sales, distribution and management positions at 3form® in Salt Lake City, Utah, and NYC while pursuing an MBA at Northwestern University – Kellogg School of Management. Newly hired to serve as national sales manager for Chauvet Professional and Ilumincarc is DeAnna Padgett. Padgett brings Padgett more than 20 years of experience in busi-
ness management, administrative, sales, and marketing, having worked for more than a decade as part of the Barbizon Lighting team. In addition, Ethan Aberg, with over 15 years in the industry, serves as Iluminarc national business development manager and reports to Padgett. Serving as national sales manager for Chauvet DJ is Ana Jaramillo, an integral part of the team since 2001. Both Jaramillo and Padgett Jaramillo report to Grant Goodson. Will Steven has joined the staff at SKB Corporation as product and OEM manager. Steven comes to SKB after earning his BA in Mu- Steven sic with a Minor in Advertising from the University of Wisconsin at Whitewater in 2007. He began working in the music business in 2001 while still in high school in the repair department at Ward Brodt Music and continued there through college. In 2007 Will began working at Full Compass in the Pro Audio, Video, Lighting, and MI Sales Departments. Stevens’ responsibilities at SKB include developing new case designs, working with manufacturers on OEM projects, managing and updating current products, and working with customers on case suggestions or concerns to better facilitate products as they progress as well as assisting with various trade shows.
Breaking News! Find it in the Hot News section of MMR’s Web site, www.mmrmagazine.com
visit us online at www.namm.org
Note from Joe
Thank You It’s the last month of the year and hopefully a busy time for our NAMM Member retailers, with holiday sales peaking between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. And, just as dealers scramble to meet the needs of their customers, manufacturers are busy making last-minute holiday shipments and readying their new products for debut at the upcoming NAMM Show. While this was yet another challenging year for many NAMM Members, perhaps now is a ﬁtting time to recognize some of the reasons we have to be thankful. In my retail past, this was the season we’d go extra lengths to thank those who shopped with us throughout the year, parents who brought their kids in for lessons, music teachers who worked closely with us, vendors who supplied us with the right products and programs, and, perhaps most importantly, our staff who made “all the trains run on time.” So in that spirit, we’d like to thank you, our Members, for all you’ve done for the association this year. So many of you have given generously of your time and talents that it’s tough to know where to begin. I’ll start with the 29 incredible individuals who make up our Board of Directors and Executive Committee, businesspeople volunteering their time and energy to improve the association and the industry for all. To the current Board and the hundreds of Board alumni who remain close friends, we are grateful for your continued leadership. Nearly every NAMM Member company from around the world came to one of our shows this past year. Thank you to our exhibitors for bringing their best ideas to market at the shows, to our buyers who came to plan their purchases and strengthen their relationships with vendors, and to the NAMM U speakers who volunteered their time and ideas. The NAMM Show is your show, and we’re grateful for your trust in us to continue providing this service to the industry. A big thank you also goes out to our partners who helped us produce the best trade shows possible. It takes thousands of people working long hours before the show opens to provide
a safe, efﬁcient and productive environment for our Members and their guests. In addition, we’d like to express our sincere appreciation to all the NAMM Members who’ve worked diligently to strengthen music education. Many made the trip to Washington for the annual Advocacy Fly-In, and Members in communities all around the world used market development programs to create more music makers locally. Because of you, school music programs have been strengthened and saved. As a result, hundreds of thousands of students picked up an instrument for the ﬁrst time. Thank you to the many national arts organizations that lobbied for music education with us, and to our Members who worked tirelessly on regulatory reform for intellectual property, health insurance and environmental issues. This past year, your NAMM staff worked diligently and creatively to assist and represent you, and I would personally like to recognize this dedicated team. It’s an honor to work with them to serve this great industry. Thank you for everything you do every day to bring music into the lives of your community. We are all so lucky to be in an industry that provides joy and meaning to the world. Happy holidays,
Joe Lamond NAMM PRESIDENT AND CEO
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Stats U.S. Musical Instrument Imports for Consumption: Quarterly data for 2012
Sources: The data presented in this chart have been compiled from tariff and trade data from the U.S. Department of Commerce and the U.S. International Trade Commission. * HTS: The Harmonized Tariff Schedule was enacted by Congress and made effective on January 1, 1989. The HTS comprises a hierarchical structure for describing all goods in trade for duty, quota, and statistical purposes. ** NESOI: Not Elsewhere Specified Or Included
Second Quarter Third Quarter In Actual Units of Quantity
Argentina MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
17 18 166,933
12 36 114,695
0 24 166,295
317 0 0 0
48 78 0 0
0 21 89 36
4 2 52,042 1,275 0
818 7,285 63,097 906 48
875 2 57,105 755 458
163,039 30,064 12,092 9,951 13,578 198,488 54,470 69,649 21,784 10,820 151,674 610,724
209,764 46,445 18,059 14,366 21,747 91,129 58,107 97,065 4,845 12,469 203,668 567,262
250,359 61,327 20,107 24,917 28,551 445,652 129,422 303,658 13,582 15,333 273,525 299,003
Australia GUITARS VALUED OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE WIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Austria BRASS-WIND INSTRUMENTS VALUED OVER $10 EACH SAXOPHONES MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Belgium SAXOPHONES WOODWIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI
Brazil BRASS-WIND INSTRUMENTS VALUED OVER $10 EACH WOODWIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI DRUMS MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Bulgaria STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS PLAYED WITH A BOW GUITARS VALUED NOT OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE
Canada GUITARS VALUED NOT OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE GUITARS VALUED OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI WOODWIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI CYMBALS FRETTED STRINGED INSTRUMENTS MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Chile WOODWIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI
China STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS PLAYED WITH A BOW GUITARS VALUED NOT OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE GUITARS VALUED OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI BRASS-WIND INSTRUMENTS VALUED OVER $10 EACH CLARINETS SAXOPHONES FLUTES AND PICCOLOS (EXCEPT BAMBOO) WOODWIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI WIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI DRUMS CYMBALS MUSICAL SYNTHESIZERS VALUED $100 OR OVER EACH FRETTED STRINGED INSTRUMENTS MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Second Quarter Third Quarter In Actual Units of Quantity
Cote d`Ivoire DRUMS
0 0 0
0 0 0
272 210 1,364
13 4,991 69 3,173 214 3,349 2,000 13 26,815
11 4,770 42 1,794 208 178 0 697 32,045
16 603 23 1,310 157 418 134 0 9,002
6 2,801 2,449 1 108 157 8,025 420 9,044 102 547 221,209
536 705 2,546 4 10 12,793 0 2,711 12,594 66 186 188,249
26 594 2,821 164 18 3,926 3,007 794 13,996 85 615 156,068
0 4,004 2,000 0
0 0 2,937 400
3,500 0 0 0
734 0 3,611
505 3,300 694
290 656 3,412
Czech Republic STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS PLAYED WITH A BOW GUITARS VALUED OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE BRASS-WIND INSTRUMENTS VALUED OVER $10 EACH FRETTED STRINGED INSTRUMENTS
Denmark MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Egypt STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI WOODWIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI DRUMS
France STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS PLAYED WITH A BOW STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI BRASS-WIND INSTRUMENTS VALUED OVER $10 EACH CLARINETS SAXOPHONES WOODWIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI WIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI DRUMS MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Germany STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS PLAYED WITH A BOW GUITARS VALUED OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI BRASS-WIND INSTRUMENTS VALUED OVER $10 EACH CLARINETS SAXOPHONES FLUTES AND PICCOLOS (EXCEPT BAMBOO) WOODWIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI WIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI DRUMS CYMBALS MUSICAL SYNTHESIZERS VALUED $100 OR OVER EACH FRETTED STRINGED INSTRUMENTS MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Hong Kong GUITARS VALUED NOT OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI WIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI DRUMS CYMBALS
India STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI WOODWIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI WIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI
Stats U.S. Musical Instrument Imports for Consumption: Quarterly data for 2012
Sources: The data presented in this chart have been compiled from tariff and trade data from the U.S. Department of Commerce and the U.S. International Trade Commission. * HTS: The Harmonized Tariff Schedule was enacted by Congress and made effective on January 1, 1989. The HTS comprises a hierarchical structure for describing all goods in trade for duty, quota, and statistical purposes. ** NESOI: Not Elsewhere Specified Or Included
Second Quarter Third Quarter In Actual Units of Quantity
DRUMS FRETTED STRINGED INSTRUMENTS MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
13,061 5,447 1,300
5,732 3,047 10,617
11,835 2,949 0
24,658 4,868 3,131 4,700 161,937 2,142 18,360 73,407
44,782 6,774 2,811 6,030 111,453 14,771 39,743 99,060
15,812 4,824 3,077 6,019 238,396 10,326 22,784 119,369
4 4 318 231 64,241
39,026 11 278 343 76,903
31 1,255 325 619 53,253
3,024 3,041 1,110 961 628 15,467 0 1,721 2,807 16,223 2,592
0 4,245 1,465 1,255 888 14,220 156 2,154 2,286 27,372 9,511
13 3,993 1,425 1,372 755 20,541 1 1,249 2,824 19,572 308
2,040 252,666 60 97 26,088 4,066
380 182,016 4,160 12 34,678 0
1,962 149,800 4,500 133 26,542 200
Indonesia GUITARS VALUED NOT OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE GUITARS VALUED OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI CLARINETS SAXOPHONES FLUTES AND PICCOLOS (EXCEPT BAMBOO) WOODWIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI WIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI DRUMS FRETTED STRINGED INSTRUMENTS
Ireland WOODWIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI
Italy GUITARS VALUED NOT OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI WIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI CYMBALS MUSICAL SYNTHESIZERS VALUED $100 OR OVER EACH MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Japan STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS PLAYED WITH A BOW GUITARS VALUED OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI BRASS-WIND INSTRUMENTS VALUED OVER $10 EACH CLARINETS SAXOPHONES FLUTES AND PICCOLOS (EXCEPT BAMBOO) WOODWIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI WIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI DRUMS MUSICAL SYNTHESIZERS VALUED $100 OR OVER EACH FRETTED STRINGED INSTRUMENTS MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Korea STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS PLAYED WITH A BOW GUITARS VALUED NOT OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE GUITARS VALUED OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI WOODWIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI DRUMS MUSICAL SYNTHESIZERS VALUED $100 OR OVER EACH FRETTED STRINGED INSTRUMENTS MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Second Quarter Third Quarter In Actual Units of Quantity
Malaysia WOODWIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI
1,071 0 35,329 3,190,434
596 241 38,613 2,853,860
739 0 39,282 2,358,239
Mexico STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS PLAYED WITH A BOW GUITARS VALUED NOT OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE GUITARS VALUED OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI DRUMS FRETTED STRINGED INSTRUMENTS MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Morocco WIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI
Netherlands DRUMS MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Pakistan STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI DRUMS
Peru WOODWIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI DRUMS
Philippines GUITARS VALUED NOT OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI
Poland MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Romania STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS PLAYED WITH A BOW GUITARS VALUED NOT OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Serbia MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Slovak Republic MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Slovenia MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Spain GUITARS VALUED NOT OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE
Stats U.S. Musical Instrument Imports for Consumption: Quarterly data for 2012
Sources: The data presented in this chart have been compiled from tariff and trade data from the U.S. Department of Commerce and the U.S. International Trade Commission. * HTS: The Harmonized Tariff Schedule was enacted by Congress and made effective on January 1, 1989. The HTS comprises a hierarchical structure for describing all goods in trade for duty, quota, and statistical purposes. ** NESOI: Not Elsewhere Specified Or Included
Second Quarter Third Quarter In Actual Units of Quantity
GUITARS VALUED OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE DRUMS FRETTED STRINGED INSTRUMENTS
924 129 2,405
435 28 1,711
129 5 2,609
0 2,442 0 4,280 1,261 8,100 24,061 0 1,566 1,007 0
7,500 4,026 506 5,796 2,408 59,263 37,002 47 1,316 144 33,300
35 4,758 372 5,303 1,306 4,000 30,348 1,500 234 593 6,000
0 81 5,295
0 0 7,295
541 2,098 5,674
8 2 26 132 4,632 8,446 730 247 115 39,011
2 1,326 27 79 39 1,512 250 2 712 43,397
402 25 46 75 28 5,315 25 0 11 45,627
252 169 713 1,088
0 0 1,299 3,984
109 153 1,650 4,132
Sweden MUSICAL SYNTHESIZERS VALUED $100 OR OVER EACH FRETTED STRINGED INSTRUMENTS MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Switzerland WIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI CYMBALS
Taiwan GUITARS VALUED NOT OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE GUITARS VALUED OVER $100 EACH, EXCLUDING THE VALUE OF THE CASE STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI BRASS-WIND INSTRUMENTS VALUED OVER $10 EACH CLARINETS SAXOPHONES FLUTES AND PICCOLOS (EXCEPT BAMBOO) WOODWIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI DRUMS CYMBALS MUSICAL SYNTHESIZERS VALUED $100 OR OVER EACH FRETTED STRINGED INSTRUMENTS MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Thailand DRUMS CYMBALS
Turkey STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI DRUMS CYMBALS
United Kingdom STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS PLAYED WITH A BOW STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI BRASS-WIND INSTRUMENTS VALUED OVER $10 EACH FLUTES AND PICCOLOS (EXCEPT BAMBOO) WOODWIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI WIND INSTRUMENTS, NESOI DRUMS CYMBALS FRETTED STRINGED INSTRUMENTS MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Venezuela MUSICAL INSTRUMENT STRINGS
Vietnam STRING MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, NESOI BRASS-WIND INSTRUMENTS VALUED OVER $10 EACH SAXOPHONES FRETTED STRINGED INSTRUMENTS
A Sure Cure for Island Fever
Nicole Fox Miss Hawaii 2008
When you’ve been in the Islands too long, a Mahalo Ukulele is just the thing to snap you out of the doldrums. Fifteen models and a full palette of color choices will suit your every mood. It is so easy to get started and Mahalo Ukes won’t pile your budget onto a reef either. Just follow Miss Hawaii into your local music store …surf’s up!
Mahalo Ukuleles Priced from $29.95 Retail Saga Musical Instruments • P.O. Box 2841 • South San Francisco, CA 94080 •  BUY-SAGA email@example.com • www.sagamusic.com • DEALER INQUIRIES INVITED!
Report Fifty Dealer / Fifty State
Fifty Dealer Fifty State Review & Forecast Is it safe to come out yet? Years of economic drudgery took their toll on MI retailers across the country, but the attitude among hunkered-down business owners this year has finally begun to perk up. Several store owners reported significant increases in sales this year. Perhaps even more exciting is that many are beginning to make aggressive pushes toward expanding personnel, picking up new product lines, and enhancing every bit of technical involvement they can, from e-commerce platforms to point of sale systems. Arkansas instrument shop Shuffield Music was among those who opted to grow this year. “Early in the year we moved to a larger location which more than doubled our retail space,” said owner Paul Shuffield, Jr. “This allowed us to increase our product offering by taking on a few more lines and expanding our lesson offerings. Overall, we have seen a positive increase in our business.” Parkway Music in New York also moved into a new 13,000 square foot facility this year, while Delaware’s Accent Music opened two new locations. In Minneapolis, Twin Town Guitars just completed a major effort to install a solar panel array on its roof. Perhaps the best skill for any business hoping to make it to more prosperous times is that of adaptation. As Pender’s Music’s Richard Gore says in our profile of his shop in this issue, “As times have gotten harder, everybody needs to learn how to do more with less.” West Virginia’s Clifford Hess agreed, noting that an increased attention to
detail was of utmost importance to his store, Soundwaves Music. “Shrinking inventory levels and micro-managing every SKU in the store has been the key to survival,” he said. Stores that depend on Band & Orchestra business or those such as Pender’s, which deals primarily in sheet music, may always be directly linked to the fates of school arts budgets. But smart shops have found ways to balance out those budgets with efficient repair and rental programs and new approaches to online sales. Regardless, plenty of stores continue to see a downward trend in revenue, often linked to struggling local economies and school budgets. Many were able to make it work, though. Steve Harkey, at Accent Music, noted: “As the margins on commodity merchandise continue to deteriorate, they actually have less of an impact on net profit. Business lost at 15 percent profit can be replaced with business at higher profit margins such as rentals, school sales, lessons, repairs, et
cetera. These services are what continue to set apart the independent dealer.” This year, we made especially sure to check in with everyone about effects of the recent changes to the scope and enforcement of the Lacey Act, which led to a year of industry confusion over how to best follow these evolving regulations on imported woods. The results are enlightening – some are fed up with what they call a misguided attack on a well-meaning business, while others tentatively report no interference at all. In general, the industry seems eager for some clarification and consistency. Looking to the future, the field remains optimistic. With another election under our belts, much of the uncertainty that marked the year’s market may finally subside, but that doesn’t signal a wildly optimistic approach to the MI business just yet. Nick Uhlik of Kansas’s Phil Uhlik Music perhaps put it best: “You see some glimmers, but you’ve still got to hold tight and watch what you’re doing,” he said. “It’s not like it used to be.”
Fifty Dealer / Fifty State
Alabama Capitol Music Montgomery Jim Darby, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 Overall, everything is down. We’re down to about half of what we did in our best years. We need to localize and we need these teachers to continue to give us the local service we’ve grown accustomed to. Music should be spelled “F-UN.” If we’ve done that, we touch a lot of lives and keep a lot of kids out of trouble. If we leave the world having done this all our lives, we’ve left the world a better place than we found it. Highlights/Lowlights All of these folks in government are looking for places to cut and the first place they look is in music and art. The school kids we’re trying to reach are all into electronics. They want instant gratification. “This is all the music I need,” right there in their hands. But the biggest thing that’s cut into business is the Internet. People browse in the store and buy online. I have to charge sales tax and that’s a 10 percent disadvantage already. I can avoid charging sales tax if I pay to someone out of state – I’m rewarded for not giving service. There’s something inherently wrong there. The rules are wrong, and there’s discrimination against small businesses who can’t buy in the kind of bulk that larger companies can. Product of the year Vintage instruments up in people’s attics, closets, basements, and garages. Eventually people get tired of looking at the thing and bring it in here. Those instruments that we can pick up on our own, and put out on a rent-to-own basis, are our real money-makers.
Alaska McPherson Music Ketchikan Roy and Tina McPherson, Owners
2012 vs. 2011 We have seen considerable improvement in all aspects of our business over last year. This year began with the poorest January since we started in 1987. We
had far more snow, icy roads, and frozen pipes than any prior year, and a large portion of family incomes were squeezed by fuel oil prices. We had a very good
year since then, though, with school and local government budgets a little healthier and the increased business with musicians and crew members from visiting cruise ships this summer. Highlights/Lowlights A positive asset for us is our music education program. We provide three “Big Band” ensembles for young people and adults. Our fifty-member community band and our trombone choir, “Scattered Sunshine,” along with jazz ensembles, all meet in the McPherson Music Education Center. Product of the year We are very enthusiastic about instruments from Godin Guitar Company, Taye Drums, the Teton line of guitars, and Hal Leonard’s new Tech Department. But if we had to pick just one product, our vote goes to the “Jiggs pBone” from Conn-Selmer. Suddenly, there is a very strong, enthusiastic interest in the trombone. About time!
Arizona Milano Music Center Mesa Mike Milano, Part Owner
2012 vs. 2011 ‘12 was just as flat as the year before, perhaps even worse, which forced us to make adjustments to payroll, buying decisions, marketing, and hours of operation; basically becoming leaner to maintain profitability. Highlights/Lowlights Fortunately, having other revenue streams such as instrument repairs, business from public schools and institutions, as well as our rental program, helped to offset the decrease in in-store sales. Have you been affected by recent
changes to and enforcement of the Lacey Act? The Lacey Act so far has not been a factor but I’m sure, since our government lawmakers passed it, it will eventually affect us negatively. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence Right now the majority of our online business has been in school instrument rentals and accessories, during the beginning of the school year. In terms of marketing and bringing customers into our store, it has been very successful. Product of the year Fretlight Guitars has been our most successful product this year. It is a very productive learning tool for beginners and advanced players alike, and has encouraged several people to get back into learning the guitar, which in turn has increased sales in the guitars and related products. Additionally, ukulele sales are still going strong from last year.
Arkansas Shuffield Music Arkadelphia Paul Shuffield, Jr., Owner
2012 vs. 2011 Thus far, 2012 has been a very good year for us. Early in the year we moved to a larger location which more than doubled our retail space compared to our previous location. This allowed us to increase our product offering by taking on a few more lines and expanding our lesson offerings. Overall, we have seen a positive increase in our business since opening in 2008, but it has not been without growing pains. We’re hoping for a great 2013! Highlights/Lowlights Our new location allowed us to incorporate an in-store performance area, better demonstration and lesson facilities, and much more inventory for sale. This location is closer to our two local universities which has allowed the students better access to our store which makes up a large part of our customer base.
Fifty Dealer / Fifty State Have you been affected by the recent rulings about the way manufacturers are permitted to import woods? Although we’ve had little direct effect from the Lacey Act enforcement, I understand the concerns of those involved. The intent of the Act is good in my opinion. It should help curtail illegal timber harvesting activities, but the issue seems to be in the way the Act is interpreted and enforced by the authorities. Perhaps with some refinements in language and interpretation, the Lacey Act will become less of a factor in day-to-day operations for manufacturers, importers and, ultimately, dealers and end-users.
a result of suggestions from our current customers. The utilization of a stand alone store site with an e-commerce component, the integration of social media sites, and our dedicated eBay site are going to be continued areas of focus for us in the coming years.
New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence Our website was simultaneously launched with the opening of our retail location and has been a key component in our success. We are in the process of a complete renovation and refocusing of our web presence in an effort to increase our exposure to potential customers as
2012 vs. 2011 Compared to 2011, 2012 was monstrous. Definitely saw an increase in purchasing from consumers and spending bigger amounts without hesitation. Consumers are buying with confidence again, although it is not where we would all like it to be, this is a step in the right direction.
Product of the year Snark Clip-On Tuners, acoustic guitars, and banjos.
California Greg’s Pro Audio Whittier Dario Garcia, Store Manager
Highlights/Lowlights The fact that business increased so much compared to 2011. It is exciting to see people spending and buying new toys again. It’s even more exciting to see the new generation of buyers and their way of doing business. Adapting is possibly the most exciting thing. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence Online is our #1 focus at the moment. We are in a “Buy Now” world where everything is a click away. As retailers, we must adapt to this form of business and really invest time and effort into reaching our audience through this platform. Social media, online advertising and constant connection with our audience is crucial in today’s market. E-commerce has been a savior for many retailers but has also crippled the ones who neglected the market change. Product of the year Overall business was great, from MI to DJ to Pro Audio. 2013 should be even better and we’re looking forward to it.
Fifty Dealer / Fifty State
Colorado Rockley Music Center Lakewood Liane Rockley, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 It seems that the normal slow times of retail have completely changed. Summer is a good example of that. We managed the slow time in July and August without any problems this year for the first time in a decade! October, however, has been a real drag. I am curiously apprehensive to see what the holiday season brings this year. Last year, holiday sales were late and short. With some of the big boxes advertising that they will match online prices and/or freight deals, the climate is right for an all-out battle for holiday sales. Us small independents will have to be super-creative to gain any holiday dollars. Highlights/Lowlights First, we completely turned our music lesson program upside down. In September we opened Rockley Music Education Center. We have tripled the number of students we are teaching in just over a month and a half. It has been so wonderful to have this kind of response! We’re also revamping our drum department. We hired our drum teacher as a consultant and we’ve gone through the whole inventory, making sure we can get a decent margin. Since I am a flutist, it has been a real education for me. I can now speak drum. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence Sometimes commerce sites can take on a utilitarian feeling. They can also all look the same after a while! We tried to make our site radiate the family-friendly feeling that our store does. We try to drive sales to our website by email blasts that we do in the community and by just advertising our web address as much as possible. Product of the year Music lessons have been our breakout winning product this year. For those interested, I will be sharing how we did this in the Idea Center on Saturday, Jan. 26th at 4:00 pm at the Winter NAMM Show. DECEMBER 2012
My session will be called “Why You Should Reinvent Your Lesson Program.”
Connecticut Dynamic Percussion Manchester Richard “Gus” Guastamachio, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 Our figures to date and projections for the rest of the year are way above what we expected from the paperwork we acquired. Highlights/Lowlights Moving to a facility more than three times the old location! New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence Yes! We are finishing up our beta tests of building our e-commerce site, and expanding our other online sales outlets, in addition to beefing up our total online presence. Product of the year Taye “Go-kits”
Delaware Accent Music Wilmington Steve Harkey, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 As the margin on commodity merchandise continues to deteriorate, they actually have less of an impact on net profit. Business lost at 15 percent profit can be replaced with business at higher profit margins such as rentals, school sales, lessons, repairs, etc. These services are what continue to set apart the independent dealer in the community offering a more pronounced posture in the market and providing for a broader and more stable source of revenue. We also grew geographically by opening two new stores in smaller market areas and these will continue to grow with the communities they are a part of. Highlights/Lowlights We held a huge benefit concert for the Homeless and Addicted at The Queen Theatre in Wilmington. We had 11 bands perform, of which seven were MMR 31
Fifty Dealer / Fifty State bands from our AccentLive RockSchool (ages 10-17) . All these bands were comprised of students, teachers and employees of Accent. We produced a fine DVD of the show which can be purchased at our website. We held a similar event in Middletown, where we opened a new store recently. This concert at Everett Theatre raised money and instrument donations for the local school district. Also, we have opened a performance area and studio rental space at our Kirkwood location called “AccentLive Performance Center” where we can hold student recitals, workshops, recording studio, rehearsal spaces and concerts. This also is our headquarters for our AccentLive RockSchool. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence We continue to grow our website (accentmusic.com) and have been using Facebook to reach customers locally which has let us cut back on some advertising costs. I spent too much on AdWords.
Product of the year Clip-on tuners and acoustic guitars. Also, our addition of food and drinks has been a hit.
Florida Allegro Music Miami Manuel Berberian, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 To date, we’re over 10 percent ahead of last year. I think we’re on right track and expect next year to be better than this year. Highlights/Lowlights I’d have to say that we do so many things, that I can’t pinpoint one thing. We did add two more employees because of the need. We’ve also become more active in the export business. We also picked up Korg, the Cordoba guitar lines, and Path rosin made in Ko-
rea. We also just began a Suzuki academy. Have you been affected by the recent changes and enforcement of the Lacey Act? No. We mostly do acoustic guitars and Spanish guitars. Yamaha, of course. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence We’re in the process right now. We know that the opportunity is there, it’s just been a matter of time and money. We do intend to make a push into e-commerce. We do have website – it’s okay, but it’s lacking a lot of products. Product of the year I can’t say a particular product. We do sell violins with my brand name – Emmanuel Berberian, my original name – and that’s our biggest seller. We also manufacture bows in Brazil, which we started this year.
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Fifty Dealer / Fifty State
Pacific Music Connection
Macon Jordan Welsh, General Manager
2012 vs. 2011 As far as sales go, so far in 2012 we have matched our sales numbers from 2011 – with our busiest months still to come. In 2012, I feel as if we have expanded our horizons in adding new lines, new lessons/lesson formats, new workshops, and generally expanding our business in ways that middle Georgia has yet to see from a music retailer. These changes have really paid off for our business. Highlights/Lowlights In 2012 we have experienced some great growth. We’ve added on a couple new salespeople and teachers. It’s been a privilege for me to see these new employees and the store thrive from their addition to the team. This being my first year as general manager of Georgia Music, I have had the privilege of meeting so many wonderful people both here in Macon/Middle Georgia and all over the country. Probably the highlight of my year, as a Yamaha dealer, was my first trip to Yamaha’s HQ in Buena Park, CA. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence Over the latter months of 2012 we have been working very diligently on a brand new site that allows us to better take advantage of a rapidly growing ecommerce market – this new platform will make us the only music retailer in middle Georgia with a website that gives our customers the ability to fully shop our store from home. We are very excited to roll out the new georgiamusiconline. com and see how it affects our business in 2013. Product of the year Yamaha always takes home this honor in my eyes every year. With the new CX Series pianos, they did it yet again this year. These pianos are nothing short of tremendous. The touch, the tone, the beauty – simply incredible.
Hilo Brandon Nakano, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 2012 was a lot better for us. There were some slow periods as always, but things were a little more consistently good. I saw a lot of sales of higher ticket stuff this year, too. No one wanted to spend much on that stuff last year. I think the worst is behind us so I’m hoping for the best for everyone in the market. A music store is so important. It looked kind of scary for a lot of us – we’re all in it together and we all play a vital role in getting these products out to people. The biggest thing we’ve always pushed is that we’re here for you as a local music store. If you get something from us and it fails, we’ll take care of you until it’s fixed. Customer service is the biggest thing . Highlights/Lowlights We didn’t take on a whole lot this year, in terms of getting experimental. We’re still trying to be safe. We did really well with acoustic products. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence? It’s something we’re definitely looking into because it’s such a powerful tool. And in the case of most social media, it’s a free tool. Facebook is so easy to control and such an easy product to use. Product of the year Definitely acoustic products and in particular the Genz Benz Shenendoah line of products. We have a lot of ukulele players who want to be able to plug in. The Shen line is just a really versatile line. I think they’re the best acoustic amps on the market – there’s one for everyone.
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Mike’s Music Idaho Falls Curt Dogget, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 Business has been about the same as last year. The economic recovery just has not happened in Idaho. MMR 33
Fifty Dealer / Fifty State Highlights/Lowlights One of the most surprising things for me was when we took on Bose Pro Audio. At first look I thought it was cool but expensive. Our success with their products has gone way beyond my initial expectations. Have you been affected by the recent changes to and enforcement of the Lacey Act? We are not a Gibson/Epiphone deal-
er. As such, I haven’t seen any direct impact that I have been able to tell. I think the other manufacturers are trying to make sure they don’t get caught up with the same problems New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence We are not currently doing e-commerce. Security of the transactions is the biggest issue why we haven’t moved faster on this.
Product of the year Most definitely the Bose L1 Model II.
Illinois Down Home Guitars Frankfurt Steve Haberichter, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 Things were a lot better for us. We opened in 2009, so there’s a little bit of sales growth that I was hoping for, then I think that people are finding us more and the word of mouth has spread. But I also think people have been pulling the trigger on some higher dollar items more this year than before.
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Highlights/Lowlights We had a great summer, which is usually the low point of sales. We had a great spring, then June and July fell off a bit, but then things were great. Even the student model stuff grew. We’ve expanded our lessons and classrooms and all that stuff in the fall of last year and slowly began adding more teachers and different instruments. We’re getting more students, so it’s all growing, really. We’ve also begun hosting concerts with national touring bluegrass and acoustic musicians, which helps bring an adult sort of clientele. We sell a lot of instruments just by having people sitting here at concerts looking at all the guitars on the wall. Have you been affected by the recent changes and enforcement of the Lacey Act? Most of our manufacturers are compliant with that kind of thing. There are certain things I won’t ship out of the country, like Brazilian Rosewood. There probably wouldn’t be a problem, but it would require a lot of documentation. Returns can also be a hassle. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence I’m currently working on upgrading our security through the PayPal system. We launched a new website and that hasn’t necessarily draw more sales, in terms of the online shopping cart. But the
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Fifty Dealer / Fifty State website has drawn attention to the store itself – people finding products we have in searches online much better and then coming to the store.
Meridian Music Carmel Craig Gigax, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 Our 2012 business is basically flat to 2011. However we are encouraged that our good institutional sales volume from last year was replaced by consumer business in 2012.
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Product of the year Ukuleles have definitely picked up like crazy at all different price points. Some of the high end guitars are doing well also, but not necessarily one particular model.
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Highlights/Lowlights From a purely selfish point of view, the highlights were that player piano sales showed significant improvement versus 2011. Another significant highlight is that our education department has shown continued strong enrollment numbers. There are those in our industry who believe that the piano is the anvil of the 21st Century and that the importance of music lessons has diminished forever. I think that if the economy finally rebounds we may see a lot of pent up demand for pianos. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence Self inflicted setbacks with e-commerce efforts are being corrected and website optimization is showing promise. Product of the year There are few innovations in the piano industry but the Essex acoustic studio pianos have been well received and the Yamaha DGB1KE3C has given us a terrific player piano at a competitive price point.
Iowa Kephart’s Music Center Dubuque Wendy Kephart, Treasurer
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2012 vs. 2011 It’s about the same. What do they say, “flat” is the new “up?” We’ve seen some real activity and increases in interesting areas – pianos and Clavinovas, of all things, which are supposed to be going backward. We’ve actually been moving them! Highlights/Lowlights The pianos, really. I don’t know where that’s coming from. I have theories – perhaps the people who feel like they do have disposable income are being careful about how they want to spend it. They want to get something quality rather than a keyboard for $149. If they’re going to do piano lessons, then maybe they’ll put a little investment into it. Also, music is still cool. We’re seeing a lot of beginners and parents. People are looking at traditional values and seeing that having a child that learns a musical DECEMBER 2012
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Fifty Dealer / Fifty State instrument is getting something they’ll carry with them forever. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence That’s a mixed bag. We are actually doing more on Amazon because that seems to be the mammoth shopping mall for everyone. Promoting our own website has seemed to have taken a backseat to the fact that the stuff we put on Amazon just moves quicker, faster, and easier. We’re using that primarily for print music, plus some overstock, accessories, and the occasional instrument that is basically just more small goods to broaden our market for classical music. We have a limited market for some of that stuff here in the Midwest, but when you put it on the Internet, you’ve got the world. Our online rental program has been going well and we’ll be expanding on it. It’s doing well, but it’s capable of doing much more. We’ve been working with TriTech Systems for about four years and it gets better every year.
Product of the year If we’re talking print music, it’s anything involving Adele. Hard to keep it in stock. We’re primarily known as a band instrument dealer and we always do well with the Yamaha intermediate band instruments. They just fly off the shelf. Anything from them has my vote.
Kansas Phil Uhlik Music Wichita Nick Uhlik, Store Manager
2012 vs. 2011 It’s got its ups and it’s got its downs. You see some glimmers, but you’ve still got to hold tight and watch what you’re doing. It’s just a little better. It’s not like it used to be. [laughs] Highlights/Lowlights I’m jumping in and selling some stuff on eBay for my first time and it’s doing well. I’d like to find some ways to
make that a bigger part of the future. I just started trying that in early November last year. I got rolling pretty good and it seems to me like tax return season is the new holiday, really. It seems like people have more money to spend then. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence Well I’m just diving into that all by myself really, with my iPhone and my computer in the office here and that’s it. There is a lot of stuff that had been here for 10, 15, or 20 years and I was surprised – some of it’s worth more than you thought, you know? Along with that, I’ve kind of been more eager to buy used stuff from people since now I know I can turn it around. It all helps. Product of the year The catchiest thing I’ve had I think is the PreSonus mixer. I’ve picked up the 16.4.2s and the 24s. I’ve sold about a dozen of them without even stocking one
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Fifty Dealer / Fifty State in the store – it’s all special orders and having the ability to make those sales in the store and having the install guy. It’s a cool piece.
Kentucky Guitar Emporium Louisville Jimmy Brown, Owner Multi-item_Ad_Mar11
2012 vs. 2011 Sales were up from 2011, although sales were also up in 2011 from 2010. We continue to see an increase, albeit a gradual one, but credit that to continuing to take on new product lines as well as offering competitive values on trade-in instruments and accessories.
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Highlights/Lowlights Traveling to multiple Guitar Shows has been a highlight. There is still strong interest in vintage guitars, amplifiers, and new effects pedals...and we musicians always find a way to buy new toys, no matter what the economy. Have you been affected by the recent changes to and enforcement of the Lacey Act? We do not believe we have been directly affected. Although, it is difficult to say absolutely whether or not we have missed any sales due to the Lacey Act. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence Yes, we re-vamped our website and added a Shopping Cart system. We have always had a strong eBay presence, and a loyal web-customer base, so getting the website up to more modern specs was a big priority and focus for us this year. Product of the year Tough to pick just one. The Martin Performing Artist Series has been strong, as have Taylor guitars, Suhr Guitars, Rickenbacker Basses, Wampler Pedals, MusicMan Albert Lee models, and Fender Select Series guitars.
Louisiana Zeagler’s Music
Baton Rouge Fred Zeagler, Owner and President
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2012 vs. 2011 2012 is shaping up to be slightly better than 2011. Sales are up about 3 percent but we held costs down to improve our overall position. Highlights/Lowlights MAP has basically become our retail and manufacturers seem to continue to lower the margins so we are forced to cut payroll and other costs. In specific areas, electric guitars, print music, and digital pianos were all down in sales. Acoustic guitars, school band, and accessories were up slightly. Without an improvement in both MAP pricing and government attitude toward business, I do not expect a return to acceptable profits anytime in the near future. DECEMBER 2012
Fifty Dealer / Fifty State Product of the year Ukuleles were by far the biggest growth area although still a very small part of the overall business. Repairs were also strong.
New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence Currently our website is just a basic informational site. We are going to move forward with expanding it to include ecommerce at the turn of 2013.
Product of the year Anything ukulele. We have sold over 200 ukes since we opened the new store in April. We would sell one to four ukes a day, everyday for several weeks at a time. We are seeing local schools start implementing them into their curriculum. It is a craze and a fun one!
K2 Music Camden Harvey Curtis, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 I can say the “feel” of 2011-2012 in general is that 2012 is much more positive. Of course the big question for us will be Christmas... Highlights/Lowlights The biggest highlight for K2 Music is the shear amount of support we have received from the community and many of our vendors. We are told daily by our customers how thankful they are that we kept a music store in the Mid Coast Maine area.
Maryland Hot Licks Guitar Shop Waldorf Paul McDermott, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 2012 to 2011 we are flat. I believe the political climate was the big effect for
us as we are a bedroom community for Washington DC. Highlights/Lowlights We are adding over 4,000 sq ft to our 9,000 sq ft showroom! The room will allow us to really ramp up and expand on our in-store shows and demos, teacher showcases, open mic nites, live bands, etc. We are very excited about the addition as that will really cement us as a destination store! We also just got the permits to add 13 more teaching studios to bring our total number of studios to 26! At the moment we are teaching between 500 and 550 students a week! On the product “highlights,” we kissed and made up with Gibson, so we are really stoked to get them back in the shop. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence Our web page is finally up and running. We spent the first half of the year getting it to where it needed to be. We hired a dedicated IT guy who is also an
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Fifty Dealer / Fifty State awesome photographer, and hooked up with a pro level web service. We use the social media more as info and cool stuff and less as a sales tool, and that is doing great! Product of the year Fender has really pulled out the stops to keep their line new and fresh! They constantly innovate and come out with new exciting product. And I believe their
sales and support staff, right here right now, are the best in the industry.
Massachusetts The Guitar Stop Cambridge Jeanne Oster, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 We are up in 2012 to the first three
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quarters of 2011. The year of 2011 was 10 percent better than any of our previous years. Highlights/Lowlights We celebrated our 50th Anniversary as a family owned and operated musical instrument store with an official celebration in September. We had a large attendance, our guitar teachers performed, and we raised over $1,000 to support music education in Cambridge. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence For a decade, 30 percent of our sales came from on-line purchases. During the last several years, our customers have changed the way they are using the Internet. The majority of our sales are now made in our store as opposed to being shipped around the country. Our website acts as a research and comparison tool, Customers are able to check prices, specifications, and availability in real-time, as our site is updated daily. The website is a great way to advertise promotions and music lessons. Product of the year This year we added the Cordoba line of nylon string guitars and ukuleles to our inventory. They have been a nice addition to our store as Cordoba covers the nylon string guitar line with an instrument at every $50 and $100 price points from $200 and up.
Michigan Evola Music
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2012 vs. 2011 Our sales are running slightly above 2011. However, new student enrollments are up this fall and with adults and seniors showing the largest increase.
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Highlights/Lowlights Yamaha Costco roadshows continue to generate new sales and new leads. The 10-day events are a lot of work, but they are profitable. We need to continue to promote the benefits of music education. Creating our own students makes very DECEMBER 2012
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Fifty Dealer / Fifty State loyal customers. Otherwise, some school districts are buying pianos again. However, you may have to get more creative and help them fundraise. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence We continue to employ many avenues of e-marketing to generate leads for our stores and promotions. However, we are primarily a piano, organ and lesson company and UPS and FedEx do not deliver pianos. Product of the year Disklavier.
Minnesota Twin Town Guitars Minneapolis Andrew Bell, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 2012 has been a growth year for us. Heading into 2011 we tried to hit the ground running. We set up a NAMM appointment accordingly and went to Anaheim. If you don’t go to NAMM, we encourage you to go. The long and short of it is that has worked well for us. We try to be fair in dishing out resources to our three main departments – Sales, Service and Lessons – and each one is doing better this year over last, increasing our gross sales by nearly a six point margin. Highlights/Lowlights One project that recently got crossed off the list is out Photovoltaic Solar Array. It went live this fall and it’s very exciting. Other highlights included our 15th Anniversary, which we celebrated in August. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence Each department tweets. Social networking has been huge. Even if you just are using Twitter and FB to interface with your community, you need to do it. GC and other big boxes do it; can you imagine the presence online if every indie had their own account and went after it? These social insertions find their way onto Facebook, MySpace, Twitter and all land on our homepage. We’ve been Instagraming, and just set up a Pintrest page. 44 MMR
We’ve been monitoring an AdWords campaign we started in April, and have had success with the results. Otherwise we’re polishing our site and planning a bit of a facelift in 2013. Product of the year The Snark headstock tuner. Lots of imitators, but no one even come close to the original. Even Snark’s other tuners haven’t been able to compete with the original Blue SN-1. Lots of margin, ease of use for absolute beginners and techs/ pros alike. Works on a ton of instruments and is affordable. If we had to choose an instrument, we’d vote for the Fender Squier Jaguar Short Scale bass. It has been a welcome addition to the Squire line of awesome Vintage Vibe instruments.
Mississippi Morrison Brothers Music Ridgeland Mike Morrison, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 We were up approximately three percent overall with string and percussion band instruments up about 20 percent. Highlights/Lowlights The lowlight for us was the economy still being soft. Highlights were we survived by being creative and being more aggressive with service and knowledgeable sales people. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence Yes, we continue to improve our ecommerce and are currently managing two sites. Product of the year Presonus StudioLive.
Missouri Fazio’s Frets and Friends Ellisville James Gast, Store Manager
2012 vs. 2011 We had a pretty similar year to last year. We had good, strong sales in low-
er end pro audio with the Powerworks brand. Accessory sales were absolutely up. Our high end sales stayed current . The mid price point was what suffered. It seems like the people who had money still had it and spent it and the people who didn’t did not want to put it on credit and stayed away. Highlights/Lowlights We held our first Veteran’s Day sale, which benefits the Six-String Heroes. This a not-for-profit through the VA. We raise money for the vets coming back and vets in general. We raise funds to provide them with free guitar lessons and, after a period of time, free guitars. For every item sold that day a portion of the proceeds go to this cause. Have you been affected by the recent changes in and enforcement of the Lacey Act? Nothing directly for us, but definitely for a bunch of our manufacturers and vendors. They were worried. We were as well. We’ve just tried to get as much info as we could because we obviously didn’t want to be directly affected by it. It did affect sales, actually, especially overseas. And we don’t do tons of stuff over there, but there was a period of uneasiness – not just with us as the retailer but with customers who were just worried about getting their hands on the wrong kinds of material. There’s as much misinformation among dealers and in the press as there is good information. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence We’ve been working on it, but it’s a long road. Especially if you’re trying to do it the right way. When you’re in a big sea of hundreds of stores, what’s going to make you stand out to customers? Usually its price that separates all of these stores and, to be honest, I am more interested in how best to service my customers. Product of the year The Powerworks PW-100.
Montana Rod’s Music and Sound Great Falls Rod Chaon, Owner DECEMBER 2012
Fifty Dealer / Fifty State 2012 vs. 2011 Overall our business is down a little from 2011, but still remains stable. Acoustic guitars continue to be strong sellers at many different price points. Drums have also done well this year. Having lessons, repair, and a helpful staff that truly want to provide extra customer service are key to providing a stable base for success for our store. Highlights/Lowlights Highlights include continuing to survive in a ultra-competitive industry and economic environment, and working with customers who express loyalty to our store and gratitude for good service. Also, we have seen more opportunities than ever to buy product at exceptional extra discounts from many companies with all the special deals that have been offered throughout the year. The downside is having to be more careful about normal buying because of the uncertainty about better deals coming along. The continued battle for profit margin and an equal playing field with large internet sellers is still a top concern. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence As far as e-commerce goes, we consider our sales area to be a 100 to 150 mile radius around our town. We try to respond promptly to all e-mails from customers and plan to put more energy into our website but have no interest in competing outside of an area that we feel we can service with a personal touch. Product of the year I think that lower-price acoustic guitars in general are a great value. Fender has some very good quality instruments for the money. Eastman also has some great instruments at a higher price point. Zoom recorders, portable powered sound systems from numerous manufacturers, and small items like the ever evolving clip-on tuners continue to push the industry forward.
Nebraska D-Rocks Guitars Papillion David Mike, Owner 46 MMR
2012 vs. 2011 2011 was a stronger year overall for sales at D-Rocks. 2012 started out strong but fell off somewhat during the spring and summer, most probably a reflection of the state of the overall national economy. Sales are starting to pick up as we head into the holiday season, though. Music lessons however stayed strong throughout the year, much like in 2011. Highlights/Lowlights Our most important highlight (literally) was the installation of our new, large lighted sign on the west side of the D-Rocks Music building. The new sign greatly improves our visibility to north and southbound traffic. We also made great strides in our community and the surrounding area with several of our student bands playing throughout the summer at a local amphitheater normally used for professional venues. Have you been affected by the recent changes to and enforcement of the Lacey Act? Being a smaller business, we don’t carry custom made guitars or the very high-end products on which the rulings have made a significant impact. Consequently, we’ve not been affected by the Lacey Act amendment, nor do we expect any visits from the DOJ. Product of the year While no single product stands out among the rest, accessories such as guitar strings, tuners, picks, stands, and cases bridged the gap and outsold guitars, basses, amps, and drums.
Nevada Carpenter’s Music World Reno Wendell Carpenter, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 This year was a bit of an improvement. It’s been a soft economy but things are picking up. Sales are up about 10 or 12 percent. That’s in pianos, primarily. Guitars about the same, and band instrument rentals are up about 15 percent.
Our store is about two and half times the space of our previous space from over two years ago, so we’re moving into more rebuilding and piano repairs, but I’m hoping for an upcoming increase in sales. Highlights/Lowlights We’ve had a lot of people who’ve been looking for piano rebuilds and things like that this year. I think that’s due to the economy – people are fixing up their old pianos because maybe they aren’t able to afford a new piano. But the new sales are still up at the present time. We’re also starting to work more closely with teachers. We have seminar this month where we’ve invited all the area teachers to come in and learn about what makes a good piano. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence We’ve been working through social media and we have a new website and have been trying to develop that. We’re not doing anything as far as actual sales online, so I guess the simple answer would be “no.” Product of the year We’ve featured Samick guitars the last few months and they’ve been doing very well for us. The Greg Bennettt model had done great. In pianos, the U-Series Yamaha has done quite well.
New Hampshire Indie Music Milford Jeff Harrington, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 We actually saw an increase in sales when I thought things were going to start to level off. We were also able to start buying more bulk and save on shipping which has helped a lot in growing profit. Highlights/Lowlights We lost a good employee, gained a new one in training, and our IM (“Indie Music”) beginning drum sets that we have imported sold out. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence That is on the list for next year, but DECEMBER 2012
Fifty Dealer / Fifty State also we are going to keep that limited. The one thing I’ve heard from bands on tour is very few music shops have anything cool hanging on the wall because it goes straight online. I would like to be one of those cool music shops that have some great and very cool instruments in the store, they will eventually sell to the right person and I get to enjoy seeing a great instrument everyday. Product of the year Ukuleles – for real!
New Jersey 8th Street Music Pennsauken Randy Segal, Vice President
2012 vs. 2011 It was flat. We held our own, but I didn’t see any increases. Keyboards were down, acoustic guitars up slightly, highticket item sales were definitely down, and order counts were down. But we
seemed to come out of that anyway. Highlights/Lowlights There were lots of new pricing change policies from manufacturers that probably have a lot to do with what’s going on out there. Many of them are getting high MAP policies and enforcing them more strictly. They seem to be in the driver’s seat here – they’re trying to spur the interest and sales more than we’re able to, it seems. We try to do what we can – 80 percent of our business is e-commerce. Just 20 percent is in the retail showroom that we have. So we’re held to some standards I have to follow for sure. We can only do so much to generate business anymore. Have you been affected by the recent changes and enforcement of the Lacey Act? It seems like after that all went down, manufacturers have been more strict about enforcing and adhering to those policies. I think our industry is unique as far as our pricing policies and MAP policies go. It does seem to have gotten
worse within the last year – I’ll certainly blame our competitors for that. I’d blame Guitar Center for driving manufacturers to enforce policies and, in turn, make us adhere to them. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence We keep doing what we do. Shopping online has become a sort of hazed over experience for customers. They’re really looking for deals – they either have to look really hard or know little tricks about it, but otherwise it’s tough to get them to click that “Buy” button. Our Facebook campaign has grown a lot this year. I got someone involved in it who’s doing a great job and we’re doing more advertising there this year than we ever have. It’s doing well. We mainly use Facebook as our social media outlet. A little Twitter, but mainly Facebook. Product of the year I don’t know if anything outshines anything else anymore, to be honest. Manufacturers are now striving for price
Fifty Dealer / Fifty State points to make sure name brand products can be in the $400-$600 range, so they’ve expanded that – the imported Martins from Mexico and Roland’s gotten their keyboards down in price. They all know that most of their business is in that under-$1,000 dollar range. Obviously, it affects margins. But at the end of the day, “no sale” means no margin, so it makes a difference.
New Mexico Baum’s Music Albuquerque Dan Louton, VP and General Manager
2012 vs. 2011 We have seen about an eight percent increase in overall business from 2011 to 2012. We are hopeful that the worst of the economic crisis has passed in New Mexico and are delighted to see more families able to enjoy music education. Highlights/Lowlights The biggest highlight of 2012 was my wife and I buying the business from her father, Mr. Krum. It’s been a family business since 1947 and our family has owned it since 1988. August and September are our busiest months, renting instruments to students in music education programs in New Mexico. As a family-run business, I think it makes our “rental season” even more enjoyable since we are one family helping many other families in New Mexico bring music into their lives. Have you been affected by the recent changes to and the enforcement of the Lacey Act? Fortunately, we were not heavily affected by the Lacey Act. This is due to the product mix we carry: mostly band and orchestra student instruments, and very few high-end guitars. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence We are currently working on providing an online store for our customers and are hoping to roll that out this year. While our customers have been able to rent online and make rental payments online, we feel that a full online shopping experience – musical instrument sales, 48 MMR
accessories, et cetera. – will help us serve our customers even better, especially customers in New Mexico who live far away from our storefront in Albuquerque. Product of the year Vintage saxophones. We have been lucky to have many beautiful vintage saxes in our showcase this year, and they have been very popular with the customers. One of the best we’ve had come through is a 1941 Conn 6M VIII “Naked Lady” series alto sax.
into our website, more pictures, better descriptions, more frequent updating. We do lots of trading and buying and our website helps keep the deals flowing. Going for a national reach with online selling will be one of our goals for next year. Product of the year I’m continually impressed with what I get from Gibson Custom, and Fender has some great cheap amps like the Mustang and the Excelsior, and their new American reissue guitars are great.
The Music Loft
Clifton Park Mat Hatfield, Owner
Carrboro Jim Dennis, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 We are up about 10 percent from last year. We took advantage of low interest rates and a buyer’s market in real estate to move from an 8,000. sq. ft. building to a 13,000. sq. ft. building, allowing us to expand our inventory, improve our displays and add a bigger lessons and repair department. This has made us more attractive a destination and, with slight improvements in the economy, has helped us grow this year.
2012 vs. 2011 2012 “feels” much better than 2011. Sales are up roughly 10 percent and traffic is up even more.
Highlights/Lowlights Higher end guitars have been good this year. We’ve done well with Custom Shop Strats, Teles and Les Pauls, also Martins and Taylors. In pro audio, powered speakers and digital mixers have been selling well. Have you been affected by the recent changes to and the enforcement of the Lacey Act? The application of the Lacey Act debacle has caused much confusion and unnecessary problems for our industry. With all the problems in the world, picking on Gibson and our industry is suspicious to me. I visited Gibson’s Nashville factory last year and there were hundreds of Americans working on building something tangible. Our government shut them down? It doesn’t make sense to me. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence We have been putting more energy
Highlights/Lowlights For us we had lots of vintage gear come through our store and many interesting consignment pieces. We have developed a reputation for moving these items quickly and now we have people seeking us out for this service. Have you been affected by the recent changes and enforcement of the Lacey Act? We have been contacted by several customers who were confused and worried about taking an instrument out of the country and maybe having a hard time getting back home without it being confiscated at the border. I think the press has not done a very good job with explaining the problems and issues surrounding the Lacey Act. Maybe the legislators are having trouble with it too. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence Anyone can sell stuff online. That is not what we do. Every day people come in our store and seek our advice on all aspects of playing and recording music. Our customers know that we will point them in the correct direction and that our real life experiences on the road and in the studio are worth the trip to see us. Many times we end up saving them DECEMBER 2012
Fifty Dealer / Fifty State money, time, and consternation while still giving them a great price on strings and accessories.
Highlights/Lowlights Custom Shop Guitars from Martin, Larrivee, and Taylor.
Product of the year Without a doubt it was the Snark SN-8 tuner. I have never sold so many tuners!
Have you been affected by the recent changes to and the enforcement of the Lacey Act? Yes. We now have an import license, and must pay an additional fee for guitars we import from outside the U.S.
North Dakota Popplers Music
New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence We have had an online presence since 1995. About a year ago we updated our website, and are now making our site more friendly to smartphones and digital pads. We always personally talk to our customers. Product of the year All our very special Custom instruments.
Grand Forks Paul Nelson, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 As we are primarily a school music dealer, our biggest selling season by far is the fall season. Fall 2012 is off to a solid start – increases in many areas. This is after a couple years that had been slightly down for us.
Meeting the Needs of Students for More Than 30 Years ...
Highlights/Lowlights One highlight would be our latest web design, which will be by far our most advanced and user-friendly site when it is done. School music budgets seemed to be the biggest lowlight for us, as we continue to hear from teachers about budget cuts.
Our Best-Selling SV-175 Cremona Violin!
New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence We have had an online presence, including shopping cart, for about 10 years. We’ve been redesigning it approximately every three years, and our newest version should be online by the end of the year.
Our best-selling, ebony fitted SV-175 Cremona Premier Violin Outfit has recently been upgraded to include the J.LaSalle LB-13 Octagonal Bow and the TL-33 deluxe rectangular Travelite case.
Cremona bowed instruments have set the pace for the vibrant student and rental markets for over 30 years. Strict adherence to international sizing requirements, domestic educational set-up standards and continuous quality improvement have made Cremona Violins, Violas, Basses and Cellos proven sales leaders.
Product of the year PreSonus StudioLive.
Ohio Wildwood Music
Cremona SV-175 Violin Outfit:
Coshocton Don McKay and Marty Rodabaugh, Owners
•All-solid carved, graduated construction •Seven sizes from 4⁄4 to 1⁄16 •Long lasting ebony fittings •Finetuner tailpiece for precise, easy tuning •Rugged TL-33 Travelite case •Well-balanced J.LaSalle LB-13 bow with ebony frog
$ 2012 vs. 2011 We are experiencing a small increase in sales in 2012. DECEMBER 2012
 BUY-SAGA www.sagamusic.com Dealer inquiries invited.
Fifty Dealer / Fifty State
Oklahoma Oklahoma Vintage Guitar El Reno Bobby Boyles, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 2012 was off another 20 percent from 2011 in gross sales. However, because of some changes we have made in our product offerings, our margins were higher. That gave us almost the same bottom line as 2011. Highlights/Lowlights One good thing that happened for us this year was the better economy in Oklahoma. The Oil and Gas industry in Oklahoma in the past year has made the state the one with the lowest unemployment level in the US. This has made our walk-in sale much better than in years past when we usually were much more dependent on our internet sales. A second highlight of the past year is the development of our own line of quality leather and Native American Beadwork guitar straps called the Rob Nelson Leather Company, produced right in our store facility. The straps start at just under $100 and go to $1,000 and we have found a great market for the nice highend guitar straps. We have also begun to develop a dealer network for them, so these straps are now being sold worldwide. Have you been affected by the recent changes to and the enforcement of the Lacey Act? In my opinion, one of the reasons that our gross sales were down in 2012 under 2011 is the Lacey Act. Just over a year ago, we sold a high end guitar to one of our return customers from Nova Scotia Canada. We found that there was a factory defect in the guitar and needed it get it back into the U.S. to rectify the situation. The guitar was made in northeastern USA at a very big and well-known factory only months earlier, but the U.S. Customs wouldn’t allow the guitar back into the U.S. without a ream of paperwork. Needless to say, we were unable to get the officers of the manufacturing company to fill out all that paperwork. We either had to just forfeit the guitar or 50 MMR
pay hundreds of dollars in fines to get it out of U.S. Customs. We paid the fines and got the guitar back and learned a great lesson about selling outside the U.S. My opinion is that the Lacey Act is a misinterpreted piece of legislation that has cost Americans jobs and hurt the sales of American made goods outside the U.S. Product of the year Without a doubt our product of the year so far in 2012 has been Martin guitars. They have expanded their line greatly with the new Performing Artist Series guitars and the brand has totally eclipsed any and all other brands of acoustic guitars that we offer in our store. Ovation guitars have always been a consistent seller, and we have seen a resurgence this year of US-made Adamas guitars.
Oregon Pacific Winds Music Eugene Willie Knaus, Owner
2011 vs. 2012? It’s about the same. I did some number crunching and it looks about the same. We’re all waiting for the comeback. And the ones you’re talking to here are the ones that will be there for it. There are a lot that aren’t around and it was sad to see them go by the wayside, but for the ones that are still around – we’re survivors. Highlights/Lowlights The trend has been that sales have been really slow in step-up and pro models and it’s been that way for a number of years, but there’s been much more activity this year in used instruments, especially beginners and school programs. A lot of schools have instruments that need a lot of work so the repair facility has been fairly busy. At least in our area, there’s still a lot of interest in school music programs – the numbers have not decreased – but, because of the economy, people are having trouble putting much money out. They can rent through the school a lot less that most stores are offering through rental programs. So we are seeing some activity with used stuff, but not a lot of
people making the leap to buying at retail level or higher. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence We have some presence, and we were going to get more elaborate – we were thinking of getting something up and running with our rental program to combine that with accessories and school programs, but it just didn’t fit the exact mold we were looking for and we just ran out of time. I read the trade magazines and can tell that if we do it, it’s going to have to be a local market rather than out of state because there’s the whole sales tax thing happening. We did some basic stuff like putting applications up that people can download as a PDF to save them some time and, for the first crack it, it worked quite well and people liked the convenience. Product of the year Ukulele has been big for us for the last eight years or so. There’s almost a circuit for it with festivals and things for all ages. The ukulele sales have been great, both in terms of instruments and the books – you can look at the Hal Leonards and everybody else coming out with books and accessories. Just the whole department .I mean we carried Kalas and Kamoas and Ohanas and others but I wouldn’t say one of them is dominant.
Pennsylvania California Drum Shop Bethlehem John SanFilippo, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 People are just not concerned with quality. If people aren’t educated at the ground level, they’re all just gonna quit. Don’t get me wrong – I love the industry and I would never want to do anything else. But it’s just been harder and harder to make a living. Highlights/Lowlights I’m finding a reconnection with being able to teach. I had to take it on again when my whole retail industry just dropped, like ‘bang.’ The student base we have – we really cherish that. We’ve DECEMBER 2012
Fifty Dealer / Fifty State almost become more of a drum gear museum at this point. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence We’re active with all that stuff, and it helps, but we mostly stand on our reputation. It’s great for people to go see a little more of what we do once they hear about us, but it’s really a great word of mouth. We have students who are coming in now whose parents we taught. Product of the year Taye had this import kit that had this 20” bass drum 10-12-14 tom and a 14” snare - the Orbitone - that you could sell for like $389. Same shells as the RockPro kit. I complained so much when they got rid of that.
Rhode Island Empire Guitars Providence Michael Samos, Manager
South Carolina Ye Olde Music Shop Hanahan Michael Davis, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 2011 was the best year of our 22 years in business! 2012 will wind up being one of our best years, but we’ll be a little down from last year.
Highlights/Lowlights The highlight of 2012 was national recognition for our “Instruments for All the Children” program. Have you been affected by the recent changes to and the enforcement of the Lacey Act? We’ve had some delays from certain
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2012 vs. 2011 We saw a steady increase in business. We have experienced an ever-growing number of new friends and customers at our brick and mortar location in addition to a noticeable increase in domestic and international online sales. It has been great seeing more and more people who are traveling an hour or two specifically to visit our shop. Its even better when they come back for a second or third visit! Highlights/Lowlights The major highlight this year was getting our new and improved website up. It was a big effort to redesign it but we have received nothing but great feedback. Another highlight was the acquisition of a 1960 ES-345. Its single previous owner was a fantastic New Hampshire country musician who in his younger days toured with Bill Haley and the Comets. Product of the year This year we brought on the Catalinbread line of effects pedals that are handbuilt in Portland, Oregon. We are absolutely enamored with these effects and they have been flying off our shelves.
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Fifty Dealer / Fifty State manufacturers but really no problems. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence We’ve updated our website and added Facebook, but across the board our word of mouth advertising will rival anyone! Product of the year Gibson Custom Shop products.
South Dakota Engle Music Aberdeen Don Trebilcock, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 Our year was down slightly. Not significantly, but primarily because we have had, and are continuing to have, a bit of a dry year. The crops were good but the dry year slowed it down a bit in August and September, so everyone’s spending money was down a bit. Highlights/Lowlights I would say our guitar business has been significantly up and our keyboard business was down a little, but I think that will balance out with November and December. That’s being optimistic – we’ll have to prove that, yet. We’re happy to maintain the kind of volume that we typically do. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence We’re not active in it, mainly because it’s difficult to do much more with it with the personnel we have. We just concentrate real hard on the retail that we do. Most of our customers want to put the item in their hand and they want to know about it and they want it serviced. Product of the year Yamaha is really important to uson the keyboard end – the combination of their acoustic pianos and Clavinovas has been great. Then I would have to mention, again, Taylor.
Tennessee Pick’n’Grin Knoxville Tami Brewster, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 52 MMR
In sales we were down five percent. Instruction was down for the first time at 10 percent. Our staff went from five to 1.5 But on a positive note, employee theft is zero! Highlights/Lowlights The biggest difference for me is now I don’t call to order, I call to backorder. It’s the only way I can get popular instruments back in – these are the longest backorder times that I can ever remember. We’ve had to cut back to five days because of layoffs. Owners are having to be at their shops 100 percent of the time. We can’t work six days a week except during Christmas. Customers seem shocked at this concept, but it’s a segue into the “Pitfalls of Internet Shopping 101”. Have you been affected by the recent changes to and enforcement of the Lacey Act? It has humanized our industry by putting this in the news. It will take another percentage of our “profits,” of course, and cause more delays, but it put faces on the instrument makers and that draws people in and educates them on “cause and effect.” They know that these things aren’t just spit out of a computer, but made by people who also need insurance and paychecks. Product of the year The first half would definitely be banjos, like back in the ‘70s. Gold Tone CC50s were hot. The second half has been so slow that the Pick Punch has qualified for honorary mention.
Texas Pender’s Music Denton Richard Gore, President
2012 vs. 2011 We were down three percent from the prior year’s sales. This is fortunate since many schools and churches had significant cuts in their supplies budget for last year. Highlights/Lowlights Despite being down in sales, we generated a higher profit margin than the
prior year. This was accomplished by smart buying and reducing expenses not directly related to customer service. Staffing was allowed to decrease through attrition. We started emailing digital catalogs that have linked scores and sound files. This type of promo saves money in postage and gives the customer a better experience than a printed catalog. We paid down existing debt by 75 percent and are looking to be debt free in the next year. Again, cash management and control of expenses works wonders on the financial statements. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence We have a robust website which is constantly evolving. The equivalent of two full-time staffers dedicate most of their day to our site. We hired a Search Engine Optimization consulting company to help us reach a higher Google search ranking on specific key words. We saw immediate results in increased sales, although the growth has leveled off recently. So far we have not hosted a digital download site. The current solutions are a bit clunky in that the consumer must download whatever viewer the site utilizes. We believe “cloud based” solutions will fix this problem in the next few years and then we’ll jump on the bandwagon. Product of the year Boss TU-80 Tuner & Metronome or Party Rock Anthem from Hal Leonard for Marching Band.
Utah Boothe Brothers Music Spanish Fork Steven H. Boothe, President
2012 vs. 2011 Our overall sales in 2012 have been slightly ahead of 2011 sales. Our rental business has been similar to last year. Because everything has risen in price, we suspect that we have actually sold fewer pieces of inventory. However, our dollar volume has remained higher. In our store, percussion, keyboards and recording equipment sales have all been down significantly. DECEMBER 2012
Fifty Dealer / Fifty State Highlights/Lowlights Our lesson rooms have been full of teachers and students this year. Our acoustic guitar and ukulele sales are way up. Teton acoustic guitars have been an amazing new product line for us. On the other hand, we have received new price lists from our distributors this year only to find that although the retail prices went down, our cost stayed the same or even went up. It has been difficult to let go of some of the brand name products we have carried for over the last 29 years. However, doing so has really paid off.
Product of the year We’ve been very happy with the Luna line of guitars and other fretted instruments. Good quality, great prices, and terrific dealer support.
Virginia Front Row Music Abingdon Donnie Higgins, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 Overall, our business is about 24 percent lower across the board. Highlights/Lowlights There are just less people spending money and shopping. We’re just not seeing the foot traffic at all coming into our business. This business has been here for 28 years and it’s
New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence Right now, our e-commerce accounts for a very small portion of our business. We are continually putting forth efforts to update and present our business in an electronic format. We are confident that an internet presence is essential and will pay off in years to come. Product of the year The Teton STS155CENT acoustic guitar from the folks at Chesbro Music Company.
Vermont GuitarSam Montepelier Kevin Crossett, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 We’ve seen a decent increase over 2011 in nearly every month of 2012, with the year-to-date total nicely ahead as well. The increases are spread out over every department, so it’s not just individual category bumps. Highlights/Lowlights We’ve been hosting more in-store workshops, which is a great way to build community. On the other end of things, Vermont’s first Guitar Center opened in October. Time will tell how that displays itself. Have you been affected by the recent changes to and enforcement of the Lacey Act? Some musicians are talking about it, although most don’t feel affected. I can’t say that it has affected our business as of yet. DECEMBER 2012
Fifty Dealer / Fifty State nowhere near the amount of customers we’re used to seeing. Have you been affected by the recent changes and enforcement of the Lacey Act? That didn’t really affect us all that much, although we are in the process of acquiring the Gibson line right now. It hasn’t affected our decision, though. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence A website is in the process of being built for us, but what we’ve found in our business is that there are four major music retailers online that you could not compete with, in terms of price and volume. You can’t beat them. We had finished up a website about a year and we came to find out that nobody’s buying online from us. So we’ve scaled it back. The new one will be a simple version just to be informative. Product of the year The best sellers of any given year for us are acoustic and electric guitars. Always different models, but I’d say acoustic guitars are the biggest sellers, and probably Fender and Dean in particular. They offer a good quality and variety at a reasonable price.
Washington Beacock Music Vancouver Russ Beacock, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 We are running close to 10 percent higher in overall revenue for calendar 2012. Highlights/Lowlights Changes in store layout and staff format allowed us to ‘specialize’ and get our customers the level of service and amount of help they want – whenever they want – when they come into our store. We believe this has translated to a higher closing ratio. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence Currently a priority, but not yet. Product of the year Eastman acoustic guitars
West Virginia Soundwaves Music Summersville Clifford Hess, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 I have had the privilege of owning and operating a music store here in Summersville for almost 14 years now and, although having some very difficult times, have not regretted in doing so one bit. 2012 sales for the store have been up roughly 25 percent over 2011 Highlights/Lowlights The economic environment has been absolutely brutal! This has been the first year in quite some time that I have seen increase in sales volume. Shrinking inventory levels and micro-managing every SKU in the store has been the key to survival – if a SKU does not turn than do away with it, period. Have you been affected by the recent changes to and enforcement of the Lacey Act? The Lacey Act is a concern for the manufacturers to work through. Personally, I feel there is way too much government intervention in every aspect of our lives and the Lacey Act is just another example. I am all about conservation of the natural resources used in the making of musical instruments and I’m certain companies are doing all they can to comply. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence For me the Internet is not the answer and we all better get back to the human element to survive as a whole. Why has it taken so very long for taxation to be enforced of Internet purchases? At Soundwaves Music I focus on building solid customer relationships through honesty and integrity and of course doing all that I can do to meet their musical needs. Product of the year Schecter SGR guitars and Taylor guitars.
Wisconsin Brickhouse Music River Falls Jen Burleigh-Bentz, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 January and April were the worst sales months that we’ve seen to date since 2004! The summer, however, has met the 2011 numbers, and has exceeded them in large jobs – P.A. installs, school bids, etc. No big numbers in instrument sales $899 and above, but $200 - $500 instrument sales exceeded 2011. Highlights/Lowlights Two events stick out to us. We closed our 2nd store in Eau Claire in July. As much as that was a blow to both our hearts (and our collective retail egos), it was necessary. The building that we were renting (where we had just invested $10,000 into lesson studios) had been sold and was scheduled to be demolished. Diminished sales there in the past three years added to our decision. A tough pill to swallow, but hopefully the medication will alleviate all negative symptoms involved. Highlights of our year include a renovation of the east side of our building – formerly a craptacular shed (which leaked when it rained – not much for shelter), we have poured new footings, poured new flooring, have added a 16’x20’ ensemble room, two lesson rooms, a spray booth and an employee break area. It is costing more than three times the original estimates stated. Nevertheless, it is the perfect way to celebrate our 15th year of business in River Falls (next year will be our 20th year in business)! Have you been affected by the recent changes to and the enforcement of the Lacey Act? We definitely have seen a longer lead time and, in some cases, higher pricing, on instruments being imported... especially special issue items with inlays. Speaking with manufacturers who deal with legal and legitimate imports from Canada, we have heard of much frustration dealing with border delays. Product of the year The Snark tuner is probably the fastest turn of the year. Due to the economy, our Repair Tech has been at 150 percent capacity all year, which has brought in a whole new clientele and increased footDECEMBER 2012
Fifty Dealer / Fifty State traffic to the store. PA installs have certainly brought in the most revenue to the store, the most loyal clientele, and perhaps the key to increased road sales. Due to the extent of community involvement in the install business, there is a certain satisfaction and commitment to giving back that fills our hearts, as well.
Wyoming Hill Music Casper Kurt Gilbert, Owner
2012 vs. 2011 This was a good year. It was down a little bit, but it was one of those things we had planned for, so we still felt good about it. It was only down about 1.25 percent. I would say our rentals are up and the band and orchestra instrument repairs are up. Piano sales are down. Our combo market is holding steady. Sheet music probably down, and accessory sales are up. It fluctuates from one
thing to another. Those big ticket items are really what pulls things down. Highlights/Lowlights New owners! Myself and Laura finally bought the store. I’ve been here for 25 years, but we finally bought the store from Dan Hill in August. We have upgrades planned for our point of purchase and accounting software, so that’s our big focus right now. We’ve never done a real solid point of purchase system, so we’re finally catching up with the world. We’ve sponsored a lot of things with the school music programs and we have an all-state marching band going to the Macy’s parade this year, so we’ve got a drumline that we basically loaned them for that. An awful lot of our equipment will be going to Europe through another school in a program that takes band, orchestra, choir, and jazz band over to Europe doing eight different venues there. New steps toward developing an e-commerce presence
It’s something that we do plan on once we get the POS set up, we’ll definitely improve on it. But it’s nothing we’ve put a lot of time into yet. Unfortunately, Wyoming’s customer base is statewide, and even then that just gets you around 500,000 people. Then an hour south of us, in Denver, they’ve got over a million people in that one city. So it’s an interesting dynamic to deal with. Product of the year Ukuleles.
Find it in the Hot News section of MMR’s Web site, www.mmrmagazine.com
America’s Top Music Chains So, what’s new in MI retail? If our yearly report on the top chains PO P DP BO PC FA SR EK PM DJ LT IN
Piano/Organ Piano Digital Piano Band Instruments Percussion Fretted Instrument/ Amplification Sound Reinforcement/ Recording Equipment Electronic Keyboard Print Music DJ Equipment Lighting Installation
As the majority of the dealers represented in this report are privately held, in most cases data being presented in “America’s Top Chains” was supplied by the companies, themselves. In other instances, MMR made estimates based on available data. *Not including Best Buy 56 MMR
in the industry is any indication, the answer is both, “Not much” and “Quite a bit.” It all depends on whom you’re asking. Though a decent number of the folks we reached out to provided feedback on the past year and expectations for the coming months prior to the results of the presidential election, the outcome of our collective trip to the polls on November 6th was often cited as a determining factor in how the coming year would pan out. And, much like the election itself, those responses indicated a highly divided nation. For every executive who expressed concern about the Obama administration’s policies and how they’d affect the bottom line for the MI business, there was an opposing voice pointing to a recovering economy and the upsides of the nation’s current and upcoming initiatives. Piano Distributors’ William C. Boyce, Jr. nicely summarized the dichotomy by voicing worry over, “new health issues for small businesses with ‘Obamacare’,”
while simultaneously predicting a better year in 2013 due to “a better economy [that] should increase sales!” Politics aside (or somewhat aside), how’s that “economic recovery” going, anyway? Once again, it really depends on whom is being asked. Truthfully, roughly half of the individuals we heard from reported that 2012 was “much the same” as 2011, or that business had seen a “slight increase.” But there are plenty who see things in (slightly) more extreme terms. “I don’t believe there is a ‘recovery,’ nor will there be,” asserted Music Go Round’s Tim Kletti. “The economy is now what it will be.” Beth Houlihan of Kidder Music, however, feels that, “Things are starting to turn around and we’re seeing a bit of an uptick.” And then there’s Chris Syllaba of Jordan Kitt’s who offers a very positive DECEMBER 2012
review of his operation’s past year, noting that when all is said and done, “2012 will have a significant increase over 2011.” So there you have it – crystal clear, no? Thanks in part to some new arrivals (more on that in a moment), as well as Guitar Center’s “onward and upward” continued expansion (16 new locations in 2012), our store-count is up from 759 in 2011 to this year’s total number of 774*.
This year we say goodbye – perhaps only temporarily – to Michigan’s Firehouse Guitars, which now fields two retail locations (minimum number for inclusion in “Top Chains” is three), while we greet California’s Music Exchange, Alabama’s Railroad Bazaar, and West Virginia’s C.A. House of Music. In many respects, while the lessons of the past few years and the realities of the current economic and political climate pro-
vide specific challenges, the fundamental truths behind achieving success in the MI business – in any business – remain unchanged. As Sammy Ash of Sam Ash observes: “It’s live or die… [If ] you want to die, then sit around and do nothing. Or sit around and strategize, and figure out how to survive and how to thrive.” Preach it, brother… * Not Counting Best Buy
“It’s live or die. It’s really come down to that. [If] you want to die, then sit around and do nothing. Or sit around and strategize and figure out how to survive and how to thrive.”
Volume (est. ’12)
Guitar Center DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, DJ, LT, IN, PM
– Sam Ash, Sam Ash Music
(Music & Arts, Brasswind & Woodwind) 5795 Lindero Canyon Rd., Westlake Village, CA 91362 (818) 735-8800 • firstname.lastname@example.org • www.guitarcenter.com CEO: Greg Trojan *Best Buy MI Store DP, PC, FA, SR, EK, PM, DJ, LT 7601 Penn Ave. South, Richfield, MN 55423 www.bestbuy.com • (612) 291-1000 CEO: Hubert Joly Sam Ash Music DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, DJ, LT, PM P.O. Box 9047, Hicksville, NY 11802 (516) 932-6400 • Fax (516) 938-1437 email@example.com • www.samash.com CEO: Richard Ash Winmark Corp./Music Go Round BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, DJ, LT 4200 Dahlberg Drive, Minneapolis, MN 55422 (763) 520-8500 • Fax (763) 520-8468 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.musicgoround.com Tim Kletti - Director
Volume (est. ’12)
Fletcher Music Centers PO
31st Annual America’s Top Music Chains
$ 28 MM
3966 Airway Circle, Clearwater, FL 33762 (727) 571-1088 • Fax (727) 572-4405 email@example.com • www.fletchermusic.com CEO: John K. Riley Schmitt Music Co. P, DP, SR, EK, PC, BO, FA, PM Butler Square, 2400 Freeway Blvd., Brooklyn Center, MN 55430 (763) 566-4560 • Fax (763) 566-5725 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.schmittmusic.com CEO: Tom Schmitt Piano Distributors PO, P, DP, EK, PM 1475 12th Street East, Palmetto, FL 34221 (941) 729-5047 • Fax (941) 729-3059 email@example.com • www.pianodistributors.com CEO: William C. Boyce, Jr. J.W. Pepper & Son PM (Malecki Music, Wingert-Jones Music) 2480 Industrial Blvd., Paoli, PA 19301 (610) 648-0500 • Fax (610) 993-0563 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.jwpepper.com George’s Music Stores Inc. DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, DJ, LT, PM 650 W. Swedesford Road, Berwyn, PA 19312 (610) 993-3110 • www.georgesmusic.com President: George Hines Steinway Hall P 109 W. 57th St., New York, NY 10019 (212) 246-1100 • Fax (212) 239-7462 email@example.com • www.steinway.com CEO: Thomas Kurrer Mills Music, Inc. P, DP, SR, EK, PC, BO, FA, PM 10120 Main St., Bothell, WA 98011 (425) 486-5000 • Fax (425) 486-3366 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.millsmusic.com CEO: Sam Mills Willis Music Co. P, DP, PC, FA, EK, PM 7567 Mall Road, Florence, KY 41042 (859) 525-6050 • email@example.com • www.willismusic.com CEO: Kevin Cranley
Volume (est. ’12)
Eckroth Music Co. P, DP, BO, FA, PC, PM
31st Annual America’s Top Music Chains
1655 N. Grandview Ln., Bismarck, ND 58503 (701) 223-5320 • Fax (701) 223-7554 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.eckroth.com CEO: Jeff Eckroth Sherman Clay P, DP 1111 Bayhill Dr., Suite 450 , San Bruno, CA 94066 (650) 228-2232 • Fax (650) 952-0121 email@example.com • www.shermanclay.com CEO: Eric Schwartz C&M Music Center, LLC DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, DJ, LT, IN, PM 2515 Williams Blvd., Kenner, LA 70062 (504) 468-8688 • Fax (504) 468-8683 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.musiccenter.net CEO: Chris Nail, Melvin Volz, Jr. Quinlan & Fabish Music Co. BO, PC, PM 166 Shore Dr., Burr Ridge, IL 60527 (630) 654-4111 • Fax (630) 654-4128 email@example.com • www.qandf.com CEO: George Quinlan, Jr. Marshall Music Co. Inc. PO, P, SP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, DJ, LT, IN, PM 3240 E. Saginaw St., Lansing, MI 48912 (517) 337-9700 • Fax (517) 319-9325 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.marshallmusic.com CEO: Dan Marshall Frank Rieman Music, Inc. P, DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, IN, PM 4420 E. Broadway, Des Moines, IA 50317 (515) 262-0365 • (515) 264-1075 email@example.com • www.riemanmusic.com CEO: Paul Rieman Kennelly Keys Music Inc. DP, PC, BO, FA, SR, EK, PM 4918 196th St., Lynwood, WA 98036 (425) 771-7020 • Fax (425) 670-6713 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.kennellykeysmusic.com CEO: William J. Kennelly Nick Rail Music DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PM 2801 De la Vina St., Santa Barbara, CA 93105 (805) 569-5353 • Fax (805) 687-1390 email@example.com • www.nickrailmusic.com CEO: Nick Rail
Volume (est. ’12)
31st Annual America’s Top Music Chains
Henderson Music Co. P, DP
910 Madison Ave., Covington, KY 41011 (859) 431-2111 • Fax (859) 431-8426 www.hendersonmusic.com CEO: Carl Henderson Menchey Music Service, Inc. AP, DP, EK, OR, BO, DR, SR, RE, FR, PM
Piano Gallery P, DP, BO, EK, PM 5478 Green St., Murray, UT 84123 (801) 266-9550 • Fax (801) 266-8445 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.pianogallery.com CEO: Stan Beagley Brook Mays Music 8805 Carpenter Fwy., Dallas, TX 75247 (214) 905-8614 • Fax (800) 637-9399 www.brookmays.com CEO: Bill Everitt, Jr. Jacobs Music Co. P, DP 1718 Chestnut St., Philadelphia, PA 19103 (215) 568-7800 • (215) 568-0020 email@example.com • www.jacobsmusic.com CEO: Al C. Rinaldi West Music Co. PO, DP, BO, PC, FA, SR, EK, PM, DJ, LT, IN 1212 5th St., Coralville, IA 52240 (319) 351-2000 • Fax (319) 351-0479 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.westmusic.com CEO: Robin Walenta Music Exchange PO, P, DP 1501 N. Main St., Walnut Creek, CA95696 (925) 933-6310 • Fax (925) 933-6355 www.muex.com CEO: Thomas Kurrer
80 Wetzel Dr., Hanover, PA 17331 Menchey_info@mencheymusic.com * www.mencheymusic.com (417) 882 7000 CEO: Joel Menchey Ken Stanton Music PO, P, DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, DJ, PM 119 Cobb Pkwy N., Ste. A, Marietta, GA 30062 Phone: (770) 427-2491 • Fax (770) 422-8455 email@example.com • www.kenstantonmusic.com President: Kenneth E. Stanton, Jr.
Volume (est. ’12)
White House of Music P, DP, BO, PC, FA, SR, EK, PM
2101 N. Springdale Rd., Waukesha, WI 53186 (262) 798-9700 • Fax (262) 798-0224 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.whitehouseofmusic.com CEO: Christopher White Portland Music Co. DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, IN, PM 531 S.E. MLK Jr. Blvd., Portland, OR 97214 (503) 226-3719 • Fax (503) 226-6574 email@example.com • www.portlandmusiccompany.com CEO: Mark Taylor Heid Music Co. P, DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, LT, PM 308 E. College Ave., Appleton, WI 54911 (920) 734-1969 • (920) 831-8493 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.heidmusic.com CEO: Todd Heid Ted Brown Music Co., Inc. BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, DJ, LT, IN, PM 6228 Tacoma Mall Blvd., Tacoma, WA 98409 (253) 272-3211 • Fax (253) 572-1416 email@example.com • www.tedbrownmusic.com President: Whitney Brown Grisaffi Saied Music P, PO, DP, SR, EK, PC, BO, FA, PM 3259 S. Yale Ave., Tulsa, OK 74135 (918) 742-5541 • firstname.lastname@example.org • www.saiedmusic.com CEO: Bob Saied C.A. House of Music P, DP, BO, FA, EK, PC, PM 3700 Cavalier Cir., Parkersburg, WV 26104 (304) 422-4676 • Fax (304) 422-4009 www.cahousemusic.com • email@example.com Mississippi Music Inc. P, DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, DJ, LT, IN, PM 222 Main St., Hattiesburg, MS 39401 (601) 544-5821 • Fax (601) 544-5841 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.mississippimusic.com CEO: Rosi K. Johnson Jordan Kitt’s Music P, DP 9520 Baltimore Ave., College Park, MD 20740 (301)513-1212 • Fax (301) 474-3648 • www.jordankitts.com CEO: Chris Syllaba Railroad Bazaar FA, SR 1207 Edison St., Athens, AL 35611 (256) 232-5800 • Fax (256) 232-5201 email@example.com • www.music.railroadbazaar.com DECEMBER 2012
Volume (est. ’12)
Keyboard Concepts P, DP, PM
31st Annual America’s Top Music Chains
5600 Van Nuys Blvd., Van Nuys, CA 91401 (818) 787-0201 • Fax (818) 787-1219 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.keyboardconcepts.com CEO: Dennis Hagerty Bertrand Music PM, BO, EK, OR, DR, SR, FR, KA 13179-5 Black Mountain Rd., Sa Diego, CA 92129 email@example.com • www.bertrandmusic.com • (888) 780-1812 CEO: John Bertrand, Sr. Portman’s Music FR, DR, DJ, AR, EK, BO, SR 7650 Abercorn St., Savannah, GA 31406 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.portmansmusic.com • (888) 780-1812 President and CEO: Jerry Portman Dietze Music House P, DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, DJ, PM 1208 O St., Lincoln, NE 68508 (402) 476-6644 • Fax (402) 476-8962 email@example.com • www.dietzemusic.com CEO: Tim Pratt Tarpley Music Co., Inc. P, DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, IN, PM 2420 Commerce, Amarillo, TX 79109 (806) 355-0795 • firstname.lastname@example.org • www.tarpleymusic.com CEO: David Tarpley & John Tarpley Buddy Roger’s Music, Inc. BO, FA, SR, EK, PC 6891 Simpson Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45239 (513) 729-1950 • Fax (513) 728-6010 • www.buddyrogers.com CEO: David Miller Evola Music Center PO, P, DP, BO, PM 2184 Telegraph Rd., Bloomfield Hills, MI 48302 (248) 334-0566 • Fax (248) 334-2340 jim.evola@Evola.com • www.evola.com CEO: Jim Evola Griggs Music DP, SR, EK, PC, BO, FA, PM 3849 N Brady St., Davenport, IA 52806 (563) 391-9000 • Fax (513) 728-6010 email@example.com • www.griggsmusic.com CEO: Steve Judge Alto Music DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, DJ, LT, IN, PM 180 Carpenter Ave., Middleton, NY 10940 (845) 692-6922 • (845) 346-0016 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.altomusic.com CEO: Jon Haber 62 MMR
Volume (est. ’12)
Piano & Organ Center PO, P, DP, BO, EK, PM
31st Annual America’s Top Music Chains
Box 2369 Great Northern Mall, Clay, NY 13039 (315) 622-3926 • Fax (315) 652-5030 email@example.com • www.pianoandorgancenter.com CEO: David Constantino Jackson’s Music P, PM, DP, EK, BO, FA, SR 1409 S. Stratford Road, Winston-Salem, NC 27103 (336) 760-9635 • www.jacksonsmusic.com CEO: Douglas J. Dryden Robert M. Sides Family Music Center PO, P, DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, DJ, IN, PM
201 Mulberry St., Williamsport, PA 17701 (570) 326-2094 • Fax (570) 326-5155 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.rmsides.com CEO: Peter K. Sides Samuel Music P, DP, FA, SR, EK, PC, DJ, LT 908 W. Fayette Ave., Effingham, IL 62401 (217) 342-9221 • Fax (217) 342-9227 email@example.com • www.samuelmusic.com CEO: Dean Samuel Keyboard World PO, DP, FA, EK, PM 14701 National Highway, Lavale, MD 21502 (301) 689-2534 • Fax (301) 729-0873 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.keyboardworld.com CEO: Ronald B. Klinetob Mr. E’s Music P, DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, DJ, PM 2503 Gravel Dr., Fort Worth, TX 76118 (817) 595-1910 • Fax (817) 595-1920 www.mr-e-music.com CEO: William C. Everitt Rincon Musical BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, DJ, LT, PM 1110-1116 13th Street North Bergen , NJ 07047 (201) 348-0057 • (201) 348-0075 email@example.com • www.rinconmusical.com CEO: Amalio Santos Jr. Trombino Music Centers Inc. PO, P, DP 1049 Broad Ave., Belle Vernon, PA 15012 (724) 929-6707 • Fax (724) 929-2049 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.trombino.com CEO: Robert A. Trombino
Volume (est. ’12)
Skip’s Music PC, FA, SR, EK, PM, DJ, LT, IN
31st Annual America’s Top Music Chains
$ 3.7 MM
2740 Auburn Blvd., Sacramento, CA 95821 (916) 484-7575 * Fax (916) 484-7610 email@example.com • www.skipsmusic.com CEO: Skip Maggiora Jent’s House of Music P, PM, DP, EK, BO, FA, SR 10901 University Street, Lubbock, TX 79423 (806) 795-5579 CEO: Karen Pollard Frank & Camille’s East PO, DP 482 Route 110, Melville, NY 11747 (631) 385-0606 • Fax (631) 385-1040 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.frankandcamilleseast.com CEO: Camille Scheidemann Ace Karaoke 161 S. 8th Ave., City of Industry, CA 91746 (888) 893-7464 • Fax (626) 820-0625 email@example.com • www.acekaraoke.com Instrumental Music P, PM, DP, EK, BO, FA, SR 3328 State St., Santa Barbara, CA 93105 (805) 569-5055 • www.instmusic.com CEO: Brian McCann White’s Music Box P, DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, PM 200 South Downtown Mall, Las Cruces, NM 88001 (575) 526-6677 • firstname.lastname@example.org • www.whitesmusicbox.com CEO: Mike White Kidder Music DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, LT, IN, PM 7728 N Crestline Drive, Peoria, IL 61615 (309) 692-4040 • (309) 692-4789 email@example.com • www.kiddermusic.com Owner/President: Beth Houlihan Pender’s Music Co. PM 314 S. Elm St. , Denton, TX 76201 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.penders.com • 800 772-5918 President: Richard Gore Riverton Music, Inc. PO, DP, EK, PC, BO, FA 4650 South 3740 West, West Valley City, UT (801) 254-4489 • Fax (801) 746-1140 • www.RivertonMusic.com CEO: Kevin Rindlisbacher
Volume (est. ’12)
Prosser Piano & Organ PO, DP, EK, PM
31st Annual America’s Top Music Chains
13400 Interurban Ave., South Tukwila, WA 98168 (206) 957-8732 • KerryP@prosserpiano.com • www.prosserpiano.com CEO: Kerry Prosser The Clavier Group, Steinway Hall – Dallas P 5301 N. Central Expressway, Dallas, TX 75205 (214) 526-1853 • Fax (214) 526-5358 email@example.com • www.steinwaypianos.com CEO: Danny Saliba Art’s Music Shop, Inc. P, DP, BO, PC, FA, SR, EK, PM, IN 3030 East Blvd., Montgomery, AL 36116 (334) 271-2787 • Fax (334) 279-0119 sales@ArtsMusicShop.com • www.ArtsMusicShop.com CEO: Paul Freehling Dave Phillips Music & Sound DP, PC, BO, FA, SR, EK, PM, LT, IN 377 Irwin St., Phillipsburg, NJ 08865 (908) 454-3313 • Fax (908) 859-4449 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.davephillipsmusic.com CEO: Dave Phillips Pecknel Music Co., Inc. DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, IN, PM 1312 N. Pleasantburg Dr., Greenville, SC 29607 (864) 244-7881 • Fax (864) 244-7894 email@example.com • www.pecknelmusic.com CEO: Scott N. Peck Meyer Music P, DP, BO, PM 1512 W. Highway 40, Blue Springs, MO 64015 (816) 228-5656 • Fax (816) 228-6059 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.meyermusic.com CEO: Ted Meyer, Betty Meyer Kessler & Sons Music BO 3047 E. Charleston, Las Vegas, NV 89104 (702) 385-2263 • Fax (702) 385-7966 email@example.com • www.kesslermusic.com CEO: Charles R. Kessler Welch Music, Inc. P, DP, BO, FA, SR, EK, PC, PM 837 Pole Line Rd., Twin Falls, ID 83301 (208) 734-9010 • Fax (208) 734-2210 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.welchmusiconline.com CEO: Randy Welch
Awards We’ve reached a fairly significant milestone:
two decades of MI retailers across the nation determining the winners of the MMR Dealers’ Choice Awards. Looking back across those 20 years, there are those suppliers who’ve regularly dominated in their respective categories (Yamaha, Shure, American DJ, Peavey, et cetera), but – perhaps surprisingly – there’s also been a good deal of “motion.” 2012 is no exception, with a few surprises (Gibson’s Les Paul stealing the “Electric Guitar Line 66 MMR
of the Year” from Fender, some shakeups in the Acoustic and Digital Piano categories), as well a handful of companies who look to be establishing impressive long-term winning streaks (Pearl, Ibanez) or maintaining long-held dominance (Yamaha). Votes in each product category were cast via online ballot, e-mail, and good
old fashioned snail-mail, with the total number of responses – over 660 – besting 2011’s record as the largest in the history of the Dealers’ Choice Awards. Many thanks go out to all participating retailers, without whom we wouldn’t have enjoyed two decades of competition. Congratulations go out to all the winning suppliers! DECEMBER 2012
ELECTRIC GUITAR LINE OF THE YEAR
Gibson Les Paul
Gibson Guitar Corp. Gibson has been in the news (and in the pages of MMR) quite a bit lately. With all the tales of federal agents raiding facilities, discussions about Lacey and CITES, and political discourse of a broader scope relating to the company, it’s almost easy to forget what Gibson is actually all about: crafting beloved and hugely popular guitars. Players and retailers haven’t forgotten, though, and this year the iconic Les Paul is once again in the winner’s circle as “Electric Guitar Line of the Year.”
Product of the Year
ELECTRIC BASS LINE OF THE YEAR
Yamaha AvantGrand Yamaha Corporation of America
After “beating itself” by unseating the longstanding winner in this category last year (the Disklavier), Yamaha delivers a repeat performance with the AvantGrand once again taking top honors as “Product of the Year.” As with last year, voters pointed to an impressive array of features, quality craftsmanship, and the overall aesthetic appeal of these hybrid pianos as strong selling points. Yamaha’s Spatial Acoustic Sampling and Spatial Acoustic Speaker System were often praised for their capability to product “highly realistic” acoustic piano sounds. Time will tell if the AvantGrand has what it takes to match the Disklavier’s run at the top of the heap (10 years!), but it’s off to a strong start… DECEMBER 2012
Hoshino USA, Inc. This was a tighter contest than in recent years, with plenty of strong candidates in the field receiving numerous votes. Ibanez held strong, however, and its exhaustive line of models that appeal to players of many styles and budgets once again came out on top. MMR 67
20th Annual Dealers’ Choice Awards ACOUSTIC GUITAR LINE OF THE YEAR
AMPLIFIER LINE OF THE YEAR
RECORDING EQUIPMENT LINE OF THE YEAR
Fender Mustang II
C.F. Martin & Co., Inc.
Fender Musical Instruments Corp.
For many acoustic players of all stripes, it’s “Martin or nothing” and the ballots this year reflect that, with the Nazareth, Penn.-based institution taking a commanding lead early in the voting process and never letting up. A sterling reputation founded upon over 175 years of expertly crafted guitars that have been embraced by generations of legendary players makes Martin tough to beat.
Last year, Fender’s feature-rich Mustang series –USB connectivity, Fender’s proprietary FUSE software, and a sizable bank of built-in effects – took top honors in this category. In 2012 the votes were specifically for the newer Mustang II amplifier, which appealed to both retailers and end-users, thanks to the unit’s capabilities and comparatively low price-point.
In 2011, we noted that, “Zoom owns this category” and the voting results in 2012 offered very little to suggest otherwise. The significant difference between this year and previous being that, at this point, Zoom fields so many popular recording products that there was no one, single winning device, but instead the entire line received top marks.
SOUND REINFORCEMENT LINE OF THE YEAR
MICROPHONE LINE OF THE YEAR
BAND & ORCHESTRAL INSTRUMENT LINE OF THE YEAR
Yamaha Yamaha Corporation of America Once again, due to the sheer volume of popular, quality products offered, the overall Yamaha B&O line once again came out on top.
Similar to the case with Zoom, this is a category that has been dominated by one company of late. This year no specific product is a winner. Peavey’s extensive line of sound reinforcement products got so many votes that we had to grant the win to the entire category of products offered by the company.
What can you say about the SM58? When virtually every performance stage and recording studio has at least one (and usually more) of these microphones, it’s almost a “gimme” that Shure is going to take the prize as “Microphone Line of the Year”…
ACOUSTIC PIANO LINE OF THE YEAR
HOME DIGITAL KEYBOARD OF THE YEAR
PRO DIGITAL PIANO LINE OF THE YEAR
Hailun HU 5P
Kawai America Corporation
Yamaha Corporation of America
Now here’s a surprise. For many years there, it appeared that Kawai’s K-3 had established a veritable lock in this category, but in 2012 China’s Hailun won “Acoustic Piano Line of the Year” in convincing fashion. The HU 5P was praised for meticulous craftsmanship and classic deigns.
Kawai made up for any lost ground with a strong showing in this category. Dealers pointed to the CA95’s impressive array of features – Grand Feel WoodenKey Action, Harmonic Imaging XL Sound Technology with 88-key piano sampling, the ability to play and record MP3 and WAV files, built-in practice exercises and Alfred Lesson Songs – as key selling points.
Given that the AvantGrant is the 2012 “Product of the Year,” it should come as no surprise that this console also wound up in the winner’s circle in its specific instrument category…
PERCUSSION LINE OF THE YEAR
LIGHTING LINE OF THE YEAR
DJ LINE OF THE YEAR
American DJ Supply, Inc.
Four years in a row – that qualifies as a legitimate “streak.” Pearl is a consistent favorite with players and dealers, even though this category remained as hotly contested in 2012 as in recent years.
Speaking of streaks… For the eighth year in a row ADJ wiped the floor with the competition, winning this category by a wider margin than any other award presented in 2012.
Pioneer’s powerful DDJ-SX performance DJ controller gets the nod in this category, thanks to its versatility, high quality audio reproduction, and intuitive user interface.
20th Annual Dealers’ Choice Awards PRINT MUSIC PUBLISHER OF THE YEAR
ACCESSORY LINE OF THE YEAR
WEB SITE OF THE YEAR
Hal Leonard, Corporation
D’Addario & Co.
Yamaha Corporation of America
There’s only been one winner to sit at the top of the heap in its category since the very first year of the Dealers’ Choice Awards: Hal Leonard. The massive library of titles is an obvious reason behind the company’s success, but many dealers also pointed to Hal Leonard’s efforts to work with retailers in effective, helpful ways as a reason why this print giant once again rose above the competition.
With so many accessory needs met, D’Addario/Planet Waves are repeat winners in this category. The minituners have proven hugely popular, providing serious “bang for the buck,” while the company’s well-regarded line of strings remains a favorite with players and retailers.
It’s really more than just one site, with plenty of pages providing information on products, music education resources, news & events, and more. However, MI retailers most regularly pointed to the portal for Authorized Yamaha Dealers, as the primary reason why Yamaha is a winner in this category.
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Print Music’s Top-Sellers for 2012 MMR touched base with some key players in the realm of print music publishing to ask them what their best selling titles were for the past year, as well as to get their comments on the state – and future – of the market…
David Jahnke Hal Leonard Corporation 2012 was educational. Literally. The education side of our business did extremely well, thanks in part to our new Guitar Tab Method, Faber Piano Adventures, Essential Elements and all things Ukulele. This is very encouraging because our products are the roadmaps that can help the “wannabe’s” become music makers. We have also seen a posi-
tive trend with music stores enforcing copyright law by requiring their teachers to use method books and supplements in their lesson programs. This benefits the student, teacher, and music store. Multi-platform products are the biggest trend we are focusing on. This means adding components like CDs, DVDs, USB drives, and software along with the standard printed material. We are also working on enhanced content for the consumer to access from the Internet. The Internet gives us the ability to offer things like bonus audio
tracks, video instruction, and even mobile digital editions free of charge for the customers who purchase the physical book. This allows us to keep the retailers at the center of the transaction while we move forward with evolving digital initiatives. Music is still a very important part of the world’s culture. Television shows like The Voice, American Idol, X Factor, America’s Got Talent… continue to promote music like never before. Most of these shows focus on vocal talent instead of instrumental, which helps explain our
Hal Leonard 1. Hal Leonard Guitar Tab Method 2. Vocal Warm-Ups, Pro Vocal Series 3. Jake Shimabukuro – Peace Love Ukulele 4. The Ukulele Play-Along series 5. Charlie Parker Omnibook Play-Along 72 MMR
6. How to Play from a Real Book 7. Journey Through the Classics series in the Hal Leonard Student Piano Library 8. Guitar Chord Songbook White Pages 9. The Easy Guitar Play-Along Series 10. Hal Leonard School for Snare Drum DECEMBER 2012
increased sales of vocal methods and repertoire. This trend tells us music stores are also reaching out to this growing market and adapting their lesson programs to teach more voice students. As long as people continue to want to learn how to make music, the future is bright for our industry.
Chuck Sher Sher Music Co. Not long ago I had a vision of sorts, involving the Biblical story of God telling Lot that he would destroy Sodom and Gomorrah. Lot asked God to cool himself because there were some good people there. God said that if he could show him 10 good people, he would refrain from Sher Music 1. The Jazz Theory Book by Mark Levine 2. The Jazz Piano Book by Mark Levine 3. The New Real Book, Vol. 1 4. The Real Easy Book, Vol. 1 5. Three Note Voicings and Beyond by Randy Vincent 6. The Latin Real Easy Book 7. Line Games by Randy Vincent 8. The Real ‘Cool’ Book - Octet Transcriptions of West Coast Cool Jazz Classics 9. Method for Chromatic Harmonica by Max De Aloe 10. Afro-Peruvian Percussion Ensemble by Hector Morales
the destruction. Lot did, and saved the cities (for a while). Similarly, it occurred to me recently that as long as there are 10 good tunes being played on the planet at any given time, the whole show wouldn’t just implode. It is our job, as musicians and as facilitators of musicians, to keep good music happening, for the sake of all humanity, I believe. So regardless of our challenges, let’s all persevere and have some fun while we’re at it! Peace.
Joseph Galison LudwigMasters Publications 2012 is still a good year for LudwigMasters. Early in the year we signed Lynne Latham on to our team as String editor. She is currently writing all new pieces for LudwigMasters, as well as doing some new arrangements for us. We are really excited to see her expertise on educational string music reflect in some of the new pieces she is working on. We are also very pleased to see that our new music for band, string orchestra, and full orchestra was very well received by music teachers all over. When we [selected] the new music for 2012, we were very picky so as to make sure that the music had good educational value and was fun to play for young musicians. We went through hundreds of works and really picked the very best. This selection process works very well for us and helps to drive our sales.
“When we [selected] the new music for 2012, we were very picky so as to make sure that the music had good educational value.” Joseph Galison LudwigMasters Publications
LudwigMasters 1. The All American Drummer 2. Lincolnshire Posy 3. Modern Rudimental Swing Solos 4. Bobsled Run 5. South Hill March 6. N.A.R.D. Drum Solos/ Snare Drum Method 7. Greensleeeves 8. Courtly Airs and Dances 9. Circus Galop 10. The Lambs March
We have also made new strides to reach out into other markets. LudwigMasters did a complete flyer with score pages and accompanying CD for the Canadian market. We worked with someone very close and knowledgeable with Canadian music programs and let them pick the music they thought was best. In this collaboration we really found some new and back catalog pieces that would make an excellent fit in any Canadian music educator’s classroom.
Antonio Ferranti Alfred Music Publishing Company, Inc. 2012 was such an important year for Alfred. We celebrated our 90th year in business. At Alfred, we know you don’t get to 90 years in business on your own. In addition to a great legacy of producing the industry’s best-selling music education MMR 73
Alfred Music Publishing 1. Alfred’s Teach Yourself to Play Ukulele Complete Starter Pack 2. Alfred’s Teach Yourself to Play Guitar Complete Acoustic Pack 3. Alfred’s Teach Yourself to Play Guitar Complete Electric Pack 4. Alfred’s Kid’s Guitar Course Starter Pack 5. Alfred’s Kid’s Ukulele Course Starter Pack 6. Alfred’s Basic Piano Library: Lesson Book 7. Alfred’s Basic Adult All-In-One Course, Book 1 8. Alfred’s Basic Guitar Method, Book 1 9. Alfred’s Kid’s Guitar Course 1 10. Alfred’s Teach Yourself Piano
“2012 may, indeed, have been the shift of the ages the Mayans had once predicted… only in retail.” Antonio Ferranti Alfred Music Publishing Company, Inc.
products, you get to 90 years in business with the support of your customers, industry colleagues, and staff. Reflecting on the developments this year in music publishing, 2012 marks the year where we will one day look back and see that the retailers who truly defined the future had found a way to harmonize their established brick-and-mortar business with the world online. Facebook crossed one billion members, Twitter empowered international revolutions, Apple and Google accounted for a billion smartphones and tablets; 2012 may, indeed, have been the shift of the ages the Mayans had once pre74 MMR
dicted… only in retail. More than ever, people want to play music. That desire is fundamental and will never change, but how they discover and shop for their musical instruments and products has changed and the dealers who partner closest with the manufacturers in reaching customers today, win the business. Alfred has implemented many new initiatives that help our brick-and-mortar retailers achieve exactly that.
Chris Scialfa Carl Fischer Music/Theodore Presser Company The first part of the year continued in similar fashion to the way 2011 ended. Things seemed to level off from the struggles many businesses were having over the last few years. However the latter part of 2012 seemed to prove our worst fears about school budgets. Educational sales seemed to be affected by school budget cuts - even more so than anticipated. So in some ways, 2012 proved even less predictable than the years during the “heart” of the economic problems our nation and businesses had faced. Digital downloads continue to be a popular topic, and although the number of digital-only retailers coming to fruition in 2012 was slightly less than last year, it’s still the area in which we are seeing the greatest number of new businesses. We’re also seeing print music appear on more third party apps than last year and more Kindle, Nook and iBook versions of known publications. Although we didn’t see a breakout trend in regards to any one product or product line, we did see that “value” continued to be a trend in 2012. Retailers and end consumers are still gravitating towards products that have a strong added value (i.e. a book/media CD combination with a competitive price point such as our Repertoire Classics series). The biggest change I think we’ve seen isn’t so much within the content or even how the content is being delivered, but rather how the content is being marketed. The social media options that we have are changing the landscape as to how publishers are connecting with not only their retailers, but with their end users. Social media is providing consumers the ability to get really
Carl Fischer Music/ Theodore Presser Company 1. Battle Hymn Of The Republic 2. Carol Of The Bells - SATB 3. Arban’s Complete Method -Trumpet 4. Technical Studies - Cornet 5. ABCs of Violin - Absolute Beg 6. Melodious Etudes For Tbn, Bk.1 7. Scale System 8. 170 Foundation Studies-Volume 9. Guitar Grimoire Scales & Modes 10. Foundation Standards for Violin, Bk. 1
close with the writers (via blogs, Facebook, Twitter, et cetera) which helps us sell more of that writer’s product. And that naturally benefits all parties involved in that sale: publisher, retailer, consumer, and writer. Our goals for 2013 remain fairly unchanged from last year. We’ll need to continue to watch the trends in the digital download area and provide consumers a variety of options to receive those products. We’ll have to simultaneously remain focused on producing quality publications that will sell no matter what the delivery method is. Social media seems like it will only continue to get stronger... but the trick will be to identify the best ways to reach your customers through social media. The social media landscape changes so fast and frequently, that one must really know their audience and spend their time and resources marketing in the way their customers are most likely to respond to. Pinterest might be great for one company, but it doesn’t mean it’s going to be great for all companies. And although that site might be great today, it doesn’t mean it’s going to continue to be great for the long haul. I don’t mean to single out Pinterest, I happen to love it. But the idea is the same for just about all social media sites. The key will be knowing which ones are best for our organization and participating accordingly. DECEMBER 2012
at Pender’s Music
Pender’s staffers with over 20 years of experience: Bill Cooksey, Bill McMath, Henry O’Bryant, Reesa Hall, Richard Gore, Betty Gore, Jeff Hudson, Andy Seigler, Todd Thompson, and Harold Gore.
Two generations ago, Harold Gore bought a campus grill and book shop in Denton, Texas that has since grown into an exceptional model for print music dealers everywhere. Texas is music country. It’s home to some of the most competitive high school and college band programs anywhere, enrollment is consistently strong, and the state’s culture is steeped in traditions like country, gospel, Texas blues, Tejano, a decades-old indie and alternative scene, and even highly influential hip-hop artists. One of America’s first world-renowned composers, Scott Joplin, was born in Texarkana. 76 MMR
In the middle of it all lies Pender’s Music, a beloved sheet music retailer based in Denton with close ties to the University of North Texas. The shop has thrived over the years by carefully catering to music education programs throughout the region, expanding into new markets when possible, contracting when necessary, and pragmatically DECEMBER 2012
looking for new opportunities to connect with customers. President Richard Gore summarizes the situation with pride. “We’re doing great,” he says. “Our financial situation is the best it’s ever been and our people are used to being disciplined about how they handle things. We’re very fortunate.” As this year draws to a close, Pender’s is celebrating its 45th anniversary under ownership by the Gore family. As with so many businesses, a look behind the scenes reveals a system based on a long track record of hard work, trust, loyalty, intuition, and maybe even a little bit of good luck. Growing Up with Pender’s Gore’s father, Harold, bought the store in 1967. The shop was originally opened in 1938 by Perry “Pop” Pender and served as a UNT campus bookstore and grill for decades. When Harold bought the store, he was married with three children and had studied music and small business at the college. Nevertheless, he’d never actually run a business. Gore describes his father as “naturally entrepreneurial.” The gamble eventually paid off and Pender’s reputation began to grow among music educators throughout the area, aided by Harold’s vision and the careful business skills of his wife, Betty.
“It just grew exponentially because he was such a great customer service person,” says Gore. “He did whatever he needed to make sure the customers had the music. He was very innovative.” By 1979, Richard himself was about to graduate college with a business degree and was looking for a job. In the middle of an interview with IBM in
spearheaded by manager Delee Francis. Francis had started working at the Denton shop right out of college with a music business degree. She was placed in charge of not only the new branch, but also in standardizing the way Pender’s did business. “We didn’t have any prior manuals or policies and procedures that could accommodate having a second lo-
You’ve got to always be looking toward the future, especially in this business which can change so quickly and radically. It can be disconcerting at times, but you’ve got to embrace it. which he found himself badgered about his family business (only to find the interviewer admit, “That’s my dream, to own my own business!”), he realized that his career might already be right under his nose. “A light bulb went off,” he says. “Why would I want to work in the corporate world when my family’s got this business going?” Since then, Richard has worked nonstop for Pender’s, gradually taking the company over from his father and bouncing ideas off of his mother as a stern mediator. With that process has come very steady growth and business ingenuity. Pender’s opened its first branch store 20 years ago in Oklahoma City,
cation,” says Gore. “She was up for the challenge.” They’ve since opened stores in Portland, Ore. and Houston (both of which have been closed), and Dallas. The Dallas location in particular (in the suburb of Carrollton) offered the possibility of a meeting of the minds between several industry veterans. It came about six years ago when Pender’s teamed with many of the staff from the recently split-up Brook Mays Music, itself a major player in sheet music with 17 locations throughout Texas and Oklahoma. Representatives from both Pender’s and Brook Mays were longtime members of the Retail Print Music Dealers Association (RPMDA) and had a lot of experience working together in that
context, so an alliance seemed a natural idea. At present day, the company counts three former RPMDA presidents among its ranks – Gore, Dallas general manager Richard Rejino, and marketing manager Becky Lightfoot. An Eye for Technology Carol Wilbur, who is in fact the current the RPMDA president as well as the Dallas location’s assistant general manager, says the transition was remarkably efficient and introduced her team to Gore’s aggressive approach to technology. “They were on computers!” she remembers. “I know it sounds funny, but we had been operating under the idea that if we put everything into our computers,
it would take too long to run the reports. That sure kept me hands-on and knowledgeable with all of our merchandise, but it was time-consuming.” “I think in 1985, he was one of the first stores in the country to totally computerize the inventory,” she says. “He has always been ahead in technology and he’s very good at forecasting trends before the rest of us can just say, ‘How did you know that?’” A major initiative in recent years has been the development of the company’s rewards card system, formed with help from NAMM’s partnership with the World Gift Card company, through which they offer $10 back for every $100 a member spends. The program so far has been a great success and helps the
store avoid coming up with new discounts throughout the year. Richard says that tech has always been a major priority to him. He points to the current Carol Wilbur development of his son, Steven, who joined the business recently to plug away at new forms of music delivery and distribution that may be more in line with the way customers are already attempting on the Internet. “We want to be
“A Soda Fountain Type of Place” Tracing Pender’s History from a ‘60s Campus Grill to Sheet Music Specialty Richard Gore recounts the old days of when his parents, Harold and Betty Gore, built up Pender’s into the operation it is today. When did your father first get acquainted with Pender’s? My dad was a band director in 1967 when he bought the business, when it was a college bookstore that had a soda fountain and a grill where you could get breakfast. He had hung out there as a music major in college. One day he was back in town and stopped by to visit and the guy who owned the shop, Ed Myers, who was 72. Ed said, “Hey, I think you could do this and make it work.” So he just dug in and made it work. Did he have any advice to go on at the beginning? Oh, no! Ed Myers told him “Whatever you do, don’t get rid of the soda fountain and grill area because that provides a steady cash flow all year.” The grill was run by a cook and a waitress who were sisters and they were the main part of the operation. When he took over the store, he was expecting that grill to be what he lived off of until he could decide how to run the business. But no matter what he did, he couldn’t make it pay. So about two years into it, he just said, “I don’t think I’ve got it,” and he closed the grill and decided to go into music. Years later, the grill cook came up to my mom and said she had to get something off of her chest. She said, “The reason you had to close the grill is not because you couldn’t run the business. It was because my sister was pocketing every third sale.” [laughs]. My dad turned to her and said, “You know, that was probably the best thing that could have happened to us. It made me focus on what I knew, which was music. It also helped me focus on what sources of income were available to me, which was selling
to schools and college students who were music majors.” So that’s what he built the business on and that’s still the core of the business. Was it always the goal to have such a broad variety of music available? Well, he had limited funds back then so he’d focus mainly on the schools and the band in particular. He’d concentrate on selling the to the band. He had about five or six directors who told him that summer, “If you carry some music in here, I’d spend my entire budget with you.” Back then, most of them were having to order from Southern Music in San Antonio. It was just a convenience thing for them, really. So he said sure. But he didn’t realize how much it would cost to carry band music. [laughs]. Even back then. When did you first start traveling to conventions to meet educators? It was 1974, when I was 16. We had just bought a new station wagon, which was a big deal to our family because I think it was the first new car we’d ever owned. The seats would fold down somewhat, so he loaded up the music that he wanted to take and couldn’t get the fixtures in to take along. He painted boards ahead of time and he and I built the bookshelves onsite with those painted boards. My mom was real bent out of shape because some of the paint wasn’t quite dry and he got paint on her new floorboards of the car and everything. We sold out every single thing we took. It was amazing. When he saw that, he said, “We need to bring the whole store. We’ll just let directors buy it all off the rack at the show.”
customer-centric. We’re hopeful that we can develop something that can maintain print music but also give our customers the ability to go digital.” It’s a question that’s been plaguRichard Rejino ing the print music industry for years now – how to compete with digital music sales (and the increased free filesharing that goes along with it) without giving up on customer relations? One approach, as Richard stated above, is that digital delivery is indeed simply a new avenue to follow customer demand. Dallas location manager Richard Rejino says it’s a matter of fact, not theory. “As an industry as a whole and certainly as our own business, we’ve got to find a way to be a part of digital delivery,” he says. “Because it’s here already. That’s just sound business. You’ve got to always be looking toward the future, especially in this business which can change so quickly and radically. It can be disconcerting at times, but you’ve got to embrace it.” Gore says that examples of where things are going aren’t hard to find – music manufacturers themselves are a good place to start. “I just a see a lot of things going on with some of the lead publish-
ers in our industry that are very exciting” he says. “While they can’t necessarily include a retailer in it right now, I have faith that the channel of distribution will remain the same.” He says Pender’s is currently hard at work developing a new model with vendors that incorporates the digital world and may even be suitable for franchising down the road.
ford a step-up instrument, but they can afford a $5 piece of music.” She looks to employee expertise to master that kind of demand and, as far as she’s concerned, everyone’s an expert. “If someone’s not in the shop that day, you really need to know how to cover that person’s specialized area,” she says. “You can’t tell a customer, ‘I’m sorry, you’ve
A Retailer’s Secret Weapon: Service One thing that remains firmly in retailers’ grasp for now is service. Pender’s continues a 25-year-old annual tradition of organizing new music reading sessions each year for K-6 music educators that includes clinicians and meals and help from publishers Hal Leonard, Alfred, and Lorenz. Those have been rolled out by the publishers to other similar events throughout the country, but Gore says the one they run locally at the Lewisville Convention Center is still the biggest (“Because we’re Texans, right?” he offers). When Wilbur discusses the constantly changing business environment, she is quick to point out the importance of an attentive, knowledgeable staff and a sensible geographic location. “We do truly bend over backwards to get the customer what they need when they need it,” she says. “We’ve had a huge advantage being in Texas because we deal with so many schools and private teachers and churches. Print music does pretty decently in down economies because people can’t af-
got to come back tomorrow when the other guy is here.’” And Pender’s has a lot of experts. Gore says the company has nearly no turnover in any of the business’s key positions and that several employees have been with the company from 20 to 30 years, some dating back to before Gore himself had begun working for the store. Which is to say that even in a tough economy, this longstanding shop in the heart of Texas has continued to take advantage of the region’s love of music and always find innovative ways to make it work. “We’re always trying to constantly change and adapt,” says Wilbur. “That’s always the secret of running a good business.”
New Products Afro-Peruvian Percussion Ensemble: From the Cajon to the Drum Set from Sher Music Afro-Peruvian Percussion Ensemble is designed to be useful for any level of musician – beginning to advanced. The book contains music charts with the specific rhythms played by the cajon, congas, cowbell, bongos, cajita and quijada – as well as bass and guitar parts – for major styles of Afro-Peruvian and Creole music. The various rhythms are also shown being adapted to the drum set, with and without other percussion instruments playing. Readers will encounter a valuable history of the development of AfroPeruvian music, including numerous photos and an 85-minute DVD with instruction on each percussion instrument and the drum set. The DVD also includes a song in each of the main styles shown in the book, recorded with top musicians of the field, including: Hector Morales, Peruvian Grammy award winner Oscar Stagnaro, former “Peru Negro” musicians – Mariela Valencia, Marcos Napa, Hector Ferreira and Jhair Sala and also “Maestro” Carlos Hayre protege, Eric Kurimski and Paulo Stagnaro. Retail price: $30. www.shermusic.com Levy’s Steampunk Guitar Straps Check out the latest in Victorian sci-fi fashion with Levy’s new Steampunk series of guitar straps. Each strap is a 2” polyester webbing sublimation-printed with a design of the sub-culture of Steampunk, finished with complementary
leather ends, and a tri-glide adjustment. Pictured is model MPSP2 available in six original designs. www.levysleathers.com Milbert Amplifiers GAGA D-30 Guitar Amp Milbert Amplifiers introduces the GAGA D-30 tube guitar amplifier, third in the line of Guitar Artists’ Guitar Amplifiers. Based on the GAGA 90 and offering similar features and functions, the “domestic” model GAGA D-30 provides from 1 Watt up to 30 Watts full power audio output and weighs a light 11 pounds total weight with a 120V / 240V mains input. GAGA D-30 may be upgraded to ei-
ther the domestic GAGA D-60 model, or to the international model GAGA 90. The upgradeable nature of GAGA Amplifiers, unprecedented in guitar power amplification, extends already extreme versatility and furthers good investment into the future. Important features common to GAGA Amplifiers include: No traditional audio output transformer, unveiling stunning clarity of tone, the ability to play over 30 kinds of tubes, adjustable Headroom for more distortion at low volumes, autobiasing of all tubes, Auto-Impedance and Blow-Proof universal speaker outputs, P3-ReadyT 9V high-current phantom power for pedals and active pickups, and much more. Made in USA. Retail price: $1,950. www.milbert.com/gaga Behringer iNUKE BOOM JUNIOR The iNuke BOOM Junior is a 1:23 scale model of its powerful predecessor, packed with professional grade components and a three-way active speaker design. It is compatible with almost all mobile phones or media players with its included cables. The model includes a Standby LED indicator, Line-In LED indicator, Aux LED indicator, and an iPod LED indi-
cator. It connects via an iPod dock, Line In, Aux In (stereo RCA connectors), and Video Out (video) and includes compatibility with iPhone 4 / 4S / 3GS / 3G, iPod Touch / Nano / Classic (5th Generation), iPad 1 / 2* / The New iPad*. A 1 x CR2025 battery is included. The speakers are a 2x1” tweeter, a 2x3” midrange speaker, and a 1x5.25” woofer. Power consumption is max. 50 W. Retail price: $179.99 www.behringer.com American DJ’s X-Move LED 25R Moving Head Representing the next generation of the company’s popular X-Move LED Plus, the X-Move LED 25R is a moving head fixture that uses a 25-watt CREE white LED lamp source to create a hard-edge beam that projects gobo patterns and solid colors across dance floors, walls and ceilings. In addition to increasing brightness by a factor of two, the X-Move LED 25R is lightweight, easy to set up and loaded with powerful features. The high output beam of the X-Move LED 25R offers eight colors plus white; six rotating, replaceable gobos plus spot; separate color and gobo wheels; gobo scroll mode; gobo shake effect; manual focus; pulse effect and random strobe from slow to fast; 0–100 percent dimming; and auto X–Y positioning. High-quality stepper motors allow for smooth, accurate movements, while the unit’s 17° beam angle, 540° pan and 270° tilt provide wide area coverage Despite its increased brightness, the X-Move LED 25R uses a fraction of the power draw compared to traditional halogen or discharge moving heads – just 75 watts maximum. The highly versatile X-Move LED 25R has three operating modes. In addition to being compatible with a standard DMX-512 controller (9 DMX channels), it can be run in Sound Active mode to its own built-in lighting programs. For wider area coverage in larger venues, multiple units can be DECEMBER 2012
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New Products linked together in Master/Slave mode. A highly portable fixture, the X-Move LED 25R weighs only 14 lbs./6.2kg. and measures 8.75”L x 8”W x 12.75” H/ 221 x 202 x 320mm. Retail price: $629.95. www.americandj.com Beginner Guitar Models from ChordBuddy ChordBuddy LLC presents a new line of Perry’s brand beginner guitars to make learning to play the guitar even easier. The new guitars feature laminate spruce tops, catalpa back and sides, nickel silver frets, rosewood fingerboards and bridges, sealed die cast tuning keys, and, in some cases, flame or quilt finishes. The Perry’s Natural Dreadnaught (Model PD1) is available in four colors: natural, vintage sunburst, black, redburst. Retail price: $129. The Perry’s Youth Guitar (Model PYG) is available in three colors: natural, vintage sunburst and black. Retail price: $99.00. www.chordbuddy.com Godin Montreal Premier Godin Guitars’ Montreal Premiere is a thinline, semi-hollow body electric and the latest addition to the brand’s Signature Series. It features a Canadian wild cherry top, back and sides, with an innovative spruce “breathe-through” carved core. This feature promotes free airflow through the interior center block, in turn making the Montreal Premiere a resonant and vibrant guitar. The guitar’s resonance is harnessed by a pair of Custom Godin Humbucker pickups. A no-nonsense set up, comprised of a three-way toggle switch along with vol-
ume and tone knobs, control the overall sounds. Other features include a 24 ¾” scale, mahogany set-neck with rosewood fingerboard, double-bound binding, high-gloss custom polished finish, contoured high-gloss headstock with highratio vintage style tuners, and ResoMax 82 MMR
bridge system by Graphtech with stop tailpiece. Color options include: Natural HG, Trans Red HG, Trans Black HG and Sunburst HG. A Godin Montreal Premiere with Bigsby® B70 tremolo option is also available. The Bigsby® model features a tune-o-matic style bridge with roller saddles and Trans Red HG finish. Retail price: $1,795.00. www.godinguitars.com Acoustics First Sound Channels Wall Fabric Sound Channels® acoustical wall fabric is manufactured from 100 percent PostConsumer Recycled material, making this a quick ship, easy, no thought acoustic solution. The product is applied directly to vertical surfaces, is easy to cut and installs like wall carpet. This absorptive wall fabric is a great choice to moderate speech frequencies in any application. Great to soften sound in conference rooms, distance learning, offices, and day
care facilities, this material can also be used as a base layer in home theaters, recording studios and broadcast facilities. Not only is this economical acoustical treatment available in countless colors, it is manufactured from recycled materials, reducing environmental impact.Sound Channels in manufactured using Eco-fi fibers. Eco-fi is a high-quality polyester fiber made from 100 percent certified recycled plastic bottles. www.acousticsfirst.com Gator Cases G-TOUR Pedal Boards Added to Gator’s G-TOUR series of road worthy ATA cases, The G-TOUR Pedal Boards provide professional level protection at a very affordable price. The GTOUR Pedal Boards feature thick plywood construction and a tough laminated exterior. The heavy duty outer case shell
safely and securely holds the pedal board inside with specialized EVA foam lining the interior to protect effects pedals during transport. The pedal board surface can be removed from the base and sits flat for low-profile use and the interior
space below the pedal surface doubles as accessory storage. Included with each G-TOUR Pedal Board is the unique 3M Dual Lock fastener strip for pedal mounting. The new G-TOUR pedal boards are available in two sizes. The small model, G-TOUR PEDALBOARD-SM, features a compact 17”x11” pedal surface that holds 8-10 standard sized stomp box pedals and is small enough to be carried on most airlines. The large model, G-TOUR PEDALBOARD-LGW, features a larger 24”x11” pedal surface that will hold up to 10-14 stomp boxes. The large model also includes a retractable tow handle and wheels making transport a breeze. www.gatorcases.com EMG 57/66 Humbuckers The new 57 active humbucker from EMG is a bridge pickup suitable for any genre, with a unique combination of Alnico V magnets combined with steel pole pieces. The new 66 active humbucker was designed specifically for the neck using Alnico V magnets together with ceramic pole pieces to create a perfect rhythm pickup that is full and open. The 57 and 66 are currently only available in EMG’s exclusive brushed stainless steel cap. Each pickup is sold individually. Retail price: $199.99 www.emgpickups.com DECEMBER 2012
AweSome Upgrade for Fender’s Select Series HSS Stratocaster A simple-to-install upgrade for Fender Select Series HSS Stratocaster contains AweSome Musical Instruments’ T4Switch, part of the company’s growing family of over 50 high performance patented Pickup Switch Upgrade™ products. This drop-in product lets users instantly get 76 pickup tones. Performers will now only need one guitar to play everything including rock, pop, blues, surf, grunge, jazz, metal, folk, country, and more. The upgraded
The NSPA features a 3” driver powered by a 25 watt amplifier. With three inputs on the rear panel (XLR, ¼”, and 1/8” summing), users can plug directly into the Nano Spot from any source or microphone. The NSPA also features 24V Phantom power, a 20dB pad switch, and a built in
compressor to handle any source or level you can throw at it. The front panel controls include a level control, two-band EQ control with center detent, as well as power, compressor, and signal LEDs. www.galaxyaudio.com
guitar will have the ability to mimic electric guitars including a Stratocaster, Telecaster, Jaguar, Jazzmaster, Les Paul Custom or Studio, Silvertone, National, Mosrite, Airline, Danelectro, Harmony, Ibanez, Maestro, or many others made with either single-coil pickups or humbucker pickups. These upgrade products come in four standard three-ply colors (white, black, white pearloid, brown tortoise) and are made to fit a standard American righthand Select Series HSS Stratocaster body. These pickguards are completely wired and designed to accept pickups and be easily installed with no soldering needed. www.awesome-guitars.com Galaxy Audio Nano Spot The Nano Spot is the newest member of Galaxy Audio’s Hot Spot family. Designed for small reference monitor use, call centers, bar or patio settings, the Nano is inconspicuous to the listener but has a powerful presence. The powered Nano Spot is portable, weighing less than two pounds, and has the dependability of Galaxy Audio’s 35 years in business. DECEMBER 2012
New Products V-MODA Crossfade M-100 Headphones V-MODA’s latest M-Class headphones feature pure analog soundscape, exotic style, exotic materials, military-grade durability, and versatility. V-MODA uniquely crowd-sourced the input of hundreds of audiophiles, journalists, producers and renowned DJs around the globe after news of M-100 first leaked online. The company embraced this information and openly interacted on forums and so-
cial networks which ultimately transformed into a platform of crowdsourced product development. Years of ergonomic research and obsessive quality control over speaker driver variance served as the driving force in the release of M-100. Its unique sound signature is characterized by the model’s deep yet clean bass, vibrant mids, and ultra-extended clear and transparent highs. Retail price: $299.95. www.v-moda.com
Chops: The Ultimate Guide to Building Tone, Technique and Flexibility from Carl Fischer Chops: The Ultimate Guide to Building Tone, Technique and Flexibility is available for both trumpet and trombone. Written by Frank T. Williams, these exercises are the vegetables that all brass players must eat in order to improve their tone, technique and flexibility. This is a one-of-akind collection of exercises and insights into mastering the skills necessary to be a solid player on a brass instrument. Williams’ students range from private students, high school bands, award-winning drum and bugle corps, current 84 MMR
composers, band directors, and professional musicians, including Mike Roylance, tubist for the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Frank T. Williams received his B.S. degree in music education from Florida A&M University in Tallahassee, Florida, and his Master of Music degree from State University of New York in Fredonia, New York. An educator for nearly three decades, he has taught at the junior high, high school, and college levels. He is a member of MENC, FBA, Kappa Kappa Psi, and Omega Psi Phi, and has served as Vice President for the IAJE Florida chapter. Retail price: $12.99. www.carlfischer.com Genz Benz NX2 Series Bass Cabinets Genz Benz has released two NX2 series lightweight bass loudspeaker cabinets that replace its popular NeoX line. New NX2 series improvements include proprietary neodymium loudspeakers and an advanced cabinet design that adds strength, yet reduces weight. These NX2 cabinets feature Dual Edge “X” porting for increased lowfrequency support and projection. At a relatively trim 47 pounds, the NX2-212T design is lighter and more portable than its predecessor. The cabinet features new Genz Benz loudspeakers with increased sensitivity for greater output. The NX2-212T effortlessly projects a powerful response with throaty midrange character. The cabinet design aligns the loudspeakers vertically to create a small footprint for increased vertical dispersion. The NX2-112T cabinet provides full-bodied sound with a very fast transient attack. The cabinet is lighter at 31 pounds and boasts more low-frequency presence while maintaining the articulate midrange and defined highs of its predecessor. Retail price: $1,199.99 (NX2-212T), $799.99 (NXT-112T). www.genzbenz.com.
Hal Leonard Recording Method: Engineering & Producing Engineering & Producing is the second edition of the fifth book in the Hal Leonard Recording Method by Bill Gibson. The first four books of the Hal Leonard Recording Method cover microphones, mixers, recording vocals and instrument; working with samples and loops, and modern sequencers, along with how digital recording software and plug-ins work in the studio. This edition takes a giant step forward, examining modern concerns of engineers and producers. This detailed guide addresses some of the most important new considerations, such as social media, aggregators, making money in the current business climate, earning royalties from streaming and Internet radio stations, professional organizations and songwriter affiliations, and more. Included are tips on extensive use of QR Codes, changes in the audio industry, and what it takes to engineer and produce today and multiple appendices that provide substantial industry resources, musicians’ associations, and other tools for the modern engineer and producer. Retail price: $ 39.99. www.halleonardbooks.com Apogee MiC The new MiC from Apogee was designed to be the first studio-quality digital microphone for GarageBand on iPad, iPhone and Mac. MiC’s PureDIGITAL technology delivers a pristine signal of voice, instrument or any sound source to your iPad, iPhone or Mac for professional quality recording. MiC’s gain wheel and single LED meter make it easy to set the perfect, noise-free level for recording. Simply adjust the gain wheel while checking your sound. Its plug-andplay feature means there’s no set up or configuration for easy use. The equipment features 44.1/48 kHz, 24-bit DECEMBER 2012
analog to digital conversion; studio quality preamp with up to 40dB of gain. Retail price: $199 www.apogeedigital.com
Playing with Your Drums from Hudson Music The Playing With Your Drums DVD, written and produced by Derek Roddy, is aimed at drummers of all styles and levels. Playing with Your Drums provides an enlightening and fun discussion of common issues facing every drummer. The one-hour-and-20-minute program discusses the ins and outs of setting up and getting comfortable on a drum set. Joined by a panel of three other professional drummers, Derek delves into detail on important (yet often overlooked) topics such as seat height, position/angle of the drums, using your available space on stage, setting up your pedals, creating an ergonomic setup, proper positioning of your hardware, placement of the hi-hat, how to position your toms, and even the importance and proper use of a drum carpet. Although Derek is known for his metal playing, his approach to these topics (and the comments offered by the panel) apply to all styles. As a bonus, the program includes footage of Derek playing along to five tracks and an improvised drum solo. Retail price: $12.99. www.hudsonmusic.com On the Beaten Path from Alfred On the Beaten Path: Beginning Drumset Course, Complete, by renowned drummer, clinician, and author Rich Lackowski, guides drummers through the process of learning how to play the drums using a methodical progression of famous drum beats and fills played by some of the best drummers on some of the world’s most famous songs that shaped modern music. Level 1 starts off with a wide selection of rock beats and fills by DECEMBER 2012
drummers including John Bonham (Led Zeppelin), Tré Cool (Green Day), Dave Grohl (Nirvana), and many more. Level 2 unlocks coordination and syncopation skills with an expanded vocabulary of dozens of blues and jazz beats. Level 3 fortifies drummers’ knowledge with reggae, country, funk, and Latin
beats. Additional concepts like time and tempo manipulation, other time signatures, and a ton of key drumming tools are also included. The enclosed DVD includes over 4.5 hours of video demonstrations covering every line of music in the book, plus 142 MP3 audio tracks of every legendary beat and fill. On the Beaten Path: Jazz, by Rich Lackowski and John O’Reilly Jr., is an essential exploration of jazz and its many subgenres from a drummer’s perspective, covering its roots and all of the significant events that happened as it flourished. The book is integrated with authentic transcriptions and easyto-follow lessons for 36 legendary beats and solos. Insight on world-renowned drummers Art Blakey, Jack DeJohnette, Jeff Hamilton, Elvin Jones, “Papa” Jo Jones, and more is included, with information on the gear they used, the licks and solos that made them famous, and the significant albums that defined their genre. The included CD contains performances that demonstrate all the beats and solos in the book. Retail price: $19.99 - $29.99. www.alfred.com
of red, green and blue LEDs allows easy mixing for the perfect color to match any event, while independent color and effect control allow it to function as an
independent fog machine or uplight. For increased design flexibility, you can also mount Geyser™ RGB to emit horizontal bursts. Easily control Geyser™ RGB up to 100-feet away with the FC-W wireless remote control. Using the digital display, program preset colors and manage the illuminated fog effect with the simple press of a button. www.chauvetlighting.com
Chauvet Geyser RGB Geyser™ RGB is a fog machine and wash light in a single fixture that operates using fog or haze fluid. This machine blasts a vertical stream of safe, water-based fog or haze, while simultaneously illuminating it with 21 highpower, three-watt LEDs. A combination MMR 85
Supplier Scene Vater Adds Journey’s Castronovo to Artist Roster Vater Percussion recently announced Journey drummer Deen Castronovo as its latest endorsing artist.
Castronovo, born in Westminster, California, discovered the drums at age five and played his way through a long list of highly acclaimed bands. Deen first rose to prominence in the ‘80s in heavy rockers Bad English, led by his future Journey band mate Neal Schon. Deen joined Journey when the band reformed and original drummer Steve Smith decided to continue on his path with Vital Information. Castronovo has been touring around the world and recording with Journey for over 10 years. He is currently on tour with Journey and is using the Vater Power 5B in wood tip. www.vater.com NS Design Partners with Julie Lyonn Lieberman NS Design recently announced a partnership with composer Julie Lyonn Lieberman on her recently published Bollywood Strings project, based around an orchestral score composed by Lieberman for orchestra and electric violin. Written either for junior or senior high school level players, the parts can be per-
formed independently, but they also can be interlocked for an exciting festival or all-school performance. Along with the bi-level scores, Lieberman has created versions of an accompanying performance video, with and without electric violin, and authentic Indian percussion soundtrack which can be included with the performance. Ms. Lieberman, who used her NXT during the recording of the BSP music tracks, as well as in the making of the performance video, has made special arrangements with NS Design to loan an NXT violin to any school which decides to perform Bollywood Strings. Special pricing will also be available for participating schools interested in retaining the NXT violin after their performance. The NS NXT Violin, crafted in the Czech Republic, was designed by Ned Steinberger, and features a combination of clean, striking design, advanced ergonomics, a patented tuning system, and acoustic tone quality not common among electric violins. www.thinkNS.com Mapex Launches ‘Get the Pedal or the Metal’ Mapex Drums is offering customers a choice with their current “Get the Pedal or the Metal” promotion: Purchase a qualifying new Mapex Meridian or Horizon Birch shell pack or a complete kit from either series from participating retailers through December 31, 2012 and Mapex will send them a free Steel Snare Drum or a Double Bass Drum Pedal. Customers need only submit the required “Get the Pedal or the Metal” entry form with proof of purchase in order to receive the promotional item from Mapex. With Purchase of any New Meridian Maple or Birch Shell Pack or Complete Set, participants will receive either a free P710TW Double Bass Drum Pedal (a $339.00 Retail Value) or a free 13” x 3.5” Steel Piccolo Snare Drum – Model MPST3354 (a $124.99 Retail Value). With Purchase of any New Horizon Birch Lacquer Shell Pack or Com-
plete Set, participants will receive either a free P500TW Double Bass Drum Pedal (a $199.00 Retail Value) or a free 13” x 3.5” Steel Piccolo Snare Drum – Model MPST3354 (a $124.99 Retail Value). usa.mapexdrums.com Precision Devices Loudspeakers Announce North America Distribution Deal Flightcase and speaker cabinet hardware manufacturer Penn-Elcom recently announced their exclusive North America Distribution partnership with famed UK
loudspeaker maker Precision Devices. The UK company’s well-known line of pro audio drivers will now be available in North America for the first time to both OEM and retail customers. “Precision Devices has enjoyed historic success in Europe with its quality handmade UK speakers as original supplier to Turbosound and others,” says David Logan, North America Sales Manager for Precision Devices and Fane. Neil Barnes, sales director at Precision Devices, is excited for the new venture. “The timing of the launch is ideal for both companies who are in the process of implementing strategic international expansion plans. Precision Devices is rapidly expanding its global distribution network more than at any time in its history.” www.penn-elcom.com and www.precision-devices.com Casio Announced as CES Innovations 2013 Design and Engineering Honoree Casio America, Inc. was recently named as an International CES Innovations 2013 Design and Engineering Awards Honoree for the flagship of its new Privia line, the PX-850. Products entered in this prestigious program are judged by a preeminent panel of independent industrial designers, engineers and members of the media to honor outstanding design and engineering in cutting edge consumer electronics products across 29 product categories. DECEMBER 2012
Casio’s Privia PX-850 features Casio’s new proprietary sound source, AiR (Acoustic and intelligent Resonator).
pressed brass grommet, with the toms using decorative tacks to affix the badge. www.gretschdrums.com. Hohner Awards Jimenez with Lifetime Achievement Award The National Endowment for the Arts recently named Flaco Jimenez a National Heritage Fellow at The Lincoln Library in Washington, DC. He was also awarded with a Lifetime Achievement Award by Hohner for his incred-
“We are honored to be a Design and Engineering Award Honoree at CES,” said Stephen Schmidt, Vice President of Casio’s Electronic Musical Instruments Division. “We look forward to continuing to lead the way in the electronic musical instrument industry with innovative products that meet consumers’ wants and needs.” www.casio.com Gretsch to Reintroduce Round Badge Beginning in January 2013, all Gretsch USA Custom drums will feature the traditional Gretsch Round Badge. First appearing on USA-made drums between 1930 and 1970, drum sets made with the brass round badge have become highly respected and collectible in the vintage drum community. The Gretsch Round Badge will appear on all Gretsch USA Custom drums, including G-4000 Series Metal and G-5000 Series Wood Snare Drums. The newly designed Gretsch Round Badge shares many of the characteristics of the original version. Each is made from brass and features an embossed “Gretsch” logo, versus fully-embossed badges found on original Round Badge drum sets. A simulated patina will be applied to give the badge a vintage brass look. The new Round Badge will be attached in the traditional method to the drums’ vent holes using a pneumatically pressed brass grommet. Original Round Badge bass drums and snare drums have the pneumatically DECEMBER 2012
ible achievements culminating in his receiving five Grammy awards for musical collaborations with some of the most prestigious artist in the world. Flaco has played a very important role in making Conjunto (Tex-Mex) music known all over the world and is recognized as the ambassador of Conjunto music. www.playhohner.com TreeWorks Builds World’s Largest Bar Chimes The Guinness Book of World Records officially certified that the chime recently built by TreeWorks Chimes is the largest one ever recorded. The project was the collaborative effort of Mitch McMichen of TreeWorks Chimes and Tom Shelly of Universal Percussion. It features 1,221 chime bars that were hand-tied on, one-
at-a-time. The record was broken at Drum Fest, a Universal Percussion sponsored community event in Columbiana, Ohio. To break the previous record of 1,000 bars, the chime had to be used during a performance, so Shelly’s band played at the event and accompanied the long sweep of the instrument for the record. The chime is currently on display in the Universal Percussion showroom. The total length of the chime was measured at 64 feet 2 inches, weighing over 140 pounds. www.treeworkschimes.com Alfred Congratulates Howard for Ms. Senior California Honor Alfred Music Publishing congratulates Elisabeth Howard – author of Alfred’s Sing!, Born to Sing, Power Speech, and The ABCs of Vocal Harmony – for being honored as Ms. Senior California, 2012. The pageant is designed to elevate elegant senior women and allow them to get the recognition they deserve.
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Supplier Scene The California Senior America Pageant crowned Elisabeth as Ms. Senior California, marking her first steps on a journey of representing the American woman 60 years of age and over who have reached the “age of elegance.” As a noted author and recognized pioneer in the teaching of vocal technique, Elisabeth competed against eleven contestants in interview, evening gown, and talent competitions. Elisabeth is a graduate of The Juilliard School with a B.S. and M.S. in voice. She is a member of the voice faculty at Pepperdine University and is also the creator of the Vocal Power Singing Method and is founder and director of Vocal Power Academy, Los Angeles, established in 1980. www.alfred.com Music Mix Mobile Touts Genelec Monitoring Hardware Versatile mixing production company M3 continues to employ Genelec monitoring equipment for a variety of audio engineer-
Tilting a grand piano has never been easier using the new Moondog Grand Piano Tilter.
If you’ve ever needed to tilt a grand piano from or to a skidboard by yourself, the Moondog Grand Piano Tilter is the tool for you! To view a demonstrational video of the tilter visit our website: www.moondogmfg.com For more information including pricing contact firstname.lastname@example.org
425-252-0757 2915 Pine Street • Everett, WA 98201 www.moondogmfg.com
M3’s Jay Vicari and Joel Singer.
ing challenges. Aside from the renowned mixing company M3 (Music Mix Mobile)’s more conventional clients, which include The Grammys, The Latin Grammys, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, The Colbert Report, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon’s live broadcast from the University of North Carolina, and the upcoming 2012 CMA Awards broadcast, among many others, M3 has recently been putting their Genelec equipment to good use mixing live 5.1 surround sound for broadcast for challenging, high-energy events. In particular, two recent jobs for AXS.tv – a new brand combining the tools of AEG Live and AXS (formerly HDnet) – allowed M3 to utilize their full Genelec 5.1 systems, which consist of 8200 Series Active Monitors and 7200 Series subwoofer. The Genelec 8200 Series Bi-Amplified Active Monitors employ the company’s proprietary Smart Active Monitor (SAM) concept, which includes, GLM™ (Genelec Loudspeaker Manager software) and AutoCal™ (Automated Calibration software) technologies, which together create a self-calibrating monitoring solution that both guarantees accurate audio and ensures a steady-paced workflow. www.genelecusa.com Daisy Rock Welcomes Betz “Original girl guitar company” Daisy Rock Girl Guitars welcomes to its artist roster Carla Betz, bassist and backup singer for punk-pop band The Trainwrecks. The Trainwrecks were formed in Hollywood when vocalist/guitarist Garner Knutson joined up with Betz, bonding over a mutual love for bands like Green Day, Dinosaur Jr., The Replacements, and vintage Kiss. The witty lyrics are outshone only by radio-ready melody lines. Daisy Rock Girl Guitars offers a complete line of quality girl guitars designed to look and sound great, and to fit the female form. www.daisyrock.com DECEMBER 2012
Shredder Gus G. Appears at Recent Dealer Guitar Clinics Influential metal guitarist Gus G. (Ozzy Osbourne, Firewind) was a crowd pleaser at recent dealer clinics sponsored by Blackstar Amplification in conjunction with ESP guitars. Gus G. played tracks
from Firewind’s latest album and showcased his new signature Blackstar amp, the BLACKFIRE 200. He also answered questions from the audience and signed autographs. The mini clinic tour included visits to several premier Blackstar dealers: Chuck Levin’s Washington Music Center, two Sam Ash locations, and Alto Music. www.blackstaramps.com Yamaha Keyboards Launches New Home Office Training Model Yamaha Corporation of America recently hosted the first-of-its-kind Home Office Training for Yamaha dealers at the company’s headquarters in Buena Park, Calif. Two training seminars, each accommodating 40 salespeople from key dealers, took place over two weekends in late summer. “Receiving an overwhelmingly positive response from our valued dealer base, this new training model effectively sets the industry standard for product
training events,” says Bob Heller, National Sales Director, Yamaha Corporation of America. “Our goal was to invite dealers into the Yamaha ‘home,’ tour our facilities, meet the people behind the phone calls and emails, and experience first hand how we ‘live.’ Heller also noted the surprisingly strong turnout of salespeople aged 35 or younger, a growing demographic for the company’s dealer base. Each training session began with a welcome dinner and reception followed by a presentation on the history of Yamaha. Attendees were then given a free iPad, preloaded with a vast library of content including brochures, manuals, PDF training documents, access to all Keynote presentations, hand-out materials, and website information. As new information comes out, the salespeople can sync-their iPads with the server, and instantly have the latest and greatest in terms of product information, images, videos, specifications and applications, such as the recently released NoteStar. www.yamaha.com Denis Wick Adds Ponzo to Endorsing Family Denis Wick recently announced Dr. Mark
Ponzo, trumpet professor at Northern Illinois University, as the newest addition to the Denis Wick Performing Artist family. Ponzo has an extensive background including membership with the Rochester Philharmonic, Mexico City Philharmonic, and the Syracuse Symphony. He has also been a featured soloist with The Music of the Baroque, Elgin Symphony, New Sousa Band, Southern Tier Symphony and many more. “I think it’s great to have an artist and teacher like Mark come on board with Denis Wick,” commented Mary Galime, Denis Wick Art-
ist Manager. “He is an amazing player and we are thrilled that he believes in our mouthpieces and mutes.” The Denis Wick Performing Artist group has added three new trumpet artists and a tuba artist this year alone. www.deniswick.com
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Seeking: Certified Band/Orchestra Repair Techs, Print Music Manager, Store Managers, Company-Wide Lesson Coordinator, and Sales Associates in the following departments: Guitars, Pro Audio, Drums and Percussion, and Band/Orchestra.
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• Band and Orchestra Rentals • New and Like New Educator-Approved Brand Name Instruments • Personalized Rent-To-Own Program • No Franchise Fee or Inventory Investment • No Shipping Costs • High Commissions Paid the 1st of Every Month • Exceptional Service
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Ken Stanton Music Attn: Scott Cameron, General Manager 119 Cobb Parkway North, Suite A Marietta, GA 30062 firstname.lastname@example.org
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New! Selling warm Florida Retail Music Store 9 teaching studios, 25 year rep, great lines, $500k inventory, buy/partner $200,000+-, turnkey! Bruce 321-725-3047
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PIANO DEALERS & MANUFACTURERS We Have Your Customers!
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CERTIFIED PRE-OWNED PIANOS
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Ad Index COMPANY NAME
A Al Cass Allparts Amati’s Fine Instruments American Way Marketing LLC Anthem Music Group Anthem Music Group
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89 87 53 47 31 33
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36 37 81
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9 42 16
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34 88 30 70 14
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55 32 83
B J.J. Babbitt Co. Inc. Bechstein America LLC Behringer USA, Inc.
C/D Casio America, Inc Celestion Dream Cymbals And Gongs
F/G Floyd Rose Marketing Gable Piano Service Galaxy Audio Gator Cases George L’s
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K Kala Brand Music Co. KMC Music, Inc Kyser Musical Products Inc.
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71 13 14
S Saga Musical Instruments Saga Musical Instruments Saga Musical Instruments Samson Technologies Corp. School of Rock LLC SHS International Shubb Capos SKB Corp. Sound Ideas Music LLC String Swing Mfg. Inc.
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40 49 25 3 26-27 38 85 11 41 5
www.tkl.com www.powellflutes.com www.vicfirth.com www.visualsound.net
1 cov 2 43 cov 4
T/V TKL Products Corp. Verne Q. Powell Flutes, Inc. Vic Firth Company Visual Sound
W/Y W.D. Music Products Inc. Wittner GmbH & Co. KG Yamaha Corp. of America
www.wdmusic.com www.wdbiz.com www.wittner-gmbh.de www.yamaha.com
304 17 15
Networking the Jazz Arts Community â€Ś
â€Ś Local to Global! ATTEND OUR
4TH ANNUAL JAN 2â€“5, 2013 CONFERENCE ATLANTA, GA Evening Concert Artist Lineup Wednesday 1/2 $MBSL"UMBOUB6OJWFSTJUZ+B[[0SDIFTUSBt&NPSZ'BDVMUZ+B[[2VJOUFUtÍƒ 'SFEEJF$PMF2VBSUFUt3VGVT3FJET2VJFU1SJEF Thursday 1/3 #PPLFS58BTIJOHUPO)417"+B[[$PNCP*t$ISJTUJBO)PXFT(SPVQt #SJB4LPOCFSH&OTFNCMFt,SJT#FSH5IF.FUSPQMFYJUZ#JH#BOEXJUI $ISJT7BEBMB 8BZOF#FSHFSPO $MBZ+FOLJOT Friday 1/4 $FOUSBM8BTIJOHUPO6OJWFSTJUZ7+&tÍƒ5IF6OJWFSTJUZPG.BOJUPCB/PSUIFSO "MUFSOBUJWF+B[['BDVMUZ&OTFNCMFtÍƒ#FSLMFF(MPCBM+B[[*OTUJUVUFXJUI +PIO1BUJUVDDJtÍƒ"SNZ#MVFTXJUI8ZDMJĂ˛F(PSEPO Saturday 1/5 ,PCJF8BULJOT(SPVQXJUI#PCCZ#SPPNtÍƒ6/5+B[[4JOHFSTtÍƒ,BSBDIBDIB XJUI.BFTUSP'SFEEZi)VFWJUPw-PWBUPOt6OJWFSTJUZPG.JBNJ'SPTU $PODFSU+B[[#BOEXJUI%BWF-JFCNBO
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