Page 1

w w w. m m r m a g a z i n e . c o m

March 2009

NAMM Show 2009Review Q Summary Q Product Introductions Q Best & Worst Q Awards

Piano Retailers – Facing ’09 with Cautious Optimism


Meet the crew with the heat. Each SansAmp™ Character Series pedal is a time capsule of distinctive amplifier styles taken from decades of tone born in the UK and the USA. You can explore these iconic tones then tweak them your way with the amp-like knobs and the unique Character control, which delivers tones from vintage to red hot mod. Every pedal features true SansAmp speaker cab emulation specifically voiced for each amp type, delivering a complete stage and recording solution. Up your game with the high-rolling SansAmp Character Series and play with fat stacks of tone.


That distinctive diamond grille tone is yours for the tweaking. From the jangle of mop-top pop to the top-boosted growl of mod rock, this amp style has a voice that shook generations. Push it to the limit and it will, it will, rock you.





The legendary crunch of British steel and Greenbackstyle speakers delivers searing blues to UK anarchy from this Anglo-voiced pedal. Tough Bluesbreaker overdrive, the throaty roar of a Plexi or the ballsy smack-down of a ‘70s Metalface, it all adds up to a well tasty spot o’ bovver, Brit-style.

Come for the chiming, woody cleans, the gnarly ‘wicker-grille’ overdrive and the supernatural silky sustain of the lead tones. Stay for the devastating chunk of a high gain rectifier. With the velveteen punch of a US-style speaker emulation, you have everything you need to create your own California dream tone.

This Blonde dishes out pure American tone to the stratosphere. Sparkly, spanky cleans that overdrive with a satisfying low-end rumble become the punchy bark of hard-pushed tweed, maxing out in a fat sizzle of lead boosted tone. This Blonde is one wild ride through history.

The tower of power pumping through a stack of 10-inchers is the legendary bass tone for players who enjoy being heard. Bask in thick, articulated tones, from chunky funk with the ubiquitous flip top, to the higher gain growl of indie rock Clean focused thump to dirty earthquaking rump, you dial it in.

Designed and Manufactured in the U.S.A. -

Contents Cover design by Laurie Chesna.


MARCH 2009 VOL.168 NO. 3

Features THE PIANO MARKET 25 Dealers: Retailers Face 2009 with Cautious Optimism In a challenging economy, vendors look to increased institutional and used sales, as well as innovative marketing strategies to keep their businesses in the black.

42 46

New Keyboard Products Lambert’s Music Judy and Phil Lambert find success in Anderson, Indiana selling Lowrey organs to an enthusiastic local market.


2009 NAMM SHOW 50 Over 1,500 Exhibitors Showcase New Product in Anaheim Despite turbulent economic times, the Winter NAMM show provided reasons to have a positive outlook in ’09 – attendance and exhibitor numbers were fairly steady and “Much better than we expected!” was the repeated refrain from all MMR spoke with.

60 62

46th Kawai Presidential Awards Dealers’ Choice Awards Winners of the 2008 Dealers’ Choice Awards were presented with their trophies at the NAMM show.


Best & Worst Warm weather, full-body unitards, baked brie, incompetent cashiers – MMR spotlights what caught our attention at this winter’s industry get-together in Anaheim.


Meet the Press We summarize a number of the significant press conferences, product introductions, and tours that took place at the NAMM show.


78 iMSO – Expands to 350 Dealerships 104 NAMM Notables: New Gear Introductions 112 Rock House Method MMR checks in with Joe Palombo and John McCarthy, founders of Rock House, producers of innovative instructional guitar method DVDs and related Web content.

114 Anniversary: Ernie Ball’s 25th


4 Editorial 6 Upfront 18 People

20 Letters 24 Stats 118 Supplier Scene

121 Classifieds 128 Advertisers’ Index

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 ©2009 by Symphony Publishing, LLC, all rights reserved. Printed in USA.


MARCH 2009

Kliepflinfic[`ekfX nfic[$ZcXjji\Zfi[`e^jkl[`f% JFG?@JK@:8K@FED8;<J@DGC<% K_\?+e`jflidfjkjfg_`jk`ZXk\[i\Zfi[\i%8e[n`k_ `kjj`dgc`Ô\[lj\i`ek\i]XZ\#`kËje\m\iY\\e\Xj`\ikf dXb\`eZi\[`Yc\i\Zfi[`e^j% :ljkfd$[\j`^e\[#O&Pjk\i\fZfe[\ej\id`Zji\Zfi[Xk \`k_\i0'—fi()'—%8e[flie\n#[`^`kXccpZfekifcc\[d`Z gi\Xdgi\e[\ijXl[`fjfgi\Z`j\#pflËccjfle[c`b\pfl i\Zfi[\[`eXnfic[$ZcXjjjkl[`f

N?P+:?8EE<CJ8I<9<KK<IK?8E)% Gifg\id`b`e^`j\jj\ek`XckfdXb`e^X^i\Xki\Zfi[`e^% K_\?+e`jk_\fecp_Xe[_\c[k_XkZXei\Zfi[fe]fli Z_Xee\cjj`dlckXe\fljcplj`e^`kjfeYfXi[d`Zjn`k_ pfli\ok\ieXcd`Zj%K_\elj\`kjYl`ck$`ed`o\i]fi g\i]\ZkcpYXcXeZ\[i\Zfi[`e^jk_XkXi\i`Z_\ik_Xe\m\i%

@KËJ89FLKK?<DLJ@:% K_\?+e`jXcjfXlj\i$]i`\e[cp+$kiXZbjkl[`f%Gcl^`e X^l`kXifiYXjjXe[lj\`kjXdgdf[\cjkf`ejg`i\pfli Zi\Xk`m`kp%FeYfXi[jkl[`f\]]\Zkj#kle\iXe[g_iXj\ kiX`e\idXb\k_\?+em\ipdlj`Z`Xe]i`\e[cp%<m\elj\`k XjXLJ9`ek\i]XZ\kfi\Zfi[[`i\ZkcpkfpfliZfdglk\i%

9I8@EJN@K?89F;P#KFF% I\Zfi[_`^_$i\jfclk`feXl[`fXk)+Y`k&0-b?qfeJ;?: d\[`Xf]lgkf*)>9%K`d\jkXdgXe[kiXZbdXib\i ]leZk`fej^`m\pfl^i\Xk\iZfekifc%PflZXe\m\e\[`k pflii\Zfi[`e^jfek_\Õp% K_\?+e]\\cjifYljkXe[`kjilYY\i`q\[Z_Xjj`ji\[lZ\j _Xe[c`e^ef`j\%8cXi^\C:;jZi\\eXe[feYfXi[jg\Xb\i kXb\pfli\og\i`\eZ\kfk_\e\okc\m\c%

=LCCPCF8;<;% <m\ipk_`e^pfle\\[`j`eZcl[\[1X(>9J;ZXi[# n`e[jZi\\e#d`ZZc`gX[Xgk\i#8:X[Xgk\i#LJ9ZXYc\# gifk\Zk`m\ZXj\Xe[:lYXj\C<i\Zfi[`e^jf]knXi\% N`k_k_\e\n?+e]ifdQffd#`kËje\m\iY\\e\Xj`\ikf dXb\nfic[$ZcXjji\Zfi[`e^j¿efdXkk\in_\i\pflXi\ `ek_\nfic[%

Qffd?+e?Xe[pI\Zfi[\i Nfic[$ZcXjji\Zfi[`e^j]fi\m\ipfe\% ŸQffd)''0sqffd_+e%Zfdsqffd]o%Zfd



Volume 168, Number 3, March 2009 PUBLISHER Sidney L. Davis

It’s Called Selling The Package

EDITOR Christian Wissmuller ASSOCIATE EDITOR Eliahu Sussman


ega-groups Guns N’ Roses and AC/DC both launched albums this past holiday season, each with a similar game plan, exclusive distribution via a big box outlet. Guns N’ Roses gave exclusive rights in the U.S. to Best Buy and AC/DC’s Black Ice followed suit with Wal-Mart Stores. As reported in the Wall Street Journal, Best Buy guaranteed the purchase of 1.3 million units and as of mid-February sold a disappointing 537,000 units. Quoting the Journal, “The album’s poor showing contrasts with the success of AC/DC’s “Black Ice”…It has sold about 1.6 million copies in the U.S.” While there were several factors contributing to the sale (or lack thereof) of the two albums, i.e. Axl Rose’s lack of personal support for the album in comparison to AC/ DC’s visbility to both the public and the press the Journal article also pointed to the fact “Best Buy backed Chinese Democracy with a marketing campaign centered solely on the album. Wal-Mart saw Black Ice as a way to sell more than music. The company hawked AC/DC T-shirts and an exclusive AC/DC version of MTV Networks’ Rock Band videogame.” There is a lesson to be learned here for the body retail, music products included and in simple terms its called selling the package. This is hardly a new concept, entry level guitar packages during the holiday seasons of a few years back (before the big boxes entered the fray) were both a traffic and profit builder. Dare I point out that many brick and mortar dealers (along with the internet retailers) used a package-of-products to counter minimum retail pricing. In truth, the multiple sale is as old as the farmer’s market. When the National Association for Business Economics depicts the worst business conditions in the US since the organization’s formation in 1982 and points to a loss of 2.6 million jobs in 2008 with an equally gloomy forecast ahead, maximizing the customer base is the order of the day. Every buyer who leaves the dealership with a single product in hand, is a lost opportunity. Whether it’s a piano lamp, practice amp, valve oil or set of reeds… now more than ever maximizing the sale is the name of the game, Coincidentally, as the issue closed we received an e-mail from a Canadian dealer,, with the headline “New $150 + Stimulus Package” offering $150 in accessories with the purchase of a guitar over $499. And on a final note we mourn the recent passing of Chris Ross, well-known and universally liked, Chris was a sales rep from the old school, who believed a territory was to be covered. He traveled throughout the Northeast with his sales team, a strong advocate for the products he represented, an advisor and friend to his retail accounts and a valued member of NAMM. As business associate Rick Nelson pointed out, “He left us unexpectedly and way too soon.”

ASSOCIATE EDITOR Denyce Neilson ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER Rick Kessel ADVERTISING SALES Iris Fox CLASSIFIED AD SALES Maureen Johan PRODUCTION MANAGER Laurie Guptill GRAPHIC DESIGNERS Andrew P. Ross Laurie Chesna CIRCULATION MANAGER Melanie A. Prescott ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT Popi Galileos WEBMASTER Sanford Kearns SYMPHONY PUBLISHING, LLC Xen Zapis • Chairman Lee Zapis • President Rich Bongorno • Chief Financial Officer Corporate Headquarters 26202 Detroit Road, Suite 300, Westlake, Ohio 44145 440-871-1300 PUBLISHING, SALES & EDITORIAL OFFICE: 21 Highland Circle, Suite 1, Needham, MA 02494 (781) 453-9310 Fax: (781) 453-9389



MARCH 2009

Upfront Loud Withdraws from NASDAQ, Acquires New CM Partners Loud Technologies Inc. has said that it will voluntarily withdraw its shares from listing on the NASDAQ stock exchange. Officials at the Woodinville music products company (NASDAQ: LTEC) cited a number of reasons for the move, including high costs for continued stock exchange listing, management time to maintain listing, limited trading in the company’s shares, the chance that Loud won’t meet minimum exchange requirements in the future, and the lack of analysts who cover the company’s stock.

Loud is currently not complying with one NASDAQ requirement because it is late fi ling a 10-Q report with the Securities and Exchange Commission. (Source: Puget Sound Business Journal (Seattle)) The company also recently announced two new contract manufacturing (“CM”) partners and the reallocation of production for certain EAW and Mackie products across its worldwide supply chain to replace capacity lost when the prior CM for those products

Disney Star Guitarist: Guitar Hero With Real Guitars Disney Star Guitarist, made with help from Washburn Guitars, uses the same style of “falling notes” that Guitar Hero and Rock Band employ, but instead of a plastic peripheral, Star Guitarist makes use of a real guitar. The special strings

are included with the $200 game, and can be strung onto any standard guitar. Disney Star Guitarist, along with similar versions for keyboards and vocals, will be released for both PC and Mac this summer. (Source: Wired)

discontinued operations in December, 2008. Meanwhile, supplies of all other EAW and Mackie products, as well as Alvarez, Ampeg, Crate and Martin branded products continue uninterrupted, as they are manufactured at other Loud CM partners.

Harman to Close NY Facility Harman International Industries, Inc. has announced that it will be closing its consumer audio facility in Woodbury, N.Y. by the end of this June, affecting roughly 130 employees. Harman has stated that it will be consolidating most functions based in the Woodbury offices to its facility in Northridge, Calif. A limited number of employees will be offered relocation. (Source: Reuters)

Shure Raids in China Uncover 8,500 Counterfeit Earphones An investigation initiated by Shure in Futian District, Shenzhen, in Mainland China led to a recent raid by the Shenzhen Administration for Industry and Commerce (AIC) on a wholesale shop, Sanze Electronics, in the Zhongdian Electronics and Technology Building on Huaqiang Road, and another at an associated warehouse. Goods seized during the enforcement action included 8,500 pairs of counterfeit earphones bearing the Shure name and other well-known trademarks. 6 MMR

Penalties imposed by the Shenzhen AIC against the wholesale outlet include the confiscation of all earphones, the requirement that the outlet cease its infringement activities immediately, and the imposition of a fine of 30,000 RMB. Penalties against the warehouse will be determined in February. In addition to its vigorous anti-counterfeiting efforts in China, Shure also has mounted successful operations to uncover and halt intellectual property violations in other parts of Asia, Europe, South America, the Middle East, Africa, and the United States. MARCH 2009

Upfront Salinas’ Gadsby’s Music Has Closed The Californian reports that after 73 years, Gadsby’s Music store in Salinas has closed. “It’s the economy and for personal health reasons,” says Larry Tharp, owner. “Gadsby’s has done so much for the community for so many years that, when I hear this news, I see a part of

Salinas vanishing,” reflects D.L. Johnson, music director of North Monterey County High School and frequent contributor to MMR’s sister publication, School Band & Orchestra. The article in The Californian notes that even the local competition regrets

that Gadsby’s closed. For 15 years, Wise Music has operated mere feet away, but because the two stores often offered different items and brand names, their combined drawing power helped both, according to Peter Wise, owner. (Source: The Californian)

MENC Encourages Integration of Wii into Music Curriculum In what may well be the first time that a videogame has been incorporated into a widespread music lesson plan proposal, it was stated in a press release sent on January 13th, that MENC: The National Association for Music Education will help teachers in 51 cities across the nation to integrate


Wii Music into their curricula, making use of the game’s 60-plus instruments and array of tutorial exercises in rhythm, tempo and song structure. To help inspire students and promote an active appreciation for music,

Nintendo has been working with teachers to incorporate Wii consoles and Wii Music software into their lesson plans to offer teachers a unique tool for creativity and improvisation.

MARCH 2009


)"3.0/*$" SOLUTIONS! )0)/&3)"3.0/*$"4 Hal Leonard is proud to now distribute Hohner harmonicas. Available in new shrink-wrapped and hang-tabbed packaging, designed speciďŹ cally for music stores â&#x20AC;&#x201D; great for slat-wall!

Contact your Hal Leonard sales rep for information on our limited time special oďŹ&#x20AC;er on prepacks, accessories and display options for Hohner harmonicas.

)"3.0/*$" 1-":"-0/(4&3*&4 The Harmonica Play-Along Series will help you play your favorite songs quickly and easily. Just follow the notation, listen to the CD to hear how the harmonica should sound, and then play along using the separate backing tracks. The melody and lyrics are also included in the book in case you want to sing, or to simply help you follow along. The audio CD is playable on any CD player, and also enhanced so PC and Mac users can adjust the recording to any tempo without changing pitch!


Contact your Hal Leonard sales rep to place your order today!

1-800-554-0626 FAX 414-774-3259 E-MAIL INTERNET CALL

Upfront Clarence “Leo” Fender Received Technical Grammy

Morrison Leaves Music for All

Fender Musical Instruments Corp. (FMIC) announced that the Recording Academy® honored Clarence “Leo” Fender with a Technical Grammy® Award during a special invitation-only ceremony during Grammy Week on Sat., Feb. 7, 2009. In a recent release, the Recording Academy noted that the Technical Grammy Award recipients are determined by vote of the Recording Academy’s Producers & Engineers Wing Advisory Council and Chapter Committees as well as the Recording Academy’s Trustees. The award is presented to individuals and

It was announced on January 14th that Robert Morrison, executive vice president and founder of the Music For All Foundation, has resigned his management position within the organization. Morrison is a longtime advocate of music education and, since founding the Music for All Foundation in 2003, his efforts have directly led to significant advancements in public awareness and access to music and arts education programs throughout the nation. In September of 2006, the Music for All Foundation merged with Bands of America, creating what is now Music for All, Inc. Since the merger, Morrison served on the Board of Directors and as an officer of the organization. His departure comes five years after the public announcement of the creation of Music for All Foundation. Mr. Gayl Doster, Music for All’s Board Chair, comments, “We thank Mr. Morrison for his many efforts on behalf of the organization and we wish him well in his future endeavors.”

companies who have made contributions of outstanding technical significance to the recording field.

MIAC’s Kowalenko to Step Down The Board of Directors of the Music Industries Association of Canada (MIAC) has announced that Al Kowalenko will be stepping down from his position as executive director, effective August 31, 2009, after 30 years of continuous service. Al first began work with MIAC in 1979 and has seen the organization

grow from a membership of 50 companies to today’s roster of more than 330 manufacturers, distributors, and retailers. The MIAC Board also announced that it would be suitably recognizing Al’s achievements at the Association’s national Trade Show, August 23-24.

J.W. Pepper’s New Distribution Centers J.W. Pepper & Son, Inc. is rapidly approaching the opening of two new distribution centers to service order fulfillment needs for their retail and print operations. Pepper’s strong commitment to customer service and speed of order fulfillment are the core of its strength in the sheet music industry. Historically, the company has distributed product through 15 locations. The two new distribution centers will allow order fulfillment operations to be focused in the two new facilities, allowing remaining locations to focus on regional marketing opportunities. The new facilities will be located in Atlanta and Salt Lake City, cities in which 10 MMR

Pepper currently has a retail presence. The building project is being overseen by Bret Rhoades, vice president of Operations. The Atlanta Distribution Center, which will open in May 2009, will be managed by Kyle Badgero, currently manager of the Grand Rapids location, assisted by be Ron Cunningham. The Salt Lake City Distribution Center, which is slated to open in March of 2009, will be managed by Rich Delong, currently manager of Pepper’s Detroit location, assisted by Ed Chillington, currently of the Pepper location in Los Angeles. Regional Marketing Centers will remain an active part of Pepper’s business,

as regional marketing is an important component of its overall marketing plan. The regional marketing centers will be updated to enhance the in-store experience for local customers and will house the regional marketing staff. All existing Pepper locations will continue to function in this marketing capacity, with the exception of the Detroit branch. Functions of the Detroit location will be absorbed by the Grand Rapids location. Address questions to: Kathy Fernandes, vice president of Marketing, (610)648-0500, ext. 2236; E-mail: MARCH 2009

Upfront Wanamaker, Geer, & cFour Partners Launch Equity Program for MI Vendors Longtime music industry veteran Jay Wanamaker has teamed up with John Geer, a seasoned private equity acquisition and merger professional, and cFour Partners ( to provide equity financing resources to MI vendors. Together, Wanamaker and Geer seek to serve the MI vendor community’s financing needs. Wanamaker’s extensive industry knowledge and unique understanding of its various market segments, combined with Geer’s more than 20

years of experience in the private equity market sector, will provide a substantial resource to the MI vendor community. Specifically, they will provide equity financing for a variety of vendor needs, including buyouts, growth fi nancings and recapitalizations. In a recapitalization, some shareholders can sell stock, while others retain their ownership and continue to manage the business. The “recap” can also be used to get some chips off the table for owners who continue to

Jay Wanamaker and John Geer.

run their businesses. “The recap is a very flexible structure and situation which can be crafted to meet the objectives of individual owners of a business,” according to Geer. For additional information please contact: Jay Wanamaker at (818) 292-5032 or E-mail:

S.N. Shure Theater Opens Shure Incorporated celebrated the opening of the new S.N. Shure Theater at the Company’s Corporate Headquarters in

Niles, Ill. Shure chairman, Rose L. Shure, and president and CEO, Sandy LaMantia, participated in the ribbon cutting ceremony and then welcomed Shure Associates and special guests into the new venue. “We’ve wanted to build out this space ever since we moved into our new headquarters five years ago,” says LaMantia. “Following the completion of the Shure Technology Annex in 2004 and the Performance and Listening Center [PLC] in 2005,

we were finally able to turn our attention to this project, which turned out even better than we imagined. It’s a beautiful venue that will serve as a lasting tribute to our founder, S.N. Shure, for many years to come.” Designed by Krueck + Sexton Architects, construction began in March 2008 on the 4,000 square-foot, 143-seat theater, which was designed as a state-of-the art venue for audio and video presentations, product demonstrations, and live music performances.

Fender Partners with Little Kids Rock Fender Musical Instruments Corporation announced a long-term strategic partnership with Little Kids Rock, one of the nation’s leading nonprofit providers of free lessons and instruments. The goal of the partnership is to transform children’s lives by restoring and revitalizing music programs in public schools across the United States. Fender is assuming a leadership role in Little Kids Rock’s nationwide effort to keep music in our schools. The Little Kids Rock program trains and equips schoolteachers across the country to run contemporary band pro12 MMR

grams that feature guitar, bass, drums, keyboards and vocals. Participating schoolteachers receive free training, curriculum and instruments. The organization now serves tens of thousands of students in 18 cities, with new cities being added each year. Little Kids Rock students learn how to play popular music styles including rock, reggae, metal, hip hop and others; they also

learn how to compose their own music and how to improvise. “Little Kids Rock is the most exciting thing to happen for music education in decades,” said Bob Morris, Fender’s director of music education. “They are putting music back in the schools where it belongs, and teaching kids how to play and write the music they love. What could be better than that?” MARCH 2009

THEY KNOW WHAT THEY WANT... So why stock anything else? year? From New Beat HiHats to K Custom Hybrids, Zildjian is the proven gold standard of cymbals. No other cymbal line truly defines your store or excites your customers as much. You know that your Zildjian stock will quickly turn time and time again. And for 2009, we have put together an aggressive schedule of promotions that you will not want to miss. Now more than ever, Zildjian is the only serious choice .

Š2009 Avedis Zildjian Company

What other cymbal brand gets this sort of following year after

Upfront D’Addario Launches New Web Sites D’Addario & Co. has announced the launch of eight all-new Web sites in the first quarter of 2009 for all of D’Addario’s brands, including D’Addario Fretted, D’Addario Bowed, Planet Waves CI and CE, Evans Drumheads, HQ Percussion, Rico Reeds, and PureSound Percussion. With a new look and design, all sites feature expanded usability and content including product news and information, artist and teaching videos, promotions and sweepstakes, articles, community forums and networking, and additional artist features. The sites also incorporate built-in purchasing options fulfi lled by local retailers, plus international catalogs and consumer buying options.

To experience the all-new D’Addario brand Web sites, please visit the following: D’Addario Fretted: • D’Addario Bowed: • Planet Waves CI: • Planet Waves CE: • Evans Drumheads: • HQ Percussion: • Rico Reeds: • PureSound Percussion: •

DJ Hero On the Way Gaming blog Kotaku (via Eurogamer) definitively confirmed what had long been rumored, DJ Hero is coming “later this year,” complete with a turntable for “competitively” spinning and mixing tunes. Activision CEO Bobby Kotick let the news slip during a recent appearance on CNBC, according to Kotaku. Details are still scarce: Kotick is quoted saying that the DJ Hero turntable will, indeed, let you “play competitively and

spin discs and mix songs,” but that’s about it for now. The first DJ Hero rumors began swirling almost a year ago, after Guitar Hero publisher Activision fi led a trademark for the game back in February 2008. The buzz flared up again in September, after anonymous sources confi rmed the game (reportedly in development for more than two years) to both Kotaku and MTV Multiplayer. (Source:

Textron Exits Finance Business Just prior to the Winter NAMM show, Textron Financial announced that it would no longer be financing the piano market, which ultimately left some suppliers and dealers scrambling for new credit sources. A recent article in the Wall Street Journal reported the company had eliminated 6,200 jobs – 14 percent of its workforce – and shut down most of its commercial-finance business. Textron said it would preserve only the part of its finance unit that lends customers money to buy Textron products.

M. Steinert Closes Worcester Store M. Steinert & Sons, one of Steinway’s oldest dealerships has closed its Worcester, Mass. location. The company had a store in the Worcester area since 1872. Steinert headquarters in Boston and a satellite unit in Natick, Mass. will remain open. It was indicated that the company would be 14 MMR

seeking another location as the economy improves. Steinert traces its history to 1860 when Morris Steinert opened a store in Athens, Ga. The Civil War caused Steinert to move to Connecticut and eventually operate more than 40 dealerships throughout the

New England area. The Steinert family ownership continued until 1934 until it was acquired by long time employee Jerome Murphy in 1934. Today, brothers Paul and Jerome represent the third generation of the Murphy family to operate the business. MARCH 2009

Upfront Trade Regrets:

Christopher Ross

Bob Seidman Bob Seidman, noted MI retailer and wholesaler, passed away on January 7th, 2009 at the age of 78. His career spanned five decades and he was a pioneer in commerce relations between the United States and Japan in the years following World War II.

In 2007 Bob was interviewed for the NAMM Oral History collection, a clip of which is currently posted on the NAMM Web site in honor of Bob and his long career in music in-memoriam (scroll to the bottom of this page to view his clip).

Don Randall Don Randall, who named many of the most famous guitars in the Fender line, has passed away. Don Randall met Leo Fender before World War II when both men worked in radio repair. After the war they decided to form a business together that would allow Leo to focus on developing a line of guitars. The Fender Guitar Company began work on a series of electric guitars and Don named all of the prod-

ucts Leo designed. First he named the Broadcaster, then the Telecaster and by the time rock was rolling into popularity Don named the next line of guitars the Stratocaster. Don went on to have an equally important role in the design of the solid-state amplifier when he opened Randall Corp. in 1970. The company introduced several innovative products before Don sold the business in the late 1990s.

Christopher Ross, founder and president of Chris Ross & Associates, passed away on February 9. Mr. Ross attended Berklee School of Music, and Hofstra University and later managed Bayshore Long Island music store where he taught many students. His later business venture, Chris Ross & Associates, was a prominent manufacturers representative firm specializing in audio/visual equipment, musical instruments and contracting to the broadcast markets. He was a member of NAMM’s Advisory Board. A Memorial Service will be held in the spring. In lieu of flowers, those wishing to remember Chris may do so through contributions to the Parkinsons Foundation, Don’s NAMM Oral History interview was completed on February 10, 2006. Mr. Randall passed away on December 23, 2008. For a short video clip taken from his NAMM Oral History interview, visit:

Manuel Rodríguez II Manuel Rodríguez II, one of the finest luthiers of the Madrid school, died on December 25 in Madrid. In his early years, Manuel worked with his father, a maker of flamenco and classical guitars, and also learned

from the likes of Jose Ramírez III, Santos Hernández, Modesto Borreguero, and Marcelo Barbero. During his lifetime, Rodríguez strived for a strong, balanced sound from his instruments, while never neglecting the need of having instruments that are also strikingly beautiful in their appearance.

Today, the guitars manufactured by Rodríguez & Sons can be found in almost every European country, as well as in the US, Japan and many other countries. His guitars have been tested, used and praised by Andres Segovia, Regino Sáinz de la Maza, Angel Romero and Theodore Norman, among many others.

pipe organ building. The goal was always to make organs better, more affordable, and consequently more available for people to enjoy. During his long and prolific career, he was awarded over 70 patents. Peterson Electro-Musical Products, Inc. still remains a family

owned and operated business to this day with Scott R. Peterson, Dick’s son, as company president. Memorial donations in Mr. Peterson’s name may be made to the American Guild of Organists “New Organist Fund”, 475 Riverside Drive, Suite 1260, New York, NY 10115;

Richard H. Peterson After a fourteen-year-long bout with a debilitating illness, Richard H. (Dick) Peterson, founder of Peterson Electro-Musical Products, Inc., passed away peacefully at his home at age 83 on January 29, 2009. Besides spending time with Carol, his devoted wife of 53 years, and with his other family members, Dick’s greatest passion was applying modern technology to 16 MMR

MARCH 2009

For over 55 years Keystone has been supplying Battery Clips and Contacts to all industries, including the music industry. We pride ourselves in designing and manufacturing quality products that you can depend on. Some applications include: Guitars, Basses, Acoustic Pickups, Microphones, Amplifiers and Effects Pedals. Play with the best. Get the Keystone connection.

RoHS Compliant ~ ISO 9001 Certified

(718) 956-8900 • (800) 221-5510 • FAX (718) 956-9040 e-mail: • Website:


Battery Clips & Contacts

Call or Click for Catalog M55 Available from our global distributor network

People The Canadian Professional Disc Jockey Association Inc., (CPDJA), has announced that Michael Coombs has been appointed president of the CPDJA and Dina Deveau has been appointed vice president in addition to retaining her current management responsibilities. The outgoing president Dennis Hampson will continue with the association in an executive director role involved with the day-to-day operations of the association. Group One Ltd. has appointed Matt Larson as its National Sales manager for Professional Audio Products. In his new position, Larson will oversee the U.S. sales efforts of Group One’s Larson roster of audio products, which include DiGiCo, MC2, and XTA. Larson is a pro audio veteran, whose previous experience includes Business & Sales Manager for the prestigious Midas and Klark Teknik lines. FDW-Worldwide, North American distributors of Violet-Design, Sontronics, Nevaton microphones and worldwide distributors of Cable Up and Vu cables and accessories, announced the Goodwin appointment of Buzz Goodwin to the newly created position of president of FDW-Worldwide. In this position, Goodwin will be responsible for overseeing day-to-day operations of the business as well as managing worldwide sales and marketing strategies, artist relations and product development for all FDW-Worldwide brands. Bob Lee of QSC Audio Products has been elected to serve as AES’s secretary in 2008. He officially took charge of the post shortly after the 125th AES Convention held in San Francisco. 18 MMR

Lee fulfi lled a technical marketing role at QSC prior to joining the Tech Services Group. In professional life previous to his commitments in Costa Mesa, he was a tech support specialist at Crest Audio, and served a stint at Sennheiser as an applications engineer specializing in wireless microphones. Having just completed two years as AES VP for the Western US and Canada, during his tenure in this capacity he helped launch the society’s new professional section in the Sacramento Valley, and revitalized student sections in locations including Long Beach City College. The Office of AES Secretary is part of the Executive Committee, and is one of the highest in the organization. QSC VP of Global Sales Greg McLagan has also announced that industry veteran Perry Celia has been named as the company’s director of US Sales-Western Region. Celia comes to the post following a career path marked by stops at JBL, where he served as director of Eastern Sales; independent rep firm Sound Marketing West, where he was a VP and principal; and Alesis Corporation, where he also wore the title of director of Eastern Sales.

Shure Incorporated announced that Mark has Humrichouser been promoted to general manager of its U.S. Business Unit. In this role, he will have dayto-day responsibility for the management of Humrichouser the sales, marketing, customer service, and applications engineering functions for the U.S. In addition to Humrichouser’s promotion, Jim Schanz has been promoted to director of U.S. Field Sales and Abby Kaplan has been promoted to senior manager of National Accounts. Schanz will be responsible for managing all of Shure’s U.S territory sales activities. Kaplan will oversee all activities related to the Company’s designated national accounts, including national music instru-

ment retail chains, consumer electronics big box retail chains, and specialty channel dealers.

Guitar Center recently announced the appointment of Phil Rich to the position of vice president of Merchandise for Guitars and Amplifiers. The announcement was made by John Bagan, executive VP of Merchandise. In his new position, Rich will be responsible for overseeing the purchasing and merchandising of all stringed instruments and amplifiers. Harman International Industries, Incorporated (NYSE: HAR) has announced that David Slump will take the dual position of president, Consumer Audio Division and vice president Corporate Development, effective immediately. He succeeds Mr. Richard Sorota who has decided to seek an opportunity outside the company. The Company also named Mr. Sachin Lawande as Chief Technology Officer, effective immediately. He succeeds Mr. Helmut Schinagel.

Breaking News

Find it in the Hot News section of MMR’s Web site, MARCH 2009


Count Basie Ray Charles Duke Ellington Ella Fitzgerald Herbie Hancock Lionel Hampton Luciano Pavarotti

Petrof Pianos. Played by the worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s most famous musicians. 5400 Lawrenceville Hwy, Suite B1 770.564.4964

Lilburn, GA 30047

Letters Congratulations on creating the “Don Johnson Service Award” and for its inaugural presentation to Dave Teeple. What a perfect combination! Don was such a strong advocate for music education and Dave Teeple epitomizes that in everything he does. I just read your February issue and tremendously enjoyed your story about Dave and Barb Teeple – great people and great ambassadors for our industry. Well done! Warmest regards, Dennis Houlihan Roland I just received the February 2009 issue of MMR, and I was proud to see Dave Steeple’s picture on the cover. Dave is most deserving of the “Don Johnson Music Industry Service Award.” I have known Dave for almost 25 years and he is exactly as your magazine article tells his story. Dave is also an outstanding husband, father, and community servant. Dave is

A Message from the Johnson Family to David Teeple Dear Dave, Congratulations on receiving the Don John son Music Indu stry Serv ice Award. Our family was delighted to hear you were chosen for this welldeserved recognition based on your relentless devotion to the mus ic indu stry, and your commitment to bringing your love of music to a diverse group of people. Don shared these passions too, and we know he would be humbled that he was being honored with this award. We wish you continued success with Port Huron Music Center and future endeavors that will continue to inspire, promote and shape the future of music education.

Best Wishes, Charlene, Hilary and Rosamund Johnson

20 MMR

the type of person who, by being in your life, makes you a better person. Thank you for the article on Dave Teeple! Regards, Steve Wicks Korg USA Please note that within the article on Universal Percussion (February, pg. 23), Tom Shelley related that Tama “doesn’t have any other sub-distributors” other than Universal Percussion. Unfortunately that very significant pre-fix “sub” got lost in the tran-

scription sauce and the quote came out as Tama doesn’t “have any other distributors” which might cause some confusion. So I might just set the record straight: Tama has two distributors in the United States: Chesbro Music for authorized dealerships west of the Rockies, except California; and Hoshino USA, for authorized dealerships in California and east of the Rockies; and one sub-distributor (for Tama Hardware only) Universal Percussion. Paul Specht Hoshino USA

MMR’s new Musical Merchandise Professionals Group on LinkedIn is where M.I. professionals are interacting with their peers and discussing the issues of the day. Recently we asked folks for their impressions of the recent NAMM show – here are a few responses: Donovan Bankhead wrote: The show was very successful for Springfield Music, Inc. We operate a couple of full-line music stores in SW Missouri. I took six staff members, and we were booked solid from 8am-6pm every day. Between meeting with vendors and attending the Idea Sessions, we didn’t have time for lunch. I’m always disheartened by the number of dealers that spend all of their time looking at new gear, and not spending the time going to the Idea Sessions where they will REALLY learn how to improve their business. One thing most stores DON’T need is more product (sorry to my manufacturing friends who have replied to this topic)… Kimmy McCann wrote: NAMM was a huge success for Core One Creative. Our Bullet Cable and Core X2 Cables have a fan base around the world that we weren’t aware of and now we are. Dealers who were at the show were ready to do business. We signed a higher percentage of new dealers at this show than in the past… Frank Baxter wrote: As the owner of I look to the show for networking opportunities. This was our best show in years, many piano industry professionals (dealers, manufacturers, restorations shops, etc.) have finally realized the advantages of promoting to our audiences. We’ve worked hard (and continue to work hard) to build substantial qualified traffic… I did find that a lot of the people we chatted with were cautiously optimistic. Many of the manufacturers (piano) claimed to be having a “great show,” but I have to wonder how much of that was hype. Dealers, on the other hand were in general less enthusiastic, but still seemed to believe things would be ok… LinkedIn is an online network of more than 30 million experienced professionals from around the world, representing 150 industries. MMR created Musical Merchandise Professionals Group to help M.I. professionals advance their careers and business goals by facilitating the creation of vital, new business contacts. LinkedIn is free to join. Visit to create a profile that summarizes your professional accomplishments. Then simply search for “Musical Merchandise Professionals Group” and request to join. MARCH 2009

The New Pro-Series Gig Bags from Levyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s CPS20 for acoustic guitar.

Headstock pocket for strings, batteries, set list...

Retroreflective strip. CPS7 for electric guitar.

Main pocket with removable valuables sleeve.

Multi-layered tri-tone polyester shell. Weather resistant.

Ideal for laptops, sheet music, and books. CPS8 for electric bass guitar. Rubberized, skid-resistant band.

Lower bout pouch for mini-recorders and pedals. NORTH AMERICA TOLL FREE PHONE & FAX

1-800-565-0203 1-888-FAX-LEVY (329-5389)

Levyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Leathers Limited: 190 Disraeli Freeway, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada R3B 2Z4 Tel: (204) 957-5139 Fax: (204) 943-6655 email:

Neck stabilizer with hook-and-loop closure.

Neck cushion compartment with reinforced walls and zippered exterior access. Great for picks, capo, tuner....

Rubberized string and bridge shields. Fixed padded shoulder straps with stabilizer strap and quick-adjust ladder-lock buckles.

Shoulder strap hide-away sleeve.

One inch foam padding covered with tear-resistant polyester lining.

Waterproof polyester rain-cape with elasticized binding. Affixed to interior of pouch.

Rain-cape pouch.

High-density foam strap pin suspension shock absorbers.

Stats MI SalesTrak Snapshot: Share of Digtal Piano Dollar Sales by Type 100 80 60










40 20 0

QConsole QSlab

Source: MI SalesTrak® The numbers represent US retail sales in music stores, based upon SKU-level POS data from a panel of over 500 retail outlets. For further information contact:

Huge innovation in a new package. The new Vandoren Flow Pack packaging. Every reed we make is now wrapped in humidity balanced packaging resulting in reeds that are factory fresh. The most remarkable part of this innovation is you don’t have to do anything to benefit from it. No special storage, no little bags...nothing. Just put them in the store and watch your customers marvel at the consistency and quality you no extra cost. Now there’s a new point of purchase display availble! Contact your sales representative for details. It’s a huge innovation, but that’s what Vandoren is all huge innovation after another.

U.S. importer, 818 W. Evergreen Ave., Chicago, IL 60622 • 888-707-4455 • © 2007 Vandoren SAS •

24 MMR

MARCH 2009


With a Yamaha Silent Brass TM System, you can play your horn (or trumpet, flugelhorn, trombone, even tuba) without bothering others around you.The Silent BrassTM System allows you to play normally, unlike most mutes that require playing harder than normal just to hear yourself. Plus it comes with a cable so you can plug into an MP3 player and jam along with your favorite music.


1. Free Music A $1,000 complimentary music package is include with each system. 2. MusiConnect PianoDisc’s music download technology supports Standard MIDI files, and even converts MIDI instrumentation into digital audio for CD or MP3 playback. 3. AlwaysPlay This MusiConnect feature ensures that even the most obscure MIDI files will play the piano. If the MIDI file doesn’t have a piano part, AlwaysPlay assigns one automatically. 4. Educational Software Scott Houston has created made-for PianoDisc teaching lessons in our format; David Higginson’s Professional Chord System 72-lesson series; Piano Wizard. 5. PianoDisc Largest Music Library of Artist Series Recordings Grammy, Billboard Top Ten Artists and winners of major international piano competitions, including the Tchaikovsky, and Cliburn. Also yesterday’s favorites and today’s hottest hits! 6. PianoVideo-DVD-Blu-ray First to market video MIDI Sync technology, PianoVideo-HD performances in high-definition, Blu-ray and standard DVD. 7. Full Play—88-Notes PianoDisc faithfully reproduces the great masterpieces using all 88-notes. There are no keys that don’t play or “magic” pedals that fail to impress.

8. Multi-Media Player Systems The iQ DVD player supports playback from a number of popular media formats including CD, DVD, USB flash, SD/MMC flash cards, MP3, MP4 & Ogg Vorbis. 9. Intelligent Design, Flexibility PianoDisc’s iQ player system is the most flexible product yet. User friendly, seamless integration and future-proof technology ensure your PianoDisc iQ will provide a lifetime of enjoyment. 10. Open Architecture This means support for, and compatibility with, more devices and technologies. As technology progresses, your piano can too. PianoDisc systems are upgradeable and have no built-in obsolescence. 11. Audio Samples PianoDisc provides audio samples for each disc on sale in its online Music Store. 12. Safety Certified PianoDisc complies with OSHA requirements and its products are nationally and internationally safety certified. With safety certification, PianoDisc products can be used in public venues as well as businesses. 13. Reliability PianoDisc systems are backed by a generous 5-year warranty and a company with over 20 years of success. You can be confident that we will be there for you should you ever need assistance in the future. 14. Technical Support Industry-leading technical support means that we’ll be here for you when you need help. We’re available from 4:00 AM to 7:00 PM Pacific Time on weekdays, and between 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM Pacific Time on Saturdays.

15. Certified Technical Network PianoDisc equipped pianos are fitted, maintained and serviced exclusively by our worldwide certified and trained technician network. 16. In-House Film Studio & Staff PianoDisc is committed to Video DVD and Blu-ray production. We have a full, in-house video production team and studio. 17. Leader in Innovation With a strong patent portfolio, PianoDisc places a high value on innovation offering products that feature new and exclusive technologies that the competition simply cannot copy, including SilentDrive. 18. First Internet Connected Piano Opus7 was the first reproducing piano system to fully integrate with home networks and the first to offer true stereo accompaniment along with a piano performance in a single standards-compliant music file. 19. First Streaming Digital Internet Radio Internet “radio” stations deliver music and programming in real-time, including stereo instrumental and vocal accompaniment. “Classical and More” 24-hour royalty-free music, ideal for hotels and restaurants. 20. Award Winning Products Our products continue to win awards and recognition for innovation and design. Recent awards include:

1) 2005 Design Journal ADEX Award for Design Excellence

2) 2007 Music, Inc. “Best In Show” in the “Trendsetters” category 3) 2008 Music, Inc. “Best In Show” in the “Gotta Stock It” category 21. #1 Selling Player System Worldwide PianoDisc is the worldwide market share leader endorsed and supported by leading manufacturers, dealers and distributors worldwide. 22. Retail Sales Associates Incentive Programs Cash incentives, vacations and more! PianoDisc partners with its worldwide network of dealers, distributors and retail sales associates in a team effort to increase your income and profitability. 23. Research & Development PianoDisc products are designed and tested in California. 24. Price-Points & ROI PianoDisc offers flexibility in a variety of player systems from entry level to affluent allowing you to mix and match to your pianos, increasing your potential for higher Return on Investment. 25. PianoDisc Brochures and Owners Manuals PianoDisc offers detailed documentation, appealing brochures and easy to understand operation manuals.

Bring Your Piano To Life [800] 566- DISC —

Piano Retailers

2009 Optimism

Face With Cautious

Dealers Scramble for Prots — Stress Institutional and Used Sales


or most of us, 2008 was a challenging year—one that included soaring gas prices, a worldwide financial crisis, record home foreclosures, and a presidential election. All of these events have, of course, had an impact on MI vendors, some more than others. MMR recently checked in with piano retailers to see how they fared during the events of the past year, and what they expect in 2009. In terms of sales, there seems to be no clear trend: roughly half of the dealers we spoke with report that high-end sales are keeping them afloat, while the other half noted that low-end and middle range models have been moving. With 2008 being so unpredictable, some dealers noticed a shift in sales as the economy slumped. As Anne Shepherd of Chick Music in Athens, Ga. notes, “The inexpensive pianos are selling. We did a lot with the higher end player pianos, but after the middle of the year, we saw those sales slumping. We do carry a less expensive player grand and they are moving better than the upper end.” One common thread shared by most dealers was that institutional sales have been a key component and, for most, have become more important than ever. As Alex Kapteyn of Central Michigan Piano in Carson City, put it, “This seems to be our saving grace currently. We are focusing more on institutional sales this year than ever before.” As for 2009 predictions, the overall sentiment from dealers was uncertainty. However, they do remain hopeful, on average. Gil Colainni summarized the coming year by saying, “The industry is precarious. The next six to eight months will really tell a story. It doesn’t look good, but the strong will survive.” 28 MMR

MARCH 2009

How do you think 2009 will compare to 2008? Gil Colaianni: Worse. I don’t know how small, local dealers like me are going to be able to buy merchandise with the credit situation being the way it is at local banks. Dennis Fry: We had a really good 2008 up until October. We actually did better this December than last December because we had a lot of large school sales. Schools have been very strong for us. We are lucky that in our area we have a lot of large schools and colleges like Yale that have been putting a lot of money into music funds. Anne Shepherd: Well, I am not going to be pessimistic. I’m going to say that it will be better. Alex Kapteyn: We are cautiously optimistic about 2009.

Gil Colianni Colaianni Piano Little Rock, Ark.

Dennis Fry Fry’s Westport Fairfield Piano & Organ Fairfield, Conn.

Bobby Hodges: It looks like 2009 will be a trying year for all in the piano industry. Market recovery, negative media, and the election year have all taken a toll. William Crabtree: We had a very strong institutional year in 2008 with a down year for home sales. I think 2009 will still be a good institutional year, but probably not at the 2008 level. Home sales will depend on consumer confidence which will be anyone’s guess. Craig Whitaker: 2007 was the best year ever with 2008 being the second best. 2009 will be okay, but not as good as the two previous years. Nick Pell: I think 2008 will go down as just another so-so year for the Conservatory of Music.

Anne Shepherd Chick Music Athens, Ga.

Alex Kapteyn Central Michigan Piano Carson City, Mich.

How has the economy impacted your business? Gil Colaianni: It has impacted business considerably. It has been a combination of things. I am not a full-line store, and before the economic crisis, piano sales had been on the decline for all dealers to begin with. I think the biggest surprise and the biggest impact of the economic crisis on business has been the credit market freeze. I don’t have the personal capital to keep my inventory up, and banks are not lending to small businesses.

Bobby Hodges Hodges Piano & Organ Florence, S.C.

Dennis Fry: There has been an impact, but we’re making it through. We are not waiting for the business to come in; we’re going out to get people in. We have been doing a lot of promotions with Yamaha. Alex Kapteyn: Our numbers were actually up in 2008, but only through much creativity in marketing, as well as beginning to manufacture our own soundboards and pinblocks for our piano restorations. This aided in controlling our costs. Networking with other piano stores and techs has also helped us find new market share. Bobby Hodges: Buying attitudes continue to decay, and it is a real challenge to make the sale in today’s market. We attempt to make the purchase a pleasant experience. William Crabtree: All facets of retail business are off. I especially notice that customers seem to be retreating to one level. Steinway customers are buying Boston pianos; Boston customers are buying Essex pianos. New low-end buyers are buying used or digital pianos. Craig Whitaker: We have been seeing more low-end shoppers, for both digital and acoustic, fewer people coming through the doors and fewer buyers Nick Pell: Our gross sales numbers were very much in-line with 2007. However, we did notice a slightly lesser profit margin. MARCH 2009

William Crabtree Reifsnyder’s Lancaster, Penn.

Craig Whitaker Craig’s Pianos & Keyboards Toledo, Ohio

Nick Pell Conservatory of Music Terre Haute, Ind.

MMR 29

Have you expanded or have you had to cut back on staff, for example?

Anne Shepherd: Right now we are holding on and have not cut staff yet. We hope it will stay that way.

Gil Colaianni: I have always kept my staff and expenses at a minimum because we are a fairly simple operation; we are not full-line. But advertising spending has been curtailed drastically.

Alex Kapteyn: We still are maintaining the same staff, but are concerned we may have to cut back if the economy does not improve.

Dennis Fry: We have stayed the same with no expansion or cutbacks.

Bobby Hodges: We are a staff of regulars who have been here long term. There have been no changes other than temp help.

William Crabtree: We have cut back on staff and are now at barebones. Craig Whitaker: Things have remained the same. Nick Pell: Our staff levels have remained the same. We feel that any reduction in staff would have caused us to suffer a loss in our level of customer service. In this economic climate, it’s imperative to have the best team you can. We all preach to our customers that “you get what you pay for.” The same can be said for your sales staff. What price points are moving? Gil Colaianni: If it wasn’t for the high-end sales it would be difficult. Fortunately we carry the Steinway line, and it doesn’t take a lot of the large dollar sales to at least keep our head above water. That’s where our money is coming from—the high-end sales. Dennis Fry: All of the top-end, used stuff went this past holiday season. People were very conscious of price. But we had some high-end, used pianos for $25,000 that we had for a while, and they sold the quickest. In terms of new, it’s been the moderate end, mostly mid-range uprights. We also sold a lot of digital pianos over the holiday season. It seemed like people felt as though they were getting more for their money with a digital. We had a record year for Clavinova sales.

! w e N

LED Piano Lamps from

Alex Kapteyn: High-end grand pianos, and entry level consoles are moving.


Call us today at

1-866-431-6983 fax: 802-888-2942 e-mail: MMR09

30 MMR

Anne Shepherd: The inexpensive pianos are selling. We did a lot with the higher end player pianos, but after the middle of the year, we saw those sales slumping. We do carry a less expensive player grand and they are moving better than the upper end. We are selling more grands than uprights.

Bobby Hodges: Small or petite grands seem to outdistance the other units. I attribute this to middle to upper income. William Crabtree: The Essex vertical has been especially strong in the $4,000 to $5,000 range and the high-end Roland HP207 SB is a very good mover, while the lesser models are slower movers. Craig Whitaker: Low-end and rentals. MARCH 2009

Yamaha has a goal for Clavinova: make music fun and accessible for everyone. To reach this objective, we’ve spent the past 26 years creating exciting features, offering excellent services and delivering premium quality. These characteristics define the Clavinova Advantage. This Advantage not only helps musicians and hobbyists enjoy making music, it makes dealers happy. Clavinova ® – 2008 MMR Dealer’s Choice Award, Home Digital Keyboard of the Year.

Nick Pell: It seems that the middle-end products are moving the best for us. What role have institutional sales played? Gil Colaianni: That business has broken through to about 20 percent. It is the only thing that has been semi-constant. Dennis Fry: In December, Yale bought 16 pianos, all high-end Yamaha. Just prior to that, the city of Bridgeport bought 15 professional uprights.

Anne Shepherd: We havenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t done a lot with institutions. We have done business with people who work at the University, but nothing with the school directly.

William Crabtree: Very strong in 2008, close to half our total revenues. While 2009 may not rise to this level, we have expectations for another very strong institutional year.

Alex Kapteyn: This seems to be our saving grace currently. We are focusing more on institutional sales this year than ever before.

Craig Whitaker: Institutional sales have not been impacted too much by the economy and have remained steady.

Bobby Hodges: Institutional sales hold our business together, with a combination of organs and pianos.

Nick Pell: Institutional sales are extremely important to us now. We find that purchasing church mailing lists and offering free on-site trials with no obligations have better than 75 percent closing rates. Once we get our instrument in there, they donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t want to let it go. How have trade-ins and used sales been? Gil Colaianni: Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s all I can get. We may be seeing a renewed interest in low-end, low-priced, used pianos. About 25 percent of my floor space is dedicated to nothing but refurbished, used pianos. Anne Shepherd: We have a tremendous amount of trades and used. We had a lot of used pianos during the Christmas season, most of which have moved. Alex Kapteyn: About the same as 2007. Bobby Hodges: We keep a good inventory of used and trade-ins to feed the buyers who cannot afford the new price range, which works well for us. William Crabtree: We have more inquiries about used pianos, especially people wanting to sell. With the glut of used pianos, we are able to be much more selective and purchase newer and higher quality pianos for less than we did several years ago. We have also found a new service to offer and that is the removal of unwanted pianos for a fee. In years past, people would try to give their old pianos away free if we could re-sell them or use them for parts. Now they are willing to pay us to haul away the pianos. We do quite well offering this service since we have a full-time moving crew. Craig Whitaker: Piano trade-ins, used piano sales, and rentals have been an increasing revenue stream. Nick Pell: Used pianos are actually our quickest turning instruments.

32 MMR

MARCH 2009


ssurance — it is what every church or individual customer wants when making a decision to purchase a new organ. At Rodgers Instruments, we are proud to celebrate 50 years of leadership in the classical organ business and 20 years as part of the Roland Corporation. Thousands of churches, homes, educational institutions and concert halls have chosen Rodgers. Why? Sound quality, trust in our local dealers, and the knowledge that Rodgers is a solid company with unparalleled nancial strength to support existing products and innovate the best new instruments. Have you thought about what being a Rodgers dealer can do for your business? These are just a few of the benets of representing Rodgers organs:

• Church organs have some of the highest average sale and gross prot margins of any product segment in the musical instrument industry, thereby improving your protability. • Rodgers offers access to complete organ customization online via Rodgers Organ Architect. • Selling a Rodgers organ to a church opens the door to additional keyboard and organ sales to everyone in the congregation. • The partnership of Rodgers and Roland provides an incomparable level of technology innovation and service support. • Associating your company with Rodgers gives you a connection to a highly respected name in the church organ world, adding prestige and credibility to your business.

To discuss what Rodgers can do for your business, contact Duane Kuhn at 503.681.0461 or

Rodgers Instruments LLC 1300 NE 25th Avenue Hillsboro, Oregon 97124 503.648.4181 503.681.0444 fax

How are you getting people in the store? Gil Colaianni: Prayer. I am just hoping to stay in the loop. I have a lot of competition in this area and a newcomer who has to advertise because no one has ever heard of them. There’s an array of Steinway promotional activities that we have adhered to for quite some time, some of which cost very little and some of them cost a lot. I can’t invest $50,000 in an all-out

promotion. I have continued with direct mail and that’s about all right now. We also do social-type events every month. It’s a good, inexpensive way to get people to come in and visit for music, cocktails, and a musical presentation. Sometimes we see a lot of the same people at these events, but anything to generate camaraderie that spreads to new customers is good. It’s fun too. We are in a very eclectic part of town, with many art galleries. We combine a lot of events with our neighbors and have art

Innovation to the First Power The New Antigua® A596 Black Nickel PowerBell® Baritone Saxophone After 5 years of extensive research and development, Antigua has crafted a revolutionary and innovative new baritone saxophone. The end result of this exhaustive research is an extremely versatile and durable handcrafted saxophone that has incredible power, tone, intonation, and quality. The A596-BNGK Black Nickel Baritone Saxophone by Antigua is the new standard.

• Exclusive PowerBell Design • Beautifully Hand Engraved Bell • Power Forged Keys • Double Action Table Keys • High F# Key & Low A Key • Drawn Tone Holes • Deluxe Heavy Duty ABS Case with Wheels

5806 La Colonia • San Antonio, Texas 78218 Phone: 210.661.6505 • Fax: 210.661.6702 •

34 MMR

displays. I also jump at the opportunity to work with charitable organizations, if they are looking for a place to host an evening out for their donors. We have done several of those and they have really worked out well.

Dennis Fry: We’ve run full-page ads in regional papers and, we really can’t tell if we got any calls from it. We did radio ads and got no calls from it. We’ve been doing quite a bit on-line with our local Yellow Pages, to target people shopping on-line, so they can find us. It’s been really hard to trace the money spend and what has come back from it. Anne Shepherd: Television has been our best form of advertising. We also do

Santi Falcone– Where Is He Now? Santi Falcone has made the transition from piano dealer, technician and manufacturer to chocolatier. During the ‘70’s Falcone operated a chain of seven dealerships in New England which was sold to New England Piano & Organ. In the early 1980s, Falcone introduced, a line of grand pianos under the Falcone brand which was later sold to supermarket entrepreneur Bud Greer and became part of Mason and Hamlin. Eventually Mason and Hamlin was sold to the Burgett Family and the Falcone brand to ASC. As reported in the Boston Globe, Falcone decided on a change of lifestyle 20 years ago, “I spent two weeks at the library, researching what I wanted to do, and boiled it down to either bottling water or making chocolates…I wanted a business that was relatively recession proof.” He made his first candy (truffles) at home and developed his candy making skills to Dante Confections, a wholesaler and retail operation located in a strip mall in Billerica, Mass. When asked if chocolate has proven to be a recession proof career Falcone replied, “Yes, even when times are bad everyone still buys chocolates.” MARCH 2009

CRAZY EIGHT At Yamaha, naturally we’re proud of the Disklavier and its

the success of this groundbreaking instrument. We’re not

features. But we never dreamed that it could

about to rest on these laurels, though. As the

win the music industry’s top prize — the

introduction of the Disklavier E3 at NAMM

MMR “Product of the Year” award — eight

proves, there’s more excitement to come.

years in a row! We’re incredibly honored and we gratefully acknowledge our dealers’ role in ©2009








newspaper ads, but have found that television ads are much more effective.

as our main avenue of media, and this has been mainly through television and radio.

have also done liquidation sales on stock from other out-of-business dealers

Alex Kapteyn: We are advertising and selling more than ever through our Web site. We have done a couple of big mailers this year, but with disappointing results. Locally, people are not buying nearly as much as 2005-2007. Our area has been hit hard by the declining auto industry.

William Crabtree: Our Web site is attracting more buyers, so we try to increase the information. We also offer our store space to teachers for recitals and organizations for meetings. We have a contract with a national talk show host to do radio ads. This has had some positive results as far as store awareness.

Nick Pell: We have done some radio advertising and lots of direct mail. I still think that over half of our business comes directly from referrals. That’s why creating customer loyalty is so important to us.

Craig Whitaker: We have done radio ads, mostly with newspaper support. We

Gil Colaianni: I think it’s a very integral part of my business. I don’t know of too many of my customers who have not accessed the Web site or found us through the site. We preach to not be in a hurry and to use resources like the Internet. We encourage people to use the Internet to shop around to make their decision and not just buy the first shiny thing they see out there. We figure if they slow down, get an education, and talk with people, our chances are a lot better that they will come back here and deal with us. We have been here a long time—55 years in the city and 85 years in my family. Our products’ dollar value is second to none.

Bobby Hodges: We keep rotating advertising between local radio and major television markets. We continue to use branding

Is this how you’re ordering product?

Things happen fast during the work day. There’s so much to do that ordering reeds, mouthpieces or mutes becomes a real time drain. Not any more. Now you can go to and click on the DANSR 24-7 link. The DANSR store is open day and night so you can order product anytime you like, whenever it’s convenient for you. It’s quick and easy and gives you access to great products on demand so you can devote your instore time to bigger issues—like making money. It’s the kind of service you’d expect from a company that imports world-class products like Vandoren reeds and mouthpieces and Denis Wick brass mouthpieces and mutes. Now you can expect it 24-7.

What do think your Web site has done for your business?

Dennis Fry: We don’t sell through our Web site; it’s just for fact finding. We are getting customers through the site more than ever. It also comes down to our reputation. We have been here for 50 plus years. A lot of our business is word of mouth. Anne Shepherd: We have had people come in saying that they saw our Web site. We have teaching studios, and many people have come in for lessons because they saw it on our Web site. Alex Kapteyn: Without it, we would be struggling a great deal. It accounts for 50 to 60 percent of our overall business. Bobby Hodges: We have been pleased with the out of area response from our site. It continues to amaze me how many people surf the Web. William Crabtree: It has made us more visible and has defi nitely enhanced customer contacts and business.

Vision � Passion � Results © 2009 DANSR, inc., 818 W. Evergreen Ave., Chicago, IL 60642 • 888-707-4455 • 36 MMR

Craig Whitaker: The Internet has replaced the phone book for shoppers. Nick Pell: Our Web site is budding right now. MARCH 2009

Do you have a customer e-mail list or regular mail list? Gil Colaianni: Our e-mail list is about 6500. We’ll do that periodically, for promotions, but not on a daily basis. I don’t want to be in peoples’ faces. Dennis Fry: Both. We do e-mail blast. Anne Shepherd: We have a mail list and plan on creating an e-mail list. Alex Kapteyn: Yes, both.

tising with our long history of being in business. Discounted prices always get attention.

William Crabtree: I cannot say that anything has been particularly effective. Good referrals still are our best opportunity to sell a higher quality instrument. Working directly with influential folks in the community is still good. Craig Whitaker: Special financing offered by the manufacturer and liquidation sales have worked the best.

Nick Pell: Free trials for institutions and free lessons for our general walk-in customers have been good. A great lesson culture shows your customer your not just a salesperson, but you are going to see it through right along with them. Who is your customer base? Gil Colaianni: Well, for years we would assume that the instigator of a piano purchase would be they lady of the family, interested in beatifying the home and educating the children. That still viable, but

Bobby Hodges: We keep a continually growing church list. William Crabtree: We are building a list for e-mail. Direct mail pieces have not done well for us in the past. Craig Whitaker: We do not have an email list, but we do have a mailing list. Nick Pell: We have both customer and institutional direct mail lists. What type of promotion has been the most effective? Gil Colaianni: Little things have done well, and I have lost thousands of dollars on promotions when I shouldn’t have lost anything. It’s a matter of timing I guess. We are not really big in the promotional game. Some retailers promote sales for pianos selling at 80 percent off. That’s ridiculous; I’m not going to get into that fray.

Meeting the Needs of Students for More Than 25 Years ... Our Best-Selling SV-175 Cremona Violin! Cremona bowed instruments have set the pace for the vibrant student and rental markets for over 25 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. Our best-selling, ebony fitted SV-175 Cremona Premier Violin Outfit has again been upgraded to include the new LaSalle LB-15 Octagonal Bow and the TL-33 deluxe rectangular Travelite case.

Dennis Fry: We’ve been doing a lot of targeted, direct mail pieces. We buy certain zip codes and target that way. We sell the high-end Disklavier. We target people who we think who are not as effected by the economy

Cremona SV-175 Violin Outfit:

Anne Shepherd: Television ads and our Web site. We also have a lot of loyal customers who do a lot of advertising for us. Word of mouth has been the best type of advertising for us.

•Six sizes from 4⁄4 to 1⁄16 •Long lasting ebony fittings •Finetuner tailpiece for precise, easy tuning •Rugged TL-33 Travelite case •All-solid carved, graduated construction •Well-balanced LaSalle LB-15 bow with ebony frog

Alex Kapteyn: We have done a couple of big mailers this year, but with disappointing results. Locally, people are not buying nearly as much as 2005-2007. Bobby Hodges: We stick with the branding, and generic types of adverMARCH 2009




Suggested Retail


[800] BUY-SAGA Dealer inquiries invited.

MMR 37

the male of the home is just as interested, if not more now.

Nick Pell: Our base consists mostly of moms and dads.

which helps. We do school band rentals, and that gets students in the door.

Dennis Fry: Mostly families with young children, but we cater to all.

Do you offer lessons or work with the community in any way to get people interested in music making?

Alex Kapteyn: Yes, we do offer lessons

Anne Shepherd: We have a widerange of customers. The University of Georgia is right here in Athens, and we get a lot of customers from there. We have two hospitals and some of the doctors have been our customers. We also do a lot with music teachers. Alex Kapteyn: Our customers are schools, recording venues, casinos, piano owners, piano teachers, and piano technicians. Bobby Hodges: We continue to see the middle income couples, in their late thirties, leading the way. William Crabtree: Families with beginner children and retired or almost retired adults. Craig Whitaker: Mom and dad with a few kiddies who want to learn to play the piano

Dennis Fry: We have a studio and offer lessons. Right now we have one teacher. This is an area where we are really looking to grow in 2009. Right now we have 60 students. We work with Make a Wish and other organizations. We also did a lot of promotion, trying to get people excited about pianos, when the Elton John piano was on tour. We have sold two Elton John pianos, which are very expensive. With Make a Wish we have donated pianos to families. Anne Shepherd: We have put an addition on our building and have dedicated the entire second floor to teaching studios and recital hall. It’s been two years since that was completed, and it’s going very well. We work through the schools to reach out to students and get them in to take lessons. We are a full-line store,

Bobby Hodges: We have always promoted private lessons and support our local music teachers association. We provide a digital piano each year at Christmas for their students to perform. We also tried a digital in one of our local grocery stores for Christmas music during the month of December. We had a musician play each afternoon from 3 to 8. PM.... William Crabtree: We began an RMM (Recreational Music Making) program in one of our stores, and I have interest from a teacher to begin one in our other store. We also have studios in our store. Craig Whitaker: We do in-house lessons, but not much work in the community to promote music making. Nick Pell: We have a great Lowrey Organ program for senior citizens that focuses on fun and wellness.

chicks AND brass AND bling Talk to a member of our new sales team about Sonaré’s two

new trumpets and three new gold flutes. just kinda different.

Call and make your appointment to visit us at NAMM booth 2930. 9 7 8 - 4 6 1 - 6 1 1 1 38 MMR

w w w . s o n a r e w i n d s . c o m MARCH 2009

What is your outlook for the coming year? Gil Colaianni: The industry is precarious. The next six to eight months will really tell a story. It doesn’t look good, but the strong will survive. Those dealers with personal assets may be able to hold out and ride the storm. There are also some savvy entrepreneurs who know how to scale back and still make money. My feeling is we will probably see some heads roll—there is no way around it. It’s going to be tough. Maybe if we all ride out these peaks and valleys together, it won’t be so bad. I may be working out of my garage in the future, but I will always be in the business. Dennis Fry: I am trying to maintain a positive outlook. It seems like all of us here are doing twice as much work to make what we did last year. We are actively pursuing whatever we can. Anne Shepherd: I think things will improve. We have seen bad financial times before. Things will pick up again. Alex Kapteyn: Uncertain, but doing all we can to succeed. Bobby Hodges: Guarded but optimistic. We are too blessed to be stressed. William Crabtree: I believe it will be a tough and challenging year, but I expect we will survive the current economic climate. We will have to re-evaluate how we do business, re-focus on our core operations, and in general, get back to basics. Craig Whitaker: I will refined my advertising vehicles and cut out phone book ads. My outlook is generally positive. I am not retrenching for 2009, but am not planning any overzealous promotions or product line changes. Nick Pell: We are already noticing an upswing in our piano sales for the month of January. We think if we can focus on getting more referrals and building our customer base and loyalty, we can outperform 2008 by a large margin. MARCH 2009

MMR 39


New Keyboard Products of


Korg Unveils the LP-350 Digital Piano Korg’s LP-350, a full 88-note keyboard, is specially designed to be unobtrusive. The smooth top and no exposed hinges, allows the piano to easily blend into the room and even be used as a small table or desk. Three levels of touch sensitivity are available, allowing players to customize the dynamic response to their own playing style. The hammer weighting gets progressively lighter as a player moves up the keyboard, and the key cover is a true slow-closing fallboard, just like on a concert grand. All three pedals from a concert grand are included (damper, soft and sostenuto), and the damper and soft pedal feature expressive and nuanced half-pedaling. When open, the key cover transforms into a sheet music stand. The LP-350’s piano sounds feature stereo samples from a concert grand piano taken at multiple velocities to capture and reproduce the entire dynamic range with clarity. Electric pianos, clavs and harpsichords, church and jazz organs, mallet percussion, guitar, strings, choirs, and lush pads round out the sound offerings. Two sounds can be layered together 40 MMR

for rich blends, with reverb and chorus effects able to be added to any of the thirty on-board sounds. The tuning is adjustable to match other instruments, and users can transpose the LP-350 into any key to play along with any musician, instrument or range. A built-inmetronome is also included for practice purposes. A sound system is integrated into the unit’s cabinet. Two large 10-cm speakers are mounted in a bass-reflex chamber and powered by a pair of 11-watt amplifiers. For private use, dual headphone outputs allow parent and child, student and teacher, or friends to share the instrument together. The LP-350 is also equipped with MIDI In/Out, allowing access to a home computer or other MIDI device. The Korg LP-350 Digital Piano will be available early March 2009 at a U.S. MSRP of $1,400.

has been redesigned from scratch. The result offers a rich sound with many possibilities in its dynamic range; it is now often compared to a larger grand. Grotrian aims to place this instrument in practice rooms of universities and conservatories, in smaller event locations, and in private residences.

Roland Unveils V-Piano Unlike previous loop-based sampling, Roland’s V-Piano reproduces the complex resonances of acoustic pianos, as well as the subtle modulations generated by touch. Its new keyboard sensors not only support high repetition, but also reproduce the tonal fluctuations caused by differences in stroke acceleration patterns. The V-Piano’s sounds include both “Vintage” and “Vanguard” pianos. The

Grotrian´s New Baby Grand Grotrian has been reworking its baby grand model 165 Chambre over the course of the last year. The complete acoustical system of the 165 grand piano MARCH 2009

vintage tones reproduce the sound of contemporary pianos and famous vintage pianos, while the vanguard tones allow users to create never-before-heard tones, going beyond previous physical restrictions of acoustic pianos related to the type and number of strings. Using basic component-based synthesis, players of the V-Piano can create their own piano to their taste using voicing parameters such as unison tuning, hammer hardness, and various resonances. This allows for easy creation of the desired piano image, plus the ability to switch easily between desired sounds.

New Wyman Grand Upgrades Finished in polished ebony, the new Wyman Model WG145 HPE 4'9" grand piano features an all-new beveled lid de-

sign, an all-new plate color and finish, oversized spaded legs with double width solid brass casters, and other cosmetic enhancements. These product upgrades are now available on all other Wyman grand piano models and finishes as well, including the premium Wyman Pianoforte models.

Kawai Debuts “Blak Series” The RX BLAK Series of grand pianos from Kawai features the M-3 Ninja Action, named for its ability to provide a tactile responsiveness. The application of ABS-Carbon is said to help to make the M-3 Ninja Action up to 25 percent faster than traditional wooden

MARCH 2009

piano actions. Hammer shanks are reinforced with stabilizers to maintain proper hammer alignment and deliver a more precise strike. Cosmetic enhancements include a new plate finish, a new plate relief, black soundboard braids and felt, brass accents, and a solid brass lower lid prop.

Yamaha’s AvantGrand N3 The AvantGrand N3 from Yamaha features new technologies that are said to actualize the physical connection a pianist experiences on an acoustic grand piano. The Tactile Response System replicates the resonating string vibration of an acoustic piano to the player’s hands

Post NAMM Comments In light of the current business climate, we were pleased to have had a good turn-out at NAMM and to have an opportunity for dealers to see our new AvantGrand product, and hear about the new Keyboard Division’s objectives. The AvantGrand was a huge hit, and our other products received good comments and orders from our dealers. I think that dealers still are very cautious about this year and are making moves to watch finances and shore up their bottom line - both necessary in these times. I certainly don’t have any specific predictions for the year, but we remain cautiously optimistic. Paul Calvin VP/General Manager Piano Division Yamaha Corp of America This year’s NAMM Show was a little bit slower visitor wise. But we had nearly all our dealers from the US and Canada at our booth stated. In general we noticed that dealers are a little bit more cautious to reorder instruments they have sold. But so far business has not been so bad. We think that 2009 in general will be tough for American dealers. We, as a small size piano manufacturer, will always find our customers. In 2008, for example, we increased our worldwide grand piano sales about 15 percent, compared to 2007. Burkhard Stein CEO Grotrian Piano Company GmbH

We had a very good NAMM show this year; although attendance was down somewhat. Our business was up slightly over last year’s show. Plus we were able to visit with many Wyman dealers in person which is always valuable. Although the consensus is that 2009 will be a challenging year, we do see opportunities for those who work hard and are proficient in the piano business. As an example, Wyman fully supports the PMAI effort to promote Recreational Music Making (RMM). Interest in making music is as strong as ever, and RMM is a great way to steer baby boomers into playing the piano and to generate piano sales. Tim Laskey President Wyman Piano Company NAMM was good for Lowrey. We had a successful launch of our newest product, A300 Holiday Classic as well as a number of new marketing programs for dealers. We signed three new dealers at the show and have several more working toward that goal. Predictions for the year are Lowrey and its dealers will make the best of a tough situation by remaining strong in our alliance and working hard together for mutual success. Frank West Marketing Manager Lowrey Organs

MMR 41

Samick Debuts Digital Grand Product Assembly in Gallatin Jay Cross, vice president Sales and Marketing for Samick Music Corp reports that “NAMM traffic was steady and actually busier than anticipated. Last year’s show was exciting for us because of the 50th anniversary of Samick, but also because of the ‘official’ unveiling of the KD7 digital grand and we were the first company outside Piano Disc to offer Syncavision to our dealer direct. This year we unveiled twice as many new products as we did the year before. Our approach at NAMM is to always provide something new and I think our dealers appreciate that even though the economy is restricting the flow of buyers, we’re staying out front with new products for their

showroom floor. We are also aware that dealer credit has tightened up, most recently with Textron closing their music finance division, at the same time we are fortunate that Textron did not represent a majority of the flooring used to fund our product. Regardless, we are searching for alternative sources to fill the void and we should have resolution of this issue before the first quarter of 2009 is complete. “Last year Samick purchased a 52-foot trailer for dealers to do promotions. The side of the trailer reads, ‘Factory Direct Piano Sale’ so consumers can’t miss it. Dealers used the trailer during the Fall and we have it scheduled heavily through the Spring of 2009. All a dealer has to do is commit to a trailer load and pick a week or two weekends to use the trailer. We provide banners and move it to the dealers specific location. In 2008 we also hired Tony Mastadonna

as Director of Institutional Development. With American production under way, we see an opportunity to increase our market share in the US for institutional sales. “Another fairly new development for us is the LXR recording strip. With this system a piano can be easily connected to a computer via standard USB, allowing for options related to both education and recording on the instrument. There are similar products on the market, but we believe the LXR is completely different. Rather than being an ‘offthe-shelf’ add-on, our unit has been engineered specifically for SMC and we are taking this world-wide for distribution. It will work with any applicable keyboard software available, including ‘Piano Wizard”. The unit will be bundled with its own educational based software so both dealer and consumer will be able to plug-and-play right out of the box.”

New Keyboard Products KIG54 Ebony Polish with Bubinga accents, PS157 Ebony Polish with Pommele accents. Normally seen in

European Pianos, the KIG54 EBBP is a 5’4” New Yorker Series grand in Ebony Polish with Bubinga accents. The PS157 EBPM, our 5’2” Pramberger Signature Series grand, uses the same format, but different finish combination with the base of Ebony Polish with Pommele accents. These

42 MMR

style/finish combinations are typical of “upper end” models, according to Jay Cross who notes “We found we could offer these at more affordable price points.” New 7’ scale available. “We are sensitive to the needs of both the dealers and their customers (especially during tough economic times), so we want to develop products, particularly for 2009, that most dealers can stock and turn relatively quickly. We received several requests for a high quality, well built, yet affordable 7’ piano. We’re now offering this scale by special order to dealers for the buyer who desires the “big” sound of concert grand, but only has the budget for a smaller grand. We have also targeted institutions with this product, specifically churches”.

Designed, Developed and Assembled in the USA. Dick Christian, a consultant on American Production for SMC commented on the assembling of William Knabe and JP Pramberger pianos at the Gallatin, TN headquarters. “ We have started producing mid size and larger grand pianos in Gallatin. Our numbers are slowly increasing and we are plannint to produce ten grand pianos per month for 2009 and we hope to increase gradually to 15 per month in 2010.” KC243. “ Another request in the Kohler & Campbell line has been an affordably priced 43” decorator console” noted Jay Cross. “We feel we hit a homerun with our answer to this need. K&C deale-

MARCH 2009

rs will notice one piece leg (like a fine piece of furniture) glued and doweled construction for the front legs. Beveled edges, tone escapement, beautiful “bird’s eye maple” inlays in the music racks of some models are just some of the features our dealers will enjoy. This product will catch the eyes of the discriminating buyer, and once again, with our theme to produce high quality products at affordable pricing, we’ve produced a product ( in the KC243) that will look and play like an expensive piano, but will remain affordable. K&C New Yorker Series Changes, KIG59/61. “As marketing director the last two years at SMC, I was charged with task of marketing all six of our brands. Noticing we had too many skus, the first thing I did was address each individual brand. Since I had a hand in helping with the design of the Pramberger line, we tackled that first. We decided to remove the “Remington” name from the entry level Pramberger product and vertically market the brand with every fall board utilizing the “Pramberger” name. The second step was to eliminate sku’s that just no longer made sense. We now have a very clean lineup of Pramberger products with no replication within the line. In 2008, I decided to take the same approach with the Kohler & Campbell line. Early in 2008, we started making

MARCH 2009

the KIG48, 4’8” grand, KIG50, 5’ grand and the KIG54, 5’4” grand, available for “non-container” dealers. It took off so well we decided to make two new products to finish out the series, the KIG59 and KIG61, 5’9” and 6’1” grands. Like the KIG54, these models offer a duplex scale, premium Samick Hammers (with German Hammer Felt) and our own Samick Action. Once again, we’re keeping the theme of high quality, durable, institutional grade product at better price points. All KIG grands will now be considered “New Yorker Series”, and starting in the Summer of 2009 we’ll address our “Millennium Series” grands with the “new” prefix, KMG. We now have a clear distinction between the New Yorker Series and the Millennium Series. Also, later this year, we’ll apply the same philosophy to the verticals in our K&C line.”

through specially placed transducers, while a new mechanical touch pedal system reproduces the fi nesse of acoustic pedals, duplicating the spring, friction, and inertia. The placement of the four-channel, three-way Spatial Acoustic Speaker System mimics the points where the original grand piano samples were taken, while two Soundboard Resonators create a non-directional sound dispersion directly in front of the player, duplicating the subtle reproduction of the buildup of sound felt by concert pianists.

MMR 43

The New Ritmüller Pianos from Pearl River Pearl River Piano Group America has launched their totally re-designed, upmarket brand, Ritmüller line. European designer Lothar Thomma spearheaded the redesign effort and produced a total

beyond expectations. The pianos have all been re-engineered and assembled with components including: Louis Renner premium hammers; genuine ebony wood sharps; solid spruce soundboards; Röslau strings and solid maple capped; vertically laminated bridges.Mr. Thomma was also involved in the redevelopment of several popular Pearl River models including the new T-Series consoles. Newest

color LCD display, USB port, two 49note keyboards, 13 note pedal board, preset and programmable modes for any type of player, and walnut or oak rolltop cabinets.

Lowrey’s A300 Organ The A300 Holiday Classic features 90 styles, 1,421 presets, 177 genius tones,

Breaking News

of eight completely new Ritmüller models including three uprights and five grands. Mr. Thomma’s charge was to combine European craftsmanship with the latest in music technology and he has succeeded

Find it in the Hot News section of MMR’s Web site,

More. Prot. Now.

Right now, profit equals survival. ACCESS is the industry’s most profitable line of bags and cases. Sure, our quality, value, service, guarantee and fulfillment are outstanding. But it’s our profitability that will help you weather the storm. Let us prove it.

(877) 288 -7881 ©Copyright 2009 Access Bags and Cases

44 MMR

MARCH 2009

Lambert’s Music Wins

with Brand & Customer Loyalty


n 1974, Judy Lambert began selling organs at Anderson Music Center in Anderson, Ind. and, not long after she started, sales were up with the organ department thriving. More than any other line, Judy enjoyed selling Lowreys and decided that was what she wanted to do when she retired – open her own store and sell Lowreys and nothing but. Along with her husband, Phil Lambert, that’s exactly what she did. In 2006, they purchased the organ division of Anderson Music Center and re-opened as Lambert’s Music. Since launching the business they have managed to build a strong customer base. In addition to Judy and Phil, Lambert’s Music has seven employees, who all teach music at the store. According to Judy, “Business has been awesome. The lesson program brings in business and if people are having fun, enjoying music making, the organ sales will come.” The sales have come - within the past two years Lambert’s Music has become the tenth largest Lowrey dealer in the U.S. In 2007 Lambert’s Music was awarded with Lowrey’s Top Performer Dealer Award.

46 MMR

Seijro Imamura, vice president & general manager of Lowrey Organ, Judy and Phil Lambert, and Hirotaka Kawai, president of Kawai Musical Instruments.

MARCH 2009

Lambert’s participates in Lowrey’s LIFE program – a recreational music making program for dealers. Lowrey rewards LIFE members with points, which can be used for gift cards, travel, and apparel. Judy reports the program is a success saying, “We have the largest LIFE club in the United States. We took up the name, “Friends for Life” for our LIFE club and now have 162 members. We have a special organization here. LIFE club members often arrive at the store an hour before class to catch up with fellow members and have some milk and cookies.” Lambert’s LIFE club organizes two benefits a year for local charities. Last year they raised $18,000 for a local advocacy organization for abused and neglected children. Despite a tough economy, Lambert’s has managed to continuously generate business. Anderson’s population has dropped from its peak of 75,000 in 1970 to 55,000, mostly due to the closings of area General Motors plants. Most of the people who remained in Anderson are retired and as Judy put it, “They have nothing to do, and Lambert’s has become the place to be.” LIFE club members range in age from 50 to 96, and Lambert’s has become the social center of their community. Lambert’s has a Web site ( Judy says that being linked in with the Lowrey site has provided them with a lot of traffic and business. They also advertise in the local and surrounding newspapers and on two radio stations. Judy says such advertising has been very effective in recruiting students. Lambert’s does outreach programs, where LIFE members play live music at a local senior community center, every Monday. They also perform at a local café, the mall, and at various clubs and organizations. The goal is to get people exposed to and interested in music making.

Breaking News Find it in the Hot News section of MMR’s Web site, MARCH 2009

MMR 47


MARCH 2009



Wanna Play? New Customers Do!

NAMM is planning for our second annual Wanna Play Music Week to drive more customers to your store! This yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s event features the Music Monday performance throughout North America, a new lesson locator to help prospective music students ďŹ nd you, the Wanna Play? Film Contest, the debut of the So You Wanna Play Music Hotline and ongoing media efforts to broadcast our message online, on TV, in print and by word of mouth. The message is clear: Everyone can make music!

Music Monday Kicks Off a Week of Events

Note from Joe

me ore, so please forgive Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve told this story bef g win gro t tha nk but I thi for repeating myself, music ive act re mo ng ati the market and cre n re important now tha makers is perhaps mo ever before. t manager Peter Gran Led Zeppelinâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s famed , ter ing a promo was angrily condemn ď&#x192;&#x17E;ve shows in a row. t ou g lin sel er aft even the ed by saying, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Look, nd po The promoter res ew they already kn he t tha ed nd po t res dium stadium is full.â&#x20AC;? Gran eway outside the sta fre ed wd pointed to a cro se tho nt wa â&#x20AC;&#x153;I d, sai had those people. He d home from work an ing ad he le op the pe er h aft packed wit r of â&#x20AC;&#x153;going very clearly the powe people!â&#x20AC;? He understood freeway.â&#x20AC;? g the market by been focused on growin NAMMâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s efforts have ying and becoming pla that get more people ms ady gra pro ng rti po sup been blessed with ste Historically, we have the on le op â&#x20AC;&#x153;pe lifelong music makers. the nt t we want more. We wa consumer demand, bu that of the current ent Gallup Poll found rec a t, nt, a whopping 82 freeway.â&#x20AC;? In fac y a musical instrume pla t no es do t tha ion populat . percent wish they did y? ay is with Wanna Pla going after the freew r ou o int ers sum One of the ways weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re get con paign is designed to ir livesâ&#x20AC;&#x201D; the ke ma to This public service cam do can discover what music ys Membersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; stores and . There are many wa iliesâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;so much better fam ir the of side with by e sid rk and the lives wo to er your association is eag gh to get involved, and more customers throu sic makers and bring mu re it. t ou ab you to create mo all rn go to to lea your door. Call us or w this industry: to get two ways for us to gro There are really only ve fewer people quit ha to d playing music an ll the potential that more people started ether on both to fulď&#x192;&#x17E; tog rk wo tâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Le . sic playing mu we know is out there. Joe Lamond EO NAMM President/C

On May 4, music will be performed simultaneously across North America, as Americans and Canadians join together to celebrate Music Monday. From there, we will highlight a different â&#x20AC;&#x153;NAMM bandâ&#x20AC;? each day of the week that could appear on national morning news and in local media, including bands with children, Weekend Warriors, grandparents and grandchildren performing together, seniors and corporate rockers.

Promote Free Lessons for New Studentsâ&#x20AC;&#x201D; Let NAMMâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Lesson Locator Lead the Way We encourage NAMM Members to take advantage of this publicity opportunity by offering free music lessons during the week to new students. NAMM will be seeking reporters, columnists and bloggers whoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve never played music and coordinating a free 15-minute â&#x20AC;&#x153;get startedâ&#x20AC;? music lesson. A new lesson locator featuring the most comprehensive database of music educators on the Web from NAMM Member stores, MTNA (Music Teachers National Association), and will also be launched. This tool will connect prospective players with a teacher. More players equals a stronger music products industry!

So You Wanna Play Music Hotline

During Wanna Play Music Week, NAMM is paving the way for a special music hotline, staffed with celebrity musicians and music store representatives, to talk with consumers about how to select the best instrument and get past the most common challenges or fears. This effort will encourage people to take the next step in learning to play, and all callers will be directed to get in touch with their local NAMM Retail Member music store (which can be found on in the NAMM Dealer Locator).


Ongoing Media Relations

NAMM will promote Wanna Play Music Week in a series of Webcam broadcasts on from schools across the country and at a national event based in a New York City school with mentions on local television morning shows and radio stations. We’re also working to coordinate print and broadcast interviews with participating celebrities talking about how learning to play music impacted their lives.

NAMM’s Wanna Play? Film Contest

NAMM has launched the very first installment of the Wanna Play? Film Contest—reaching out to more than 500,000 music and film enthusiasts and asking them to create short films that highlight the positive aspects of making music. The contest will run through May 2009. The winner will fly to Nashville for an industry world film premiere at the 2009 Summer NAMM Pre-Show Party at The Hang.

Get Your FREE Wanna Play? Resources!

NAMM’s Wanna Play? program features collateral for Members to use as in-store merchandising, including posters, window decals, brochures and buttons, to raise awareness that music making is for everyone. Send an e-mail to to obtain materials. Also, the Wanna Play? Web site houses information on the campaign with regular updates to news, local events, musician spotlights and a NAMM Dealer Locator. Find out how you can bring Wanna Play? to your store during Wanna Play Music Week— and throughout the year! Check and stay tuned for more details.


March 2009

industry news, latest breaking -to-date on the up ep org. ke m. To am . @n MM tal published by NA r at playbackdigi NAMM News is gital e-newslette Di ck ba AY PL r sign up for ou

The 2009

NAMM Show: Positive Outlook and Encouraging Numbers Despite Tough Economy …over 1,500 Exhibitors, attendance nearly 86,000

NAMM Breakfast, Gene Simmons 50 MMR

MARCH 2009

David Teeple of Port Huron Music Center accepts the Don Johnson Music Industry Service Award: (l to r) Joe Lamond, NAMM, Sandra Jordan, David Teeple and Sid Davis, MMR.


Members of the JEN Board: (l to r) Mark Ingram, Matt Carter, Orbert Davis, Jim Widner, Mary Jo Papich, Rick Kessell, Julie Traenkenschuh, Christian Wissmuller.

hen asked recently by the LA Times about the appeal of the NAMM Show, I simply told them that it’s the family reunion of the global music

products industry; not just a trade show but a pilgrimage,” says Joe Lamond, president and CEO, NAMM. “When I was explaining that to the reporter, I couldn’t help but think of Don Johnson who

made the trek to NAMM last year in spite of his illness and was able to see so many of the people who cared deeply for him. Sure it will always be about business, but here it means so much more than that.”

Joe’s comments pretty accurately summarize the tone of this winter’s convention, both for exhibitors and attendees as well as, with respect to his remarks about Don Johnson, those of us on the MMR staff. While unpredictable (and generally negative) economic trends continue to be hot-button topics for vendors and suppliers, most folks seemed to be pleasantly

surprised with the action in Anaheim this January. “Much better than I expected!” was the oft-repeated assessment of the 2009 NAMM Show offered by those we touched base with. “I’ve seen a lot of positive attitudes here at the show,” noted Marciello Grassi of EGM Distribution. “Some businesses will fail, but there is a lot of optimism. We have already secured our goals

and hopefully we’ll pick up something new, too.” Orange USA’s Alex Auxier echoed that sentiment, saying, “It’s been excellent, probably the best NAMM we’ve ever had. It seems like the people here are here to do business and that’s great for us.” “We’re very pleased with the steady traffic that has been visiting our display at the NAMM Show within minutes of

Kevin Johnstone, NAMM and Madeleine Crouch, RPMDA.

“Admiral” Sterling Ball, Ernie Ball, demonstrates the company’s new Sterling guitar line.

Dave Navarro at the PRS booth.

MARCH 2009

MMR 51

The Berg family – Mike, Irwin and Sharon at the Humes & Berg booth.

Five-Star Drum Shop dealers visit the Yamaha booth in the Main Hall at NAMM. Gary Mobly, Dave Coontz, Shubb Capos.

the show opening on Thursday,” said Dennis Houlihan of Roland Corporation U.S. “Dealers are eager to see new products and new technologies. Everybody is anxious about 2009 and yet there’s an underlying confidence in the value of music and the need for music products in our country right now more so than ever before. Roland Corporation is very pleased with the attitude of retailers and we’re responding to their needs with products and programs to help everybody navigate through this time of uncertainty and economic challenge. Roland is confident, optimistic and moving forward, full-speed ahead.” “NAMM is always one of the best shows for us to go to,” said Grant Henry of Ludwig Musser. “This year especially—we’re celebrating our 100-year anniversary, which has been great. It has been one of the most excitable times that we’ve had at the booth. The number of dealers,

the number of artists, and the drummers that have come through have recognized what kind of things we’re doing. So this year’s NAMM Show, as always, has proven to be a success and we’re really excited about what this year has to bring.” “It’s been a great show,” said Steve McCreary of Collings Guitars. “We didn’t quite know what to expect coming in, but Thursday and Friday, we were swamped, Saturday was busy, Sunday was a little bit slower but that’s to be expected, and we had a lot of international interest, which was great. We’re looking forward to Nashville.” Steve Buiaroski of Australia’s Jade Sound Systems said, “We project that business will be slow for six months, but we’ll get through that. There might be a hold back on buying, but the economic situation not as disastrous as the media is making it seem.”

At the Music Distributors meeting Mark Dyke, Vic Firth and Chuck Moulton, Vic Firth, Inc.

Dancer at TAMA’s party on Saturday night.

52 MMR

By the Numbers The actual numbers support the notion that this winter’s get-together reflected a stronger industry than other economic indicators might suggest: NAMM is reporting a final tally of 85,799 registrants to the show – down only three percent from last year’s total of 88,128 – while 1,505 exhibitors set up shop at the Convention Center (down from 2008’s record-breaking total of 1,560). “The 2009 NAMM Show was perhaps one of the most important industry gatherings in memory,” reflects Joe Lamond. “Our Members once again demonstrated their determination and persistence as the best and brightest from around the world gathered to experience four days of new products, NAMM University courses, networking and great live music.”

Mike Armstrong and Dennis Capiga of Hammond Suzuki USA, Inc. MARCH 2009

Jerry Freed of Gator Cases.

Remo’s Brian LeVan and Bob Yerby

Hoogie Donais, Rich Antaya, Tim Pfouts, Eddie Speedy, Bryan Trembly, SIT Strings.

Indeed, in addition to the primary business of buying, selling, and networking, The 2009 NAMM Show featured a non-stop schedule of performances and appearances by the likes of Gene Simmons, Kerry King, Brian Wilson, Alicia Keys, and Steve Vai. Attendees were also once again able to benefit from a number of informative courses, professional development sessions, and lectures offered by NAMM University and the daily NAMM University Breakfast Sessions…

NAMM – It’s What’s for Breakfast Set to the tune of the Beatles’ “Come Together,” the NAMM University

Ken Haas, Joe Naylor, Reverend Guitars. 54 MMR

The Sonare Winds team: Maryann Zschau, Jan Carey-Wilson, Stephanie Stathos, and Christina Guiliano-Cobas.

Joe Calzone and Bruce Jordahl, Calzone Case Co.

Breakfast Sessions featured a wide array of speakers, panels, and performers, in addition to standard culinary breakfast fare. The first session, on Thursday, was titled “Breakfast of Champions.” After a few brief remarks from Carolyn Grant, executive director of the Museum of Making Music, Bob Brozman, musician and ethnomusicologist, entertained the crowd by performing music from around the world on a variety of guitars and guitar-like instruments, including an exotic 22-string “guitar” from India. Following the music, NAMM president and CEO Joe Lamond addressed the audience, beginning on the som-

George Goodwin, Raxxess

Steven Maines and William Carpenter of Hamilton Stands Incorporated

ber note of the current economic uncertainty. “This is one of the most important industry gatherings of our lifetime,” stated Lamond. “We’ve come here with many questions, but I can’t think of a better place to try to answer them than here at the NAMM Show.” He then had a brief discussion with legal expert Paul Cuomo on the topic of the ongoing FTC MAP investigation, followed by a chat with Mitsuru “Mick” Umemura, president of Yamaha, who stressed that “the music business is the music education business” and that the industry must continue to develop and grow demand for music and MI products by supporting music education and creating new ini-

Amy Nao and Dr. Paul Sheldon of Diplomatte Musical Instruments.

Saga Musical Instruments’ Lilliana Urosevic. MARCH 2009

Essential Sound Products: John Hart and Michael Griffin.

Direct Sound’s John Gresko.

Andy Papiccio of Floyd Rose Marketing, Inc.

Mike Hrano and Neil Harris of Rockano Productions.

Evet Corp’s Steve Ridinger.

Joe Vasco of Mapex Percussion.

Sonora: Victor and Plutarco Toloza.

Chrystal and Susanne Clayton, Steve Clayton, Inc at the MDA show and tell prior to NAMM.

Epilog Laser: Amber Darby.

Universal Percussion, Inc.’s Tom Shelley.

Lava Cable’s Mark Stoddard.

Avant Electronics: Glen Heffner, Sue Avant & The New Avantone BV-1. 56 MMR

Liz Schaefer of HW Products Inc.

Mark Shaffer and Jack Faas of Dynasty Percussion/DEG Music.

Allparts: Phil Florian, Steve Wark, Gary Castellucio.

tiatives. “Let’s work together to create music makers,” stated Umemura. That interview was followed by a roundtable with three successful retailers, all of whom were thriving even in this down market. For the final act of the morning session, Joe Lamond brought out Gene Simmons, marketing guru and bass player of the legendary band KISS, who took little time to confront the crowd with borderline-offensive bombast. “Listen. It’s simple: find out what people want and give it to them, genius,” sneered Simmons. “Get your soft, white asses out of your stores! People are dying to give you money, but you’ve got to go find them.” Alan Friedman, Friedman, Kannenberg & Co. and Danny Rocks, The Company Rocks, moderated the Saturday morning’s NAMM University Breakfast Session, “25 Ideas to Improve Your Business—NOW!” The session offered tips in the four areas: sales promotion, financial improvement, technology and business operations and was attended by a recordbreaking 1,047 NAMM attendees. The video can be seen at and the complete listing of the 25 dealer-tested tips can be accessed at http://www.

On to Nashville After a successful return to “Music City U.S.A.” last June, Summer NAMM will once again be held in Nashville this July. 2008’s midyear counterpart to the Anaheim show boasted a 36 percent overall increase in registration compared to 2007, making a compelling case that Nashville is the true “home” for NAMM’s Summer Session. Summer NAMM will take place July 17-19. For more detailed information, visit: www. MARCH 2009


Full Discount Wholesale is the premier supplier of Professional Audio, Video, A/V and Lighting equipment to resellers and contractors.

FDW Offers: Extensive Inventory Low Cost Shipping No Minimum Order Hundreds of the Top Brands Friendly, Experienced Sales Pros Exceptional Customer Service Blind Drop Ship Capability

The Godin Guitar Team – Peppino D’Agostino, Katherine Calder – Becker, Corrado Rustici, Robert & Janet Godin, Richard Bunze, and Simon Godin.

Colorado Case Company: Steve Simmons, Andrew M. Amalfitano.

Will Calhoun – artist endorser at the Mapex booth.

Angel Lopez, Jessie and Joe Perri, Perri’s Leathers.

At the Hohner press party: Scott Emmerman introduces the Bob Dylan Signature Series harmonicas.

Breezy Ridge: Mary Faith Rhoads-Lewis, Simon Frost, Charlene Frost, Eberhard Kerker, Linda Pearse, Todd Newman, Dana Thorin.

Anna and Angelo Tordini, Reference Laboratory.

Kevin Bolembach, Eric Myers, and Trevor Shaikin of Godlyke Distributing, Inc.

A Modern Drummer essay contest on the question, “What does drumming mean to you?” generated over 300 responses, in addition to several video entries. Another key point was the “Percussion in the Schools” program, which co-sponsors in-school performances by professional musicians. The PMC’s Karl Dustman mentioned

that the organization is trying to get involved with the X-Games, hoping to increase visibility and the public’s awareness of PMC initiatives. “There is opportunity in the educational organizations,” notes Sandy Feldstein of the NAMM Foundation. “The key is getting into the schools and demonstrating the educational element” of the council’s initiatives.

PMC Breakfast On Saturday, the Percussion Marketing Council met to assess the progress of the previous year’s initiatives and take a look at the future. The Roots of Rhythm program, which provides world drumming opportunities for fifth and sixth graders, was reported as being particularly successful at introducing young students into the world of percussion. 58 MMR

MARCH 2009

46th Annual Kawai Presidential Awards Held this year at the Sheraton Hotel Ballroom, Kawai’s Annual Presidential Awards once again brought together dealers and Kawai representatives. Opening remarks from Kawai America executive vice president Naoki Mori included an acknowledgement that Kawai’s K-3 model had won the MMR Deal-

Dealer of the Year Large Market (5 or more locations) Schmitt Music - Minneapolis,Minn. Wayne Reinhardt

Top Digital Piano Market Performance (Large Market) Lacefield Music St. Louis, Mo. Cathy Krubsack

ers’ Choice Award for Acoustic Piano Line of the Year and a presentation of the award to president Hirotaka Kawai. Kawai’s Pinnacle Awards honoring 2008’s top dealerships, as well as piano maker’s Regional Sales Manager of the Year were presented after the evening’s dinner.

Dealer of the Year Large Market (Fewer than 5 locations) Southern Keyboards - Marietta, Ga. Silas Lyon

Top Digital Piano Market Performance (Large Market) Piano Warehouse San Marcos, Calif. Dennis James

Dealer of the Year Kawai Canada Music Merriam Music - Oakville, ON Alan Merriam

Top Digital Piano Market Performance (Small / Medium Market) Turner’s Keyboards Augusta, Ga. Lisa Turner Maddox

Dealer of the Year Professional Products Sam Ash Music Hicksville, N.Y. Bob Brennan & John McFadden (Accepting for Sam Ash Music)

Top Sales Performance (Single Location) Piano Clearing House Peekskill, N.Y. Chris Pfund 60 MMR

Top Sales Performance (Medium Market) Farley’s House of Pianos Madison, Wis. Renée & Tim Farley

Regional sales Manager of the Year Jerry Porter

MARCH 2009


Why We’re #1 $30,579,118.00


50 Years

(Paid to our Licensed Affiliates) The financially stable program of choice for discerning dealers whose eye is on the future. Now is the time to get out from under the financial RISK and BURDEN of running your own rental program.

The NEMC Affiliate Program Offers:






Be A Part Of Our Next Successful 50 YEARS!

� A No Fee Licensed Affiliate Rental Program. � Rental agreements that are customized to the specific laws of the Affiliate’s state. � State licensing and/or registration of the Affiliate’s rental program at NEMC’s expense. � Only one quality level of name brand instruments in New and Like-New condition only. � The restoration of all rental returns to Like-New condition at NEMC’s service facility. � Multi-colored Promotional & Educational handouts provided. � Motivational mailings to the Affiliate’s customers. � No inventory investment and all normal freight costs are paid by NEMC. � One of the largest staffs of skilled repair technicians dedicated only to rental instrument service. � Hands-on repair training in our NJ repair center with one-on-one private instruction (FREE). � Billing and collecting rental fees for the Affiliate’s accounts. � Ability to review customer accounts 24/7 through a dedicated web site. � The NEMC Calling Plan for collections. Working for the Affiliates from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.


� The Platinum Plan Plus - to increase commission percentage. � The Annual Rental Bonus Plan - for an additional cash bonus.

� Each Affiliate is able to create a Custom, Competitive, and Profitable price schedule for the

� Business is promoted into the Affiliate’s retail store, not onto the Internet. NEMC does not Affiliate’s individual marketplace. NEMC does not post rental prices on the Internet.

� An Affiliate’s territory is protected. NEMC will not set up its own retail stores in an Affiliate’s territory. compete against its own Affiliates by renting ‘On-Line’.

For Complete Information: Call Toll Free (800) 526-4593 Ext. 240

Ask For Gene Garb


National Educational Music Company 1181 Route 22, Box 1130 Mountainside, New Jersey 07092

Dealers’ Choice PRODUCT OF THE YEAR Yamaha Disklavier

Rick Young, Paul Calvin, and Jim Levesque with the Dealers’ Choice Award for Product of the Year: Yamaha’s Disklavier.

SOUND REINFORCEMENT LINE OF THE YEAR Yamaha BR Series Yamaha took home top honors in the Sound Reinforcement Line of the Year category. John Schauer, Wayne Hrabak, and Rick Young are seen here with the trophy.




Jim D’Addario and Brian Vance, Sr. of D’Addario & Company with the Dealers’ Choice Award for Accessory Line of the Year.

Digidesign’s Paul Foeckler with the Dealers’ Choice Award for Software Line of the Year (Sibelius).

Chris Schyvinck and Mark Humrichouser of Shure Microphones receiving their MMR Dealers’ Choice award for Microphone Line of the Year.



The Dealers’ Choice Electric Bass Line of the Year was awarded to Hoshino. Accepting the award (L to R): Shogo Hayashi, Kiyo Yamada, Yuki “Ozzy” Ozawa, Pete Chiovarou, and Yuichi Hirayama.

MMR’s Dealers’ Choice Award, Print Music Publisher of the Year, won by Hal Leonard Publishing: David Jahnke, Keith Mardak and Doug Lady.

62 MMR

MARCH 2009


John Nelsen, Jeff Hawley, Rick Young, Roger Castleman, and Don Morris receive Yamaha’s Dealers’ Choice Award for Supplier Web Site of the Year.

AMPLIFIER LINE OF THE YEAR Peavey Vypyr MMR’s Sidney Davis presents Peavey’s Hartley Peavey with the MMR Dealers’ Choice Award for Amplifier Line of the Year.

HOME DIGITAL KEYBOARD OF THE YEAR Yamaha Clavinova Yamaha’s Dane Madsen, Paul Calvin, and Rick Young with the Award for Home Digital Keyboard of the Year, the Clavinova.



Justin Norvell, Fender Musical Instruments, shown with the Dealers’ Choice Award for Electric Guitar Line of the Year.

Chris Martin and Dick Boak, of C.F. Martin, receive the Dealers’ Choice Acoustic Guitar Line of the Year and display the company’s 75th anniversary commemorative model D28 guitar.



Christian Wissmuller, MMR presents the Dealers’ Choice Award to Kawai’s Hirotaka Kawai and Naoki Mori for the K-3 Upright Acoustic Piano.

Tama was the recipient of MMR’s Dealers’ Choice Award for Percussion Line of the Year, Koji Kamada, Terry Bissette, Jason Ranck and Atsoshi Okamoto.

MARCH 2009

MMR 63

Dealers’ Choice Awards



Roland’s Chris Halon and Douglas Hanson receive the Dealers’ Choice Award for Pro Digital Piano Line of the Year (FP-7) from MMR’s Rick Kessel.

Numark’s Mark Frederick, Chris Roman, and Gregg Stein receive the MMR Dealers’ Choice Award for DJ Line of the Year.



James Tsaptsinos, Mark Wilder and Scott Goodman, Samson Technologies receive MMR’s Dealers’ Choice Award for Recording Equipment Lone of the Year.

Don Reynolds, Tabor Stamper, and Derek Craig holding the Dealers’ Choice award for Band Instrument Line of the Year – Jupiter XO Trumpets.

LIGHTING LINE OF THE YEAR American DJ Scott and Chuck Davies of American DJ Supply receiving the MMR Dealers’ Choice award for Lighting Line of the Year. 64 MMR

MARCH 2009



Best & Worst of Best (Free) View

Best Reminder to Re-Watch “Pirates of the Caribbean”

The rooftop café on the third floor of the Convention Center offered the same overpriced, barely edible fare as the other vending carts littered throughout the show floor, but the outdoor eating area provided a stunning, panoramic view of scenic (well, parts of it, anyway…) Anaheim.

The swashbuckling attire of these random yellow-badge folks who we ran into on Sunday afternoon put us in mind of our favorite amusement-park-ridethemed pirate.

Best Reminder Why We’re Happy to be in Anaheim

Best Use of Unitards

The anonymous, Lycra-clad models at the Pacemaker booth certainly drew showgoers’ attention.

Best Contrast

Rick Kessel of MMR and Slayer’s Kerry King rocked a similar, yet nonetheless very, very different, look.


While MMR’s hometown of Boston was recording historic low temperatures, Orange County was basking in an unexpected heat wave, courtesy of those notorious Santa Ana winds. Associate editor Eliahu Sussman and editor Christian Wissmuller took advantage of the balmy weather (89ºF when we landed in Long Beach on Tuesday!) to take a dip in the Marriott’s pool (Apologies to all outdoor diners who had to witness our freakishly pale pallor. We haven’t seen the sun in months).

MARCH 2009

Show Awards Best Free Food!

There were a number of contenders in this category, but ultimately the baked Brie at the Hohner Press Party was decided to be the clear winner.

Best Unintentional Impersonation

Best Intimate Performance

MMR’s own Melanie Prescott was repeatedly congratulated by visitors to our booth on pulling off a lovely Sarah Palin impersonation.

Yamaha provided a real treat by hosting a free, small-setting performance by superstar Alicia Keys.

Best Eye-Catching Coiffure

“Flock” of Everly Strings took creative hairstyling to (ahem…) new heights, with this bleached, vertically bold “do.”

Best of the Best

South African band, Liyana, featuring physically handicapped children, performed in the Convention Center lobby, sponsored by the John Lennon Educational Tour – Truly inspiring.

Best Integration of Vehicles in a Booth Display

The double-decker British bus at the Ashdown Engineering booth, Lace Sensor’s vintage Airstream, Fender’s custom Toyota Matrix, and the delicious looking Honda at Fret Candy’s booth all caught show attendees’ eyes. MARCH 2009

MMR 67

Best & Worst of Show Awards Worst Timing

MMR editor Christian Wissmuller had an uncanny knack for arriving at the Press Room just as the last bagel (or muffin, or Danish – fill in the blank, depending on the day and time…) had been snagged. Happily, any resulting weight-loss was remedied by repeated trips to the Carl’s Jr. and Del Taco down the street.

Worst Hours of Operation

Cafe Del Sol, the Marriott’s restaurant, apparently felt that folks who ate dinner past 7pm were just going to risk giving themselves nightmares due to indigestion and, so, closed their doors at that hour on Tuesday evening, before the show. We were briefly saddened and certainly hungry, but it’s nice to know that large, faceless hotel chains really do care.

Worst Parking

The Gardenwalk garage, which boasted a mysteriously large number of alleged “Level 1”s.

Most Predictable “Worst”

Learning that “The Catch” restaurant had, once again, closed its doors was a disappointment to some, but no surprise to any NAMM veteran (this is the… third time?).

Worst Cashier

Toothpaste, shaving cream, Doritos, Vitamin Water – ringing up these items might be expected to take… what, three minutes? Two? Ah, but such single digit numbers are laughed at by the determinedly confused and abundantly fragrant employee at the Anaheim Target who managed to squander no fewer than 13 minutes (Yes, I actually started keeping track. I’m kind of a jerk like that.) processing said toiletries and foodstuffs. Thankfully, this delay didn’t make anyone on MMR’s staff late for important meetings or press conferences, but I did totally miss the beginning of that night’s “Family Guy.”

Worst Deal

The “Sneaker Outlet” on South Harbor Boulevard that offered Vans “Old Skool” shoes for the bargain price of $53 (as opposed to the typical $30-$40 price easily found online or at most retail outlets).


Worst Return to Reality

28ºF and an additional 10” of snow on the morning that MMR’s editorial and sales team touched down in Boston… MARCH 2009

Meet the Press Sabian Press Conference: Stepping Up the Brand At the 2009 Winter NAMM Show, Sabian president Andy Zildjian addressed the company’s 2009 outlook with wry optimism: “In 2007, we were hurt when the Canadian dollar dipped. In 2008, we were hurt when the price of copper went up. In contrast, this year looks to be easy.” In fact, Zildjian professes to be excited about the opportunities the recession presents to “clear up confusion in the market. Sabian is ready to step up the brand,” he declared. Sabian founder and patriarch, Bob Zildjian, wryly noted, “Sabian is hoping to exist while other cymbal companies drop off – hopefully.” He continued to say that although there have been a few

layoffs at the company, most of the workforce is secure. New to the Sabian product line is the Vault series, which are dark cymbals unique in that they were also designed to project. With these new models, “Sabian is trying to capture the essence of ancient cymbal traditions,” said product specialist Mark Love. In addition, Sabian is creating a special series of 100 21” Vault Artisan Rides, which have been buried in dirt for eight months and will be unearthed in Spring of 2009. Each cymbal is numbered, one through 100, and will be shipped in a custom designed crate. Purchase offers for this series of cymbals can be made online at

Sabian’s Andy Zildjian.

inside the compact head. It is manufactured with three switchable polar patterns (omni, cardioid and figure-8). The Black Hole SE (BH-2) is a cardioid condenser microphone with one large, true electrostatic capsule inside the compact head made by new golden drops technology. The new capsule has a single,

off-center tap diaphragm and patterned variable sputtering, using specially mixed alloy for coating. The BH-2 uses the same quality and has the same design as the original Black Hole, only it is less expensive. For more information, visit

JZ Mics: Black Holes Latvia-based JZ Microphones were on hand to demonstrate their wares, which include a unique series of professional quality multi-pattern studio microphones called “Black Holes.” The Black Hole is a technically innovative microphone in that it contains two large, independent, opposing capsules

Roland and Martin Team Up with Acoustic Preamps

Martin Guitar’s Chris Martin speaks at the unveiling of the new Roland/Martin collaboration. 70 MMR

Roland and Martin Guitar have partnered to introduce the new Roland AP-1 preamp. The AP-1 will be available in several new Martin models which include the 00C-16DBGTE, DC-16OGTE and the OMC-16OGTE. The AP-1 uses Roland’s advanced Composite Object Sound Modeling technology to produce three bodyspecific tone variations and includes a programmable seven-band EQ, anti-feedback control, digital chromatic tuner, digital reverb and LCD display.

The 00C-16DBGTE is a small-bodied Grand Concert-sized Venetian cutaway guitar with a deeper body depth. This particular shape was designed to allow for great player comfort, while extra depth provides presence, projection and power to the tone. The new Roland AP-1 onboard electronics system features three body-specific COSM tone variations and includes programmable seven-band EQ, anti-feedback control, digital chromatic tuner, digital reverb and an LCD display. MARCH 2009

Each 00C-16DBGTE ships in a durable 334 hardshell case with a light brown interior. The DC-16OGTE and OMC-16OGTE feature ovangkol (also known as mozambique, shedua, or amazakoue), an

African tonewood that ranges in color from a tawny olive brown to a deep chocolate with dark striping. The DC16OGTE is a full-bodied Dreadnought and the OMC-16OGTE is a smallerbodied Orchestra Model. Both feature

rounded Venetian cutaways for full access to the upper registers and polished gloss tops with satin-finished back and sides. The 3-piece back is comprised of solid ovangkol wings with an East Indian rosewood center wedge.

Graph Tech: Superchager Kit

Colin Darling of Graph Tech Guitar Labs.

Graph Tech introduced a new “Supercharger Kit,” which is a package of high performance components for hobby guitarists interested in customizing their instruments. Many of Graph Tech’s best-selling products are available now in one package, which includes full instructions on the packaging, “making it easier for retailers,” according to Graph Tech’s Colin Darling. Full customer support is also offered by the manufacturer. The 11 kits Graph Tech offers can modify over 85 percent of existing guitars.

Yamaha: Keys and Keys Remo: Enhanced Product Line Remo unveiled the latest additions to their product line, which include a calfskin head that is heat treated instead of cured for increased durability, a dumbek stand and strap, designer series djem-

bes, and new “Black Suede” drum heads, which were designed to “provide focused warmth and enhanced mid-range for snare drums and tom toms without muting their percussive attack.”

Paul Reed Smith Guitars: New Acoustics and Electrics Flanked by more than a dozen artist endorsers, Paul Reed Smith unveiled a number of new products, including

Paul Reed Smith holding two new acoustics. MARCH 2009

acoustic and electric guitars and a new series of amplifiers, at a press-only event during the 2009 Winter NAMM Show. New acoustic guitars include the Angelus Cutaway and Tonare Grand models, which were designed and prototyped with artist Ricky Skaggs and luthier Steve Fischer. The standard features on these two guitars include German spruce tops, dark rosewood or curly mahogany backs and sides, rare Peruvian mahogany necks, red spruce and mahogany bracing, exotic inlays and rosettes, and thin shatter-hard all nitro finishes. For electrics, Smith showed off new guitars and finishes, including three new Sunburst series guitars with an all new PRS proprietary nitro-cellulose burst

Yamaha announced a new partnership with Alicia Keys at a NAMM press conference. The project is a collaboration to digitally reproduce the sound of the Yamaha C3 Neo grand piano, used by Keys in her New York studio and on her latest album As I Am. Keys delighted the crowd by playing four of her hit songs on the Yamaha DGT2A and the AvantGrand hybrid piano. Keys has sold more than 30 million albums and has a five-year history of collaboration with Yamaha. The web cast including the concert can be seen at

colors, the Mira X, which is a 22-fret, 24-½” scale guitar, and the affordable SE Custom 24, which features a mahogany body, maple top and neck, plain maple veneer, three-piece wide-thin neck, rosewood fretboard, and moon inlays. PRS artist endorsers at the press-only event included country artists Ricky Skaggs and Tony McManus, Creed’s Mark Tremonti, and special guest Carlos Santana, who appeared via video to speak his experience with PRS guitars. MMR 71

Meet the Press Zildjian: Expanded Lines, New Artist Series Products Zildjian announced a number of new and expanded product lines, including the K Custom Hybrid cymbal line, and the A Custom Rezo line has been expanded. Additionally the new Steve

Gadd cymbal bag was introduced, as were four new Artist Series drumsticks: the Travis Barker Black Drumstick; the Ronnie Venucci sticks (Zildjian’s only maple Artist Series sticks); the John Blackwell Drumstick; and the Ronald Bruner, Jr. sticks.

Paul Francis demos some of the new K Custom cymbals at Zildjian’s press conference.

Reference Laboratory: Distinctive Cable Offerings

MMR’s Sid Davis with Angelo Tordini of Reference Laboratory.

72 MMR

Reference Laboratory is an Italian-based company that designs and manufactures unique audio cables. Each of the four cables that Reference Laboratory offers, Rock, Acoustic, Live, and Studio, was created with distinct qualities and characteristics tailored for a unique musical

setting. For example, the Studio audio cables are rich and sensitive, whereas the Live cables are designed to handle the stressed signals created in live performance. For more information, visit

MARCH 2009

Lowrey NAMMGetaway 2009 Attended by dozens of Lowrey dealers from around the country, 2009’s NAMMGetaway held in Las Vegas after the NAMM Show kicked off with a Dealer Reception, and dinner and the Annual Lowrey Dealer Awards Presentation. The 2008 Prestige Award of Excellence went to: Lambert’s Music Center of Anderson, Ind.; Allen’s Music Cen-

Dennis Zalewski of National Music Funding.

tre in Great Yarmouth, England; Central Music of Louisville, Ky.; Critchett’s Lowrey Organ Center, Des Moines, Iowa; Evola Music in Bloomfield Hills, Mich.; Fletcher Music Centers, Clearwater, Fla.; Keith Jorgensen’s, St. George, Utah; Lacefield Music, St. Louis, Mo.; Schmitt Music Center, Minneapolis, Minn.; and Trombino Music Center, Belle Vernon, Pa.

The 2008 Performer of Growth Award which went to those dealers who showed exceptional growth in 2008. Award recipients were: Miller Piano Specialists, Franklin, Tenn.; Dunkley Music in Boise, Idaho; Knapton Musik Knotes, Janesville, Wis.; Musicland, Guilderland, N.Y.; and Romeo Music, Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas.

Joe Lamond (right), president of NAMM presents Bill Reglein of J.J. Babbitt with a special anniversary award.

Zuni Custom Guitars: Catherine Lucas, Michael Blank, Bruce Ceresol.

Mono Case’s Daniel Kushner.

E & O Mari: Bob Archigian, Richard and Eric Cocco.

Bob Taylor, Taylor Guitars.

JT Musical’s Scott Johnson.

Kendra Morris and Mike Matthews, New Sensor Corp. MARCH 2009

MMR 73

Donna and Tom Dougherty of TKL Cases.

Pictured from L-R: Korg USA Director of Sales Doug Nestler, Korg USA Vice President of Sales Ken Fuente, Korg USA President Joe Castronovo, Hugo Helmer Music's Mike Henry and Justin Henry, and Korg USA Northwest District Sales Manager Paul Sommer.

Korg USA Key Note Awards The Korg USA Key Note Awards were presented at 2009 Winter NAMM Show to top dealers in six categories. The winners are as follows: • • • • • •

Best New Dealer: Musician's Advocate Henderson, Nev. Overall Growth: Metal Shop Music Tarpon Springs, Fla. Overall Commitment to Excellence: Hugo Helmer Music Burlington, Wash. Customer Relations: Sweetwater Sound Ft. Wayne, Ind. Marketing and Promotions: Zone Music Cotati, Calif. Merchandising: American Guitar and Band Maple Grove, Minn.

Korg USA vice president of Sales Ken Fuente stated, "Korg USA is proud to recognize those retailers that have exemplified excellence this past year as well as shown exceptional loyalty to Korg USA's brands and products. These awards are not only significant for the recipients but also important to Korg USA, as our company continually strives to return the same support and commitment that our dealers demonstrate to Korg USA every day."

Harpsicle Harps: Pamela Rees & William Rees.

Sabian founder Bob Zildjian.

U.S. Music Corp’s Marissa Osheff.

Barry Robinson and Garry Smith of M&M Merchandisers, Inc.

Pictured from L-R: Korg USA Director of Sales Doug Nestler, Zone Music's Frank Hayhurst, Korg USA President Joe Castronovo and Korg USA Northern California/Nevada/Hawaii District Sales Manager Peter Markovich. 74 MMR

Adam and Rob Juzek of Metropolitan Music. MARCH 2009

Roc-N-Soc’s Gwyn and Steve McIntosh.

Tycoon Percussion: Stephen Yu, Quincy Yu.

Carter Steel Guitars: Billy Phelps, John Fabian.

designed and built a case that is two and a half times the impact strength of the product that our competitors are selling, and it’s lighter. Because we build the handles and wheels and everything else in house, we can sell these at more than a competitive price. So we felt pretty good about it. We felt like, even though there’s some risk involved, it’s minimal because this is going to give us a better product at a better price than anything that’s out there, so we should be able to sell it. “Potentially, this machine will be able to produce about $2 million worth of product per month, once we have enough molds to keep it busy,” Wilkes explains. “And when we can get to that point, it’ll pay for itself pretty quickly.” How it works, in simplified terms, is that plastic is injected into elaborate steel molds that are held in place by magnets. Each mold weighs as much as 27,000 pounds and can take months to design and construct. Jerry Andreas, senior vice president of SKB’s Music Division, remarks, “We have to be very calculated on every type of mold we buy because they’re going to cost about 100,000 dollars each, instead of the 20,000-dollar molds used by some of our smaller machines.” The design of each mold takes 30-45 days, and then it’s another four months to build the tool. Included in this period of time is test running, smoothing out details, and working out kinks. Dave Sanderson, president of SKB, admits that this machine “is more about military industrial manufacturing than musical manufacturing. It gives us the ability to match

up against our direct competitors. It’s very lucrative selling those big industrial cases to the government, and you need a lot of infrastructure in place to build those. But what’s always happened with us is that we get into something because of a military or industrial purpose, and it trickles down into our music business. There are a lot of these large injection mold cases that are being sold in the music industry because it’s a much more ef-

Inside the SKB Factory On Wednesday, January 14, SKB Corporation unveiled the latest newcomer to their Orange, Calif. factory, a massive Energy Saving Hydraulic Toggle Injection Molding System. This million-dollar, 225,000-pound machine gives SKB the capacity to manufacture large injection mold cases, and executives expect it to have a far-reaching impact across the company’s product line. “This is a hybrid that has basically 1,200 tons of clamping force inside the machine and a 2,000-ton hot section,” states Robert Wilkes, senior vice president of Global Operations. “It has a larger shot capacity, which means we can push a larger quantity of plastic into the part.” The larger quantity of plastic means they can fill larger molds and make larger cases. “We have eight sizes of cases on the drawing board ready to go, and the first – a case with a 29-inch length, 18-inch depth, and 14-inch height – has already been completed,” continues Wilkes. “The seven other cases we have designed are penciled in to be built for this machine over the next two years.” Production on the machine began in February, and Wilkes estimates that at its peak the machine will be able to make a case approximately every two minutes. This potential production capacity was one of the factors that helped alleviate management’s concerns about making the investment in manufacturing infrastructure in the midst of an era of economic turmoil. “There is some risk, but because we’re so vertically integrated with all of the other parts and pieces that we make on the cases, we feel like this machine will give us a competitive advantage,” affirms Wilkes. “We MARCH 2009

ficient way to make cases, rather than the traditional road case. Plus, they’re watertight and they last forever.” In terms of the manufacturing process, this large-scale injection mold machine represents the future of the plastic case industry. “What it does is takes the labor out of the process,” elaborates Sanderson. “You get a better product with almost no labor. Instead of having people molding, trimming, and bending aluminum, and drilling and riveting… that’s all gone now.” Jerry Andreas concurs, stating, “There’s a lot of great, efficient technology in that machine that we’re really excited about.” MMR 75

Joe Fucini and Jennifer Ramirez, Fucini Productions.

Dana and Dave Stirewalt of Groove Juice

B.R. Wexler of Wexler Music with Stephen Murray of Kazoobie.

Peak Music Stands: Pamela Liu, Pei Chun.

George L’s- Kahler Willaims, Susie Merritt, Sandy Richter, Leesa Gifford.

CE Distribution’s Orin Portnoy and Brian Campanella.

Dale Krevens and Andrew Barta of Tech 21.


Your Name Here Your Name Here

Your Name Here Your Name Here Your Name Here

Have Your Store Logo on Flutes, Saxophones, Trumpets Clarinets…

Send us a logo and your order, and it will be ready in 3 days! Completion of assembly in our New York warehouse. One year warranty included, $50 one time set-up, and $5 per instrument.


3300 Northern Blvd., Long Island City, NY 11101 (718)706-0828 ■ FAX (718)706-0128 76 MMR

MARCH 2009

HALL GUITAR SLIDES Carl Fischer’s Anne Sobol, Chris Sciafa and Allison Wofford.

America Longxing: Al Harris, Paul Chu, Joe Cardinale.

Retail: $6.00 to $10.00 Connolly Music Company’s Chris Rohrecker.

Antonio Aparicio Guitars: Owner Antonio Aparaicio Garcia

Auralex Acoustics’ Press Conference: Tim Martin

Pete LaPlaca, PJLA Sales.


Glassworks Musical works of art at a price that sells

Fusion Products: Amanda Wheatley, Nicole Szekeres, Theli Renwick, Wendy Caldwell.

R.S. Berkeley’s Ken Fragner, Les Silver and Gina Frague.

Robert Racicot of Kaman Music Corp.

R. Scott Johnson of JT Musical Inc.

Dave Martin of Dave Martin International

Full discount to our stores Handmade in the USA 1-800-231-2499 sales@hall www.hall Retail: $59.00 to $89.00

Dana Froula, beyerdynamics


The Ferdinand Petiot band warms up. MARCH 2009

Phil and Judy Lambert, Lambert’s Music Center, Anderson, IN with Andy Cerone, Lowrey Organ Company. MMR 77

iMSO Expands Members Totals 350 Dealerships NAMM Meeting Used to Clarify What the Group Is – And Isn’t By Kevin M. Mitchell

At the NAMM meeting of the iMSO: board member Donald Ulrich, Yenney Music, Olympia, Wash.; vice president Harry Gillum, Showtime Music, Bridgeport, W.V.; president Gordy Wilcher, Owensboro Music, Owensboro, Ky.; secretary Chris Lovell, Strings & Things, Memphis, Tenn.; and marketing director Frank Hayhurst, Zone Music, Cotati, Calif. Not pictured: treasurer Pat Oliver, Treble Clef Music, Palos Hills, Ill.


hat we want to do is let you know who we are and

what our goals are,” announced Independent Music Store Owner’s president Gordy Wilcher at the group’s meeting at NAMM. “There is some confusion.”

78 MMR

But mostly, there is a lot of excitement. The group, founded by five MI retailers in early 2007 as an all-volunteer nonprofit organization dedicated to growing the market and creating forums where members can exchange ideas, has already grown to over 350 members. In addition to its noble pursuits, the cost to join is certainly attractive. It’s free, though to be a voting member it costs a mere $25 a year. No one in the organiza-

tion gets paid (monies so far have mostly gone toward legal fees), and members of the board are placed there by vote. The bylaws are simple: the retailer must be an independent owner of a brick and mortar store, with the majority of sales coming from that and not the Internet. The motto seems to be, “the more the merrier,” as the organization encourages “competing” stores in the same town to become members. The spirit of the orgaMARCH 2009

nization is “one for all and all for one,” the belief being that if a customer isn’t going to buy something at one store for some reason, it’s much better for everyone if that customer goes down the street to another independent store, rather than going to a chain or going online. They hope to succeed where others have faltered: “We ask dealers who have belonged to other groups if they have ever gotten anything out of them, and the answer is always. ‘No,’” Wilcher says.

Members on iSMO: “For all our differences independents are an extremely important part of the industry. If all the independents were to fail tomorrow our industry would be severely damaged. This group gives us a chance to find common ground and speak to the important issues our industry faces. Sales tax reform is a good example which affects all of us.” Stephen Middleton DaCapo Music Ardmore, Okla.

A New “Old” NAMM? Marketing director Frank Hayhurst (Zone Music) opened the recent meeting with a bit of trivia that not all remembered: NAMM is no longer an acronym, but a notfor-profit trade association dedicated to all aspects of the music instrument industry, including vendors, suppliers, and manufac-

You’re not my competitor, you’re my colleague,

turers. While the letters stand for National Association of Music Merchants, it’s evolved and, for some time, it’s actually been the International Music Products Association, with “NAMM” remaining as a name. The short history lesson / refresher course was important because the group is defining itself in the context of the origins of NAMM, as it was in 1901: a group of music instrument dealers staying in touch and sharing marketing information and promotional ideas aimed at creating more music makers. “We’re a national coalition, a partnership of independent dealers, and already our proactivity is something that the industry finds refreshing,” Hayhurst said. “NAMM is valuing that we’re unrelentingly positive and proactive,” added MARCH 2009

“I have been in the music industry for over 33 years. For most of that time I was like most other dealers. I sat here on the side of the road running my own business and hardly ever saw the inside of another store. I was totally reliant on my reps and trade magazines to tell me what was going on in other stores across the country. “Now with iMSO I can chat on a daily basis with over 200 music dealers from all over the country and in all types and sizes of cities. If I want to know how other stores handle their teaching programs I just ask. If I need to know which companies have the best deals on credit card rates I can ask other retailers not just rely on what the credit card companies wants to tell me. “Information is power. Never before has their been such an efficient and successful and low cost means of letting independent music dealers share information with each other.” Bill Wagoner Wagoner Music Plymouth, Ind. “Gordy Wilcher, the iMSO president, and Marketing director Frank Hayhurst, are bringing proactive energy and common sense from the world of independent M.I. retailers. My impression of this group is that they are focused on adding value to the “brick and mortar” retail channel. Essentially, the iMSO group said that their intent is to grow sales and the market by utilizing their strengths as community based retailers, and we think this can only be a good thing. Korg USA is constantly asking our customers how we can improve programs and services. We’re pleased that a group of store owners would ask for, listen to and value our suggestions on how they can do a better job at the retail level. As store owners, they’ve invested in our industry, and it makes sense that they would be looking for ways to secure and increase the value of their investment. There is a growing trend of retailers working together and the more this happens, the greater their reach into the market. These efforts, combined with those of manufacturers who are engaged in outreach about the benefits of owning and playing an instrument, will invigorate our industry.” Ken Fuente VP of Sales Korg USA MMR 79

secretary Chris Lovell (Strings & Things). “We’re not obligated to NAMM, but want to partner with them.” Hayhurst stressed iMSO is not going to compete with NAMM, but work with the organization and hopefully get their moral and financial support for the purpose of growing the market for all. “We are committed to collaboration and partnerships,” he said. Another key goal of the group is to work with manufacturers and suppliers – again, not necessarily as a buyers’ group, but rather in acknowledgement that retailers can learn from those that make the instruments ways to sell them more successfully. The group is wearing their independence on their sleeve, and makes the case that they are best able to reach deep into the community and implement grass roots campaigns that they believe most effectively grow the market in ways that big chains cannot. “We want to be a good role model,” said Hayhurst. “Our agenda is to benefit our industry, our community, and ourselves. If you’re a weak retailer and you go under, you don’t serve me as a dealer, your don’t serve your community, and you certainly don’t serve our industry.” “You’re not my competitor, you’re my colleague,” added Wilcher. Right now the biggest asset seems to be the retailer forums on the group’s Web site ( Several at the meeting stood up and gave testimonials. Don Tegler, of Tegler Music (Clinton, Iowa) commented that for $25 a year, he’s already gotten his money’s worth. Sharing ideas, and reading comments from dealers whose profits are up is an important feature for him. And there’s a lot out there – already the iMSO Web site boasts over 20,000 posts. “I can’t tell you how many little tidbits that can help a dealer’s bottom line are on our site now,” Wilcher said. “And the forum has put me in a different mindset to buy differently at NAMM.” “It’s important to know that there’s a lot on the forum, and it covers a big scope,” said board member Donald Ulrich of Yenney Music (Olympia, Wash.). “One guy might be in the business three months, another since 1920; an owner might have a 350 square foot shop, another a really large operation with several stores. But the most fascinating aspect of it is the sharing of 80 MMR

information. I like to log on and help somebody out, and then I myself get tons back from it.” Wilcher got a phone call from one member who told him that he felt like he was lost in the woods before he discovered the website, and it’s literally helped him survive. He added the interesting thing about the membership is they have what they affectionately called “lurkers” – people who are logging on and read-

If you’re a weak retailer and you go under, you don’t serve me as a dealer, your don’t serve your community, and you certainly don’t serve our industry.

ing the forums, but not participating as much as the board of directors would like. “We’re hoping to get them a little more involved.”

Survey Says One of the group’s recent undertakings was a partnership survey designed to gather information and learn from vendors. Titled “How can we be better partners?” they asked about their perception of independent dealers and groups, if they would be interested in creating special models by modifying existing product for independents, if special marketing merchandising programs could be created, etc. “We went to them and asked their opinions about what they think is working,” Hayhurst said. Currently Lovell is tabulating the responses, and they hope to make that information available in the future.

Wilcher, who as an owner of Owensboro Music in Owensboro, Ky. and saw his numbers go up last year, is certainly an independent’s biggest cheerleader: “We’ve had an impact on our community, and when I see how many new music makers we’re producing, I know we’re the best solution. Now we need to get more of our comrades involved.” The question on everyone’s mind (including some vendors) is will the iSMO become a buying group? The answer is for now “not yet but maybe later.” “We’re now an informational sharing coalition,” Wilcher says. In the not too distant future they could see helping iMSO members form regional buying groups if that’s what they want to do. “As I like to always say, I have five musicians in my band and we have trouble finding a single song we all want to play – so the idea that all 350 do something in a buying group together is just not feasible.” Yet some kind of buying factions will emerge. “In 2009 there will be buying programs available to our members,” said vice president Henry Gillum (Showtime Music). “It wasn’t our intention in the beginning. We’re going to be happy to offer that service to our members.” “But we’re putting together a trade organization, not trying to get an extra five percent [discount] from manufacturers,” Lovell said. “We’re trying to figure out what’s in their heads.” Reception from manufacturers to the group is reported to be very strong – though none would go on record with a comment. NAMM too declined comment. (Both rare instances of shyness no doubt due to the long shadow of the FTC.) Another point that the board felt needed to be made was to remind everyone that iMSO is still an “infant” organization. “Just 19 months ago this started with five people,” explained Wilcher. “The way of the world today is that people want something right now and if they don’t get it, it’s a little discouraging.” It will take a while to meet “critical” mass, but when it does, it will be “an incredible tool for all of us.” “We are most struggling to get rid of some misconceptions,” Lovell added. “We’re a nonprofit trade organization first. There will be buying possibilities down the line if that’s what people want.” MARCH 2009

Sid Davis, MMR and Danny Rocks, The Company Rocks.

John Gresko of Extreme Isolation Headphones.

Denon DJ’s 1Phat DJ.

Pekka Rintala and Christopher Allis of B-Band Inc.


Mike Armstrong of Hammond Suzuki USA, Inc.

Alan Adelstein, American Recorder Technologies, Inc.

nder the direction of master piano designer, Lothar Thomma, Pearl River has added exciting new models to their best-selling piano line. Combining quality components, state-of-the-art technology and old-world craftsmanship, Pearl River has earned bravos from around the world.

The World’s Best-Selling Piano 800.435.5086 •

Pointless Picks by Completely Oblivious: John Pallister, Bev and Doug Larsen. MARCH 2009

Find Breaking News in the Hot News section of MMR’s Web site, MMR 81

David Kilkenney, Jim Kephart, and John Gill of Anthem Instruments.

EMG Pickups’ sales team.

Sabian’s Christine Jewett and Nick Petrella.

82 MMR

Colin Holdsworth, Music Industries Association with NAMM’s Dan Delfiorentino.

Panyard, Inc.: Ron Kerns & Randy Kerns

MARCH 2009

Jim and Bev Scott of Scott’s Highland Services Ltd.

At the Vandoren booth-Ralph Bowen, Michael Skinner.

Jim Semeizer of Mountain States Music, Pueblo Colorado, with Chip DiFiore of V.J. Rendano.

Jeff Lowherd and Tony Riccobono of J. Bovier.

Three Brands. One Focus.

Samick: Bob Tringali, Dick Christian.

Sam Finlay of David Gage.

Dependability Easy playability Affordable pricing Tonal responsiveness Quality workmanship

DJ Skirts: Steve Jones’s Noah Herschman, Musician’s Friend’s Craig Johnson, and American Musical Supply’s Jim Hovey participate in a panel discussion on e-commerce at Wednesday morning’s GAMA Breakfast event.

Trusted brand names from a trusted supplier. Tony Guarriello, Tregan Guitars. MARCH 2009

Stuart Spector of Spector Basses.

MMR 83

SKB Cases- Carl Hassano, Kathy Galbraith.

The P. Mauriat Team – Lukas Ercanback, Pete Olstad, Darren Rahn, Alex Hsieh, Pete Jeffryes, Roger and Dan Greenburg.

Ford Drums: Jay Galen.

Dave Surber, Tom Getzen, and Mary Rima of Getzen Corp.

Dansr’s Sylvain Carton, Jim Metz, and David Gould.

MDA meeting, Ted Kuehnert, Yamaha Corporation of America; Angelina Angrisani, Dealer Direct and Tony Blair, Kay Guitar.

Musikmesse: Phyllis Tsang, Judy Cheng, Andreeta Franklin.

HWP: Angela & Izzy.

IK Multimedia’s Enrico Iori.

Rosemary Bailey performs on the Roland AT-500 organ. 84 MMR

Dave and Tarina Dunwoodie, Graph Tech Laboratories.

Pioneer ProDJ: Karl Detken.

Aquarian: Ron Marquez and Roy Burns.

Lace Music Products: Don Lace.

Little Kids Rock’s David Wish.

Dave Lee, Doug Williams and Mike Kropp of Flea Bass, Inc. MARCH 2009

Marc Davis, David Roof, and Sonia & Tom Vallis of LPD Music.

Sabian’s Dr. Nick Petrella demonstrates the company’s new Vault Series orchestral cymbal.

Jennifer Gonzalez and Bruce Mihalek, Lowrey Organ company.

Peace Musical’s Andre Cynkin and Anita Liu.

Petrof Pianos: John Garrisan, Al Rich.

The String Cleaner/ToneGear: Michael Krumholz & David Chiapetta.

Larry Linkin, former NAMM executive vice president, prepares to lead Petiot Band prior to the show opening.

Wholesalers of:

Juzek Stringed Instruments Bows Cases Strings Accessories

P.O. BOX 1415 STOWE, VT 05672 1.866.846.5461

MARCH 2009 MMR 85

Reunion Blues: Alan Poster, Dave Andrus, John Maher.

The Levy’s Leather’s Team: (back) Larry Greene, Brett Marcus, Ben Myron, Bob Richards, Tom Levy, Piers Munro, Glenn Booth, Jerome MacPherson, Jeff Bard. (front) Garth Giebrecht, Linda Booth, Harvey Levy, Corrinne Hunt, and Amy Hanford.

Mike Pedulla, Pedulla Guitars with Bonnie, James and Clyde Fitch, Fitch Music, Los Vegas, NV.

Martin Matthies of JA Musik GMBH.

Manuel Rodriguez Jr. Manuel Rodriquez and Sons Guitars.

Lowrey Organ Company: Frank West, Bruce Mihalek, Jennifer Gonzalez, and Andy Cerone. 86 MMR

D’Addario: James D’Addario, Georgina D’Addario, and Rick Drumm.

House of Troy’s Betsy Levin.

Bob Reardon of Sonic Distribution/ SE Microphones.

Tabor Stamper, Jupiter Band Instruments, Inc.

Alex Harnandez and Jim Reeder of Bluthner Piano Co.

Antigua Winds’ Joe Ramotowski.

Rana Singh of Amati USA and Vaclav Hnilicka of Amati - Denak.

Ultrasone’s President, Paul Taylor.

Sher Music’s Michael Aragon & Chuck Sher. MARCH 2009

Donna and Tom Dougherty of TKL Corp. receiving their MMR 20th Anniversary Plaque.

Ikutaro Kakehashi introduces the new fleet of Roland Atelier organs.

MARCH 2009

Rick Kessel of MMR (right) presenting the MMR 90th Anniversary Plaque to Rocky Giglio, and Bill Reglein of J.J. Babbitt.

Allen and Heathâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Michael Palmer introduces the iLive-T, a compact digital mixing system.

MMR Special Appreciation Anniversary Plaque presented to Jenny and Jim Hall, Hall Crystal Flutes.

Janet Robin performs at the Daisy Rock booth.

Seane Yosephia and Mark Badger of Belcat, Inc.

MMR 87

Taurino Quezada of Real de los Reyes.

(front) Sylvia Keller and April Soloman, (rear) Mark McCauley, Chris Bell, Bill DeWalt, and Frank Mazurco of the Musical Instrument Museum.

Charles Fisher, Point Technologies.

Iain Wilson of IBC Trading Ltd.

Alberto Bertolazzi of Hering Harmonicas. Martina Bocanova, Bert Neidhardt (of German American Trading), Marcela Schramlova and Peter Schraml of Bohemia Piano America.

AIM: Carey Short, Michael Carnathan.

Stevan Mills and Theresa Perry, Hailun Pianos.

John Musselman, American Way Marketing, LLC.

U.S. Band & Orchestra Supplies Inc.: Mark Ragin

Wendall Jones, Jones Double Reed Products.

MaryJo Papich at the JEN (Jazz Education Network) press conference.

Joe Naylor of Reverend Musical Instruments.

Sunlite Industrial Corp.â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Roger Kao.

Vanetta Wilson of Chesbro Music Co.

Piano Empire, Inc.: Chris Vance, Ronald Bol, Marti Gordon, and Alan Merriam. 88 MMR

American Recorder: Lee Watters

Eleca: Micheal Oâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Lee, Randy Cheung, Xin Man Zhang.

String Swing: Travis and Paul Thieman. MARCH 2009

Trevor Lawrence being introduced as the new lead-endorser of Silver Fox Signature Sticks, along with Neil Grover, president of Grover Pro Percussion.

Dr. Lonnie Smith demoing at the Hammond Suzuki booth.

Dana Teague and Dale Titus, Dana B. Goods.

Tevis and Sheryl Laukat, Cannonball Musical Instruments

Jack Westheimer and Larry Goldstein, Westheimer Corp.

Alan Guyot demos the new Synca-Vision system by Pianodisc.

Stash Picks: David Rosenfeld, Brenton Trotter




MARCH 2009

MMR 89

Sister and brother Laurie and Kevin Dougherty of TKL Products Corp.

DBZ Guitars: Dean Zelisky & the DBZ Girls

H & F: Rafael Gutierrez, Sonia de Santaigo, Paula McNamee, HawRenn Chen.

Bottom Line:

“if you’ve got to have the best, this is it.” BASS PLAYER, February 2009

Randy Wright, Scott Flesher, and Bill Wensloff from Morley / Ebtech

NEMC: Kenneth Maehl, Lorne Graham.

Barry Heid and Kim Frederick of Manhassett Stands.



“groundbreaking” “innovative” “revolutionary” DOWNBEAT, January 2009

Proudly made in USA.

ES ssent ial

Take advantage of post NAMM offer to new dealers! 90 MMR




roducts, Inc.

w: e: t: 248-375-2655 MARCH 2009

Steve McDonogh & Olga, Spectr Audio.

Dana Bourgeois of Bourgeois Guitars with Stu Cohen of Lexington, Mass.’s Music Emporium.

Tracy Bonham performs at the Barcus-Berry booth.

Get ‘Em Gear: Rania Olayan, Adrian Galysh.

Susan Mona, Richie Onori, Kathleen Capps of Onori Straps. MARCH 2009

Highland Guitar Company: Mark Eberhardt.

Merano Musical Instruments: Su Fei Wu, George Li, Lian Hong Liu, and Feizhen Wu.

Sue Mooers and Laurie Rasmussen, Dusty Strings Co.

NADY SYSTEMS: Mike Perez, Cora Racher, Rich Bandoni, Jeremy Kaiser.

Rusty Bickford of Tradition Guitar/ Trem King.

Ted Kornblum visits with John Maher of Ace Products. MMR 91

Strings by Aurora’s Chris Pelletier.

Paul Rivera of Rivera Amplification.

JT Musical: R. Scott Johnson.

Spencer Horwitz, Bradley Weinholtz, Jan Cavanagh, and Fabian Moralez, Bridgecraft USA Inc.

Mike Robinson of Eastwood Guitars.

Composite Acoustics: Laurie Abshire.

Harold Wang of V2GO Technology Corp.

Bradley Weinholtz, Bridgecraft USA Inc.

Fitness Audio’s Robert Holombo.

Cecilio Music: First Row. Mandi Keung, Carly Chan, Wesley Chan. 2nd Row. Kristie Au & Kelly Yim

Acesonic’s Jamie Chu.

9AF?;J7DE1 KAG47F5:3 Check out the latest PS and MM series professional mixers by Gemini. With so many styles and features to choose might just want them ALL! Ranging from tabletop battle mixers to rack mountable mixers, you can be sure that the performance of the new PS and MM series mixers will provide the highest quality of sound. Whether you’re a club dj, a wedding dj, or a studio dj...Gemini has the best mixer to fit your needs. Building mixers for over 30 years.


92 MMR

MARCH 2009

Players Music Accessories: Jodi Ann Parker, Christine Vankol.

Jody Jazz: Naoki Iwane and Michael LaBombard.

MARCH 2009

Scott McCormack of Music for All, with Matt Carter of Music Crossroads.

Mikhail and Simona Ioffe of Green by Design (

Wood Violins: Laura Kaye, Mark Wood.

Latin Percussion’s Jim Rockwell and Ray Enhoffer.

Dean Markley Stings’ Michael Renwick with Ribbecke’s Rochelle Coatney.

MMR 93

Laurie Guptill, MMR and David Guptill, Guptill Music.

Rick Shubb of Shubb Capos demonstrates his picking abilities.

Sperzel: Nancy and Ron Sperzel, Bob and Lori Sperzel.

Chris Coppinger, Antoine Beaussant, and Francois Kloc of Buffet-Crampon.

Sean Kelly and Roger Benachowski of Music & Arts with Barry Pease and Neil Howell of Burkart-Phelan.



100% ROCK ‘N’ ROLL IN A CAN With a rock solid die-cast body and sturdy dynamic capsule the new RØDE M1 can take all the abuse you or your Roadie can throw at it, without showing signs of age or neglect. You can rely on the M1 to offer reliable high quality performance, day after day, gig after gig. And with a lifetime warranty* you know it will be there for years to come. Visit for more info. *see for full terms and conditions

94 MMR

MARCH 2009

Dave Fournier, Chris DeMaria, and JC Costa of Fishman.

Craigie Zildjian of Avedis Zildjian.

Sean Michaud of WaveAngle.

LM Products: Pat O’Denius, Troy Parker, Tyler Mecham.

Deering Banjo: Carolina Bridges, Gary Hill, Janet Deering.

Paul Pinchuk, Musical Instruments Distribution Canda Ltd.


Dennis Zalewski of National Music Funding.

Orlano’s Wind Instruments: Orlando Casteneda.

Phil Baughman and Andrew Naumann of Schilke Musical Instruments. Dan Getzen and Mark Schafer, DEG Music Products, Inc.

Burkhart Stein of Grotrian Piano Co.

Pro-Mark’s Maury Brochstein, Jenifer Tooke, Kevin Radomski, and Joe Luoma.

Colin Schofield of Premier Percussion.

Concord International Group, Inc.: Chuck Gunsaullus, Chi Yang, Diana Yang, and Dean Daubs. MARCH 2009

MMR 95

Music Sales: Joey Lyons, Phil Smith, Rene Flores.

AXL: Ada Chan, Vesna Tonic, Scott Thompson, Bryan Kehoe.

C.F. Martin leathercovered D 28 Elvis Presley limited edition guitar with an MSRP of $11,499.

The Music People!, Inc.: Jessica Wong, Alex Shillo, Carl Hestad, and Matthew Rothstein.

GCI Technologies Corp: Eddie Ojeda, DJ Will, Alestar Digby, Alan Cabasso, Ernie-C, Ramon Santiago.

Roger Greenberg, Monteverde Music, Inc.

The Capo Company

The G7TH Nashville Capo designed for accuracy & speed In Pursuit of Excellence

96 MMR

MARCH 2009

Hannes Schimmel and Lothar Kietsche of Schimmel Piano Co.

Mr. Kakahashi of Roland, Remo Belli of Remo, Mary Luehrsen of NAMM, Ani Belli (Remo) and Kaz Tanaka and Dennis Houlihan of Roland Corp.

Andy Papiccio at the Floyd Rose booth.

Antonio Aparicio of Guitarras Antonio Aparicio.

Deering Banjo’s Greg Deering.

Michael Farley and Michelle Mantyla, Mighty Bright.

MMO: Stephen Rose.

L.T.D. Drum Company’s Danny Thompson.

Access Bags: Kevin Leigh, Marty Harrison, Tom Wheeler.

D’Alegria/BASS DYNAMICS: James L. Carruthers.

Kickstand’s Mike Kelly.

FBT USA, Inc.: Dennis Marturano, Guglielmo Cicognani, Tom Concorde, and Carol Concorde.

Don Rhodes of E.M. Winston.

Rotosound USA, Inc.: Dan Roeber, Jason How, Kathy How, and Zach Frederick. MARCH 2009

MMR 97

Major Music Supply: Jim Bruno and Michael Mulqueen.

Walt Ostermeyer, Flavoreeds, Dan Gosling, Good for the Goose.

Seymour Duncan: Evan Skopp, Rick McClendon.

Guy Legere of Legere Reeds and Ton Minnen of T Music Distributors.

Tri Tech: Brett Stoeffel, Julie Cox, Dave Cox, Ron Koppes.

Peter Ponzol and John Musselman of American Way Marketing.

Jet Fretz: Christina Rivera, Chad Hilkert, Cheryl Rivera, Jason Rivera.

BC@<G=C@ >@7<B;CA71 23>/@B;3<B 7<B=/ >@=47B13<B3@


3fVWPWbaO\R^`]TSaaW]\OZRSdSZ]^[S\b T]`]e\S`a[O\OUS`aabOTT

/>@7: 'Âł;/G A/:B:/9317BG

eee^`W\b[caWQ]`U 98 MMR

MARCH 2009

The Kyser Music Products team – Greg O’Hlaver, Dewayne Phillips, Randall Williams, Chuck Day, Nick Palmer, Bobby and Suzan Harper.

Korg’s Mitch Colby.

Terry West, Pearl Corporation.

Gary Burgett of Mason & Hamlin Piano Company.

Steve McCreary, Collings Guitar.

Gary Byers, Connolly Music Co.

Bari Woodwind Supplies, LLC: Ron Van Ostenbridge, Carl Krause, and John Cavanaugh.

Sabine: Lance Spano, Anna Phelps, Doran Oster.

Michele Roberts of Allegro Acceptance.

Bulletproof Guitars: Mike Stasiewicz.

Andy Del Instruments: Chris Delpriore.

Bert Neidhardt of German American Trading, with Annekatrin Forster and Frank Israel of August Forster Pianofortefabrik.

Eastwood Guitars: Michael Robinson.

Tim Laskey and George Benson, Wyman Piano.

WaveAngle: Steve Clemons, Renee Michaud, Shelly Michaud, Sean Michaud, Randy Guss.

The crew at Ernie Ball Inc.

Marc and Mike Harris of Harris Musical Products.

Jessica Watts and Franck Bichon, BG France

Bill Carpenter and Steve Maines of Hamilton Stands, Inc.

EMGâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Bobby Vega with Michael Renwick of Dean Markley Strings.

DIRECT IMPORT ASSISTANCE CORP. YOUR RECORDER HEADQUARTERS If you are looking for high quality student recorders for your distribution or school supply company, contact us with your needs. We will have instruments to fulfill your requirements. We are providing product to some of the largest distributors in the U.S.A. and Canada. Join the list of satisfied Customers using our products. We have a complete line of instruments, sopranino through bass, in three piece instruments. We also offer one and two piece economy instruments. You buy your instruments directly from Asia, on an import basis. We will private brand your products including the carrying cases and fingering charts. Direct Import Assistance Corporation 354 Balmoral Drive Cleveland, OH 44143 Tel:216.973.6790 Fax: 440.461.3631 E-mail:

100 MMR

MARCH 2009

Gene Houck, Phil Garfinkel, Dennis Cray, Desiree Gregg, Lofty Whitaker, and Cliff Castle of Audix Corp.

Classic Musical Instruments’ Rob Olsen, Klaus Schoeller, Tom Belotti, and Situ Xuan.

JZ Microphones: Andis Blinds & Edijs Rudzij.

Steve Buiaroski, Jade Sound Systems.

Victor Velez, Miami Parts Import.

Unk Guitars: Paul Unk, Jeff Hunter, Jorn Gorlach, Steve Zschiegner.

RANE; Mike May. MARCH 2009

John Terry at Numark’s NS7. MMR 101

Fret King’s Paul Pinchuk, Kate Wilkinson, and Dennis Drumm.

Traude Diehm, Werner Schuermann, Martin and Gabriela Koenig, Michael Wamser, and Mike Fruedenberger of Koenig & Meyer Stands.

Morgan Hill: Mike Shellhammer, Jeff Strametz.

Music Freight: Nick Isasi, Rob French, Lisa Phillips.

Rusty and Richard Membrano of OnBoard Research.

Paul Acton, Dave Cox, and Pat Murphy of TriTechnical Systems.

Erik Lind, Dave Trout, and Jeff Sazant of Tanglewood Guitars.

Shaker Microphones: Gus Harless, Joe Harless.

Chuck Kirschling with Richard and Cory Berger of Grover Products.

Aurora Strings’ John Coniglio, Bart Comiskey, and Chris Pelletier.

The Kelly Shu: Kathleen Kelly & Jeffrey Kelly.

Pearl River Pianos: Lothar Thomma, Jennette Xu, Phil Kennedy.

102 MMR

MARCH 2009

Bechstein: Arndt-Christian Schmitz, Ken Ambrose, Karl Schulze.

The Las Vegas Academy Guitar Ensemble performing in the lobby of the Anaheim Convention Center.

Dan Saulpaugh and Bradley Weinholtz of Bridgecraft.

Oasis: David and Stephen Hepple.

EMD’s Dan Barker, Ennis Markus, and Andrew Swift.

Brian Hannie and Karl Winkler of Lectrosonics.

RS Berkeley: Les Silver, Gina Fragner.

Bill Stouraites, Kendra Morris, and Ralph Trimarhi of New Sensor Corp.

Major Music Supply’s Jim Bruno, Mike Mulqueen, and Travis Woodland.

Shannon Kori and Mike Dorfman of Trick Percussion.

Black Diamond: Ray Noguera, Richard Smith, Mary Nell Chadsey, John Cavanaugh.

MARCH 2009

MMR 103

NAMM Notables: New Gear Introductions Madarozzo Gig Bag Couture Madarozzo has launched a new boutique collection of gig bags. The Madarozzo boutique gig bag range comprises more than 70 models in a wide variation of shapes, padding, and price points, and is available in three color combinations. The bags are designed for all types of fretted instruments, from standard guitar shapes to the more unusual shapes such as Flying V, Explorer, Headless, and many difficult to find shapes. Bags to accommodate two electric guitars or basses are also available. The range offers luggage-grade 600D Polyester, rugged zippers, soft Nylon lining, comfortable designed backpacks, headstock, bridge, and end-pin protection.

New from Colorado Case’s Case Logic Brand Colorado Case’s Sport Backpack flute case is part of the company’s Flute Lifestyle Case line sold under Colorado’s Case Logic brand. The design features a center access, top loaded, flute compartment, which helps to keep flutes balanced and protected. The Sport offers spacious room for a laptop/music compart104 MMR

ment, inside organization panel, large expandable side pockets, water bottle pocket, and large internal storage for books. The backpack is finished with a molded bottom for protection. Also new from Case Logic is the Acoustic Premier guitar case - The Summit. This Case Logic guitar case was designed to be functional, while protecting the instrument. A number of specially designed pockets, padding, and adjustments have been incorporated into the uniquely designed case to fit sheet music, picks, tuners, cords, and room for more. With an obelisk shape, the styled soft case is built of high quality fabric outer shell, soft cloth interior, and includes put-away backpack straps, adjustable internal expansion padding at the tailpin and waist, and a strong carry handle. Colorado Case senior vice president Andrew M. Amalfitano says, “These uniquely styled guitar cases do the job by providing simple organization while protecting the instrument in a number of unique ways. Our goal in 2009 is to grow Case Logic brand awareness and develop our dealer network and musicians around the world.” Both cases come with an original purchaser lifetime guarantee.

Ernie Ball’s New Titanium Acoustic Sets & Power Peg Ernie Ball introduced four new phosphor bronze acoustic string sets, the latest

in the company’s line of coated Slinky strings. All wound strings are treated with a micro-thin layer of exclusive enamel that is said to prevent decay and corrosion more than uncoated sets. In addition to treating the wound strings, the plain strings are reinforced with a patented winding of titanium wire. Titanium’s inherent strength helps to prevent string breakage and slippage. Ernie Ball’s new Power Peg string winder is portable, motorized, and features an easy access battery compartment, locking on/off switch, forward and reverse lever for string post alignment, and durable housing. The head attachment is suited to fit all peg head types including bass, acoustic, and electric guitar, as well as other stringed instruments. The retail price is $29.99.

Fender Road Worn Series Fender’s new Road Worn Series is based on Fender’s classic instruments of the 1950s and ’60s, and production methods invented at the Fender Custom Shop; Road Worn instruments were designed to reflect life on the road. The series consists of a ’50s Tele, ’50s Strat, ’60s Strat, ’50s Precision Bass, and ’60s Jazz Bass guitars. All models feature distressed nitrocellulose lacquer-finished bodies, as well as worn chrome hardware (nickel/chrome for basses), to create an aged appearance. Additionally, while the guitars have been designed with period-correct specifications, several modern upMARCH 2009

grades have been built into each model, including Tex Mex single-coil pickups, larger 6105 frets, and five-way pickup switches (Strat models). The ’50s Tele features an ash body, maple neck, vintage-style tuning machines, three-saddle strings-thru-body bridge, one-ply white pickguard, and is available in two-color sunburst and blonde. The ’50s Strat has an alder body, maple neck, vintage-style tuning machines, synchronized tremolo, one-ply pickguard, and is available in two-color sunburst and black. The ’60s Strat features an alder body, maple neck with a rosewood fingerboard, vintage-style tuning machines, synchronized tremolo, three-ply mint green pickguard, and is available in three-color sunburst and Olympic white. The ’50s Precision Bass has an alder body, maple neck, vintagestyle reverse tuning machines, American Vintage bridge, gold anodized aluminum pickguard, and is available in two-color sunburst and fiesta red. The ’60s Jazz Bass features an alder body, maple neck with rosewood fi ngerboard, vintagestyle reverse tuning machines, American Vintage bridge, four-ply brown shell pickguard, and is available in three-color sunburst and fiesta red. The Road Worn ’50s Tele, ’50s Strat and ’60s Strat guitars manufacturer’s suggested retail price is $1,200; ’50s Precision Bass guitars suggested manufacturer’s price is $1,500; ’60s Jazz Bass guitars suggested manufacturer’s price is $1,570.

Dr. Duck’s Dial A Chord The Dial A Chord disk from Dr. Duck demonstrates how to make all the guitar chords by combining the Nashville Number System with a guitar chord diagram reference. The dial is eight inches across with a grommet in the middle. The top circle has windows that show how to make every guitar chord at the fi rst position and lines up to show which chords go together in each key. The dial shows how many sharps or flats are in each key signature, the names of the diatonic scale degrees, and the solfa names of the scale positions. The Nashville Number System is explained on the back of the dial, along with how to make minor chords. The dials come with a POP counter display for retailers. The retail price is $15.95. MARCH 2009

eMedia Music’s My Violin The third release in eMedia’s My Music series, My Violin features video demonstrations that guide children through the instructional material, with interactive games and quizzes to help teach music notation and other basic concepts for violin. An animated character named Val the Violin guides kids through over 160 lessons authored and presented by professional violinist Sabina Skalar, first violinist of the New York City Ballet Orchestra. Designed for kids ages six and older, My Violin covers basics such as holding, tuning, playing rhythmic tunes, and moves on to playing songs and reading music notation. An animated fingerboard displays correct finger placement as live recorded audio plays. The Finger Tracker tool listens to the violin as it is played and shows whether fingers are placed correctly. Also included are adjustable-speed MIDI tracks, recorded voice and accompaniment tracks. Additional features such as an automatic tuner, metronome, and digital recorder are also included. The retail price is $49.95.

Gemini’s Two New Lines of Mixers The PS Series and MM Series are the latest professional mixers by Gemini. The PS Series includes the: PS-121X; PS-424X; PS-626X; PS-626USB, PS-626EFX; PS828X; and PS-828EFX. The MM Series includes the: MM-1000; MM-30001800; MM-2400; and MM-4000. Each professional mixer is solid and built for mobility. The mixers have the Rail Glide Fader built into them to give smooth mixing on all creative sets. Options for the PS and MM Series range from tabletop battle mixers to rack mountable mixers. The Series carry an MSRP of $119.95$399.95.

Eastwood’s Monolith The Monolith guitar from Eastwood features the three voice Monolith pickup from rebelSonic, said to be “the biggest pickup on the planet.” Aside from being MMR 105

a massive pickup, the Monolith pickup has three different voices - JackHAMMER, cementMIXER, and icePICK. Eastwood is also offering optional custom chrome, clear plexi pick guards, alternate switch tips, and each guitar is professionally preset.

Fishman’s SoloAmp Fishman’s SoloAmp weighs less than 25 pounds without stand and offers performing acoustic guitarists/singers easy setup in a portable package that can be carried with one hand. SoloAmp’s compact line array speaker design delivers wide horizontal dispersion. It includes a fully digital (Class D) power amp that can produce 220 watts matched with ul-

tra-high excursion drivers and a servo power amp design that eliminates the need for subwoofers. SoloAmp features two mic/instrument input channels with three-band EQ, phantom power, and high-quality preamps that accept a wide range of input sources, from acoustic instruments to microphones and line level sources. Each channel also offers independent reverb level, effect loop, plus phase, and notch fi lters to fight feedback. Also included are four digital reverb effects; monitor input/ output, an auxiliary stereo input with level control; balanced XLR D.I. outputs for both channels, plus main mix; a setbreak mute button; and universal voltage for worldwide operation. SoloAmp ships complete with a padded carry bag fitted with wheels and a tripod stand. MSRP: $1539.95 MAP: $999.95

getmore profits with

LESS competition

Eastwood dealers get it:

• Solid 50%+ markup • A-mark dealer pricing • In-stock inventory • Protected territory Get your profits started today with Eastwood Guitars

905-702-8291 106 MMR

Community MX41E Monitors Community Professional Loudspeakers has introduced their new MX41E series of stage monitors. The MX41E is a compact two-way bass reflex floor monitor. Available in 90 x 40 (MX41E-94) or 60 x 40 (MX41E-64) degree coverage patterns, the MX41E is voiced for live performance use. Both models feature rotatable horns for narrower horizontal coverage. Angled backs allow the MX41E to be positioned at 30- or 45-degree angles. The MX41E features include Community’s Ferrofluid-cooled LF driver technology; solid birch plywood construc-

tion; 16-gauge perforated; powder coated steel grille; heavy-duty steel handles; solid steel input panel with Passive/Bi-amp switch; and pro-quality Neutrik input connectors. MX41E monitors are also protected by Community’s PowerSense driver protection circuitry, and covered by Community’s five-year warranty. Both black and white finishes are available.

Completely Oblivious’ Round Picks Completely Oblivious’ Pointless Picks are designed for beginners and pros alike. Left- and right-handed pickers are finding that muscle memory is improved through elimination of points, while the raised grip ring is said to help eliminate dropping. The picks, which are a patented design, are made of a crystalline engineering polymer and are available in three different thicknesses.

Allparts Music Now Distributes N-Tune Tuners The N-Tune Onboard True Bypass Chromatic Tuner allows guitarists to pull their MARCH 2009

HW Product’s Horn Cleaner

volume knob and silently tune up, then push it back down to play, with no effect on the instrument’s tone. N-Tune can be installed into almost any electric guitar or bass, and is available as a Single-Coil Guitar Kit for (includes black, white, parchment, Fender-Cream, GibsonCreme colored tuning rings and a 250k ohm pot) and as a Humbucker Guitar Kit (includes black, white, parchment, Fender-Cream, Gibson-Creme colored tuning rings and a 500k ohm pot). All that’s required is the existing volume knob and standard soldering tools, with no permanent guitar modification required.

The HW Brass-Saver cleaner for French horn and flugelhorn features pull-through brushes that are 100 percent non-metal, will not shed or get stuck, can be used wet or dry, and will easily negotiate curved tubing. Brushes are also available for trumpet, trombone, and baritone.

Sonaré Gold Flutes The newest 700 series flutes from Sonaré Winds have the sparkle of 14k rose gold. Each Sonaré flute has a body made with the Modern Powell Scale at the Boston area workshop using Verne Q Powell’s patented

Weber 10th Anniversary Mandolin Weber’s 10th Anniversary Mandolin was built by Bruce D. Weber, and features hand rubbed semigloss varnish fi nish, and inlay work on both the headstock and heel button. The mandolin also comes stock with custom mother of pearl accent line inside curly maple purfl ing, a fossil ivory nut and saddle, gold Waverly tuners, and a custom Ameritage case with numbered plaque.

Jody Jazz Mouthpieces With easy playing, good projection, and a dark warm throaty baritone sound, the DV NY mouthpiece from Jody Jazz is suitable for all styles of playing. The DV BASS, for bass saxophone, delivers ease of play and a deep, dark warm tone. The DV BASS features a medium chamber with PHI proportions. Both new mouthpieces are manufactured with machines from Virgin Brass, are hand-finished and plated in 24 karat gold. MARCH 2009

Zinki technology. This flute body, in combination with the hand-cut Powell headjoint, produces an instrument designed to retain projection, colors, and intonation. Sonaré’s rose gold-plated flutes come in three basic configurations: SF-707, which is the 705 model dressed up with a gold-plated lip plate and crown. SF-708, which features an entire body and headjoint plated in gold and keys that are silver-plated. This two-tone instrument is attractive and the unique color combination makes the flute stand out in a crowd. The SF-709 is an entirely rose gold-plated flute. The gold plating is said to increases the depth of sound, as well as provide a visually stunning appearance.

Fitness Audio Distributors’ Waterproof Mics Fitness Audio Distributors, LLC has updated and added several new products to their line of audio products for the health and fitness industry. The Aeromix 2+2 group exercise room fitness mixer now features an optional Sound Ear SPL meter, paired with enhanced EQ settings for sweat resistant. The Baqua Pak waterproof mic system is a fully submersible, rechargeable body pack transmitter





MMR 107

and headset combo. The Triton 100, for aquatic exercise classes, is a self-contained, 100 watt, AC/DC system with a built-in CD/USB player with pitch control and wireless receiver. Fitness Audio now offers a complete line of wireless cardio entertainment products for watching broadcast TV/facility video entertainment or listening to radio/house sound tracks with headphones from cardio and/ or other exercise equipment (treadmills, stair machines, and exercise bikes).

Power Slam Bass Strings Re-released Shane Music Products is celebrating 29 years in the music industry with the re-release of its line of Power Slam bass string sets. Known for their FPW (formula preferred wrap) outer core, these bass strings deliver an outstanding bottom, while mids and natural highs are not overshadowed or lost. Nickel Round Wound Power Slams come in four- and five-string sets. Stainless steel sets are also available. Shane Music Products offers Power Slam Bass sets along with Shane electric guitars, Shane basses, and JR acoustic.

Rock House’s Lead Guitar Instructional DVD Rock House announces the release of a new instructional DVD featuring guitar instructor John McCarthy. In his new DVD, Lead Guitar: Techniques for Creating Solos, students learn techniques to

108 MMR

create their own solos. They will develop arpeggio skills like sweep tap, small three string sweeps, and arpeggio progressions. They will learn techniques like bi-dextral scale hammer-ons, pivoting, whammy bar tricks, muted scratching, and full neck runs. John shows them how to add color to their style with violin effect, natural flange, sextuplet speed runs, and two string speed riffs. Each DVD comes with an iPod ready video, a booklet with each lesson tabbed out, and lifetime membership to Rock House’s lesson support Web site. This feature, exclusive to Rock House and its partners, offers students supplementary support for the lessons featured on the DVDs. Once registered, students can interact with the community, and utilize additional learning tools. The DVD is priced at $24.99.

Tech 21 Launches Private Stock Division Andrew Barta started Tech 21 with a product he originally designed for his own personal use, the SansAmp. Now he has decided to open the door to his Private Stock. The Tech 21 Private Stock division will offer a diverse range of products, the first of which is the Vacuum Tube Bass Pre-Amp Head. Each product will be custom-designed by Andrew, hand-built, tested, and tweaked at their factory in the United States, and available directly for purchase on a per order basis. Dealers should check the Tech 21 Web site periodically for updates.

Ford DRUMVEE Soft Cases Ford’s new DRUMVEE soft cases for, drums, cymbals, and hardware, are made from military-spec digital Camo 600 denier polyester and offer 100 percent waterproof stability. Between the fabric layers are 1⁄2” of closed-cell foam to withstand the rigors of the road, plus 1⁄2” of polyfoam to protect the drums within. All webbing is tear-resistant

to 500 pounds, all seams are double stitched with ballistic polyester thread, and the strong #10 YKK zippers are sewn into each case with a “lip” that acts as a double gasket to keep moisture from entering. Other features include snaps and O-rings of heavy-duty steel, ergonomic molded rubber handles, and padded shoulder straps. Instead of being round, tom cases feature a proprietary shape that accommodates tom mounts and suspension systems, eliminating the need to buy a case that’s one size up from the drum’s actual size. In addition, every tom case comes with padded inserts that can be used selectively to fit drums of multiple depths. Thus one 12”- diameter case can fit an 8x12, a 9x12, or a 10x12 drum. List prices start at $110. Snare cases also feature a unique shape, with “ears” to accommodate today’s larger throw-offs and butt plates. One snare case fits 13”- or 14”-diameter drums from 5” to 7” deep, thanks to the included padded inserts. Bags list for $110. DRUMVEE’s bass drum soft cases feature handles on either side, as well as the traditional handle on the top. Each case diameter fits 14”, 16”, and 20” depths. List prices start at $240. The DRUMVEE cymbal bag is made to accommodate a 24” cymbal. Its main compartment features sewn-in soft dividers to accommodate six cymbals. An outside pouch holds hi-hat cymbals up to 16”. A large gusset pocket hides a key ring to keep keys out of sight. Other pockets are designed for a cell phone and business cards. List price is $195. MARCH 2009

The DRUMVEE line also includes two designed soft hardware cases. The 32” case accommodates five or more cymbal/boom stands. The 36” case is for the take-everywhere essentials: single or double pedal, hi-hat, snare stand, and drum throne. It’s perfect when you’re on the road and playing a kit that’s been back-lined for you. Both bags feature padded dividers to isolate their contents and prevent them from getting scratched or dented from banging together. Handles on either side facilitate two-person lifts; one handle in the middle allows solo lifting. The 32” bag lists for $195, the 36” bag lists for $240, and a set of both lists for $400. DRUMVEE soft cases come with a 12month warranty. In the event of a fault in a DRUMVEE case, Ford will repair or replace the case free of charge.

instantly transform any guitar, new or old, and it protects the guitar while giving it a different look. The Facelift range comprises nine designs each to fit Fender Telecaster and Stratocaster guitars and was recently increased with two new designs to fit the Yamaha Pacifica 112V and three for Pacifica 012 and 112J guitar body shapes. Facelift won ‘Best In Show’ at the annual Winter NAMM event in Anaheim, Calif., in January.

Missing 15%?

MONO’ s New Hybrid Case MONO has expanded their M80 Hybrid Case series with the introduction of the new M80 Semi-Hollow case. Designed around ES-335 style hollow body guitars, the M80-HB incorporates all of the protection features of the original M80 line. MONO’s 2009 product launch also includes M80 Dual cases for two guitars or two basses, and the new EFX series featuring bags for the professional DJ, producer, or gear-head.

Levy’s Christian Guitar Straps

During difficult economic times, accessory sales are critical to maintaining or growing your business. Denis Wick brass sales grew over 15% in the U.S. and Canada last year alone. It's the kind of growth that makes a difference to your bottom line. To find out how you can find your missing 15%, call a DANSR sales representative at 888-707-4455 or email us at

Products in Demand. Performance by Design.

Soft nubuck leather provides the canvas for Levy’s new Christian-themed guitar strap designs. They are available in six print designs adorned with nailheads.

Facelifts for Guitars The Facelift for guitars is a removable and re-usable laminated vinyl overlay for guitar bodies developed to quickly change the appearance of any guitar. Facelift is coated in ultra-low tack adhesive that leaves no residue. It can be applied and re-applied in seconds to MARCH 2009

North American importer • 818 W. Evergreen Ave., Chicago, IL 60642 • 888-707-4455 • MMR 109

The EK Blessing’s Student Trumpet The BTR-1275 Trumpet from EK Blessing is an instrument exclusively designed for students, and is only available to school music dealers. The BTR-1275 is made from American brass. Nickel and monel materials provide the foundation for strong, resilient durability and performance intended to stand the test of time and the rigors of student use. The trumpets are all handmade in Elkhart, Ind. Throughout the development and construction of every BTR-1275, over 100 quality control procedures are in place. MSRP: $975.00

Peace Musical’s Bass Drum Stands Broadening its range of products for marching and concert band, Peace Musical introduces two new bass drum stands. Joining the BDS-1 in the Peace catalog, the

BDS-2 is a compact, collapsible stand designed to accommodate 10” depth marching bass drums. Rugged yet lightweight, the bass drum stand has rubber grips that provide cushioning as well as sonic insulation. For the concert band that employs Scotch bass drums, the BTS-1 is an adjustable, double-braced marching bass drum stand primarily for concert band and orchestra. It can accommodate a range of bass drum sizes, and at its greatest height extension the bass drum fairly towers over the ensemble for impressive visual effect, and making it useful for signaling cues.

Zoom’s H4n Packs More Into its Next Handheld Recorder Than Ever As the leading manufacturer of portable handheld recorders, Zoom is pleased to introduce the next generation in its line, the H4n. With a focus on new features and improving the user experience at every level, the H4n is also Zoom’s most sophisticated handheld recorder to date. Zoom’s H4n offers superior, built-in X/Y stereo condenser mics that allow variable recording patterns at either 90° or 120°. Audio quality is improved through its new digitally controlled, high-quality mic preamp and the ability to use internal and external mics simultaneously for 4channel recording. A large LCD screen, a

more intuitive interface and onboard reference speaker will take the user’s recording experience to the next level. “We have learned a great deal from the success of the H2 and H4, and have continually sought to bring the most important improvements to our designs,” says Masa Iijima, CEO of Zoom Corporation. “Our new H4n confirms our commitment to this category while bringing users substantial improvements to their experience.” For example, Zoom has incorporated several of the most popular features from its H2 to the H4n such as Broadcast Wave Format (BWF) compatible time stamp and track marker functions and its auto-record and pre-record features so you never miss a moment. Of course, the H4n records high-resolution audio at 24bit/96kHz on SD/SDHC media of up to 32GB and is USB 2.0. The H4n is also the most robust recorder from Zoom, with a rubberized, shock resistant body for improved chassis protection, all-metal microphone design and a built-in mounting joint for tripod and mic stand use. For musicians and songwriters, the H4n has a more user-friendly multitrack recording capability along with Hi-Z Inputs for recording guitar and bass, variable speed playback capability for “phrase training”, onboard studio effects, and over 50 guitar and bass amp modeling settings. In addition, a new stamina mode enables the H4n to operate for 10 hours continuously on a single set of AA batteries. And as always, Zoom places an emphasis on value, including everything you need to get started with the H4n. The package includes a 1 GB SD card, wind screen, mic clip adapter, AC adapter, USB cable, protective case and Cubase LE recording software. An optional remote control is also available.

Buffet Crampon Adds Bass Clarinet to Green Line Buffet Crampon USA’s newest addition to their Green Line family of woodwind instruments is the Green Line bass clari110 MMR

MARCH 2009

net. Green Line woodwind instruments are said to offer durability and resistance to atmospheric variations of humidity and temperature. Composed of 95 percent African black wood (also known as grenadilla wood) and five percent epoxy resin, Green Line instruments retain the acoustic properties of the wood while remaining resistant to cracking. Buffet Crampon also offers professional Green Line B-flat, A and E-flat clarinets, as well as the 3613G professional oboe. The Prestige bass clarinets (1183G and 1193G) represent the culmination of the Green Line evolution. The prototype Green Line Prestige bass clarinet with range to low C was play-tested domestically by Buffet Crampon Performing Artists including J. Lawrie Bloom of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Andre Moisan of the Montreal Symphony Orchestra, Alcides Rodriguez of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Marci Gurnow of the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra. Buffet Crampon Green Line bass clarinets are now in production and will be available at Buffet Crampon USA Dealers throughout North America.

Access Bags and Cases Stage Three Custom Case Concept The Stage Three Custom (S3C) case concept from Access Bags and Cases features a modular foam body insert. The universal body insert is designed to easily and permanently mate with stock, off-the-shelf S3C cases. Guitar makers can have form-fitted foam body inserts tooled for each of their specific models or shapes.

BWE Amplifiers and Effects BWE Amplifiers and Effects are a new line of solid-state guitar and bass amMARCH 2009

plifiers and effects pedals developed in a joint venture between Gary Wolk of QMP sales and Doug Bischoff, formerly of AXL products. The line currently offers a three and four-watt mini amp, 10 and 15-watt guitar amps, and a 15 and 50-watt bass amp. Also available are 4x12 cabinets and distortion pedals. All amps are simple, straight ahead, practice/rehearsal amps with a traditional look, easy to manage controls, and custom speakers. The Super and G-Series amps feature a closed-back design, sturdy large metal corners, and feature an aux in for external audio devices. The GM series mini amps feature a real wood cabinet, steel plate chassis, and a four-watt drive mode selector. The sturdy 4x12 cabinet comes with locking heavy-duty castors. The BD-1 distortion pedal has a solid metal shell, two distortion options, and is available in gold or silver. Sales and marketing will be handled through QMP Sales, and US distribution will be through US Band and Orchestra Supplies in St. Louis Mo. The amps carry an MSRP from $59.99 to $489.99.

Eventide Adds to It’s Line of Effects Pedals The PitchFactor Harmonizer stompbox features ten of Eventide’s Harmonizer pitch and delay effects as well as 1.5 seconds of stereo delay and simultaneous pitchshifting effects. PitchFactor features 100 presets, instant program change, true bypass, tap tempo, three footswitches for immediate preset access, and MIDI. Useable in mono or stereo, with line- or instrument-level inputs and outputs, PitchFactor is adaptable to a wide variety of guitar or bass rigs, studio, and live sound applications. The effects featured in PitchFactor include: Micropitch, Diatonic Shifter, Quadravox, Harmodulator, H910/H949, PitchFlex, Octaver, Crystals, Harpeggiator, and Synthonizer. Eventide PitchFactor is available in March 2009 and will retail at $599. Bootsy Collins is recognized as one of the most distinguished bassists in the development of funk music. Today he continues his more than thirty years of success in the music industry using Eventide’s TimeFactor effects pedal. TimeFactor includes nine stereo or dual mono delay effects, including Digital

Delay, vintage DDL, Tape Echo, Modulated Delay and Ducked Delay, as well as Band Delay, Filter Pong, MultiTap Delay, Reverse Delay, plus a 16 second vari-speed Looper. TimeFactor offers real time control of all the parameters via 10 knobs, expression pedal, or a MIDI foot controller. TimeFactor has 40 presets and features tap tempo, MIDI clock sync, line and instrument inputs and outputs, USB for software upgrades, and true analog bypass. It is housed in a rugged cast metal construction featuring reliable metal footswitches for direct preset access.

RapcoHorizon’s Dominator The Dominator SilverFlex line features instrument and microphone cables in two different configurations. The entire SilverFlex line in Dominator is jacketed with a rugged TechFlex outer skin and a clear inner conductor to add durability to the cable. SilverFlex Series speaker cables are available in 12 and 10 gauge sizes with bare annealed copper conductors, all of which are silver-plated and “megastranded” for enhanced performance and lower capacitance. The Dominator Gold Tuned guitar cables are manufactured using the four different types of Dominator wire and include additional components inside each of the connectors that tune the output of the guitar to the input of an amplifier or effects pedal.

Breaking News Find it in the Hot News section of MMR’s Web site, MMR 111

Rock House Method “T

he biggest issues with guitar instruction methods before we started Rock House were:

It wasn’t cool, the existing approaches did to work in terms of effectiveness, They did not represent the current audience or today’s musicians of influence, or the way people learn in this era and most important students were not getting all they could from their favorite artist.” Explains Joe Palombo co-owner/co-founder of Rock House.“People get home and they have a video that outlines some techniques or demonstrates how to play a particular song, but they’re kind of on their own. We wanted to come up with a different approach – one that was more effective and really helped create new musicians.

“We looked at the issues and asked, ‘How do we solve these problems?’ The thing that sets apart Rock House is that John [McCarthy – co-founder], who is a principle player from the business side of things, is also an extremely accomplished musician. Having a key figure in the company who can also understand things from a musican’s standpoint is something that makes us unique.” “The first step was to get artists to understand that we built a better mousetrap,” says McCarthy. “We don’t just put out one product with a given musician, like other companies have done in the past. In most cases, each artist we work with ultimately has a minimum of two, and more often four or five, products with us. Most important is what this does for the student and the retailer. If someone likes an artist and is willing to buy an instructional product from them, aren’t they likely to buy two or three? “What happens when the student is done with only one product that is, like, 40 minutes long? He or she is left frustrated, stuck, and wanting more. We solved that problem by working with each artist to reveal all that they do and who they are as musicians. It gives the students all they need to really delve into an artist’s style and gives the retailers more to sell from popular guitar players of influence in this era. You can’t have a guy like Alexi Skolnick or Vernon Reid and expect to really help people learn their full musical story in one DVD.”

The Name Game The Rock House Method’s credibility is convincingly bolstered through the enlistment of some of contemporary music’s most respected names as instructors. Current artists affi liated with the 112 MMR

Joe Palombo and John McCarthy.

program include: Doug Wimbish, Bernie Worrell, Marc Rizzo, Rusty Cooley, Dave Ellefson, Rob Arnold, Will Adler, and Jeff Loomis, among many others. “We didn’t want to just hire musicians and throw them on a DVD,” says Palombo. “Their thing isn’t really teaching, most of them; their thing is performing. Our approach allows the artist to have as much involvement as they like. Then the instructors we have on staff study each artists’s style to fashion the lessons that will be taught in a particular program. They work together with the musicians, who have fi nal approval over the end product. Not only did we get really premier talents to get on board, but because we have the instructional DVDs and we have the Web site, it allows us to only put MARCH 2009

‘meat’ on the DVDs. All the ‘fat’ is off. All of that extra stuff is on the Web and when people want it, it’s there for them to access. That’s part of the whole trick to what we’re trying to accomplish, which is really getting people to learn in a meaningful way.”

Creating Musicians – And Marketing to Them Since Palombo and partner John McCarthy introduced the Rock House Method in late 2002, it has become “the fastest growing and most widely used musical instruction system in the world.” Joe is quick to point out what distinguishes his company’s system of music education from other methods: “We’re really teaching is technique, not just songs. Creating musicians one lesson at a time is what we’re trying to do here. “Rock House is an actual house. We have loads of gear, so it immediately makes the artist comfortable. While here, we train the artist for two to three days, with them on camera in our in-house studio, so they get a feel for it, then we take them to the big studio to shoot the DVDs.”

MARCH 2009

And Rock House knows the musicians they’re creating – really knows them. And that can benefit the companies Rock House partners with “What we did was to create a unique way to identify the people,” Joe explains. “We can actually identify who they are – which guitars they have, the whole thing.” The Rock House registration system gathers customer data that Rock House collaborators can draw upon to can to craft well-informed marketing campaigns. “The system allows us to identify each customer by the specific product titles they have,” says Palombo. “This helps customers, who receive more effective training and can benefit from a thriving community, and it also provides in-depth information about their preferences, buying habits, and background.” To spread their message, Rock House has partnered with a number of big- (and not so big) name manufacturers. To date, the suppliers that carry Rock House products inside their entry level instrument packs include: Peavey, Washburn, Casio, Silvertone, Ovation, Ibanez, Ashton, Frontera, Behringer, SX, Volcano, Martinez, Spectrum, Richwood, Coast Music, Bur-

swood, Jay Turser, ESP, Jim Deacon, Power Group, Switch Music, Valencia, and Mahalo. Additionally, Rock House also collaborates with EMG, GHS, and Moody Leather Guitar Straps on various ventures. “This whole explosion happened with the mass market, we saw it coming,” says Palombo. “We knew it was coming and, because of that, since 2002, nearly four million guitar boxes that were sold around the world have had a Rock House DVD in it. That’s at least four million people who got their first experience of learning from Rock House. Of course, not everyone sticks with the program and registers, but we have over 160,000 users registered at the site and that grows by 150-250 per day.”

Looking Ahead “I just see this continuing to grow – I can’t see how it wouldn’t,” offers Joe. In addition to reasonable pricing (on average between $20 and $30 per title) and an effective distribution network via Music Sales, the expectation seems reasonable. “We have a truly unique and marketable system and I hope more and more get on board,” Joe Palombo says.

MMR 113


Ernie Ball’s Traditional:

Family First, American Made Always On the Eve of the Company’s 25th Anniversary of Purchasing of Music Man, Family Looks to Future


he Ball family continues as it started with Music Man guitars – a family business making guitars and basses

exclusively in the United States. It’s a point of pride. It’s a statement. But most of all, it’s a personal preference. 114 MMR

As just one example, Music Man production could have easily been moved off shore, but that’s not the least bit appealing to Sterling Ball. “It’s a pure quality of life issue,” he shrugs. “I think it’s great when people do that, and get their instruments to a $300 to $600 price point. But I don’t have to, and [thus] I don’t want to have to worry about what someone will fi nd when they open one of our cases.

“If business gurus looked at [my books], they would fi nd things they don’t understand. But we’re in control of our own destiny. People should do what makes them happy, and “happy” to me is making new instruments.” In addition to celebrating the 25th year union of Ernie Ball and Music Man, the company is also taking the opportunity to shine the light on Ball Family Reserve (BFR). BFR is a celebration of our MARCH 2009

heritage in instrument craftsmanship, which features some of the finest figured tone woods and finishes available. These heritage pieces will be offered in limited runs and allow us to present instruments to the public that were previously reserved for family and our loyal artists. “Ball Family Reserve is a line where we get a lot of freedom,” Sterling says. “Basically it’s instruments we make for artists, family, and friends not available to public. We just did some redwood top StingRays that are great.”

and we make people lie, cheat, and beg to see everything we as an industry have to offer under one roof.” Ball has plenty of other opinions about the business, and he is happy to share them. He says the industry as a whole too often sits and waits for something to happen, and sites the recent video guitar games that are popular. “We’re the only manufacturer featured in both Rock Band and Guitar Hero,” he says, lamenting why anybody in this business would

Oprah is on TV, and they don’t know the local venues where live music is played. If you want to be in the business, why not have a relationship with your customers?” When Ball surveys the retail landscape, he sees the biggest problem is that too many retailers are trying to be something they aren’t. “Everyone is trying to be Guitar Center, from pricing to sourcing and beyond. If the big box is a semi, then the Mom and Pop store needs to be a sports car. Be nimble and handle the corners.”

If business gurus looked at [my books], they would find things they don’t understand. But we’re in control of our own destiny. Closer to You Also great is the marketing savvy the company has shown from day one, something that continues to be refi ned and become more sophisticated. But whether it’s assembling different combinations of string gauges, providing packaging that pops, supporting national “battle of the bands” contests, or having the owner personally engage in online forums, it all amounts to getting up close and personal with the customer. “I want to get as close to the customer as I possibly can,” states Sterling Ball. “Overall, I feel our industry’s manufacturers are afraid of the consumer – as perfect evidence of this, I point out that the public can’t get into the NAMM shows. It’s insanity to me that it’s one of the largest music capitals of the world, MARCH 2009

look down at the $10 billion phenomena. He recalls there was a concern a few decades ago when Pac Man, Asteroids, and their ilk burst on the scene – concern about it taking away from the MI business. But he saw that that generation was merely multitasking. No longer were kids content to be just a baseball player or just a guitarist, but were putting their energies into several areas at once. “I thought the dumbest thing you could do was try to alienate that or fight it.” As to the idea of hosting events in an MI store around these games, he says: “Why wouldn’t you make your store a place where kids would want to come by? I travel and see stores, and I don’t think enough retailers ‘shop’ their own store. They don’t see it as kids see it – they have the dog lying by the cash register, and

It’s certainly the road that Ernie Ball Company has driven. For a quarter of a century now, Ernie Ball’s name has been synonymous with the revered Music Man brand. The long history began with one of Music Man’s founders, Tom Walker, being Ernie Ball’s first Fender rep when he ran a shop in Tarzana, Calif. When the opportunity to buy the company came up in 1984, Ernie and Sterling jumped at it. “At the time, I was 28, and I had this crazy idea to make guitars that were European-influenced, more ergonomic,” he says. Working with guitar maker Dudley Gimpel, they introduced the popular StingRay 5, the first all-new Music Man bass built in San Luis Obispo. “I was blind with excitement, naive that we could make guitars in America.” MMR 115

Reflecting, he says, “I look back on the past 25 years and while we’ve had nowhere near the impact of a Leo Fender, we’ve made guitars longer than he has. I am very proud of that fact.” Sterling says they still make it all in America, made to order, and boasts that he has the greatest dealer network in the world.

Battle of the Bands Among the many marks Sterling Ball has made on his father’s company is his groundbreaking support of the Vans Warped Tour, which led them to also partner with festivals including Clapton Crossroads, Taste of Chaos Tour, and

Mayercraft Carrier 2 (this is in addition to their own Battle of the Bands, which is now a year round event). It’s the association with the Warped Tour and founder Kevin Lyman that has garnered the most exposure. Lyman is on record as saying that he sees record companies continued decline as inevitable, and it’s up to MI manufacturers like Ernie Ball to step up and support new music so to inspire the next generation to pick up instruments. Lyman has high praise for Sterling, too. At 2007’s Summer NAMM he said: “Sterling taught me a lot about business. He never thinks inside the box—just

look at his NAMM display! His program for the Warped tour has been the most successful in finding new bands and supporting new music in general.” “Kevin [Lyman] and I have a handshake, no contract,” he says of their collaboration. “I started that Battle of the Bands 15 years ago over a napkin with Kevin. It started out pretty good – first we had 1,000 people show up, then 1,500, and then 2,500. Then Brian [Ball] got involved, and he really understands that demographic well and created a community.” Last round their contest in the show attracted 25,000 bands vying for the chance to play the event.

and he would become a profession steel guitar player and would do a tour of duty in the U.S. Air Force Band during the Korean War. After that, he ended up back in LA, where in 1957 he opened what many consider the very first music store in the country to sell guitars exclusively. His operation had a teaching store, and he saw the frustration of kids trying to play on the heavy strings that came with Fender Guitars. When Leo Fender rebuffed his suggestion for thinner strings, he launched the Slinky string. It was so popular that in 1967 he sold the

store, moved to Newport Beach, Calif., and built his company with the help of his son, Sterling. Today Sterling’s sons, Brian and Scottie, are firmly entrenched in the business. “Brian and Scottie make it really exciting and compelling to stay involved,” Sterling says, adding: “The experts say the third generation has a 16 percent chance of succeeding, and I know everybody thinks their kids are great, are smart, etc., but I feel very fortunate to work on something my dad started, that I now can continue to grow with my children.”

Ball Family History For those uninitiated, the stellar Ball’s family musical history goes something like this: In 1878 Ernst R. Ball was born. Trained at the Cleveland Conservatory, he would go on to become a respected songwriter penning such gems as “When Irish Eyes are Smiling” and “Mother Machree.” His work landed him in the Songwrtier’s Hall of Fame. His son, Roland, would sell cars and teach Hawaiian steel guitar on the side, and would become the largest publisher of Hawaiian music. Roland “Ernie” Sherwood Ball was born in Santa Monica in 1930, 116 MMR

MARCH 2009

Even today, when he could be surfing, flying his plane, or at least dialing it down a bit, Sterling is still personally making contact with his customers. He participates regularly in an online forum (he goes by the moniker “Big Poppa”), and has 11,000 posts and exchanges with players. He uses the online forum to show fans things before even the dealers see them. If he’s tinkering with a new headstock, if there’s something they are working on with the Ball Family Reserve, etc. He still has time to stop and tip his hat: “I have great competitors,” he says. “They are all good and do different things. It makes it really exciting and fun. “Paul Reed Smith, Tom Anderson – really nice. We all talk. I’m friends with Richard Hoover [of Santa Cruz], the people at Collings, the Line 6 guys … we all talk, though it’s funny that there’s not much of a relationship with Fender and Gibson.”

Despite all his success, Sterling Ball has recently taken on a second career, one that entails a 23-year-old boss. His official title is President of Team AK Inc., the “A.K.” up and coming golf pro Anthony Kim. Kim, who has just been a pro since 2006, is the first American under 25 to win twice in one year on the PGA Tour since Tiger Woods did it in 2000. Sterling negotiates and advices Kim on a range of issues, and while he’s not giving up his day job, he does say it allows him to give sons Brian and Scott “a little more room” to run Ernie Ball. As for his future, “I’ve never done a projection,” he says. “I can say that as long as we’re around, every guitar that comes out of our shop is as good as the last one. Also, I’m not out of ideas – yet. They may not all be good, but the creativity energy is still here. We’ll see where it takes us.”

Tune in profits with the OH-11 Clip-on Tuner

• • • • •

The Third Generation Scott Ball is in the Music Man division of the company, and is known for experimenting with woods. “I thought nobody would want a Music Man with a walnut maple top, but he made it happen, and it’s taken off,” Sterling says proudly. “I work with my dad and engineers on new product, specifically a lot of BFR,” says Scott Ball. Being involved in music was something he always wanted to do because when he was growing up, “dad always had a lot of guitars lying around.” Most recently Scott has been involved in “tweaking” and improving on BFR John Petrucci 7 string guitar, which they’ve made only about 1,000 of. “Realistically, [the family business] is always something I’ve had a lot of pride and passion for,” says brother Brian. “Growing up around the company, I always looked up to Dad and Grandpa, and just always had an interest in doing it.” Brian is credited for his work with the Vans Warped Tour, which he’s been involved with since 2000. Since 2003, he’s worked in artist relations, and “just had a blast doing that.” And what about … working with/ for Dad? MARCH 2009

12 note full range chromatic tuner with back light Works by picking up vibrations, so it’s not affected by ambient noise Clips to most instruments Super compact size and price... easy sale Excellent dealer margin (A mark +)

Oasis, Inc.

“You know, it’s actually really positive,” Brian says, not hesitating. “I can’t say enough how great it is to learn from my dad. Scott and I, we all work with each other daily, and Dad involves us both in important decisions and our opinions are valued. And there’s not a day that goes by that I don’t wake up hungry to go to work.” “It’s a lot of fun working with Dad,” Scott concurs. “It’s cool to take good concepts and ideas, and work them through to fruition. It’s great to be able to learn from him, and that he’s opened the door for me to contribute.” Sterling’s third son, Casey Lee, is studying classical guitar. When he was younger, he fell ill and needed a kidney. The replacement came from Sterling himself. The company went on to start a pediatric kidney foundation, and today it’s the largest private kidney foundation in the country. One of its many contributors is Jim D’Addario of D’Addario strings – “Jim has been unbelievably generous to the foundation,” Sterling says. “We compete like mad dogs in the market place, but we’re great friends.”




Resilient like your fingertip,

so it will not create tuning problems. • 707-876-3001 MMR 117

Supplierscene Wooten Joins Hartke Hartke welcomes bassist Victor Wooten to its family of artist endorsees. Wooten recently used Hartke HyDrive cabinets and LH1000 amplifiers on the SMV world tour. In addition to his solo career and collaborations with various artists, Wooten has been the bassist for Béla Fleck and the Flecktones since the group’s formation in 1988.

Soloff Endorses Sonaré Sonaré Winds announced that trumpet legend Lew Soloff has joined other internationally recognized players in performing on Sonaré Trumpets. Lew Soloff, who played with Blood, Sweat & Tears, is currently a regular in Carla Bley’s 4X4 group and her big band, and remains a founding member of The Manhattan Jazz Quintet. He continues to appear as guest soloist at universities around the country, has been on the faculty of the Manhattan School of Music for nearly 20 years, and is an adjunct faculty member at Juilliard and New School.

Hal Leonard’s High School Musical 3 Display Contest To celebrate the availability of its High School Musical 3 songbook, on the day of the movie’s release, Hal Leonard sponsored a contest to see which of its retailers could come up with the most creative HSM3 display to entice customers into their stores. Bookmark Music in Pacific Grove, Calif. redesigned their storefront window featuring Hal Leonard products and movie memorabilia. Beacock Music 118 MMR

in Vancouver, Wash. got their head in the game with a colorful display to grab shoppers’ attention. Rieman Music in Urbandale, Iowa had separate displays for each of the three HSM movies, and hosted a HSM karaoke contest. As a reward for their efforts, each of these winning retailers received a Disney gift card redeemable at Disney stores, theme parks, and resorts. Hal Leonard offers more than 200 titles featuring music from the HSM franchise. Complete descriptions and song lists are available on-line.

SKB Sponsors the John Lennon Educational Tour Bus SKB is now a sponsor for the John Lennon Educational Tour Bus - a non-profit, mobile audio and HD video recording and production facility. Since 1998, the Bus has provided free, hands-on programs to hundreds of high schools, colleges, Boys and Girls Clubs, music festivals, concerts, conventions, and community organizations. Working together with some of the biggest names in music, the Lennon Bus encourages students to play music, write songs, engineer recording sessions, and produce video projects using the latest audio, video, and live sound equipment. The Lennon Bus is committed to providing students with increased access to music, audio, video, and broadcast technologies. The program works together with local part-

ners to create free events for middle, high school, and college age students to tour the bus, and participate in the production of music, video and digital photography projects reflective of their ideas and concerns, regardless of their levels of expertise.

Parts Planet Heads to Frankfurt Parts Planet brand parts for guitar and bass will make its debut at this year’s 2009 Frankfurt Musik & Light Show at the Frankfurt Messe, April 1st – 5th. Parts Planet is being distributed solely in the U.S. through JT Musical Inc. Italybased Music Gallery will be offering the complete Parts Planet line to distributors and dealers around the world, which will include tuners, bridges, knobs, and electrical components.

Hal Leonard Inks Deal with DrumFun Hal Leonard’s senior vice president of sales Doug Lady and DrumFun president Spencer Strand have reached an agreement for Hal Leonard to exclusively distribute Strand’s Turn It Up and Lay It Down line of play-along CDs for drummers. The deal went into effect on January 1st and covers all trades, worldwide. The Nashville-based company had previously self-distributed its products. Turn It Up and Lay It Down CDs aim to give drummers of all skill levels tools for learning how to become well-rounded, successful musicians. Playing along with bass lines and music-minus-drums backing tracks is designed to help develop the key qualities of working. Endorsed by institutions including Berklee College of Music and the Drummers Collective and Percussion Institute of Technology, the series covers a wide range of musical styles, from rock, funk, jazz, Latin, Afro-Cuban to heavy metal. Hal Leonard will initially distribute the nine volumes currently available, and subsequent Turn It Up and Lay It Down MARCH 2009

America’s Premier Guitar & Bass Parts Supplier

releases. Turn It Up and Lay It Down CDs retail for $12.95.

Samson Celebrates with Yoshiki “Joe” Hoshino Joe Hoshino and the Hoshino Gakki Company were one of the first manufacturers to collaborate on wireless products at the inception of Samson Technologies. Joe recently retired from Hoshino on October 31st, 2008, after 48 years of service.

cy which can provide the fastest transients, maximum clarity, defi nition, and presence possible. The double shielding and graphite dielectric provides superior noise rejection while maintaining a maximum electrical resistance is only 32ohm/ Km - extremely low noise. Heavy-duty Neutrik connectors in straight-straight or straight-angled configurations are said to offer hassle-free performance. Optional gold-plated and patented Silent connectors by Neutrik offer players signal purity. Available in three, five and seven meter lengths, each cable also comes with a Limited Lifetime Guarantee. MSRP starts at $49.95

No Price Increases in 2009 from Grover Pro

Scott Goodman, president; Doug Bryant, vice president of engineering and Mike Ketchell, product manager for Samson visited Matsumoto, Japan to celebrate Joe’s retirement. After joining Hoshino in 1960, Joe was the first person sent by the company to live in the United States. His mission was to learn about the music business and meet music dealers so that he could help plan future business direction. When Joe returned to Japan, he directed merchandise planning at Tama and Ibanez and led the development of many products.

JT Musical to Distribute Tabacco Cables JT Musical Inc. has announced that it is the sole North American distributor for new Tabacco, professional grade instrument cables direct from Italy. Over the last 40 years, Vincenzo Tabacco has built, repaired, and modified amps for some of Italy’s most revered players and is also known for his pedalboard creations. Tabacco’s cables consist of a thickstranded conductor made up of 72 thin pure copper wires to achieve full low-end response with transparent high frequenMARCH 2009

Grover Pro Percussion announced that they will have no price increases for their Grover line of concert percussion products in 2009 and will be lowering pricing on two products - woodblocks and chime mallets.

Delta Series by GOTOH 1:21 ratio


Send $4 US for COLOR CATALOG 13027 Brittmoore Park Drive, Houston, Texas 77041

Tri-Technical Systems’ New Executive Appointments Tri-Technical Systems announces the appointments of several key executives, including the following: Paul Acton, president; Pat Murphy, executive vice president technology; and Greg Cox, executive vice president operations. “The recent growth and ongoing success of Tri-Tech can be attributed to the leadership of these three individuals” said David Cox, Tri-Tech’s founder and CEO. “The executive team will continue Tri-Tech’s strong commitment to providing leading edge technology to the music retail industry including existing product suites AIMsi, PC/Poll, and active-e.” AIMsi is a completely integrated POS and business software application that was first offered to music retailers in 1984 and continues to be enhanced in order to meet the ever-changing needs of retailers. MMR 119

Supplierscene PC/Poll is a developer of RS232 and TCP/IP cash register polling and back office software solutions and was acquired by Tri-Tech in January of 2007 in order to expand their retail software offerings. Active-e is an e-commerce solution containing three primary features:

business to business; consumer to business; and an e-commerce suite which offers the retailer a secure internet presence with a shopping cart. All active-e offerings are closely tied to the AIMsi application.

Bay Area’s Piano Technicians Get Ritmüller’s Inside Story Russell Kassman owner of R. Kassman in Berkeley, Calif., decided to invite members of the Bay Area Piano Technicians Guild to his store to learn more about “The All New Ritmüller” pianos.

The Piano Technicians seminar was held January 30 at Mr. Kassman’s store in Berkeley and conducted by Lothar Thomma, renowned piano master designer and the impetus behind the Ritmüller redesign program. The lively question and answer period lasted for nearly an hour. Guests later dined while being entertained by a pianist at the keys of a new Ritmüller GH160R.

Lauren Keiser Music Publishing Lauren Keiser, the veteran music publisher, has started Lauren Keiser Music Publishing (LKMP), an ASCAP publisher and Keiser Classical, a BMI house, new publishers of music print publications, rental library, CDs, DVDs and music rights. He has acquired the assets and music copyrights of MMB Music in St. Louis and is joining them with his new publishing program in creation of a 360 degree “serious music” entertainment company. The company is presently in negotiations for other acquisitions. Lauren Keiser is presently the president of the Music Publishers’ Association of the United States and on the Board of ASCAP’s Symphonic and Concert Committee. 120 MMR

MARCH 2009


Business Opportunities

Classified Advertising To place an ad, please call Maureen at 800-964-5150 x34 or email

• 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

Payment by: Visa, MC, Amex or Check Classifieds must be paid in advance. Symphony Publishing 21 Highland Circle, Suite 1, Needham, MA 02494 • Fax: (781) 453-9389

Business Opportunities Piano Tuning LEARN AT HOME

with approved home study course.

American School of Piano Tuning 1-800-497-9793

Visit our website: Tools Included - Diploma Granted

MARCH 2009

Breaking News Find it in the Hot News section of MMR’s Web site,

MMR 121

Visit the Classifieds on the Web:

Business Opportunities

Dealers Wanted

For Sale URL and Website For Sale THIS IS A VERY POPULAR WEBSITE FOR SELLING UKULELES. Price includes $100,000. in inventory $950,000 For info 808-870-5953

Breaking News Find it in the Hot News section of MMR’s Web site, 122 MMR

For Sale Small, unique music store in upstate New York is selling its inventory. Great dealer buys on electric and acoustic guitars, hand percussion, accessories and more. Considering offers on business, too. Interested parties should write us at

CLASSIFIEDS on the MOVE! check for daily updates!

FOR SALE Beautiful central Florida Well-known music store, Located 24 years on East Coast! All inventory/xtures, turnkey! Major brands, full-line. No real property. 8 + studios Owners have aging parents. Call PM only 321-723-6489 Or 321-725-3047 MARCH 2009

Visit the Classifieds on the Web:

For Sale

Help Wanted

MUSIC STORE FOR SALE ON MAUI Have you ever dreamed of living in Hawaii? This could be your chance! Full Line Music Store in Paradise. All inventory and xtures included. Most major lines are represented. Established in 1979 $1,800,000 For info 808-870-5953

Help Wanted Gretsch Foundation Gretsch Foundation has two openings: Controller Manager and Operations Manager. Work in Savannah, GA. 5-10 years experience required. Please send resume and letter detailing experience to

Merchandise HARD SHELL PLASTIC CASES Flute $9.00, Piccolo $6.00 Clarinet $10.00, Oboe $12.00

ELKHART CASES 1-800-582-0319

Wristies® fingerless gloves Warmth for hands-dexterity for fingers! Find out why so many musicians are wearing them for practice and performance. Wholesale, retail and quantity discounts available. 800-811-8290



For Classified Sales Call Maureen 800-964-5150 ext. 34 • MARCH 2009

MMR 123

Visit the Classifieds on the Web:

Merchandise 1,000,000+ And Counting!


Over one million posts on our world famous Piano Forums, and growing. More than 11,000 unique visitors stop by Piano World every day.


Be smart, advertise your piano related business on the most popular piano web site in the world. Home of the world famous Piano Forums.

Ready to Advertise, or Still Need Convincing?

Visit ... Today!


Asian High Quality No other supplier offers superior service before, during and after the sale. You get what you pay for!


1-800-782-2694 North American Music 11 Kay Fries Drive Stony Point, NY 10980 Fax: (845) 429-6920


Oboes & Bassoons

We create the finest hand-crafted Oboes & Bassoons. Also replacement 5K Bassoon Bocals.

Linton Woodwinds Corporation, Jack Linton 1013 Alma St. Elkhart, IN 46514 U.S.A. PH: 1-866-220-2909 Fax: 574-266-7658 E-Mail:

Guitar Show Operators

Promote your show dates and reach every guitar dealer in the US through the classified pages of MMR. Call Maureen

800-964-5150 ext 34 124 MMR

MARCH 2009

Visit the Classifieds on the Web:


Repair Tools BOW REHAIRING Expert Bow Service

Order forms,Pricing and Shipping label at: Violin bows as low as $10.00 per bow in quantity incl. shipping (see website for details.) Large inventory of replacement parts both new and vintage. IRA B. KRAEMER & Co. Wholesale Services Division

“An industry leader since 1967” 467 Grant Avenue, Scotch Plains, N.J. 07076 Tel: 908-322-4469 Fax: 908 322-8613 e mail:

Carter Steel Guitars P.O. Box 851324 Mesquite, TX 75185-1324 USA Info: 1-972-475-2324 FAX: 1-972-412-7353 Made in the USA

Miscellaneous BAND INSTRUMENT REPAIR VIDEO Save $$$ on repair expense. Earn extra income. Journeyman repairman offers “How To” videos on the repair of brass and woodwind instruments. For information write to: B.I.R.V. Co. 880 Slater Rd. Bellingham, WA. 98226 (360) 384-6707

Repair Tools FAST TURN-AROUND ON STOCK REPAIRS NATIONWIDE NAPBIRT member, 26 Years Experience Contact: Dan Rieck, 801-733-4243

For 60 years we have provided musical instrument repair tools to technicians and musicians around the world. We have a wide selection of pads and other supplies in addition to our repair tools. Contact us today for a FREE CATALOG.

For Classified Sales Call Maureen

800-964-5150 ext. 34

Reps Wanted Sales Representatives Wanted!!

INDEPENDENT SALES REPS Sales Reps Wanted Band & Orchestra Instruments Most territories open A Great Job! AMERICA LONGXING

Michigan-based Brass, Woodwind and accessories line. Join a great new organization with an “artist-endorsed” product. Competitive Commissions with incentive. Contact: 734-384-1705

(718) 706-0828 Ask for Paul

CLASSIFIEDS on the MOVE! check for daily updates!

MARCH 2009

MMR 125

Visit the Classifieds on the Web:

Seeking Employment


Pianos/Digitals/Organs I Don’t Sell, You Don’t Pay Closer for hire! 20 years experience Outside promo specialist • 561-379-4718


(800) 222-2888

(310) 830-3362 (FAX) •


with Lone Wolf Trucking

is a “grand” idea!

An independent, long-distance Mover specializing in coast-to-coast residential Relocation.

1-800-982-9505 Alamogordo, New Mexico. 88310

ICC MC-256289

Guitar Show Operators Promote your show dates and reach every guitar dealer in the US through the classified pages of MMR. Call Maureen

800-964-5150 ext 34 126 MMR

Used Band Instruments

Vintage Instruments

Clarinets and utes from $50 Alto Saxes from $250 Trumpets and Trombones from $100 French Horns and Baritones from $395 Clarinets and Flute repad $69 Alto Sax repad $149

Call Jimmy Hayes 800 559-4472

Used 4 Less Music

Breaking News Find it in the Hot News section of MMR’s Web site,


WE, BUY, SELL, TRADE and ship worldwide. Written APPRAISALS available. GRUHN GUITARS, 400 Broadway, Nashville, TN 37203

(615) 256-2033

fax (615) 255-2021 MARCH 2009

Jazz Education Network


is dedicated to building the jazz arts community by advancing education, promoting performance, and developing new audiences. The Jazz Education Network was founded in the spirit of collaboration and excellence. Our goal is to be a vital resource for a constantly evolving art form that lives globally.

Who we are: students, teachers, directors, musicians, composers, authors, fans, media, industry...WE are YOU!

Full Individual Membership (18 and up) - $50

lead the transformation of the jazz education culture

eJEN Membership Levels:

(18 and up) - ($35/25)

Partner Membership Levels:

Festival/Event- $100 Institutional - $300 • Corporate - $500

Affiliate - $25 Annual Fee + $10 per person/member 17 and under categories to be launched soon! Please check the web site for updates.


For complete membership information/benefits please visit us at:



Access Bags and Cases Allparts America Longxing Inc. American Way Marketing LLC Anderson Silver Plating Antigua Winds, Inc. ASC


Blue Book Publications Inc. Cecilio Music Colorado Case Company LLC Colorado Case Company LLC Composite Acoustics


D’Addario & Co. DANSR, Inc. DANSR, Inc. Direct Import Assistance Corporation Dunlop Manufacturing Inc.


Eastwood Guitars Eleca International EMD Music Inc. EMG Inc. Essential Sound Products FDW-W Fitness Audio


GCI Technologies George L’s Hal Leonard Corp. Hall Crystal Flutes Inc. House of Troy HW Products


IBC J.M. Linton Musical Instrument JHS


Kaman Music Corp. Kawai America Corp. Ken Smith Basses Ltd. Keystone Electronics Kurzweil Music Systems Kyser


Levy’s Leathers Ltd. LM Products Lowrey Organ Co.


Metropolitan Music Co. Mono Case 128 MMR





The Music People


48-49 61 82 76

117 119 81 11 47 19 26-27 53

44 119 76 113 81 34 21

NAMM National Educational Music Co. National Music Funding NS Design

91 72 81 97 105

Oasis Inc P & D Wholesale Pearl River Piano Group Peavey Electronics Peterson Tuners Petrof USA PianoDisc Pioneer ProDJ

15 24 36 100 39




Real de los Reyes Rock House Rode Microphones, LLC Rodgers Instruments LLC


106 82 65 89 90 57 94

92 39 9 77 30 100


83 cov 3 43 17 8 8

22-23 73 45


85 110

Saga Musical Instruments Samson Technologies Corp. Shane Music Products SHS International Shubb Co. SKB Corp. Sonaré Winds Super-Sensitive Musical String Co.


Tech 21 The Enterprising Rabbit TKL Products Corp. ToneGear


Vandoren Vandoren Vandoren Vic Firth, Inc. Vic Firth, Inc. Visual Sound


Wave Angle Winkler Woods Wittner GmbH & Co. KG Wm. Rees Instruments Wood Violins (Mark Wood Music Product


Wyman Piano Yamaha Corp. of America Yamaha Corp. of America Yamaha Corp. of America Avedis Zildjian Co.


47 55 94 33

37 3 87 5 117 59 38 107

cov 2

24 36 109 32 99 cov 4

1 96

108 92 69 98


95 35 25 31 13

MARCH 2009

Kawai Congratulates Our 2008 Pinnacle Award Winners

DEALER OF THE YEAR Large Market (5 or more locations) Schmitt Music - Minneapolis, MN Wayne Reinhardt

DEALER OF THE YEAR Large Market (Fewer than 5 locations) Southern Keyboards - Marietta, GA Silas Lyon

Kawai Canada Music Merriam Music - Oakville, ON Alan Merriam




Piano Clearing House - Peekskill, NY

Farley’s House of Pianos - Madison, WI

Jerry Porter

(Single Location)


(Medium Market)

of the Year

Renée & Tim Farley

Chris Pfund




Lacefield Music - St. Louis, MO

Piano Warehouse - San Marcos, CA

Turner’s Keyboards - Augusta, GA

Dennis James

Lisa Turner Maddox

(Large Market)

Cathy Krubsack

(Large Market)

(Small / Medium Market)

TOP SALES PERFORMANCE (Small Market) : Schertz’s MusiCenter - Bloomington, IL

DEALER OF THE YEAR Professional Products

Sam Ash Music - Hicksville, NY

Bob Brennan & John McFadden (Accepting for Sam Ash Music)

(Photo Not Available)

Kawai America Corporation • 2055 E. University Drive • Rancho Dominguez, CA 90220 •

MMR March 2009  

Summary Product Introductions Best &amp; Worst Awards M a r c h 2 0 0 Piano Retailers – Facing ’...

MMR March 2009  

Summary Product Introductions Best &amp; Worst Awards M a r c h 2 0 0 Piano Retailers – Facing ’...