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BASICS: Piano Retailers Embracing Education
Show Report: Summer NAMM NEW, DIGITAL VERSION: www.mmrmagazine.com
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Contents SEPTEMBER 2011 VOL.170 NO. 9
Back to Basics – Piano Dealers Embracing Education
By delving deeper into music education – taking a more active role in creating new players and rekindling a sometimes long-dormant interest in former keyboardists – some dealers are finding effective ways to boost sales and remain competitive even in a difficult retail climate.
Cover design by Laurie Chesna
26 UpFront Q&A: Dennis Murphy
Vice president of GE Capital, Dennis Murphy, sits down with MMR to discuss what his organization aims to provide for music merchants, and the benefits of working with a skilled financial partner, overall.
44 New and Notable Piano & Keyboard Products
48 National Piano Travelers Association – Charting
We speak to Glen Cutter and Dawn DeMars – president and secretary/ treasurer of the National Piano Travelers Association, respectively – about the 107-year old group’s history, new initiatives, and outlook for the future.
52 Show Report: Summer NAMM
Attendance was somewhat down, but spirits were (mostly) up in Nashville this summer. As with most things in the current economic climate, one must take the bad with the good, but it was encouraging to see and hear so many standing strongly behind the
annual industry Show. We offer a summary of some of the key events, seminars, and the first-ever “Top 100 Dealers Awards,” as well as some reaction and insight from exhibitors.
61 Best & Worst of Show Awards 68 Unique Squared Mobile Studio Takes to the Road
Unique Squared, an otherwise Internet-only MI business, has embraced an approach befitting its name – taking a state-of-the-art mobile recording studio tour bus on a cross-country tour to educate and entice potential consumers.
In every issue: 4 6 22 74 79 88 90 96
Editorial Upfront People At a Glance: Arthur’s Music’s Amy Osborne New Products Supplier Scene Classifieds Advertisers’ Index
70 Forestone Japan: A New Reed Creed
A relatively new player in the U.S. market, Forestone Japan is looking to change players’ (and dealers’) perceptions of synthetic reeds.
72 Fresh Faces: Finely Tuned Music
76 Retail: Cripple Creek Music Co.
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 ©2011 by Symphony Publishing, LLC, all rights reserved. Printed in USA.
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Editorial Sidney Davis
Volume 170 Number 9 September 2011
How Are You Going To Create Traffic?
PUBLISHER Sidney L. Davis firstname.lastname@example.org
For those of our readers who may not be aware, Boston is a pretty good sports town, with all four professional teams having climbed “Mount Everest” winning at least one national championship during the past decade. Life was not always this good, though, and in the midst of a rocky stock market and recent pronouncement by the Federal Reserve forecasting a slow recovery through mid 2013, I am reminded of former Boston Celtics’ coach Rick Pitino’s comments during a prolonged losing streak. Referring to the halcyon days when the wearers of the shamrock were busy racking up a league-leading 16 championships, Coach Pitino vented his frustration to the press by declaring, “Larry Bird is not walking through that door, fans. Kevin McHale is not walking through that door, and Robert Parish is not walking through that door. And if you expect them to walk through that door, they’re going to be gray and old.” The message (although Pitino did not stay around long enough to complete the mission) was one of returning to the basics and rebuilding the team. In essence, the sports metaphor might well be applied to the state of the keyboard market which, in a real sense, is tied to a prospective buyer’s aptitude to learn, nourished by a feeling of accomplishment. For this month’s cover report (see page 30) we offer a supplier perspective on how their more successful dealerships are approaching a less than enthusiastic consumer. While education and teaching are not a panacea, it’s a far better approach than waiting for the showroom door to open. Steinway’s Anthony Gilroy makes the case, “The best dealers are putting efforts in education and seeing results. I think the dealers that have adapted through education programs, and seen opportunities with hosting recitals and getting students involved in their showrooms, end up seeing sales out of it.” Grotrian’s Burkhard Stein asks, “How are you going to get more people into the store? A good way is to install your own music store… this brings in students, their parents and teachers – all potential customers.” Hailun’s Basilios Strmec comments on the relationship between teacher and dealer: “A successful approach is for the dealer to have a teacher on their payroll, make education an integral part of the business… this way the teacher is more invested into the business, including moving pianos out the door.” Kawai’s Brian Chung cites the benefits of in-store teaching: “It builds relationships, creates repeat traffic and sells accessory items such as sheet music. Petrof’s Al Rich points to Blake Cooper an Atlanta piano dealer as an example of how to foster an educational climate. “They have in-store teachers and maintain a venue where they hold piano student recitals and concerts and they use a space on their web site to feature videos of past performances.” Yamaha’s Paul Calvin stresses the experience aspect of piano learning: “ Part of our program is to look beyond the instrument itself… getting the person involved in singing, clapping movement, an all inclusive approach. It’s important to give the new player a little experience at what it feels like to play their first song.” On a final note, while researching the piano market, one finds 937 brand names and “house brands” listed (many, many of a by-gone era) including the Starr Piano Company which, in 1912, claimed to be the “largest manufacturer of pianos in the world.” The Indiana-based company once had a facility covering 12 acres, employed 600 and produced 40 pianos daily, which were sold through 13 company stores and several foreign markets. The company later moved into phonograph records and, prior to fading from the scene, survived on making radio cabinets and refrigerators. For those seeking a piece of piano history, a Starr Piano Co. stock certificate is available from scripophily.net for $495…
ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER Rick Kessel email@example.com EDITOR Christian Wissmuller firstname.lastname@example.org ASSOCIATE EDITORS Eliahu Sussman email@example.com Matt Parish firstname.lastname@example.org CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Chaim Burstein, Dennis Carver, Kevin Mitchell, Dick Weissman ADVERTISING MANAGER Iris Fox email@example.com SALES & MARKETING MANAGER Jason LaChapelle firstname.lastname@example.org CLASSIFIED & DISPLAY AD SALES Maureen Johan email@example.com PRODUCTION MANAGER Laurie Guptill firstname.lastname@example.org GRAPHIC DESIGNERS Laurie Chesna email@example.com Andrew P. Ross firstname.lastname@example.org CIRCULATION MANAGER Melanie A. Prescott email@example.com ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT Popi Galileos firstname.lastname@example.org SYMPHONY PUBLISHING, LLC Chairman Xen Zapis President Lee Zapis email@example.com Chief Financial Officer Rich Bongorno firstname.lastname@example.org Corporate Headquarters 26202 Detroit Road, Suite 300, Westlake, Ohio 44145 440-871-1300 www.symphonypublishing.com PUBLISHING, SALES & EDITORIAL OFFICE: 21 Highland Circle, Suite 1, Needham, MA 02494 (781) 453-9310 Fax: (781) 453-9389 www.mmrmagazine.com
Upfront Unsolicited Proposal for Steinway Band Business; Company Announces New Chairman In July, Steinway Musical Instruments, Inc. announced that chairman Kyle Kirkland, CEO Dana Messina, Conn-Selmer president John Stoner, and certain members of management made an unsolicited proposal to acquire the Company’s band instrument and online music divisions. In connection with the proposal, Kirkland has agreed to step down as the Company’s chairman, a position he has held since 1995. The board appointed a Special Committee to consider this proposal and strategic alternatives. In addition, the board has appointed Michael Sweeney, one of the Company’s independent directors, to the position of chairman. Sweeney is currently chairman of the board of Star
Tribune Media Holdings and previously served as the president of Starbucks Coffee Company (UK) Ltd. “First, it was a profound honor for me to serve as chairman of the Company for so many years. Dana Messina and I have
always felt that it was our duty to maintain the integrity of this American icon, and I believe we have been successful despite many economic and competitive challenges,” stated Kirkland. “Second, although it was a difficult decision for me to step down, we felt it was appropriate to have an inde-
pendent director lead the board through the process of evaluating offers for company assets. Finally, I am looking forward to continuing as an active member of the board and will serve the interests of all our stakeholders with the same respect for our people and brands that I’ve always had.” In connection with Kirkland’s departure as chairman, the Company will recognize a severance charge of $1.1 million. Details of the management offer for the band and online music businesses have not been disclosed. There can be no assurance that any potential purchaser or the Company will enter into a definitive agreement for any transaction or that any transaction will be completed.
Sweetwater Opens Expanded Retail Store Sweetwater Sound celebrated the opening of its greatly expanded retail store on August 2nd at the Sweetwater campus in Fort Wayne, Indiana. The expansion was the result of Sweetwater recently becoming the exclusive authorized Yamaha piano and Clavinova dealer in the region, including northeastern Indiana, Northwestern Ohio, and South-Central Michigan. A press conference was held on August 2 and included Fort Wayne Mayor Tom Henry, Yamaha national sales
director Bob Heller, and Sweetwater founder and president Chuck Surack. There was a “passing of the torch” between Fred Myers Pianos owner David Myers, who held the Yamaha dealership for 28 years, and Chuck Surack. The passing of the Yamaha dealership to Sweetwater was especially fitting since Surack bought his first keyboard instrument, a Wurlitzer A200 electronic piano, from Fred Myers in 1975. David Myers presented Surack with the framed copy of the original receipt for
Sweetwater’s expanded retail space also accommodates more product lines from its huge warehouse and shipping facility, plus a Roland Foresta display of Roland keyboards. 6 MMR
that transaction during the event. Since the original Sweetwater retail space was completed in 2006, the company has added an additional 3,500 sq. ft. to the store, almost doubling its footprint to 7,500 sq. ft., in order to accommodate the new piano and keyboard inventory. The added space also includes the area’s largest Apple products display, plus room to display additional product lines from Sweetwater’s on-site warehouse and shipping facility.
From left to right: David Myers of Fred Myers Pianos, Sweetwater founder and president Chuck Surack, Yamaha Keyboard Division district manager Don Smith, Yamaha National David Myers presents Chuck Surack with sales director Bob Heller, Pianist Mike Garson the framed invoice of Surack’s purchase of (on the tv screen), Yamaha designer/mara Wurlitzer A200 electronic piano from Fred keting consultant Craig Knudsen, and Fort Myers Pianos in 1975. Wayne Mayor Tom Henry. SEPTEMBER 2011
Upfront Daddy’s Junky Music Announces ‘Restructuring’ In a press release issued on July 27th, Daddy’s Junky Music, Inc. announced changes to their retail store strategy, “in response to changes on the retail landscape brought on from the impact of the current economic conditions.” CEO and founder Fred Bramante states in the release, “Daddy’s was most successful when we had 12 retail locations within rea-
sonable proximity to our headquarters and warehouse. Many markets have changed and it no longer makes sense to service those markets with retail storefronts. We have indentified 7 such markets, and will move to close those locations in the near future.” Bramante adds that, going forward, “We will provide a better presentation in markets where our experience tells us
GC Opens Store in Alabama, Sixth New Outlet in 2011
The storefront of Guitar Center’s new Huntsville location.
Offsetting the recent spate of MI storeclosings and chain “restructurings,” Guitar Center continues to barrel ahead. On Thursday, July 28, GC hit a milestone as it opened its 220th store, its newest retail location in Huntsville, Alabama. A 14,202-square-foot location, Guitar Center Huntsville also features Guitar Center Studios, an on-site lesson and rehearsal facility.
Lamond to Deliver Keynote at 4th IMC World Forum on Music The organizers of the 4th International Music Council (IMC) World Forum on Music recently announced that NAMM president and CEO Joe Lamond will be presenting a keynote address at the 4th IMC World Forum on Music on September 29 in Talllinn, Estonia. In keeping with the overall conference theme of “Music and Social Change,” Lamond will address the role of commerce and the music products industry to create access to music making for people of all ages and NAMM’s ongoing music education advocacy efforts. “NAMM is honored to support this gathering and is grateful for our ongoing participation with the International Music Council, which provides a forum for international dialogue and diplomacy for everyone dedicated to music making,” Lamond said. “I look forward to the gathering in Tallinn this September, and 8 MMR
communicating the vision and mission of the music products industry that joins with the noble goals of IMC to support and expand the right of all to learn and make music.” IMC presents its World Forum on Music (WFM) as a global knowledge-building platform on music and society in the 21st century, which explores a variety of topics from diverse perspectives: cultural, political and economical. The IMC World Forum on Music is considered one of IMC’s main contributions to setting the stage for the celebration of music in the world. At this year’s 4th edition, speakers and participants from six continents will discuss the correlation between music and social change. The forum is part of the Tallinn 2011 European Capital of Culture program. Registration is open at www.worldforumonmusic.org
a brick & mortar presence still works for Daddy’s. Our online presentation will continue to play a larger role and, in tandem with our 12-stores, presents the appropriate format to service our customers and position Daddy’s for success in the future.”
Drum Headquarters Closing
After 30 years of serving musicians in the St. Louis area, Drum Headquarters is closing its doors for good. Citing the difficulty of continuing to operate in the current economic climate, owner Jim Uding told local television station KPLR,
“I question some management decisions, but it’s not one thing; It’s not one person. It’s a perfect storm that created a wave that I cannot continue to ride out.” Drum Headquarters ended the third and final phase of a liquidation sale in early August.
Open Door Music to Close
After 22 years in business, the Open Door Music store in Saugatuck, Mich. will be closing its doors on Labor Day. “It has become increasingly difficult to keep up with the changes due to electronic media,” said co-owner Ron Elmore in a press release. “We have provided expert advice for 22 years, and a great venue for people to come in and hear before they buy — something we did long before the big box stores or Amazon.”
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Upfront Ashdown/Hayden Appoint Musiquip as U.S. Distributor Musiquip Inc. has been appointed the new exclusive U.S. distributor for Ashdown Music and the British company’s two primary brands: Ashdown Engineering and Hayden Guitar Amps. “Having the chance to represent a proven leader like Ashdown while in-
Gemeinhardt Acquired by Angel Industries
On June 25th, all the assets of The Gemeinhardt Company and its manufacturing facility in Elkhart, Indiana were acquired by Angel Industries Co. Ltd of Taiwan. Established in 1948 by Kurt Gemeinhardt, the Gemeinhardt Flute Company has, since 1993, been under the ownership of investment banks. The past few
years have seen a much closer working relationship develop between Gemeinhardt’s management and their major supplier, Angel Industries Co. Ltd in Taiwan. This has enabled recent significant growth in Gemeinhardt flute sales, along with increasing dealer demand to extend the Gemeinhardt brand name in to other areas of woodwind instrument manufacturing. Dave Pirtle, president and CEO of Gemeinhardt comments, “We have been working for this day for the past few months with the goal of introducing these new arrangements seamlessly and thus ensure continuity for our manufacturing, staff, customers and suppliers. This really is great news for Gemeinhardt; I’ve been here for over 29 years and at last can feel that this totally secures our future.”
troducing an exciting, younger brand like Hayden to the American market is a
fantastic double opportunity,” says John Kelley, Musiquip’s general manager. “Both Ashdown and Hayden fit perfectly
into the Musiquip family of best-inclass European brands that have exciting growth potential stateside. We’ll be working closely with Mark and his team to turn Ashdown into the USA’s premier bass amp, and Hayden into a household name in guitar amps.”
Strike at Conn-Selmer’s Eastlake Plant Conn-Selmer, Inc., a subsidiary of Steinway Musical Instruments, Inc. (NYSE: LVB), announced on July 26 that employees with Local 2359 of the United Auto Workers (UAW) went on strike at the company’s Eastlake, Ohio manufacturing facility. The Company’s labor contract with the union expired on February 15th and hourly employees have been working without a contract since that time. The UAW represents approximately 230 employees at Conn-Selmer’s Eastlake brass instrument facility. This equates to 28 percent of the band segment workforce.
The company anticipates it will be able to meet most customer needs for several months with its existing finished goods inventory, production from its Indiana brass instrument facility, and foreign sources. “The company has been negotiating in good faith with representatives of the UAW for the past six months,” commented John Stoner, president of Conn-Selmer. “In light of the economic environment, we believe we put a fair offer on the table. While we have reached agreement in many areas, we are still divided on some issues. We hope to resolve the situation as quickly as possible.”
Kingsburg Pianos Now in U.S. Yantai Kingsburg Piano Co. and DOREMI USA (Authorized distributor) have announced the introduction of Kingsburg Pianos to the US marketplace. Founded in 1988, Yantai Kingsburg piano Co.,Ltd was created after a merger between Yantai Longfeng (the original piano manufacturer) and the Yantai Huaxin Group and has grown into a
modern piano manufacturer with a production capacity of nearly 10,000 pianos annually. All Kingsburg pianos have been designed by Klaus Fenner, who previously designed pianos for Yamaha, Seiler, Baldwin, and other well-known brands. All Kingsburg pianos come with a 12year warranty.
Dept. of Justice Filing in Gibson Case A June 4 filing by the U.S. Department of Justice in a civil case over illegal wood against Gibson Guitar lays out details of its case, according to the Environmental Investigations Agency. The filing by Dept. of Justice prosecutors filing to strike claims by wood supplier Theodore Nagel and Gibson stated: “Gibson sourced its unfinished ebony wood in the form of blanks (for use in the
manufacture of fingerboards for Gibson guitars) from Nagel (in Germany), which obtained it exclusively from Roger Thunam (a supplier in Madagascar). Madagascar prohibits the harvest of ebony wood as well as the exportation of unfinished ebony wood.” The filing also quotes internal Gibson e-mails: “[A] Gibson employee…wrote that ‘[t]he true Ebony species preferred SEPTEMBER 2011
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Financial Steinway Revenue Up 14%
by Gibson Musical Instruments is found only in Madagascar (Diospryos perrieri). This is a slow-growing tree species with very little conservation protection and supplies are considered to be highly threatened in its native environment due to over exploitation.’ In fact, [he] spent two and a half weeks in Madagascar this June ,’ writing on his return, ‘I represented our company along with two other guitar manufacturers… All legal timber and wood exports are prohibited because of wide spread corruption and theft of valuable woods like rosewood and ebony.’” ”On February 25, 2009, in a reference to the potential long term solution, [he] wrote… that the company Maderas Barber ‘has been in the business a long time and may be able to help begin some legitimate harvests. Mr. [Roger] Thunam on the other hand should now be able to supply Nagel with all the rosewood and ebony for the grey market.’” The prosecution asserts that Gibson and Nagel do not have legal “standing” to claim ownership over the seized ebony because it is contraband, or inherently illegal to possess, “both because it was unfinished wood and because Claimants’ source for ebony in Madagascar was not authorized to sell it.” The court is now being asked to determine whether to strike the companies’ claims for this reason.
Pulse of the MI Nation Compared to last month, sales are now...
Up 35% Compiled from replies to MMR’s ongoing online survey of MI retailers. Visit www.mmrmagazine.com to participate...
On Thursday, August 4th, Steinway Musical Instruments, Inc. (NYSE: LVB) reported earnings for the quarter and six months ended June 30, 2011. Second Quarter Results • Sales of $89 million, up 14% • Gross margin increased to 29.8% from 28.3% • Income from operations of $3 million • Adjusted EBITDA of $7 million • Adjusted earnings per share increased to $0.17 from $0.09 YTD Results • Sales of $162 million, up 10% • Gross margin increased to 30.2% from 29.6% • Income from operations of $7 million • Adjusted EBITDA of $13 million • Adjusted earnings per share decreased to $0.23 from $0.26 The Company incurred a $2.4 million loss on extinguishment of debt when it redeemed $85 million of its bonds in May. Also, as a result of the transition to full public ownership, the Company incurred $2.7 million in non-cash charges for additional stock-based compensation. The bond redemption, Class A stock transaction and impairment charges associated with a closed plant impacted earnings for the quarter by $0.26 per share. Legal and consulting fees associated with these transactions further reduced earnings by $0.03 per share. In addition, operating expenses increased due to the reinstatement of salaries and benefits which were reduced during the economic downturn. Piano Operations Second quarter results showed a continued rebound in the Company’s piano business. Over the prior year period, unit shipments of Steinway grand pianos rose 25% in the U.S. and 14% in overseas markets. Shipments of mid-priced pianos were at prior year levels. The shift in mix towards higher margin Stein-
way grand pianos in the U.S. and improved manufacturing efficiencies led to improved gross margins in the piano segment. The Steinway Hall building in New York City continued to adversely impact earnings, generating a loss of $0.05 per share for the quarter. Band Operations Second quarter revenue improved over the prior year period as a result of a 15% increase in unit shipments of brass and woodwind instruments. Gross margins improved as better manufacturing performance offset substantial increases in raw material costs. Labor Negotiations Commenting on the work stoppage at one of the Company’s band manufacturing facilities, CEO Dana Messina said, “We currently employ over 800 people in our band division, with nearly 600 working in production roles in the U.S. The plant on strike accounts for approximately 23% of our band division revenue. The primary objective in these current negotiations is to keep our costs competitive and these jobs in America. Management continues to work with the union representatives to resolve outstanding issues and we remain hopeful that we will be able to negotiate a reasonable and fair agreement.” Outlook Discussing the remainder of 2011, Messina said, “We expect to see continued increases in the demand for pianos and band instruments for the remainder of the year. We’ve seen a fairly steady improvement in the U.S. and, despite the financial upheaval in Europe, we’ve seen good results there as well. Given our current operating leverage, we should see gross margin improvement and better profitability as we progress through the year. We do have some short-term operational challenges at a striking band plant, but expect to see better results at all of our other manufacturing facilities.”
Upfront SLM Named Exclusive Distributor for Nagoya Suzuki Violins for the Americas St. Louis Music (SLM) recently announced that it is now the exclusive distributor of the Nagoya Suzuki violin line in North, Central, and South America. Effective immediately, all sales of the Japanese string instruments throughout the Americas will be arranged through St. Louis Music. “It was just last year when we secured the honor of distributing these fine instruments in the U.S., so we are pleased to be further trusted to bring them to more players throughout the western hemisphere,” says SLM VP Jim Eaton. “Key is our abil-
ity to invest in inventory, and we have already made a substantial commitment in stocking Nagoya Suzuki products here in our St. Louis warehouse.” He adds that SLM VP Jim Eaton with Nagoya the central shipping location, Suzuki Violins advanced logistics capabilities, and the experience of the SLM management, sales staff, and the shop personnel influenced the decision.
Martin Partners with Applied DNA Sciences C.F. Martin & Co. has partnered with Applied DNA Sciences (www.adnas.com), creator of patented, DNA security solutions to protect products, brands and intellectual property from counterfeiting and diversion. As a result, according to both companies, Martin’s customers will be protected by the “gold standard” in forensic anti-counterfeiting systems. “People around the world know the high level of quality
that is inherent in each and every guitar that features the C. F. Martin logo, and protecting our intellectual property is of vital importance, as we face new counterfeit-related challenges at home and abroad,” said Chris (C. F.) Martin IV, the sixth-generation Martin to serve as company chairman and CEO. The two companies plan to announce further details about the partnership, including timing of implementation, later this year.
Vic Firth Opens West Coast Location
Vic Firth Co. has announced the opening of a new West Coast artist relations office. Located at CenterStaging in Burbank, Calif., the new Vic Firth office is situated in a hotbed for artist-related activity, with some of today’s top bands and artists rehearsing on-site daily. “We’ve officially become a bicoastal operation,” states Joe Testa, director of artist relations. “This move not only allows us to service our current artists much more efficiently, but also to scout out new, up-and-coming talent quickly.” Staffing the office will be Ben Davies, Vic Firth Company’s current artist relations manager. “I’m really excited about being back in California,” states Davies. “I am originally a West Coast guy, so this is like a homecoming for me. Our artists are extremely supportive and excited to have a Vic Firth office out here.” The West Coast office will feature a showroom area with onhand inventory, a media lounge, and a photo and video studio. Additionally, the office will enable visiting artists and tour personnel to experience Vic Firth’s products firsthand. 14 MMR
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Upfront Alfred Launches Sheet Music Rental Library Division Alfred Music Publishing has announced the launch of its Rental Library Division, offering hundreds of band, choral, and orchestral works to performing ensembles. Alfred’s Rental Library represents the works from many of the world’s most beloved composers with a robust collection of pop, movie, and musical selections including “Gone with the Wind,” original soundtrack arrangements from “The Polar Express” and “Harry Potter,” selections from classic Lerner & Loewe musicals, and much more. The Alfred Rental Library features Christmas favorites, including “The Many Moods
of Christmas Suites,” “O Holy Night,” “Nuttin’ for Christmas,” and “Navidad Nuestra,” among many others. Music directors from amateur to professional ensembles around the world may search titles and even request a perusal score to hundreds of titles via the online portal alfred.com/rental. Orders initiated through an online form are available for fulfillment internationally For more information about Alfred Rental Library services, selections, or for a quote, visit alfred.com/rental or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Shure Names S.K. Macdonald Rep of the Year Shure Incorporated has named S.K. Macdonald as the company’s Representative of the Year for fiscal year 2010/2011. President Perry D’Angelo receiveded the award at the recent InfoComm Show in Orlando, Florida. S.K. Macdonald was founded by Samuel K. Macdonald in 1926,
and has represented Shure in the MidAtlantic region since 1933. The company maintains offices in Reisterstown, Maryland, and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
The Shure Sales Team with Rep of The Year Winner S.K. MacDonald. Pictured from left to right are: Mark Humrichouser, Jose Rivas, Perry D’ Angelo (S.K. MacDonald), Kevin Smith, Jim Schanz, and Al Hershner.
Grand Opening of Zildjian West Coast Office The Avedis Zildjian Company recently held an open house to celebrate the opening of its new West Coast Artist Relations Office in the CenterStaging complex in Burbank, Calif. Zildjian first opened a West Coast Artist Relations office in
1982 in West Hollywood; In 1989, the office relocated to Studio City, Calif. More than 200 Zildjian artists and industry friends stopped by to check out the new West Coast Artist Relations Office, as well as Zildjian’s new Gen16 office. The event featured a selection of Sound Lab Prototypes for artists to play and provide feedback. Artists included Vinnie Colaiuta, Gary Novak, Sheila E, Airto Moreira, Russ Miller, Gil Sharone, Marvin “Smitty” Smith, Teddy Campbell, Aaron Spears, Nisan Stewart, Gorden Campbell, Kenny Aronoff, Luis Conte, Ronald Bruner Jr., Danny Seraphine, Mike Malinin, Michael White, Vince Wilburn and others.
2011 Wholesaler Guide Additions Connolly Music Company 8 Vernon Valley Road East Northport, NY 11731 (631) 757-0110 (800) 644-5268 Toll-Free Orders Fax (631) 757-0021 E-mail: email@example.com Web site: www.connollymusic.com John Connolly III, President Categories: PS/R, S&F, ETH, ACC Principal Brands: Strings – Thomastik-Infeld, Corelli, D’Addario, Jargar, Larsen, Pirastro, Prim, Super-Sensitive Stands and Pro Audio accessories – König & Meyer, The Realist, Mighty Bright Instruments –Heinrich Gill, Bazzini, The Realist, Bernd Dimbath, Bows – Coda Bow, Sebastian Dirr, Herbert and Christian Wanka, Georg Werner, Glasser Fittings – TempelGermany Shoulder Rests – TempelGermany, Kun, Wolf, Playonair, Resonans, Bridges—Aubert, Despiau, Teller Cases – Heinrich Gill Accessories—Wittner tailpiece fasteners, Fine Tuners, Mutes, Rosin, Polish and cleaner, Peg Compound, Tuners & Pitchpipes (Center Pitch and Intellitouch brands), Luthier’s Tools and parts, and more. Chesbro Music Co. 327 W. Broadway St. P.O. Box 2009 Idaho Falls, ID 83403-2009 (208) 522-8691 (800) 243-7276 Fax: (208) 522-8712 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Web site: www.chesbromusic.com Vanetta Chesbro Wilson, CEO Tana Jane Stahn, CFO Categories: S&F, PS/R, ACC, PRC, PM, P/KB, ETH Principal Brands:Tama, Ibanez, Anthem, Eleuke. CMC Perc., books & sheets of all publishers, consignment music programs, major-brand music instrument and accessories, display fixtures/literature racks, Futoro Primitive, Musi*Key reference publication, Chesbro Music, Designer Gifts, accessories incl. Hohner, Lee Oskar, Rico, Remo, Vic Firth, Vater, Pro-Mark, Macrolus, Mike Balter, TKL, Rapco, Dunlop, Martin, LR Bags, Ernie Ball, Mighty Mite guitar parts, Cleartone Strings
INTRODUCING THE ALL-NEW R8. An 8-track recorder, audio interface, control surface, drum machine, sampler and so much more. All for $299. ÂŠ 2011 Zoom | facebook.com/zoomusa | zoomfx.com
Upfront Korg Donates Musical Equipment to GAMA Korg USA recently donated musical equipment to support the Guitar and Accessories Marketing Association’s (GAMA) successful “Teaching Guitar Workshops” (TGW) program, conducted in partnership with NAMM and MENC. The purpose of the TGW is to introduce, as well as enhance, existing guitar programs in the classroom by training school music educators across the country. Korg USA donated Lâg guitars and over 200 Korg tuners to various TGW locations across the U.S.
Photo courtesy of GAMA
MySpace Sold to… Timberlake? News Corp has officially sold MySpace to the advertising firm Specific Media for around $35 million. While “Specific Media” may be unknown to most, ownership stake in the company will go to a name many are familiar with: musician, actor, former boy-bander, SNL skit-enhancer, and chronic boyfriend-to-the-stars, Justin Timberlake. Timberlake plans to focus MySpace more specifically on entertainment. “There’s a need for a place where fans can go to interact with their favorite entertainers, listen to music, watch videos, share and discover cool stuff, and just connect. MySpace has the potential to be that place,” Timberlake said in a statement. Of course there’s a bit of reverse
“art imitating life” at play here, given that Timberlake recently starred as entrepreneur Sean Parker in “The Social Network,” last year’s film which told the story of the early days of Facebook – the site which has decimated MySpace in terms of popularity and cultural relevance. News Corp purchased MySpace six years ago for $580 million and quickly began to lose advertising revenue due to Facebook’s growing popularity. While MySpace has certainly seen better days, the social networking site is nonetheless expected to generate over $180 million in ad revenue this year, making this seem – at least on the surface – to be a pretty good deal.
PMC Receives NAMM Foundation Grant The Percussion Marketing Council (PMC) recently announced that the organization was one of 35 recipients nationwide to receive a NAMM Foundation 2011-2012 program grant. The PMC’s “PERCUSSION! The Rhythm of Life Through Making Music” funding will help the further development and growth of the organization’s current Percussion In The Schools and Roots of Rhythm Programs. Percussion In The Schools is an educational in-school performance program targeted to introduce and provide profes18 MMR
sional percussion playing experiences to elementary through high school levels. Interactive concerts are presented to the complete school student body, inspiring children with first-time percussion instruction by PMC qualified professional facilitators and ensembles. During 2010 more than 32 in-school concerts were conducted by the PMC, reaching more than 11,000 students who experienced percussion for the first time. Roots of Rhythm produces multiple teacher/trainer workshops throughout the U.S. while working with a variety of
“Part of Korg USA’s mission is to foster music-making, and we are proud to support GAMA’s work to bring guitar instruction to the classroom,” says Michael Bradley, director of marketing at Korg USA. “We are pleased to partner with GAMA’s efforts to make music a priority in schools.” Since its inception in 1995, the TGW program has provided guitars, teaching accessories, and publications to participating teachers.
Hal Leonard to Distribute Olympus
Hal Leonard Corporation has reached an agreement with Boonton, N.J.-based Musical Distributors Group (MDG) to distribute popular PCM (pulse-code modulation) recorders from Olympus to music retailers throughout North America. Brad Smith, senior sales & marketing manager for Hal Leonard, and MDG President Steve Savvides signed the deal, which goes into effect on July 1st. Olympus digital linear PCM recorders provide better than CDquality sound, multiple recording formats, and plenty of internal memory, as well as removable SD media. High-sensitivity microphones capture every auditory detail and nuance. The Hal Leonard deal encompasses the entire line of Olympus linear PCM recorders, plus related accessories such as adapters and carrying cases. For more information or to place an order for Olympus products, visit www.halleonard.com.
Upfront educational venues including MENC, House of Blues Foundation and others. The program also provides week-long summer seminars by Roots of Rhythm author, Dr. Craig Woodson. Each event creates significant teacher and trainer
enrollments, allowing teachers to bring immediately applicable percussion learning and building curriculums to the classroom. This has reached tens of thousands of students since its creation and launch seven years ago.
Trade Regrets: Innovative luthier Travis Bean passed away in his home in Burbank, California on July 10th after a long battle with cancer. Partnering with Gary Kramer and Marc McElwee in 1974 to start Travis Bean Guitars, Bean’s ground-breaking instruments featured an aluminum center-section and neck, with pickups directly mounted to the aluminum. Praised for their increased sustain, though derided for their greater-thanaverage overall weight (much like the similarly innovative/quirky Dan Armstrong plexiglass guitars of a few years earlier), the instruments were embraced by the likes of The Grateful Dead and Rolling Stones and, in later years, have become favorites of The Arcade Fire, Sonic Youth, and others. Prices for vintage Travis Beans have soared in recent years, with the guitars regularly fetching between $3,000 and $4,000 (and higher). Kramer and Bean’s partnership was short-lived, with Kramer departing in 1975 to found Kramer Guitars. A Travis Bean documentary, “Sustain,” has been in the works for a while. On June 28, former NAMM Board member and longtime music retailer Bill McNamara recently passed away at the age of 94. While working for Thearle’s Music Store in San Diego, McNamara served on the NAMM Board in 1959 for a term and then again in 1964. He also served on the AMC Board in the 1970s. Dale Beacock, 81, founder of Beacock Music, Vancouver, Washington was killed when his bicycle veered into the path of a logging truck on
August 4. Mr. Beacock was a well known musician in the area. Beacock Music was founded in 1976 and is presently managed by Gayle and Russ Beacock. Dale Beacock was bicycling with his son, Russ, at the time of the accident. Alfred Music Publishing senior vice president, Gwen Bailey-Harbour, passed away on August 12. Bailey-Harbour began working at Alfred over 23 years ago and has had roles in marketing, sales, and operations within the organization. “We were blessed to have Gwen come to Alfred Music on June 13, 1988,” said Ron Manus, Alfred’s CEO. “Many of us knew her a long time. Over the last year, we have watched Gwen battle cancer. How she faced adversity with strength, conviction, class and character continues to be an inspiration for me. I know she is now at peace after a valiant battle. We are all mourning this incredibly tragic loss and we will celebrate her life and legacy as we pay tribute to this remarkable woman and dear, dear friend who we love so much.” Gwen is survived by her husband, Rod Harbour, and their two boys: Ethan Harbour (age 12) and Sean Harbour (age 8). A 529 College Fund as well as a Gwen Bailey-Harbour Memorial Fund have been set up to help with family expenses. For more information and to make a contribution, visit alfred.com/GwenBaileyHarbour.
People Carl Fischer Music has announced that Denise Eaton is now working for the company as choral/vocal editor. Eaton will oversee Carl Fischer’s yearly choral releases, working Eaton closely with composers. Denise Eaton has taught secondary choral music for nearly 30 years. A native Texan, she graduated from the University of Texas at Austin where she received a bachelor of music degree in education with emphasis in piano and voice. Mrs. Eaton has taken an active role in her profession and is currently serving as the immediate past-president of the Texas Music Educator’s Association. The Percussion Marketing Council (PMC) appointed Bob Jespersen and David Jewell as executive officers of the Percussion Marketing Council, effective immediately. The four PMC officers serve as equal co-executive directors, each responsible for specific areas of guidance, direction and benefit to all PMC members and the percussion industry. Bob Jespersen is the National Call Center director/ regional sales manager for KMC Music, Inc., headquartered in Bloomfield, Conn. Jespersen brings a wealth of experience with Jespersen all PMC programs, as he has spearheaded the use of many PMC activities, helping dealers realize the benefits of utilizing the PMC programs and initiatives to create more drummers and customers. David Jewell is the marketing manager of Yamaha Drums, headquartered in Buena Park, Calif. Jewell will assume direction over the PMC’s marketing strategies. He will begin direct Jewell involvement of the 2011 International Drum Month campaign and this fall’s National Percussion in the Schools Celebrity Concert. Shure Incorporated has announced the appointment of William Chan to managing director of its Shure Asia/Pacific 22 MMR
Business Unit, effective July 1, 2011. Chan joined Shure Asia as regional marketing director in 2008 and was promoted to deputy managing Chan director in 2011. As managing director of Shure Asia/ Pacific Business Unit, Chan will lead the Asia/Pacific team to oversee all sales and marketing activities and strengthen the presence of the Shure brand in the region. Coinciding with its 10th anniversary and a recordbreaking sales year, Guitar Center Professional (GC Pro) as announced the appointment of Rick Plushner to the position of vice Plushner president, effective immediately. Plushner joined the Guitar Center organization in September 2005 as general manager of GC Pro. At that time, the GC Pro division employed 18 staff members. His directive was to grow GC Pro’s sales force and develop the infrastructure to enable GC Pro to work in tandem with Guitar Center stores. Rick was promoted to director of sales in 2006 and then director of the division in 2008. Over the past six years, GC Pro has grown into a profitable division with four times the sales that it had in 2005, as well as a team of 75 employees. Guitar Center, Inc. has announced that music industry veteran Glenn Noyes has been promoted to the position of director of category management for drums and percussion. Noyes The announcement was made by Mark S. Nelson, vice president, drums and percussion division. Since rejoining Guitar Center in 2007, Noyes has served as category manager, overseeing drum sets, snare drums, cymbals and hand percussion. He has received multiple awards while at GC, including its Outstanding Service Award. In his new role, Noyes will oversee category management of all drum and percussion products for Guitar Center’s 219
stores across the United States. He will work closely with GC’s marketing department to provide input and build targeted promotions to drive sales as well as foster and maintain vendor relations. Glenn Noyes began working at Guitar Center in 1986 as drum department manager while continuing as a professional drummer working in and around the Los Angeles area. In 1987, Glenn helped create the Guitar Center “Drum Off” competition, which to this day continues to bring together thousands of the nation’s top undiscovered drummers for a chance to live their dreams while competing for prizes and national recognition. Noyes left Guitar Center in 1991 to become store/drum manager at West L.A. Music, a position he held until rejoining Guitar Center in 2007. Zildjian has appointed Adam Cocio to the new position of sales planning manager, drumsticks and accessories. Cocio will assume the responsibility for drumstick and accessory sales forecasting, production scheduling, artist requests, new product development, and promotions. In addition to his new position, Cocio will retain his responsibilities as the account manager for Best Buy. Atwell Curtis & Brooks, Ltd. recently announced an alliance with Joe Bednar, a forty-five year veteran of the music industry. Bednar joins The Atwell Companies as a liaison to the music Bednar industry offering commercial accounts receivable management services to manufacturers, distributors and suppliers. The Atwell Companies provide professional accounts receivable collection services, commercial credit reporting, and can offer a complete credit management department for a supplier or a distributor.
Breaking News! Find it in MMR’s Web site, www.mmrmagazine.com
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News Note from Joe .!-- 5 AND .!-- 5 /NLINE Attendance at NAMM University sessions at Winter and Summer NAMM continues to surge but online participation has not. Since introducing the NAMM U Breakfast Sessions and the Idea Center Sessions a few years backâ€“â€“and, more recently, the Hands-On Training (HOT) Zoneâ€“â€“attendance has increased substantially. The combination of the most important topics, as chosen by our Members, and quality presenters representing the very best of the industry have resulted in consistently packed rooms and provided great value to those businesses trying to get an edge on the hyper-competitive landscape in music retail today. To help support NAMM Members and empower them throughout the year, we have also created NAMM U Online, this website features some of the best offerings from the shows, as well as, extensive courses on ďŹ nancial management by Alan Friedman and retail sales by George Hines. You can choose from sessions on technology, lesson programs and social media. In addition, youâ€™ll ďŹ nd short videos of industry leaders sharing
visit us online at www.namm.org some of their best ideas and tips for success. While the site continues to be a work in progress, it offers a lot of great, interactive content designed to help our Members grow their businesses. However, Member trafďŹ c on the site has been so light, it makes us wonder if weâ€™re missing something. The premise of the NAMM U sessions at the shows has been simple: ask our Members what they want and then give it to them. The results have been outstanding. But with NAMM Uâ€™s online offerings, weâ€™ve not seen the same level of participation. Is online educationâ€“â€“at your ďŹ ngertips whenever you want or need supportâ€“â€“important to our retail community? And, if so, how can we adapt the NAMM U Online content to be more meaningful for you and your staff? Many of our Members have created informative websites that feature product and company content. Others have educational sites with online music lessons, and even basic information on instrument repairs. NAMM University and NAMM U Online are different; theyâ€™re designed speciďŹ cally to provide relevant, high-value and industry-speciďŹ c education programs for NAMM Members. And while the sessions at the shows are accomplishing that mission, in my opinion NAMM U Online has not. Please check it out at WWWNAMMORGNAMMU and give it a spin. Then call or drop me an e-mail with your thoughts and ideas. We want to make NAMM U Online as important to your success as the sessions offered at the shows. With your help, I know we can achieve that!
*OE ,AMOND s .!-- 0RESIDENT#%/
Get Connected with NAMM U Online NAMM U Online is a convenient supplement to the standard NAMM U Idea Center Sessions you see at the shows. It offers additional ideas, useful tips and a fresh way of looking at your business.
The website is packed with great information that you and your staff can access at any time and features topics such as sales, marketing, ďŹ nance, retail, lesson programs and technology.
Plug into this valuable Member resource at NAMMORGNAMMU
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