SPECIAL: DJ & LIGHTING
August 15 2007
VOLUME 24 NO.8

THE MAGAZINE FOR MUSICAL INSTRUMENT AND SOUND PRODUCT MERCHANDISERS

 

   
 

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FEATURE
We Cover it All!
For the second time, we honor instruments that get zero or little press...

A ‘Super’ Party on Kent Island
Experience PRS loaded up on celebrities, new products and much more. Get the full scoop...

‘Father of RMM’ Passes
Karl Bruhn, a tireless music industry devotee, mentored many and made awareness of health and wellness together a lifelong initiative.
Don’t ‘Skip’ this Story!
Skip’s Music Celebrates 30th Anniversary of its Special Event
Celebrating the 30th anniversary of your store being in business is an impressive feat. Celebrating the 30th anniversary of an idea you had at your store is utterly...
I Just Wanna Bang
on the Drums All Day
How is the Percussion Industry Doing? 2010 has been a tale of three seasons for many retailers to whom we’ve spoken. Sales for many in the first three months of the calendar year...
Your One-Stop Shop For The Holidays!
Heathcare Provision Could
Be a Nightmare

America the Beautiful

Not Doubting Thomas
Mendello Retires, Thomas Named Fender CEO

Music City Mystery


-The Latest, Industry, Dealers, People and Product Buzz and Showcases.

COLUMNS
-The Music & Sound Independent Retailer: We bring back our popular Independent Retailer Round-table. Providing four pages worth of answers are Gordy Wilcher & Lisa Kirkwood.
-Five Minutes With: We lend our ears to Marty Garcia, Founder and CEO of Future Sonics.
-MI Spy: Spy makes a visit to New York City to check out stores in both downtown and midtown. Service has to be good to win over discerning New Yorkers, right? We’ll find out.
-Dan the Man: Dan Ferrisi, with the help of occasional strategically placed SAT vocabulary words, discusses the prospect that the industry may have lost luster since a promising and upbeat January NAMM show.
-Birth of a Product Two former PRS veterans combined forces to found Knaggs Guitars. The story behind the Maryland- based company, which debuted a line of products at Musikmesse.
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Sales Guru: Sales persistence pays off. Just ask Gene Fresco
-Veddatorial: Dan Vedda provides a can’t-be-missed Summer NAMM synopsis.



FORMIDABLE FEMALES

-Catherine Polk: I’ve always had a great love for music. I come from a musical family of four girls. We mostly had a vocal background, but most of us played the piano. Also, my grandfather would...
-Cyndi Fritz: She never had a dream of becoming the next Janis Joplin. Although she has eclectic musical interests, a career in music was not necessarily on her radar. Cyndi Fritz was....
Janet Deering: When Janet Deering took an aptitude test at the conclusion of her high school career, she was told agriculture or sales were....
-Kathy How: Now here’s a story you don’t hear connected to MI every day. A woman who grew up in Cape Town, South Africa, studied medicine and later moved to England.
-Sarah Heil:We’ve all heard the stories about people beginning in the mailroom and later becoming the CEO of a major corporation. Those people are rare, but it does happen.
-Sue Avant is a trailblazer. She’s also someone who
has varied interests. And she is, indeed, formidable.


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What Music Students Want
[August 2007 - Page 2]
How does the cost of music lessons compare to other activities?

Student:
Guitar lessons are $18 per half-hour session. My yoga is $14 per one and a-half hour session. My children’s hockey lessons are $13 per half-hour class. My daughter begged for guitar lessons for over a year but we held off because juggling four kids and a husband who travels a lot keeps a lot on our plate. I viewed her interest as “non-essential,” but never thought that way about any sport. I’ve learned that guitar has become their art. This experience for them is as important as all the others.

Parent: Lessons at home are much more expensive than any other activities. My children’s sports generally range from $300 to $400 per season. Aidan’s crew team costs about $1,200 per season, however, crew is unusually expensive. Colin plays tennis in winter—$800 for four months. Guitar lessons are $100 perhour which averages out to $2,100 per semester per child. 

Teacher:
I also teach at a martial arts school, and we charge about the same as the local music store charges for lessons.


How much do you rely on the teacher’s advice when purchasing products?

Student: I appreciate that he doesn’t “push” merchandise sold at the store. Just by having lessons there, we purchase things periodically. We needed an amp for my son, the acoustic guitar restrung and cleaned up, a new case, and service on an electric guitar. The store staff is very friendly and knowledgeable.

Parent: He has given us lots of advice, but mostly about size and type—electric or acoustic—instead of particular brands. He and Aidan built a guitar together which was a really great activity, and we went with his recommendation on which kit to use. Aidan wants the best quality and the stores want you to spend as much as possible, so having an objective opinion is very valuable!

Teacher: They come to me for education, and therefore trust is established by the nature of the relationship. Right now, I have a student asking me about a lefty guitar around $1,000. Some are renting and looking to buy; others want to know if they should upgrade. Everyone asks about books and accessories, and sometimes even other instruments. I also arranged for my students to get a special discount at the local store.


How can stores make the lesson experience better?


Student: Offer more programs like “Master Class.” The store offers a one-week summer class that looks like fun, but it seems to be geared toward more serious players. How about guest musicians and more events or classes that get more students together? Wouldn’t it be fun to have a teachers’ concert where kids could watch their role models perform? That was the highlight of the Master Class for my son. He was able to play with his teacher on a stage. How cool is that?

Parent: For me, the convenience of lessons at home outweighs any perks from a store. However, I’d want consistency with a teacher so that my son could have a good relationship with him. Also, nice lesson rooms. 

Teacher: Better sound isolation—if it can’t be done physically, do it with the schedule. Have loud instruments together and quiet ones on other days. It’s not an easy problem to solve, but it’s crucial. Provide technology, such as a computer, some recording gear, and even just the basics such as a great sounding amp—that’s important for both the teacher and student. Don’t put the garbage that no one buys in studios; put what helps excite students about their lessons so they tell their friends about it!
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