The death of retail music stores

I really hate that those big Internet book stores are stealing all the business from the mom and pop shops!

<a few years later>

I really hate that e-readers are stealing all the business from the online book stores!

Progress both sucks and rules. And while I feel bad, sometimes, for not buying all my drum stuff from my local store, my local store has incredibly high prices. I can get drum heads for half the price online, and I have no need to 'test' a drum head in person to decide if I want it. It's the same reason I don't take my car to the dealer for an oil change.

I do agree that buying cymbals online is risky. Even with the modern trend of making a YouTube video or MP3, a cymbal's sound depends on so many factors (including which stick is used in the recording) that you're better off spending a bit more and buying them in person.

My rule is: if the local store has it at the same price as the online store (or cheaper, although this is rare), I buy local. Otherwise if I don't need to try before buy I just find the cheapest online retailer.

That's the world we live in.
 

Lovetadraw

Senior Member
It's a plot by Paiste because they are the only ones who's cymbals sound ultra consistent from one to another of the same model!!


I kid.
 
A

audiotech

Guest
It's a plot by Paiste because they are the only ones who's cymbals sound ultra consistent from one to another of the same model!!


I kid.
I almost didn't see the "I kid", lol. In my opinion Paiste Is much more consistent in their manufacturing process than the other two big boys in the market, but I would never use the word Ultra for any of them.

Dennis
 

kurth83

Junior Member
(oddly enough, Guitar Center being the main culprit).
I read an article on this a few months back.

GC was recently acquired in a leveraged buyout, a transaction where the buyer
borrows most of the funds for the purchase and then transfers the debt
to the company they just bought - I kinda despise LB's because of this.

As a result GC is in desperate straights, near bankruptcy,
most of their massive income is required to service the debt.
They are trying to grow their way out of it however by building more stores,
which unfortunately is a capital expense, increasing debt still more.

If they go chapter 11, and the press piece suggested it should be
happening around nowish, the repercussions to manufacturers
will be large, since many of them are sitting on huge accounts receivable
from GC that they would have to write off.

Edit: probably should have mentioned the article was posted here too. :)
 
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larryz

Platinum Member
For some reason (which the experts on here may know the answer to) cymbal prices seem to be comparable in the retail stores as they are online. My independent local shop has given me some great deals on new cymbals. Better than even some of the well known online places. Drums are a different story. Shops can't compare with online for the most part.

So I've just decided to buy all cymbals in at the shop.
 

CreeplyTuna

Silver Member
I'd love to take a drive up to Philly Drums sometime when I have some cash to spend and a buddy to tag along.

Right now I'm using Sam Ash, which is still an annoying drive. The best thing I can say about them is occasionally they get some great used cymbals. I was eyeing a nice Bosphorus ride last time I was there, and it was real cheap. Gotta save up, though.

The closest thing to me is a George's Music with a great crew but almost no drum gear. I just go there for sticks and maybe heads, but they don't have too many. They mainly have odds and ends like practice pads and cymbal felts. It's really a nice shop, though. I ordered some pairs of Vater Nudes from them because I just don't like being in that Sam Ash and I wanted to give them my business. Anyway, now they stock those same pair sticks, and I come in every now and again to pick 'em up. Fantastic.

They do have lots of guitars, and I know we have some multi-instrumentalists on the forum. If you're in the Philly/ King of Prussia area, seriously check them out.
 

AGiampa

Member
Had a great drum store out here in Ca that closed a few years back called west coast drums, The place and the people were awesome. Bad economy and sign of the times via internet sales forced them to shut down after almost 40 years in business,,,,,sad!!
I was saddened to learn a few months ago that West Coast Drum shut down during my unplanned/unwanted hiatus from drumming. I used to go there all the time for sticks, heads, parts, hardware... the occasional cymbal... Joe, Darren, Scott, Charles.... wonder where they all ended up.

So I'm just sitting here waiting 2+ weeks for a Cascio Interstate Catalog instead...

Though we still have Jim's Music, which started in Irvine and is now in Tustin. Never got to know those guys too much, and they don't discount too well. This is why the internet will always win.
 

FoolInTheRain

Senior Member
It's definitely a complex formula. Some shops thrive. Some don't. The ones that do just seem to do all the right things.....good location, impressive inventory, friendly staff, Internet presence, and the willingness to discount on large purchases. The last one isn't a total deal breaker for me. I'm just not the type to obsess over prices and discounts. If their prices are in line with everybody else, I will pay the asking price almost every time.
 

AGiampa

Member
It's definitely a complex formula. Some shops thrive. Some don't. The ones that do just seem to do all the right things.....good location, impressive inventory, friendly staff, Internet presence, and the willingness to discount on large purchases. The last one isn't a total deal breaker for me. I'm just not the type to obsess over prices and discounts. If their prices are in line with everybody else, I will pay the asking price almost every time.
Oh of course, totally... but there are places that put the MSRP on things and get people to pay them because the customer doesn't know. Or they act like a paltry discount is hurting them or whatever, or they are doing you a massive favor.

If I need something *now* I'm going to go to a store. If I don't, I'm internetting it, probably. =)
 

groove1

Silver Member
Our community is very fortunate to have a 5 star drum shop, but it sometimes seems like
they are just barely holding on, in spite of a good in house supply and the ability to get things quick. Sadly, they aren't big on jazz rides. I drove to the Steve Maxwell's Drum Shop
in Naperville, IL (midwest Steve Maxwell's) and can only imagine how good the NYC store is.
I purchased 3 rides while drooling over all the fantastic things I couldn't buy but lusted for.
 

Anon La Ply

Renegade
The circle of life. Nothing is forever, including iconic drum chain stores like Drum City / Billy Hydes / Allens in Australia. It's a new time where music is less front and centre and electronics and sequencing has an increasingly prominent role.

It's a shame. I love huge drum shops.
 
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DamoSyzygy

Guest
As a manager in a large MI retail store, I can tell everyone out there that the secret has a lot to do with creating desire for the customer and being able to adapt quickly.

SOme smaller stores who are doing well quite possibly owe their success (knowingly or not) to the fact that they may have a particular retail angle that customers identify with.

There are no hard and fast rules to go by in retail, but there are guidelines. How those are applied is where success or failure comes into it.

A lot should also be said for stores who try to grow too big, too quickly!
 

Eand

Member
I recently had the pleasure of checking out Vic's Drum Shop in Chicago. That was a sweet drum shop with dedicated rooms for cymbals, hardware, sets, and snares. It was just mind-boggling. I spent an hour in the cymbal room just trying out stuff. I finally got to play and hear Matt Nolan cymbals, Murat Diril, UFIP, Hammerax, Crescent, etc.,...

And the employees set out 3 stands for me, gave me a couple different sets of sticks, and left me there to play them. There was no weirdness about taking them off the display or playing them nice and loud. It was a great place.
 
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DamoSyzygy

Guest
Eand, you should email the store and let them know that theyre doing things right. Not enough good experiences from customer to retailer get shared.
It be a massive morale booster for them, and lets them know how to fine tune and improve their service standard even further.
 
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