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Went to Sam Ash.What A Joke.


angelgirl

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I went to Sam Ash in NJ today to look at some Keyboards and there hi end keyboard inventory gets smaller and smaller every time i go.I go there about 2 times a year and today when i went to see a hammond clone and a nord 4D and a cp4,they did not have them in stock.I can remember walking in there 20 years ago and they had the best keyboard selection around.I guess those days are over.
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Last time I was in Sam Ash Manhattan - just before SS Sandy - they had the best range of Keyboards and the most helpful staff I have encountered in any store anywhere.

A misguided plumber attempting to entertain | MainStage 3 | Axiom 61 2nd Gen | Pianoteq | B5 | XK3c | EV ZLX 12P

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It's sad. Guitar Center and Sam Ash are the big guns in South LA, too. You'd think their staff would be concerned with having the latest and greatest out AND demo-able. Not so much. Guess they don't want to sell stuff that bad.

Soul, R&B, Pop from Los Angeles

http://philipclark.com

 

Cannonball Gerald Albright Signature Alto, Yamaha YC73, Fender Rhodes, Roland Juno-106, Yamaha MX61, Roland VR-09, MicroKorg XL, Maschine Mikro, Yamaha Reface CP, Roland MKS-50

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It was the Edison store.The sales guy told me they could order it.And i just smiled and said i want a hands on with a board before i buy it.There is no way i can tell if I'm going to like a keyboard unless i sit and play it for a few hours.
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I'm not defending them but if you look around at the clientele in the store; most people are not going there to drop $2K+ on a keyboard. If they are in the store to purchase a keyboard it is going to be a Casio or a PSR price range keyboard. Probably no more than 1% of their clientele is shopping for a $2k+ keyboard; so they stock based on their customer base. Even if the stock is consigned from the manufacturer to the store so that there is no inventory carrying cost to them, they will devote store space to higher traffic SKU's; $2K+ keyboards are not where their traffic is going to come from; I'm also guessing the margin on high priced keyboards probably isn't that great. How many times have you seen on the forum people write "order one and bring it home, if you don't like it just return it". Now they have a "used" keyboard that they have to mark down to the next customer, further reducing their margins, plus the cost of returning it to stock, handling fees, shipping costs, etc.. This situation ends up sucking for everyone involved, both the consumer and the retailer.

 

 

57 Hammond B3; 69 Hammond L100P; 68 Leslie 122; Kurzweil Forte7 & PC3; M-Audio Code 61; Voce V5+; Neo Vent; EV ELX112P; GSI Gemini & Burn

Delaware Dave

Exit93band

 

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In the big scheme of things we are such a tiny part of the market nowadays. If I were a business owner I don't think I'd stock them either. Well, if I was a smart businessman.
HammondCV,M3,L101,C6,SK1,xk5,Farfisa Combo Compact,RolandVR09,JX8P,vk09,Sound Canvas,CrumarTraveler1,Rhodes suitcase73,Wurly200,HohnerD6,KorgMS20,CasioCZ-101,Yamaha CP25,TX7,mx61,CasioCZ-101,PX110
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Unfortunately, IMO, fewer music stores will maintain a real keyboard inventory on the floor or in stock as the definition of a musician and their needs continually evolve. :cool:

PD

 

"The greatest thing you'll ever learn, is just to love and be loved in return."--E. Ahbez "Nature Boy"

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Last time I went into a Sam Ash, I couldn't play anything. Most of the keyboards were not plugged into speakers. And the noise from the Samplers, Drum machines etc annoyed the hell out of me. They had a whole wall dedicated to that stuff and they had monitors.

Boards: Kurzweil SP-6, Roland FA-08, VR-09, DeepMind 12

Modules: Korg Radias, Roland D-05, Bk7-m & Sonic Cell

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It's sad. Guitar Center and Sam Ash are the big guns in South LA, too. You'd think their staff would be concerned with having the latest and greatest out AND demo-able. Not so much. Guess they don't want to sell stuff that bad.

 

You and I have probably gone to the same two stores, the GC on Artesia and the SA on Hawthorne. Everybody else has already said it. We're not the market any more. They're selling plenty of stuff, just not "our" stuff.

 

Both stores tend to be full of teens who hit play on a keyboard sequencer that is already set to producing rap or so called R & B beatz and then sit there and noodle along to it. Then they get bored, walk away and leave the sequencer running. The staff is sick of it too, I've talked to some of them.

 

Bob

Hammond SK1, Mojo 61, Kurzweil PC3, Korg Pa3x, Roland FA06, Band in a Box, Real Band, Studio One, too much stuff...
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I just don't understand the s--theads who come in there and just take caps of the knobs and faders. And push in the tweeters of the speakers. Who does that. If I were a store owner I'd get pretty discouraged, too.

 

That's Beavis and Butthead territory.

 

Beavis: "hey Butthead, check out Todd over there, sticking his finger through that speaker cone"

Butthead: "Todd's pretty cool"


 

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I just don't understand the s--theads who come in there and just take caps of the knobs and faders. And push in the tweeters of the speakers. Who does that. If I were a store owner I'd get pretty discouraged, too.

 

That's Beavis and Butthead territory.

 

Beavis: "hey Butthead, check out Todd over there, sticking his finger through that speaker cone"

Butthead: "Todd's pretty cool"

 

My local GC is constantly fighting the battle with those who use the keyboard department as a free spare parts store.

 

There are always missing knobs on the MOXF's and the FA's

David

Gig Rig:Casio Privia PX-5S | Yamaha MODX+ 6 | MacBook Pro 14" M1| Mainstage

 

 

 

 

 

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It was the Edison store.The sales guy told me they could order it.And i just smiled and said i want a hands on with a board before i buy it.There is no way i can tell if I'm going to like a keyboard unless i sit and play it for a few hours.

 

It's certainly the area there. My friend owns a Mom & Pop music store just down the street there on Rt. 27. He was there long before Ash moved in. He's told me that keyboards don't sell around there. He stocks a few lower end Casio keyboards and that's it.

 

I live closer to the Springfield store and the selection is little better, but not by much. You need to go to the Manhattan store if you want to try stuff out. They were actually very accommodating to me the last time I was there.

.

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It's sad. Guitar Center and Sam Ash are the big guns in South LA, too. You'd think their staff would be concerned with having the latest and greatest out AND demo-able. Not so much. Guess they don't want to sell stuff that bad.

 

You and I have probably gone to the same two stores, the GC on Artesia and the SA on Hawthorne.

 

For keyboards, the GC on Pico and Westwood is a bit better. It's a ~30 min drive for us, but worth it to me.

 

Still, it's nothing like what West LA Music used to be.

 

 

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Last time I went into a Sam Ash, I couldn't play anything. Most of the keyboards were not plugged into speakers. And the noise from the Samplers, Drum machines etc annoyed the hell out of me. They had a whole wall dedicated to that stuff and they had monitors.

 

That's the mind-boggling thing to me. If they *do* happen to have one of the more "rare" keyboards (meaning a non-Motif and the like) then there's a good chance it won't have any power. If it has power there's a good chance the audio isn't hooked up. And if you actually make it this far, it's probably plugged in to a single Samson 8" speaker or small Roland amp.

 

I tend to bring headphones anyway so the audio isn't a big deal. But where's the thinking? Why bother having the boards at all if they are not even hooked up correctly, or hooked up in a way that will actually make them sound bad?

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Are you talking about Lou Rose music store?In the early 1970 i purchased a mini moog and a Leslie 760 from them.At the time they had a nice room full of the hi end keyboards.I think i spent half a day in that room with the mini moog.Good people.
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A recent visit to a Sam Ash in Orlando was kind of strange. Really well stocked, but none of the analogs had power or were connected to amps. I'm sure they would have hooked them up if I was interested in one, but I was just there to putz around. Same thing at the local GC -- the analogs just seemed to be their for show -- none ready to demo.

 

Later that week I was in a tiny, TINY music locally owned store in Downtown Winter Garden. This downtown is really just a block or so of mom and pop shops. The customer traffic in there was non-stop -- much more than the Sam Ash: all there for lessons, but a lot of them were shopping before and after their lesson. The managers said a big part of their income comes from lessons -- actually they just rent out the rooms to local teachers.

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It's sad. Guitar Center and Sam Ash are the big guns in South LA, too. You'd think their staff would be concerned with having the latest and greatest out AND demo-able. Not so much. Guess they don't want to sell stuff that bad.

 

You and I have probably gone to the same two stores, the GC on Artesia and the SA on Hawthorne.

 

For keyboards, the GC on Pico and Westwood is a bit better. It's a ~30 min drive for us, but worth it to me.

 

Still, it's nothing like what West LA Music used to be.

 

 

Have you been there lately? I think even the enthusiasm there is waning.

Soul, R&B, Pop from Los Angeles

http://philipclark.com

 

Cannonball Gerald Albright Signature Alto, Yamaha YC73, Fender Rhodes, Roland Juno-106, Yamaha MX61, Roland VR-09, MicroKorg XL, Maschine Mikro, Yamaha Reface CP, Roland MKS-50

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There r 3 SA across the glades in Lauderdale, the one

Ive been to was one of the best stocked keyboard sections

Ive been to in ages. They had everything, all turned on,

ready to play. Thas where I got the try the VPiano,

actually one of my all time fav digitals.

GCs r no comparo.

Plus theres a mompop shop here thats great.

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Are you talking about Lou Rose music store?In the early 1970 i purchased a mini moog and a Leslie 760 from them.At the time they had a nice room full of the hi end keyboards.I think i spent half a day in that room with the mini moog.Good people.

 

Yes. I'm good friends with the owner and his family. I used to work there in the late 70's / early 80's. I still do a little bit of computer work for him.

 

It's really interesting to see the demise of the brick and mortar musical instrument business from his eyes. He's part of the reason I try to patronize smaller businesses as much as I can, and not just with musical purchases.

.

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Every time I read this stuff, I realize how lucky I am to have fullcompass just down the road. Though their business is internet and they don't operate retail sites, they must have a range of at least twenty keyboards in their showroom, all mid-to-high end stuff.

As a matter of fact, it's my birthday next week so I think I'll go out and buy something!

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Back in the 1980's, I sold keyboards for George's Music, which at that time consisted of two stores in SE Pennsylvania. There was no internet, but there were a number of music stores in Philadelphia and the surrounding suburbs, so there was competition. I competed with the competition by knowing the products I sold and by developing relationships with my customers. Even though we were not Yamaha dealers, if someone walked in looking for a DX-7, I could show them the benefits of, say, the Ensoniq ESQ-1, and make a sale, with the belief that I put them into the right instrument for their needs.(To be fair, the ESQ-1 was an amazing value in it's day).

 

I have a Sam Ash and a GC within 30 minutes of me, and everytime I have gone into these stores, I have seen different people working in the keyboard department. I don't get a sense of comfort or familiarity, which I did back in the day. Back then, when I was a customer, I knew most of the people working at Medley, Zapf's, 8th Street, Music Barn, Cintioli's, Suburban Music, or the other stores. And when I got my job at George's, it was when I went in to check out the Ensoniq Mirage, and the salesman (who was the store manager), was so impressed by my knowledge of the Mirage, he offered me a job (thank you Keyboard Magazine, for your excellent reviews).

 

I can't complain about Sam Ash or GC. At least they still give me the opportunity to walk into a music store, even if I end up buying online. Most of the other stores I mentioned are all long gone, because the internet killed them off. And we have lost the venues where semi-pro bands used to play, that helped fuel the local music economy. So, while it would be great to be able to get my hands on a particular keyboard before I buy, I don't really expect Sam Ash to stock it, just so I can try it there, then go home and buy it online and save on sales tax.

 

 

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The last time I had bought a new board was a KS-32. I remember going Keyboard to look for a stage piano sometime in the 2000's and I hit all my old keyboard stores and there was nothing but a few cheaper synths and one 61 key Fantom workstation. I was a wake up call.

 

I became was quickly acclimated with Mail order. I never should have done that. :D

 

"It doesn't have to be difficult to be cool" - Mitch Towne

 

"A great musician can bring tears to your eyes!!!

So can a auto Mechanic." - Stokes Hunt

 

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Are you talking about Lou Rose music store?In the early 1970 i purchased a mini moog and a Leslie 760 from them.At the time they had a nice room full of the hi end keyboards.I think i spent half a day in that room with the mini moog.Good people.

 

Yes. I'm good friends with the owner and his family. I used to work there in the late 70's / early 80's. I still do a little bit of computer work for him.

 

 

Wish they did more keyboards these days - but I found the repair shop to be first - rate.

 

A few years ago A5 on my RD700SX went down and stayed down during a gig. Roland wanted to charge $700 + freight both ways (it was not in warranty so . . .) to replace the entire keybed.

 

The tech at Lou Rose (I guess they're now Central Jersey) fixed me up in about 10 days (for about $180, IIRC) by replacing the troublesome octave with OEM parts. Didn't miss a gig. :)

 

Ironically, where do you suppose I had bought the RD?? You got it . . Sam Ash in Edison.

-Mike
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Lou Rose in Edison is one of the few places that you can still buy Accordions and get lessons last I knew. Central Jersey Music Service in the back of the store is excellent for amplifier repair. Dennis Kager worked for Ampeg in the 60's and had a brief partnership with Harold Rhodes. He later went into business for himself with Sundown amps. Paul Shaffer sends his Vox Continentals to Dennis and he has done work on my Continental and Piano Bass.

 

http://www.vintageguitar.com/5407/dennis-kager/

C3/122, M102A, Vox V301H, Farfisa Compact, Gibson G101, GEM P, RMI 300A, Piano Bass, Pianet , Prophet 5 rev. 2, Pro-One, Matrix 12, OB8, Korg MS20, Jupiter 6, Juno 60, PX-5S, Nord Stage 3 Compact
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Back in the 1980's, I sold keyboards for George's Music, which at that time consisted of two stores in SE Pennsylvania...

 

When I worked for ENSONIQ in Malvern, PA I used to frequent George's Music. Back then, salespeople took pride in being proficient with the products they sold. Not so much these days. It's sad but understandable.

Wm. David McMahan

I Play, Therefore I Am

 

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