News

Upfront

Fender Musical Instruments Corporation (FMIC) has announced that it has completed an asset sale of the KMC Music wholesale distribution business including the trade name B & J Music, and certain proprietary brands to JAM Industries, Ltd. JAM Industries is one of the largest global leaders in the MI, Pro Audio, and Consumer Electronics wholesale distribution business.

KMC Music is one of the largest independent distributors of musical instruments and accessories, and is a leading wholesaler of musical instruments, accessories and lighting equipment. FMIC will provide short-term transitional support as part of the transaction. Financial and other terms of the deal are not disclosed.

Read more: FMIC Sells KMC Music Wholesale Distribution Business to Jam Industries

People

Ernie Ball, Inc. has announced the appointment of Dustin Hinz to the role of executive vice president of marketing. The announcement was made by Brian Ball, the recently promoted president of Ernie Ball, Inc., and reflects the company’s ongoing momentum-building endeavors.

Hinz represents a major addition to the Ernie Ball executive team and will lead marketing and brand strategies for the Ernie Ball and Music Man brands. A longtime Guitar Center executive, Hinz most recently held the position of vice president brand experience, marketing and media production. Well recognized across the industry for his successes, Hinz boasts more than 20 industry awards and honors to his credit in 2014 alone.  Hinz took top honors for Guitar Center’s content work at the Content Marketing Awards, Telly’s and MarCom Awards and was a finalist for PRN’s 2014 Marketing Professional of the Year.

Read more: Ernie Ball Appoints Hinz as Executive Vice President of Marketing

Trade Regrets

Bob Cavanagh, former president of famed Boston music retailer EU Wurlitzer, passed away on February 7th.

Bob's deep passion for music is traced to his own guitar playing, which had the chops to play with Joe Pass among others. His role at EU Wurlitzer began when the founder was still active and progressed in the eras of his sons and finally when Bob took charge. He left the company several years before it closed.

Read more: Trade Regrets: Bob Cavanagh

Supplier Scene

As part of REVERB’s ongoing environmental efforts in partnership with the band, Guster, each tour stop will have a fan engagement Eco Village. Bedell Guitars is proud to be a sponsor and help raise awareness for the Lacey Act. By signing a postcard pledging your support to the Lacey Act and/or taking a photo in the photobooth and posting to social media using #StopIllegalLogging, concert goers will have the opportunity to win one of the Bedell Earthsong Orchestra guitars that Adam Gardner and the band will be playing on tour.

“The Bedell Earthsong is a guitar built of sustainably harvested American woods. From the salvaged Sitka spruce top to the individually cut Western bigleaf maple trees we’ve been able to created an amazing sounding guitar that can be built for generations,” said Sami Mulhern, artist and external relations for Bedell Guitars.

Read more: Bedell Guitars, Guster, and REVERB Bring Awareness to the Lacey Act

Upfront

Sweetwater has announced another record year in total sales and job creation, plus a significant expansion of its campus in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

Since 2010, Sweetwater’s total sales have more than doubled. Total sales in 2014 were up 28 percent over 2013, which was also a record-breaking year. December 2014 sales were up 30 percent over December 2013. Black Friday and Cyber Monday both shattered all previous records, and the company sold more than 71,500 guitars in 2015, up from just over 50,000 guitars in 2013. Drums and pro-audio were two more of the many product categories that saw growth at an incredible pace.

Read more: Sweetwater Announces Record Year of Growth and Campus Expansion

Supplier Scene

At Winter NAMM, audio specialist Sennheiser and Apogee Electronics, industry leader in digital audio conversion technology, have announced their collaboration.

At the NAMM Show in Anaheim, Apogee’s Betty Bennett and Sennheiser’s Peter Claussen have jointly announced the cooperation of their companies. Peter Claussen, COO of Sennheiser, said that “Apogee and Sennheiser are a perfect fit. We both operate in the demanding premium sector, serving professional and semi-professional audio customers across the globe. Our product portfolios perfectly complement each other, and I am looking forward to collaborate with a company that has truly pushed the boundaries of digital audio.”

Read more: Sennheiser and Apogee announce partnership at NAMM Show

Supplier Scene

D’Addario and Alvarez have struck up a pilot program in an effort to promote proper guitar humidification.

For the duration of 2015, USA-based purchasers of select Alvarez guitars that come with hard-shell cases will receive a promo card in the case. The promo card has a unique code on it and it refers the customer visit the D’Addario-Alvarez landing page. There, they enter the code and their shipping information and they will receive a free D’Addario Two-Way Humidification System ($35.70 value).

This pilot program between D’Addario and Alvarez is an attempt to educate dealers and end users about the importance of proper humidification of acoustic guitars.

Read more: D'Addario and Alvarez Boost Awareness about Guitar Humidification

Supplier Scene

Full Compass Systems, a national leader in professional audio, video, lighting and musical instrument sales, received Top Dealer awards from ADJ and Elation Professional Lighting at the 2015 NAMM show.

ADJ and Elation offer lighting and entertainment products for a variety of applications, including mobile entertainers, touring and theatrical productions, studio installations and more. Full Compass has offered both brands for many years and is excited about their growing partnerships.

“We are honored to receive these awards”, stated Jonathan Lipp, Founder and CEO of Full Compass Systems, “Both companies have been long-standing partners and we look forward to continued success with them.”

www.fullcompass.com

Supplier Scene

Sterling Ball, CEO of Ernie Ball, celebrated his 60th birthday this month by releasing his debut album — Better Late Than Never. A longtime musician, Ball has toured across the globe with acts including Albert Lee, Steve Morse and more.

The album was recorded alongside longtime friends and fellow musicians Dave Marotta, Jimmy Cox and John Ferraro. The country-tinged record marks a milestone for the CEO who, in addition to his role as musician, serves as a philanthropist with the Casey Lee Ball Foundation and as an award-winning professional BBQ chef.

Read more: Sterling Ball of Ernie Ball Inc. Releases Debut Album

People

Levy’s Leathers has appointed Ted Burger as Levy’s international sales manager. Burger is a former professional guitarist and graduate of the State University of New York at Fredonia with a degree in business management and marketing.

Burger’s MI career began at Costello’s Music in Fredonia and since that time has worked for Samson Technologies, for two years and six years at Korg USA. Most recently he has been working at The Hanser Music Group in Cincinnati. Ted’s varied experience in the different aspects of the music industry makes him an ideal t fit for Levy’s.

Read more: Levy’s Appoints Burger International Sales Manager

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