Gakki Co. Ltd., holder of the Ibanez guitar and Tama drum brand names, has announced the appointment of Kimihide “Ken” Hoshino as the company’s new president. He succeeds Toshitsugu “Tom” Tanaka who, beginning in 2004, led the company into an era of sharply increased sales and prosperity. Tanaka will continue his work with the company in the capacity of advisor.

Read more: Hoshino Gakki Co. Names Kimihide Hoshino New President


Music now resonates through 27 of the nation's most underserved schools and districts thanks in part to renewed Turnaround Arts support from the NAMM Foundation. Grants to the tune of $214,000 for musical instruments, music teachers, and arts integration into other subject areas will support phase II Turnaround Arts. Turnaround Arts, a President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities (PCAH) program, is a public-private partnership that uses the arts to help narrow the acheivement gap, increase sutdent engagement and improve the culture and climate in the country's highest poverty schools. 

Read more: NAMM Foundation Invests in Music Education for Underserved Students

Supplier Scene

One of the most talked about music-related films in years, Acadamy Award-nominated Whiplash, also gives some high profile screen time to Evans drumheads. Check out the clip below:


Conn-Selmer has announced that one of the nation’s leaders in music education and highly-regarded music industry professional, Tom Bracy, has joined the company as the newly created director of educational programs within the Division of Education. 

“It is with much enthusiasm we welcome Tom Bracy to the Conn-Selmer Division of Education,” says Dr. Tim Lautzenheiser, vice president of Education. “He brings a wealth of knowledge to the ongoing expansion of our growing outreach programs and a rich history of organizational and administrative success.”

Read more: Bracy Named Conn-Selmer’s Director of Educational Programs


Yamaha has announced the appointment of Chris Marr as national account manager for the company’s Pro Audio & Combo Division. His main priorities will be managing sales relations with Guitar Center and Musician’s Friend.

Prior to working for Yamaha, Marr gained experience as the key account and territory sales manager with Peavey Electronics Corp. During his time there, he exceeded expectations and earned multiple accolades for his achievements, including several divisional top sales and Salesman of the Year. By acquiring and managing some of the largest national instrument retail accounts, including Guitar Center, Marr increased the company’s territory sales.

Read more: Yamaha Appoints Marr Pro Audio & Combo National Account Manager

Supplier Scene

The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) honors OMG Music LLC in Noblesville, IN with the Milestone Award for 25 years of service in the music products industry. The award recognizes retailers and manufacturers who have succeeded over the years through best practices and strong community standing to reach a landmark anniversary.

”In 1990 we started out with a goal of trying to sell quality guitar straps for a fair price. In 2015 the founding partners, Brett Marcus and Larry Greene, are still leading the company” said Mark Blasko of OMG Music in Noblesville, IN. “We utilize their experience every day to help independent dealers reach new levels of profitability in the accessories category.”

Read more: OMG Music LLC Honored With The NAMM Milestone Award


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


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

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