Jump to content
Gibson Brands Forums

Guitar Center downgraded again


Dub-T-123

Recommended Posts

  • Replies 56
  • Created
  • Last Reply

I prefer to patronize my locally owned (Mom & Pop) music store. They have competitive prices and services that GC and the other big box stores won't match.

 

Example 1)

 

I needed something to help my PA. The owner loaned me a BBE Sonic Maximizer, said to try it on the gig, and if I like it bring money, if not bring it back not scratched or damaged. No credit card or deposit left, no restocking fee, just a handshake.

 

Example 2)

 

Same store, I wanted a better mic for my sax. He went into the recording studio around back and loaned me a few. Again no deposit, no restocking just trust. I tried a couple on the job and ended up with a Sennheiser MD421. He ordered a new one, told me to keep the loaner until the new one came in. When the new one came in his charge was less than I could have gotten it mail order by a couple of dollars.

 

Example 3)

 

I have the owner's personal cell phone in my pocket. If something fails on the gig, he said to give him a call, he'd open the store and deliver what I need to save the gig.

 

There are plenty more examples.

 

Now I pay about a half dollar more per set of strings because he can't buy them in quantity, but it keeps his store running and when I need one of those extra services, he's there.

 

Besides for that. My band is a local business, so I prefer to patronize other local businesses. Do unto others.

 

If my local store doesn't have it and cannot get it, I'll go to Sweetwater online.

 

Insights and incites by Notes

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Rarely ever go there. I can sit in my underwear and buy strings online.

 

Not a visual I wanted [crying]

 

I bought one thing at my local GC in the entire year & it was a used Gretsch acoustic. Their inventory was slim overall and there were half the sales people than the last time I was there. And per usual the young sales staff knew very little. There was one other customer in the store at the time & he bought strings. I don't know how they have stayed open this long.

 

Their reputation for paying almost nothing for used gear is legendary around here & so no one that I know would even think about trading something in or selling anything to them.

 

When they first arrived here I was somewhat pleased only because a couple of the local brand name dealers had gotten arrogant & acted like they were doing you a favor when they sold you something. However the negative was instant in that when they opened stores in my state - anything you bought from them came with a 6% sales tax. And since Musicians Friend have no stores here - you could order from them online with no sales tax and FREE delivery. Guitar Center became the place to try stuff out then go home & order online. I realize they're both under the same corporate umbrella but it did not place GC in a prime position from the get go.

 

Over the years the local GC has had a constantly rotating staff & management which makes it impossible to establish a professional relationship with the store. I would not be sad to see them go locally since, as mentioned, I hardly ever go there.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't like seeing music stores close. It's a good competition between the other stores. It's a shame that the mom & pop stores are somewhat out of the equation anymore. As far as GC though, I don't go into my local one too often. The one thing I've lately purchased from GC.com are some Nylon bass strings that aren't available locally at any Sam Ash, or GC.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Saw this on Friday. Man, this is a bit of head scratcher. The whole of the US economy is coming in way ahead of projections. I imagine that sales have to be on the uptick for GC. Makes me wonder how bad their cash flow situation must actually be. To have 4 consecutive quarters of sales gains and at the same time getting credit rating downgraded is a really bad sign. Musicians many whom don't live in big cities really rely on guitar center.

 

I firmly believe that if they have to go chapter 9 and re-negotiate with creditors, it will be workable for Guitar Center. If their credit rating is already shitty, they may as well renegotiate the plan to pay em back. With the economic situation in the Macro looking very positive, they will pull out, I believe. Maybe it's Staples that's really causing the drain on Guitar Center?

 

But most of all. We need a legit Pop hero right now. Not a Micheal Jackson type. We need another Beatles or Guns N Roses or something that can get a whole music movement going again. Kids who want to learn to play instruments, not video games. That would solve many problems with modern society in general.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

They probably need to close some of their stores - hopefully not all. I came from the Chicago area and there were at least 4 Guitar Center stores that I knew of, and possibly a couple more that I never saw. That's a lot of overhead when you consider the rent, utilities, wages to the point where they must sell quite a bit just to break even each month. And while I haven't been in any of those stores for a few years, they each were large and had a lot of inventory. There is one store in Greenville SC which is the closest to me now, and it is quite a bit smaller and doesn't have the selection that the bigger stores in Chicago had.

 

Maybe they need to just have 5 or so really big stores nationwide, and do most of their business on-line. The last guitar I bought was through GC on-line and while the experience was not quite as smooth as Sweetwater, it was pretty good and the guitar arrived in original packaging from Gibson and was perfect. So they can deliver and I'm sure the sale was a lot more profitable for them than if I had bought it in a storefront with a lot of overhead.

 

I also agree with JayinLA that it would be a big boost to guitar shops everywhere if there were another "Beatlmania" or some such to get millions of kids to want to play.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

They probably need to close some of their stores - hopefully not all. I came from the Chicago area and there were at least 4 Guitar Center stores that I knew of, and possibly a couple more that I never saw. That's a lot of overhead when you consider the rent, utilities, wages to the point where they must sell quite a bit just to break even each month. And while I haven't been in any of those stores for a few years, they each were large and had a lot of inventory. There is one store in Greenville SC which is the closest to me now, and it is quite a bit smaller and doesn't have the selection that the bigger stores in Chicago had.

 

Maybe they need to just have 5 or so really big stores nationwide, and do most of their business on-line. The last guitar I bought was through GC on-line and while the experience was not quite as smooth as Sweetwater, it was pretty good and the guitar arrived in original packaging from Gibson and was perfect. So they can deliver and I'm sure the sale was a lot more profitable for them than if I had bought it in a storefront with a lot of overhead.

 

I also agree with JayinLA that it would be a big boost to guitar shops everywhere if there were another "Beatlmania" or some such to get millions of kids to want to play.

 

 

I lived in Chicago as a kid. The Guitar Center off the 94 Freeway in the Northwest Suburbs was HUGE. That's a ton of overhead like you said. That method of brick and morter and tons of inventory has been overtaken by the internet, true. But for me, I don't know that I would want to buy a guitar 'sight unseen'. I have ordered tons of gear online, and get all my strings on Ebay for like $3, or$4 a set. But instruments are different. This isn't really a 'shot' at Gibson, but especially Gibson guitars can be so different from one to the next.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm lucky here in Huntsville, I guess.

 

We have a really nice Guitar Center, and a few great mom and pop guitar stores as well.

I frequent all of them, and try to spread my money around.

 

I bought an amp from Railroad Bazaar last month, a guitar from The Fret Shop yesterday, and a nice strap and some headphones from GC today.

 

Life is good, and all the shops, GC included, seem to be doing really good business.

 

:)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We have no mom and pop shops. Nearest one is 40 miles if you want 149 dollar guitars and 200 dollar guitar/amp packages. If you want the three American guitars you have to drive another 20 to the other GC and the Sam Ash. GC came here and along with Gibson pushed everyone else out.

 

rct

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My closest GC is about 21 miles away. The local guitar stores here charge an insane amount for their guitars. The store at the end of my street had a used 75 LP Deluxe that was beat to hell and they wanted 3K for it. GC had the same model, same year and vastly superior condition for over a thousand less. If GC does go out, I will miss them but I will also quit buying as many guitars as I do. I guess I will save money in the long run.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I also suspect that if Guitar Center goes out, Gibson with go to bankruptcy as well.

 

Pretty much. If GC went out Gibson would have literally zero retail representation from here to Philly except for one Sam Ash.

 

rct

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We have three GC in the Austin metro area. I go in 1-2 times a year to see if they have anything I can't live without. I almost always walk out empty-handed so I won't miss them much if they go under. Fortunately we have a locally-owned shop that has an extensive inventory of Gibsons (electric & acoustic) and their prices are competitive with GC. I also buy online from Sweetwater, AMS and Zzounds.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I guess I'm in the minority as I like Guitar Center.

You can go in, check stuff out, get something if you want and leave.

The staff changes all of the time but that's okay, I'm sure they don't make much.

 

The few smaller stores in this area either have nothing but inexpensive guitars (not interested) or they have tag team sales people who follow you around driving you crazy. They're like vampires hovering over you.

 

My only complaint with Guitar Center is that unless it just came in it's a used item. Every bored person in the neighborhood comes in and beats on the stuff.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I go to the local GC when I am back home and it's nothing special. I did buy my first Les Paul from that store when they first opened but there Gibson inventory was much more robust back then. Now it's just pewny. Like others I try to use my locally owned stores for most all of my purchases. However none of them are Gibson dealers so I usually order from AMS or Sweetwater when it comes time to buy a guitar unless I stumble onto a used one hanging in the store.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's a bad sign for the industry altogether I guess.

 

I'd be concerned about the financial impact on Gibson since things aren't great as it is.

 

Is it though? I buy almost everything online. I only stop in at GC if it’s an emergency or If im nearby and I need to kill some time. The two GC near me (Indianapolis)have absolutely garbage customer service.

 

think I’ve told the story here but I dropped a guitar off at GC to have it set up a few years ago, they told me it would be a “little while”. I kept calling to check on it and after a month or so the guy claimed he was starting on it but it needed refretted. I said “ok” because the frets are a mess.

 

So two-three more weeks go by and I call again and they still aren’t finished with it. I’m totally pissed so I go over to pay for whatever was done and get my guitar back. In the 6-7 weeks they had my guitar they had done NOTHING. not a single solitary thing. I told the kid who got the guitar for me if I’d have known “a little while” meant 6-7 weeks I wouldn’t have dropped it off in the first place and he said “we always tell people how long it will take” and he started arguing with me.

 

In short they had my guitar forever....did nothing to it in that whole time.....and then gave me crap when I went to pick it up.

 

I’m not going to be bothered if they go under. That’s what overcharging and bad service will do to you.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We have no mom and pop shops. Nearest one is 40 miles if you want 149 dollar guitars and 200 dollar guitar/amp packages. If you want the three American guitars you have to drive another 20 to the other GC and the Sam Ash. GC came here and along with Gibson pushed everyone else out.

 

rct

 

The selections of Gibbys in the Cherry Hill GC is lacking. I bought my first Lester there and a Strat, don't care to do business there

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1512942807[/url]' post='1899081']

I guess I'm in the minority as I like Guitar Center.

You can go in, check stuff out, get something if you want and leave.

The staff changes all of the time but that's okay, I'm sure they don't make much.

 

The few smaller stores in this area either have nothing but inexpensive guitars (not interested) or they have tag team sales people who follow you around driving you crazy. They're like vampires hovering over you.

 

My only complaint with Guitar Center is that unless it just came in it's a used item. Every bored person in the neighborhood comes in and beats on the stuff.

 

I am too. I like Guitar Center, I've bought several guitars there and a Amp. Then I get my strings and other stuff there as it's the only one we have and it's close by. I also shop Deitz Music as it's a bit further and that's about it. I have gone to Council Bluffs to a music store but everything there was high priced. Plus GC employees know me and treat me well.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It’ll be sad for here in this part of California. They are headquartered a block from where I work in Westlake Village California. Funny but their retail store here is small. Their repair center and corporate business center is huge.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm in Birmingham UK. I went out a few months back thinking I'd try a few new Les Pauls. I couldn't find any. Even Guitar Guitar only had about 9. Most were studios and a custom. Nothing to choose from. I think the market is saturated and foreign makes are as good as USA made now in playability. Gibson's qc problems will be their demise I think.

Then there is the state of music in general. As I've said before, my brother works in the touring business and he says that the big companies are bleeding the business dry. Every penny is grabbed. He used to be able to get tickets for family etc, but it's all gone. They can't even have t shirts etc. They have to pay. You've got headline acts earning millions a month and their musicians are on a basic wage. Even the crew earn more than some of them. There's no future because of greed.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.


×
×
  • Create New...