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  48th st NYC (Page 2)

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Author Topic:   48th st NYC
Jody Carver
Member

From: The Knight Of Fender Tweed~ Dodger Blue Forever

posted 22 November 2003 08:18 AM     profile     
Long before 48th Street became famous for its multiple stores all within one block,there was only one (1) music store in that area.
Eddie Bell Guitar Headquarters located on 6th
Ave and West 46th Street.

Eddie and his wife Paula owned and operated their store which was exclusivley GIBSON.

Their discounts on Gibson were minimal and their inventory was complete.

I would often go there after school,jump on a subway and go and hang out looking at those beautiful instruments that were always
kept clean and dusted off every day by Paula
Mrs.Eddie Bell.

I would look at those Gibson Harp steels and my heart would beat faster than a subway train that I took to get there.

Eddie Bell was THE GIBSON DEALER in the NYC area and it wasnt until 1964 that Mannys was able to obtain the Gibson dealership much to the dissatisfaction of Eddie Bell.

Mannys saw a way to sell volume and offered 30% discount to customers and Eddie complained to Gibson (CMI)but there was nothing Gibson could do other than ask Manny
to keep the selling price higher and in line
with Eddie Bell.

It would cost a few dollars more to buy from Eddie Bell,but he gave the utmost attention and courtesy to his customers unlike the massive discount store that was his competitor. Eddie Bell turned me down many times regarding my offering him Fender,he thought it was a joke and I began to think he was right,but I hung on until the joke was reversed and Fender took hold off all the Amplifier sales and the P.Bass was a boom
and Eddie Bell never asked me for Fender in spite of its success.

Bell sold Gibson at 20% off and Mannys started selling at 30% off retail.

Then much to his displeasure Bell offered Gibson at 30% off retail and then Manny went the mile to 40% off retail.

That and the fact that Eddie Bell and his wife had just about had enough,they closed their doors forever.

48th Street became famous for the 40% discounters and was known as "Tin Pan Alley".
I gave it the name "Murderer's Row & Death Valley" nevertheless 48th street although a thorn in many peoples side made famous many of the product lines in those days..and to today, whenever a manufacturer or sales person want to get into the big leagues they all head for 48th street.
People from all over the world knew and know
of 48th street, that street has caused much concern for manufacturers who wanted to keep their products clean and not be overly discounted..soon the manufacturers gave in and everyone started to out do each other.

One store had a sign 40% off all ****** guitars,,the other had a sign 50% off all****
guitars and the other had a sign FREE GUITARS
that did it..and then I came along to pick up the pieces. FENDER had Arrived.

I'll bet Al Marcus knows how hard Gibson tried to keep the prices up and how difficult
it was to compete against the NYC discounters
You want service? or price? one comment often
used by some of those non sales oriented people are..."Hey You Buyin? Or Cryin"

Thats when I knew my days had come to a end
on the Boulevard of Broken Dreams. 48th ST.

Later
Tony Bennett

[This message was edited by Jody Carver on 22 November 2003 at 08:53 AM.]

Winnie Winston
Member

From: Tawa, Wellington, NZ

posted 23 November 2003 01:24 AM     profile     
Whew! Memories!
I bought my first Martin Guitar at Terminal Music in 1955. Have no idea wehere my parents bout the Martin 0-17 I learned on.
Bought lots of Gibson banjo parts at Eddie Bell.
But to me, the real mecca was Park Row-- with Silver and Horland, then down the block Harry Newcorn, and then a bit further along, the junk shop of Oreste Durante where some of the best banjos came from.
When my D-18 and Gibson mastertone were stolen from my car in 1962, someone found my guitar in a pawn shop on 8th ave. From there, they traced back to where it came from and they found my banjo at Silver and Horland.
They told me about it, and I went down to S&H and asked if they had any gold mastertones recently. They said they hadn't seen one in ages. Then the cop came in with the warrant, and they found it pretty quick.
Never trusted them.
Most of my business was with Newcorn-- really nice folks-- at last to me!

Was sorry to see the whole area close up and get torn down and re-built.

JW

Jody Carver
Member

From: The Knight Of Fender Tweed~ Dodger Blue Forever

posted 23 November 2003 05:54 AM     profile     

When my D-18 and Gibson mastertone were stolen from my car in 1962, someone found my guitar in a pawn shop on 8th ave. From there, they traced back to where it came from and they found my banjo at Silver and Horland.
They told me about it, and I went down to S&H and asked if they had any gold mastertones recently. They said they hadn't seen one in ages. Then the cop came in with the warrant, and they found it pretty quick.
Never trusted them.

Winnie,,,I confess,,I was in on the theft job
I thought I had pulled it off till the cops came.

Before that time of my life.I was stealing hubcaps on 48th st.

Gerald Menke
Member

From: Brooklyn, NY, USA

posted 26 November 2003 06:55 AM     profile     
Those of you who are lucky enough to live near a steel dealer probably won't understand what it was like for me to leave my office on 45th street, head up to Rudy's and check out a few Fessendens. What a pleasure! As Bob mentioned, Gordon is a genuine "friend of the steel", and actually knows quite a bit about them, much of it courtesy Bob, I have a feeling. I didn't have my picks or my bar with me, but Gordon was happy to lend me a bar and some picks, and showed great interest in my playing, such as it was on the S-10. If a measure of one's stature on the steel is being able to play any steel one sits behind, I still have a long way to go, but that's another matter. After about 10 minutes, I sounded like I had some idea of what I was doing.

Another customer asked numerous questions about the "lap steel" I was playing and Gordon answered each one more than competently.

Rudy and some of the other sales guys came up just to listen, made me feel very welcome there, and let me play as long as I wanted. The steels were priced very reasonably too, I am happy to report. I think this is a really great development, a guitar retailer in New York actually selling pro-level steels, and having salesmen who know something about them. Thanks to Bob for posting this, I would have never known otherwise.

Steve Stallings
Member

From: Bremond, Tx, pop 876, Home of the fighting Bremond Tigers

posted 26 November 2003 08:18 AM     profile     
quote:
Bobbe or Scotty that is the answer

With all due respect Jody, there are many fine retailers who deal in pedal steel and pedal steel products. Nor do Bobbie and Scotty have an exclusive franchise on steel guitar knowledge. I have great respect for both of their operations, but there are many places that provide an equal service.

It takes only a click on links to see that there is no shortage of steel guitar shops.

I do not think Bobbie and Scotty are the answer to wider distribution of the pedal steel. I believe that if we are to see a resurgence of pedal steel, it will come through mass marketing in the large chain stores. For the most part, the current steel distribution scheme is still firmly entrenched in the small "mom and pop" type store. While I feel that these folks are admirable, it is my belief that these folks cater to a niche market only... and not the broader public.

I firmly believe that the Carter organization may just be on the right track. I think that their mass marketing approach to the Carter Starter is a profound shift in the paradigm of steel guitar marketing. While I have my own doubts about the ability of the market to absorb increasing numbers of steels, I certainly hope to be proven wrong. What we need to see is an expanison of their marketing to include pro-level steels by several different makers.

... Imagine guitar mega-stores everywhere with two or three brands of pro steels and maybe a couple of starter instruments as well. Some of you can carp about the discordant noise at these stores, but that... is the sound of success.

------------------
God Bless,
Steve Stallings

www.pedalsteeler.com


Steve Stallings
Member

From: Bremond, Tx, pop 876, Home of the fighting Bremond Tigers

posted 26 November 2003 08:35 AM     profile     
One other thing...

I think it is great that Jerry has his guitars in Rudys. Fessendons are hands down winners in the steel guitar world. Now... if he can just get them into every guitar mega store!

------------------
God Bless,
Steve Stallings

www.pedalsteeler.com


Jody Carver
Member

From: The Knight Of Fender Tweed~ Dodger Blue Forever

posted 26 November 2003 10:33 AM     profile     
if he can just get them into every guitar mega store!

Steve,I disagree,steel guitar is a specialized item and should be treated as such. I dont think the so called mega stores can do justice to steel guitar,other than mega discounts and poor service. Jerry builds
a fine instrument..but most mega stores look for the buck rather than the interest of the buyer.

I stand by my opinions.

Steve Stallings
Member

From: Bremond, Tx, pop 876, Home of the fighting Bremond Tigers

posted 26 November 2003 11:02 AM     profile     
quote:
Steve,I disagree,steel guitar is a specialized item and should be treated as such.

...and this is the problem. As long as pedal steel is relegated to the "mystery instrument" realm, it will languish in obscurity. Please, don't misunderstand me... I love pedal steel and the exclusive little club we've got. But therein lies a large part of the problem. As long as we maintain that the pedal steel is a "specialty instrument" we will foster the notion that it is somehow a unique device which only the hallowed few may play.
Yes, Bobbie, Scotty, Jerry, Dana, Larry, Bill, Daniel, Frenchie, Blackie, Jeff,Charlie,Steve, and on and on all provide specialized service which the large chains can't match. But these same folks simply won't reach the mass market that possibly could be... if it is done right.

Jody... you are a treasure for the forum and I hold you in the utmost esteem. I love your tales from yesterday with the Fender folks. Life is about change and we all need growth to stay vital. I understand completely your views... but even Peavey is now sold at Musicians Friend and via the internet. I would love to see Hartley get involved in the mass marketing of pedal steel.

------------------
God Bless,
Steve Stallings

www.pedalsteeler.com


Jody Carver
Member

From: The Knight Of Fender Tweed~ Dodger Blue Forever

posted 26 November 2003 08:21 PM     profile     
Sure sounds easy....the key? the small specialized stores (shops) educate the prospective buyer and spends the time doing so..then the Mega store spends NO time and discounts the product to a point where the specialized store cannot compete. Are you aware of quantity discounts offered to the mass mega market stores? while the people who strive to sell the product are lost in the mega -small specialized syndrome.

Do you know how long this would last before the steel guitar is thrown to the mega stores and they milk it for all its worth and then throw it out??

I have spent all of my life in marketing and sales..and although I see your point, you would have to have been in the trenches as long as I have to undertand human nature.Time is changed I know,but human nature has not. I would like to see those smaller stores get help from the manufacturer
and not have to lock horns making a small profit after pioneering the product.

If I had to do it over,I would seperate the dealers who specialize in steel guitar and sell other un-related product to the mega stores. That was the situation with Fender and Gibson.Gibson sold various dealers instruments other than Gibson until the said
dealer was qualified to sell the major line of Gibson..this I dont agree with.

If You were a Fender account, you were entitled to anything that had the name FENDER
No Favorites...NO extra discounts every dealer paid the same price..hard to believe?
Well beleive it..but those days are gone forever. The trend is obvious, look around you how many stores can compete against the Giants? Not many how can they, floor plans?
Cash up front? Its all about MONEY.

If those you mentioned above were in competition with the mega stores,they would leave themselves open to meeting the discount
stucture of the mega stores,thus taking away something they worked so hard to cultivate.
The manufacturer gains from this,but in the long run goes back to the smaller dealers who pioneered the product when the mega dealer loses interest and the bloom is off the rose.
I still stand by my theory and that is my opinion.

The internet market is fine..but who did the groundwork? the mega stores? or the independent dealer?.

You cant sell me on this theory..this is not progress and this is what ruined the accordian business years ago.

Too many apples and not enough people eating the apples.

End of speech. Vote for me I m in row C

edited for more..Carter has a good philosophy
they sell "Carter Starters" to Sam Ash, that is fine and wets the appetitite for the prospective buyer and introduces steel guitar to those who know from nothing about steel guitar,,but let the mega dealer
try buying a Pro Carter from Carter..they have another guess coming,,It aint gonna happen McGee. On second thought dont vote for me..I'd make a lousy president

I wish Jerry Fessenden the best of luck as well as those who choose to market their product other than direct..

Rudy's is NOT a MEGA store but in the midst of a MEGA Marketing area. Every music store looks for something special he can make a profit on and not something that he has broken his back to promote and then see it thrown out to the Mega boys. IT DONT WORK THAT WAY.

[This message was edited by Jody Carver on 26 November 2003 at 08:44 PM.]

Jody Carver
Member

From: The Knight Of Fender Tweed~ Dodger Blue Forever

posted 26 November 2003 08:38 PM     profile     
I would love to see Hartley get involved in the mass marketing of pedal steel.


Dont hold your breath,,Hartley was one of the very few to carefully select his Peavey dealers and he gained the support of those dealers by being selective while CBS Fender sold every Tom Dick & Harry and Hartley carefully chose his dealers while CBS sold everyone. The going price on Fender was 40%
off retail..the going price on Peavey was full retail..there was however a difference
Hartley showed the dealers how to make a profit by not "footballing his line of amps.

Hartley Peavey has my respect for keeping his products where they belong....where they first got on board years ago.

I cant preach,,if you dont read what Im saying I cant make it any clearer for you.

Your comment and I quote......

But these same folks simply won't reach the mass market that possibly could be... if it is done right. Tell me the secret I have waited years for this. What the right way?

You got Questions?? I got Answers..

[This message was edited by Jody Carver on 26 November 2003 at 08:42 PM.]

Steve Stallings
Member

From: Bremond, Tx, pop 876, Home of the fighting Bremond Tigers

posted 27 November 2003 07:58 AM     profile     
Jody...
As I stated, I think Carter is on the right track. As for Peavey, I'm not sure I follow. Peavey is routinely discounted just as much as Fender or Gibson. I got between 30=40% off retail on all of my Peavey gear and 45% off list on my latest "Wolfgang". Peavey is mass marketed by both AMS and Musicians Friend... same as Fender/Gibson. I've been buying equipment since the mid sixties and clearly feel todays purchasing enviroment is much more buyer friendly.

And... I think you might be a little surprised at what our friends at Carter have up their sleeves.

I think we will just have to agree to disagree here. You are clearly in the old school of musical equipment distribution and have no use for the mass retailers, while I believe that without mass marketing, the steel will slowly die out as it's aging (me too) players shuffle off this earth. I think that there will always be a place for the niche stores... I just feel that to achieve broader acceptance, requires bold forward thinking strategies.

------------------
God Bless,
Steve Stallings

www.pedalsteeler.com


Bob Hoffnar
Member

From: Brooklyn, NY

posted 27 November 2003 09:23 AM     profile     
Sam Ash is a couple doors down from Rudy's. They have a Carter Starter set up that has a string missing and the rest of the strings are rusty. Its is dirty and not ready to play. The sales guy seemed ignorant and uninterested.

I'll check back there and see if I can help out again but it seems pointless.

The sales guy at Rudy's is another story all together. (and its a good story)

Bob

HowardR
Member

From: N.Y.C.,N.Y.

posted 27 November 2003 09:42 AM     profile     
quote:
seemed


Bob, you're too kind. , and yes, that Carter needs to be kick started.

Jody Carver
Member

From: The Knight Of Fender Tweed~ Dodger Blue Forever

posted 27 November 2003 09:23 PM     profile     
I think we will just have to agree to disagree here. You are clearly in the old school of musical equipment distribution and have no use for the mass retailers,

The word NO USE is a harsh word to use,,lets
say that I dont agree with mega dealers philosophy in this day and age, regarding an instrument such as steel guitar to be out into the hands of people who have no interest
other than a fast turn over of $$$$$.

So far as Carter.I wish them luck and hope that they succeed and make it happen.

Happy Holiday to you.

Jody Carver
Member

From: The Knight Of Fender Tweed~ Dodger Blue Forever

posted 28 November 2003 03:32 PM     profile     
Steve
I never let a matter of difference in opinions alter my feelings towards those who may disagree with me.So with that said, I respect your opinions and,lets keep our friendship alive and well on this Forum.

Can I help it if I like old movies? and Baseball when it was a "game" and not a business?

I guess I'm just an old fashioned guy.

Be well and thanks for the challenge,I enjoyed it. My Best to you and your's
Have a Healthy and Happy 2004.

Jody Carver

Steve Stallings
Member

From: Bremond, Tx, pop 876, Home of the fighting Bremond Tigers

posted 28 November 2003 06:22 PM     profile     
Jody... I like discussions like this... very polite and a nice exchange of viewpoints. We share many things in life, chief among those is a respect for the beautiful instrument we so enjoy. I hope you have a wonderful holiday... I'm spending the weekend with my grandbabies and that is far more important to me, than any of this steel stuff

------------------
God Bless,
Steve Stallings

www.pedalsteeler.com


Nicholas Dedring
Member

From: Brooklyn, New York, USA

posted 02 December 2003 11:17 AM     profile     
I can only echo Gerald's sentiments above. I was out of town, and haven't been to check out the instruments, but I'm so happy to hear that I can get to look them over where I was not expecting to find them.

One thing that is pretty crucial to the discussion is that in this area, unless someone you know has one, it's basically impossible to get to sample the wares of different builders... "Try a bunch out and see before you buy" is great advice, but it's just generally not possible in these parts... so kudos to Rudy's for dipping a toe into the marketplace with the Fessendens.


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