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Klarinet Archive - Posting 001063.txt from 1998/04

From: "Kevin Fay" <>
Subj: Repair People (was Mouthpiece Information)
Date: Mon, 20 Apr 1998 11:12:46 -0400

I don't have a problem paying a little more to buy from one of my dealer
friends who try to be knowledgeable and have a competent repair staff.
Two folks here in the Seattle area try to do just that--Steve Keene =
Custom Music in Bellevue and Tom Anderson's chain of stores south of the
city. Unfortunately, both are trumpet players--but at least are fine
musicians. I send students to both, and have bought more than my share
of stuff from both of them.

Most "music" stores, however, leave much to be desired in the
sales/service department. Most sales people I have seen up here know an
awful lot about electric guitars--and damn near nothing about any wind
instrument. Their repair departments are more like instrument torture
departments. Running these folks out of business is a community

The people that work on MY horns, incidentally, are not connected to a
"music store"--they have small shops and get paid by the hour, depending
on the job. I'm sure that some other great repair people work through
stores, though. For automobile repairmen (hardly a model), you can
check to see if they are ASC-certified; I wonder if there is any such
thing for instrument repair?


----Original Message Follows----
Date: Wed, 15 Apr 1998 13:08:15 EDT
Subject: Re: Re: Mouthpiece Information

In a message dated 4/15/98 12:58:33 AM, you wrote:

<<On Tue, 14 Apr 1998, Jason Hsien wrote:

> Now, in regards to your mouthpiece and instrument. I really don't like
> Artley, they don't play well, but Vandoren mouthpieces are excellent.
> would try them out at your music store, see which ones work the best
> your instrument-reed-ligature combination before you buy from WW & BW.

That's good advice, to see how a particular mouthpiece works with a
particular instrument, but just how long do you think that local
music store is going to stay in business if a lot of people start
following your rip-off advice? That's only one step above
shoplifting, in my book, to use their salespeople's time and try out
their inventory with no intention of buying from them.


Thank you for this comment. So many musicians I know see to behave as
if it
is a crime for the music store to make any profit if
people there don't need to pay rent, buy food and do the normal things
all the
rest of us have to do.
To do as was advise above, as you say, is criminal in a moral sense if
not in
a legal one.
The other part of the bad advise is that mouthpieces vary greatly, and
that plays well at the music store will not necessarily play well if
same model is ordered from another store........the mail order
might be a dog.
As a final note: so many go to the mail order places for cheap equipment
horns....but what do they do and where do they go when the horn is
broken and
they need emergency repair just before the concert?
If musicians continue to practise unethical behavior to save a few
bucks they
are likely to find they have no one to turn to locally when they are in
need....because they would have run them out of business by buying long
You get what you pay for.
If you want better prices, communicate with your local dealer for your
and your students. In most cases something can be worked out to your
Just understand, music dealers have to live too.

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