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Manny's Music owned by Sam Ash

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Joe Nerve, Aug 21, 2004.

  1. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses
    Manny's music is owned by Sam Ash. In NY this is no big secret, but apparently it is to a large part or the rest of the world. Personally, I couldn't care less - BUT, I got into an argument about this with a very politically correct friend of mine. He won't shop at Sam Ash or Guitar Center any more because they're big "corporations" and doesn't want to support them - yet when asked what it was exactly about these "corporations" he didn't want to support - he was at a loss. The idea of Manny's being bought by Sam Ash on 48th St. was thrown into the mix.

    His argument: It's deceitful, they did it so they can play the stores off of one another and basically (for whatever reason) it's a way to screw people into buying thier stuff - thinking they're buying it from manny's.

    My argument: So what? I bought my first guitar at the original Sam Ash on Kings Highway in Bklyn. I've watched that single "mom and pop" store grow into a huge corporation throughout my lifetime and I'm happy for them. If they have enought money to buy Manny's and it's reputation - and Manny's is willing to sell it, I think they're entitled.

    Besides - even if the idea does rub someone the wrong way, why blame Sam Ash? I say blame Manny's. They're the ones who sold it.

    I ask you, fellow members of Talkbass, to please be the judge, jury and lawyers here. What's your take?

    ps. mods, I'd appreciate your bumping this to the lobby if it gets political - as opposed to closing it. thanks much.
  2. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    The original Sam Ash Store was in BrownsVille Brooklyn.

    The one on Kings Highway was originally called Paul Ash (2nd or 3rd store in the Chain) & was later changed to Sam Ash. :)

    If I see something I like & ti was, IMO, priced right, I'll buy it at pretty much any store.
  3. Benjamin Strange

    Benjamin Strange Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    New Orleans, LA
    Owner / Tech: Strange Guitarworks
    My issue with huge chain stores like Guitar Center is that the bigger they get, they start losing focus of what made them so big in the first place. GC used to be a cool place to go; you could find interesting instruments, cool amps and pedals, and decent prices. Now they are more interested in being the Wal*Mart of music stores, and generally carry nothing of interest at all. They buy the gear that they feel are going to move the most units, and produce the most profit (black Fender strats out the wazoo). They pander to the lowest common denominator, and now us guys who like something exciting must look elsewhere. I guess there's nothing inherantly wrong with being a beginner's only store, but there's not alot of fun in it.

    My other big beef is how they've turned into somewhat of a monster in the industry. Their whole purpose is to put the other guys out of business and become a monopoly of sorts (any manager behind closed doors will tell you this). They play major hardball with all their dealers, and demand deals far in excess of what is fair. It's becoming harder and harder for suppliers to turn a profit dealing with the big box guys; they demand deeper discounts, order more product than can be produced, require free or discounted shipping, and charge back customer's returns to the manufacturer. Shady business practices if you ask me.

    Of course, they also treat their employees like trash while the upper guys make all the big bucks (store managers make around $100,000 a year or more, while employees up to assistant manager still make minimum wage). Their turnover rate is 400% nationally, so any good employees they might have gotten leave in an average of 3 months. No wonder you can't get good help in there.
  4. nonsqtr

    nonsqtr The emperor has no clothes!

    Aug 29, 2003
    Burbank CA USA
    "Things go to hell when the bean counters take over."

    Yet another example... :)
  5. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Some of you may recall that I've been a supporter of GC, even in the hail of criticism they typically get in here. But I am forced to agree with Benjamin on this now. Their target market has dropped to teenagers, and it's tough to find anything I need there any more. (And no, it's not because my inventory is larger than theirs.) Because of their turnover, it takes me a couple months or more to develop new relationships that I don't have spend my life haggling in. Right now, I can get righteous deals in guitars and pro audio (if they ever had what I need), but the guitar accessories guy, while friendly enough, doesn't know the difference between an Ernie Ball VP Jr. 25K and a VP Jr. 250K. What a pinhead.

    For what it's worth, the deep wholesale discounts the get from their vendors can lead to lower retail prices if you know what to pay and haggle like a mofo. They're getting some stuff at well below 50 percent of list. This may, BTW, include Gibson guitars.

    You won't hear me whine about corporate profits. I want the companies in which I hold stock to profit profusely. I can't hold it against GC's shareholders if they want the same thing.
  6. Mike Money

    Mike Money Banned

    Mar 18, 2003
    Bakersfield California
    Avatar Speakers Endorsing Hooligan
    Corporations made those kids shoot the other kids at columbine.

    And they made me fat.

    And they made mommy and daddy divorce.
  7. James Hart

    James Hart

    Feb 1, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: see profile
    no, that was TV

    I find it funny a NYC resident if boycotting Corperations. It is one of the most agressive places to make a business float...

    I use to shop @ the Sam Ash in Paramus with my GrandPop. He bought most his gear there in the 70's and 80's. When I moved to the shore 10 years ago, I'd go to the one in Cherry Hill. I stop by both when I'm in the area... but each are/were and hour from home (well Paramus was 10 minutes from Pop's house... but his was an hour from mine) I've shopped 48th street and bought a bunch from Mannys. My local "Mom and Pop" stores are full of idiots and thieves, and i only ever go for stuff I cannot wait for shipping on. The internet has moved the real "Mom and Pop's" of the world to my livingroom and front door.

    A few members of TB that either own or are employed by music shops are where I spend my dough.

    *note to self* have coffee, then make point.

    *goes to make a pot of coffee*
  8. pyrohr


    Aug 28, 2001
    Pakistani compound
    Actually Nino,
    The original store was In Crown Heights on Utica ave and Lincoln pl. Larry your old boss told me all about that. As for Ash owning Manny's thing, They have owned them for a while But continue to let the original family who owned both stores 1 in manhattan an 1 in california to run both stores! Sam Ash only ownes them.
  9. Mike Money

    Mike Money Banned

    Mar 18, 2003
    Bakersfield California
    Avatar Speakers Endorsing Hooligan
    There is one awsome mom and pop store here.

    Just started up about 6 months ago... Everything is cheaper than even guitar center...

    The other 2 are full of snakes... The peavey dealer is the only one in town, so they jack up the prices, and the other is the only G&L dealer in town, and they love to rape you as much as they can...

    And the GC... is alright as long as you have a buddy there. like me.
  10. Munji, Ben, You guys are partly right. GC appeal to teenagers, but mostly teenagers who don't research gear, try anything out, or just buy what they see their favourite bands using in the video.

    I try to be a good consumer. I try to research things, test them out, and make sure it's the tone I WANT, not the tone James Iha or Victor Wooten wants.
  11. theres a sam ash on kingshighway?
    do you mean the one in flatbush?
  12. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta (Grant Park!)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
    Yeah, it's across the street from Kings Plaza.
  13. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses
    There used to be one (the one that I thought was the original), on Kings Highway and Coney Island Ave. I don't however remember it ever being a Paul Ash. I remember it closing, and then a Paul Ash opening up around the corner from it (which turned into a Sam Ash), but not the one directly on Kings Highway.

    Now both those stores are gone and there's only the one on Flatbush Ave.
  14. yep now they built that pharmacy on coney island ave. Have you ever been to Norm's music on kingshighway, i went there once when i was just deciding which instrument to play and the dude tried charging me 300 bucks for a squire strat..never went there again. btw...i think i see you at balley's in sheepsheadbay sometimes.
  15. fastplant


    Sep 26, 2002
    To be honest, I don't really like shopping at mom and pop music stores. They all seem to specialize in the cheapest crap and nothing else. Most have one or two guitars, a crappy drum set from the 70's and 40 million sheet music books. At least GC has equipment that I might actually buy. Hopefully, it's different where you guys are, but here, no one shops at the mom and pop stores unless you're looking for a crappy guitar for a beginner.
  16. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta (Grant Park!)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
  17. Josh Ryan

    Josh Ryan - that dog won't hunt, Monsignor. Supporting Member

    Mar 24, 2001
    We have those stores here too. We also have the boutique store that charges far above what you might pay for an individual sale or ebay type deal. It's a mixed bag really.
  18. Ed Fuqua

    Ed Fuqua

    Dec 13, 1999
    Chuck Sher publishes my book, WALKING BASSICS:The Fundamentals of Jazz Bass Playing.
    So let me get this straight - he won't buy something at a store that is part of a "large corporation".

    Who does he thinks makes the stuff he's buying?
  19. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta (Grant Park!)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
    He's still working on that part! :smug:
  20. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses
    That's me. :) I spend a fair amount of time there, live right around the corner. Say hi one day if yer feelin like it.

    I CANNOT handle going anywhere NEAR Norm's music for exactly those reasons. Won't even buy strings there. I thought that guy was a crook 20 yrs. ago, didn't like his attitude one bit then, and still feel the same way about him. I wonder how he's stayed in business all these years. :confused:

    []quote]So let me get this straight - he won't buy something at a store that is part of a "large corporation".

    Who does he thinks makes the stuff he's buying?[/quote]

    He vows to only buy from the smaller American companies from now on - like Heritage.