Page 2 of 3 FirstFirst 123 LastLast
Results 11 to 20 of 21

Thread: Brand Preference

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Farmington Hills, MI
    Posts
    376
    Quote Originally Posted by Magikarp View Post
    This, and the fact the retailers are very conservative and with a brand that was almost unrivalled, didn’t need to take chances. I worked for one of the UK’s top Besson and Yamaha dealers and the owner would always try out other brands - certainly I remember playing a Meinl Euphonium, as well as Geneva and Sterling - but would always stick to the big two. IIRC Besson’s trade terms were, for the really big dealers, an additional 39% off cost price if you stocked the right number of instruments (from cornets to tubas, via Keilwerth saxes, and Buffet Clarinets) so the margin was enormous.

    Example
    Besson 967 euphonium
    RRP £5500
    Trade price £3019
    Main dealer trade price £2172
    55% put on cost plus VAT £2172 1.82125 =£3955 so £1500 off a euph and still make a ton of money - what’s not to like?!)

    This was the time a Denis Wick 4AL cost £35 in silver and £55 in gold!

    I was made redundant in 2012 and that was when Thomann had started making inroads into the UK, and Yamaha were walking a very fine line of price-fixing, which is illegal, but they were of the thought their products didn’t deserve to be discounted - the obvious solution was don’t sell to the discount stores, and don’t have credit terms with retrospective bonuses for hitting sales targets.

    The cabal of brass band dealers liked Besson because selling them was like shelling peas. The lottery instruments, taken as whole, because I know some people had good ones, were the worst instruments ever to bear the Besson name, but even so, bands couldn’t get enough of them. It was in the early 1990s when Black Dyke “chose” Besson instruments although in truth they would have been using them anyway. This was great advertising, and they’re still at it - Dyke with Geneva and Cory with Besson, although they’d previously used York because of the Childs family connection and they could get a set dirt cheap.

    I find it fascinating Packers, long with Rosehill, have taken Adams on board. It has to be good for business as long as the stocking commitments aren’t too heavy. Tom, who sold me my euphonium, said the margin is much smaller than on other brands.

    Another thing to consider is brass bands are inherently competitive, for good or bad, and Besson / Boosey & Hawkes sponsored all major competitions so the reminder was always there. There were always a few renegades who played alternative brands - Robin Taylor of Grimethorpe used a Willson, Stephen Singleton played on a Yamaha Maestro, but in all other regards it was Besson all the way. Besson also came with Wick mouthpieces out the factory. People have long memories, but not long enough to remember the dreadful lottery filth peddled by Besson.

    As an aside British brass band instruments in the 1990s would invariably have been;

    Schilke soprano cornet
    Besson cornets, tenor horns, baritones, euphoniums, tubas
    Vincent Bach Strad flugelhorn
    Conn 88H trombones
    Hilton TR181 bass trombone

    And woe betide anyone trying anything new!

    Captive market only hints at the situation.

    Luckily things are changing and the dominance of a single company, no matter how good their products, or how fabled their heritage, is at an end. It’s now down to the retailers, the few who are left at any rate, to be brave and proactive and offer the consumer a choice.
    Thank you for the insider's take. Regarding Adams margins. My US retailer did a great job getting me my E3 made to order, but could not offer a discount other than paying the freight from the factory to the US and then to me.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Farmington Hills, MI
    Posts
    376
    Quote Originally Posted by Sara Hood View Post
    I think that it would also be fair to mention that until quite recently, Besson was an English company. If you could buy a product that was produced domestically, had more than 150 years of manufacturing history and product support, and was associated with a famous name in the field, wouldn't you buy that one too? There are advantages to buying the brand that is manufactured within your own borders, regardless of product. The Besson brand had all that going for it within the UK. While Bessons are no longer made in the UK, the local manufacturing edge and the name recognition that comes from their history and lineage, have not worn off yet.

    Or to put it another way, what brand of car do you think the people of Dearborn, Michigan drive? I lay you odds that you will find a heavy piece of the market share goes to Ford. In part, because that is where the Ford brand was started by its original founder. Local company fueling local jobs and being sold without tariffs or other economic penalties.

    - Sara
    I can only tell you how I would react to that scenario. I would buy the best horn I could afford. For many in England that is Besson both for the reasons you describe and for how they sound.

    By the way I live in the Detroit Metro Area and your analogy doesn't directly apply to those in Dearborn but does to Ford employees. They get favored pricing and loyalty is part of that. But Ford is not the company it once was and many of their vehicles are not made in the US (like most American based car companies). I think this description would have fit better forty or so years ago. There are huge volumes of foreign cars here. On the other hand the Ford F150 pickup is ubiquitous everywhere as are American SUV's.

  3. #13
    As a player AND a dealer, my two biggest criteria for picking a horn (for myself and for someone trying out instruments in the shop) are:

    1. What gets the sound YOU are looking for?
    2. What is the easiest to play?

    I've never gone wrong using those two basic things.

    As for Besson vs. Geneva - I've owned a Cardinal and I've played many Bessons at conferences, and I personally would pick Geneva if I had to choose but were unable to test first. Just based on past experience from playing, the Geneva plays more like I want a euphonium to play.
    Sean

  4. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by spkissane View Post
    As a player AND a dealer, my two biggest criteria for picking a horn (for myself and for someone trying out instruments in the shop) are:

    1. What gets the sound YOU are looking for?
    2. What is the easiest to play?

    I've never gone wrong using those two basic things.

    As for Besson vs. Geneva - I've owned a Cardinal and I've played many Bessons at conferences, and I personally would pick Geneva if I had to choose but were unable to test first. Just based on past experience from playing, the Geneva plays more like I want a euphonium to play.
    I always thought Bessons, Genevas, and Sterlings played fairly similarly, so Iíd guess thatís why the dealer I worked for chose Yamaha as an alternative as theyíre so different. The issue is now there are so many alternatives it would nigh on impossible to try them all. It is probably why Willson, Shires, and probably Adams to a lesser extent, will never take off in the UK - lack of dealer interest, lack of customer interest, lack of visibility (due to lack of dealers), lack of name players, and brand inertia.

    Itís a pity because as an intellectual exercise Iíd quite to try a Willson or Shires - certainly not to buy - but just to experience it.
    Adams E2 0.80 Yellow Brass, Satin Lacquer, Blue Abalone Buttons
    AR Resonance M Top / L Backbore Gold Plated Phosphor Bronze

  5. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Magikarp View Post
    I always thought Bessons, Genevas, and Sterlings played fairly similarly, so I’d guess that’s why the dealer I worked for chose Yamaha as an alternative as they’re so different. The issue is now there are so many alternatives it would nigh on impossible to try them all. It is probably why Willson, Shires, and probably Adams to a lesser extent, will never take off in the UK - lack of dealer interest, lack of customer interest, lack of visibility (due to lack of dealers), lack of name players, and brand inertia.

    It’s a pity because as an intellectual exercise I’d quite to try a Willson or Shires - certainly not to buy - but just to experience it.
    I'm sure Gary Curtin playing an Adams now has caused some ripples in the water. FWIW I love the way my Shires Q40 fits into the brass band sound, and am excited to someday test the Solo model.
    Steven Vaughn, D.M.A.
    Professor of Tuba & Euphonium, University of Northern Colorado
    S.E. Shires Euphonium Artist

    Principal Tuba - Fort Collins Symphony

    Eastman 836 CC Tuba
    Meinl Weston 2182W F Tuba
    Shires Q40 Euphonium

  6. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by stevevaughn View Post
    I'm sure Gary Curtin playing an Adams now has caused some ripples in the water. FWIW I love the way my Shires Q40 fits into the brass band sound, and am excited to someday test the Solo model.
    Iím pleased you like your hooter. I love my Adams, but equally Iím sure there wonít be any huge names moving from Sterling, Geneva, or Besson. Iíd love to be proved wrong but British brass bands are so conservative it isnít even funny.

    Iíd decided to audition Adams before contacting Gary and he was most helpful. I guess it all depends on whether you think endorsements from people actually mean anything. Personally I donít.
    Adams E2 0.80 Yellow Brass, Satin Lacquer, Blue Abalone Buttons
    AR Resonance M Top / L Backbore Gold Plated Phosphor Bronze

  7. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Magikarp View Post
    I always thought Bessons, Genevas, and Sterlings played fairly similarly, so I’d guess that’s why the dealer I worked for chose Yamaha as an alternative as they’re so different. The issue is now there are so many alternatives it would nigh on impossible to try them all. It is probably why Willson, Shires, and probably Adams to a lesser extent, will never take off in the UK - lack of dealer interest, lack of customer interest, lack of visibility (due to lack of dealers), lack of name players, and brand inertia.

    It’s a pity because as an intellectual exercise I’d quite to try a Willson or Shires - certainly not to buy - but just to experience it.
    Traditions can certainly be tough to break. I think it would be hugely beneficial for the markets outside the United States for ITEC to be held somewhere in Europe/UK in the next few years. Having an "international" conference in the same country every time puts a continuous burden on the players, enthusiasts, markets, etc. who live outside that country - and not just for the purpose of trying horns out, but just experiencing the music and community aspects of the conference as well.
    Sean

  8. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Magikarp View Post
    I’m pleased you like your hooter. I love my Adams, but equally I’m sure there won’t be any huge names moving from Sterling, Geneva, or Besson. I’d love to be proved wrong but British brass bands are so conservative it isn’t even funny.

    I’d decided to audition Adams before contacting Gary and he was most helpful. I guess it all depends on whether you think endorsements from people actually mean anything. Personally I don’t.
    I think endorsements help companies advertise, and it's certainly a good business plan to promote players in high-profile jobs/ensembles that play their instrument. I think there are a lot of people out there that say "I like the way XYZ player sounds/plays, so I'll look into XYZ brand instrument", and I think that's a good way to start off testing instruments, but ultimately not the way I would choose an instrument. As we know there's a lot that happens behind the mouthpiece that makes someone sound they way they do!

    I love my Shires and given it's a fairly new horn (among a seemingly expanding field of new instruments) I hope more people get a chance to try them, and I'm happy to help spread the good word about them! Especially given the customization available in the solo/custom models, some of which are unique to Shires. Whether it (or any other brand) will break into the brass band scene is another story.
    Steven Vaughn, D.M.A.
    Professor of Tuba & Euphonium, University of Northern Colorado
    S.E. Shires Euphonium Artist

    Principal Tuba - Fort Collins Symphony

    Eastman 836 CC Tuba
    Meinl Weston 2182W F Tuba
    Shires Q40 Euphonium

  9. #19
    Hello everyone,

    I totally agree that the traditional British brass band scene is really hard to break into. I think another element to choosing a new instrument is choosing a brand that you have trust in. I know so many people who go for an instrument and face quite a number of issues with their new instrument and almost always end up switching back to a brand that they have a total trust in which makes it hard for new companies to break onto the scene.

    It has been absolutely fascintating to read all the posts here on this page! Thank you everyone for your continued help and support!

    Best Wishes,

    Micah Dominic Parsons
    Best Wishes,

    Micah Dominic Parsons

    Website - https://mdpmicahdominicpar.wixsite.com/my-site
    Blog - https://theblogofabrassmusician1994.blogspot.com/

    Facebook Account - https://www.facebook.com/Micah-Domin...05492345484536
    Twitter Account - @MicahDParsons94
    Instagram Account - @MDP.Micah.Dominic.Parsons
    Youtube Account - https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCRj...KljG3JLcuMs60A

  10. #20
    Join Date
    Jun 2018
    Location
    Summerville (SC)
    Posts
    319
    You are right on, Steve... Hence my own high interest in Q40, and -- somewhat as a half leap of faith, in the Shires Solo version as well.

    Hope you (Steve) will have an opportunity of trying out Solo before too long

    Regards, Guido
    Wessex EP104 Festivo + DC4, SM4U, 51D

Page 2 of 3 FirstFirst 123 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •