Hard Times Come Again No More January 2009

It’s a song, a sigh of the weary Hard times, hard times come again no more. Many days have you lingered around my cabin door Oh hard times come again no more. Stephen C. Foster, 1855 As we roll into the New Year it’s hard to be optimistic but we should all remember that the word PROBLEM is really spelled O-P-P-O-R-T-U-N-I-T-Y!! Hard to imagine if you’re a hedge fund manager, but most of us are not. The music industry is about as recession-proof as anything out there, relatively speaking. Jobs may go, cars may be repossessed, spouses may hit the road, but the need for a good guitar, banjo, or mandolin to ease the pain remains.

But it’s all relative, isn’t it? If you have a wall full of high-end instruments hanging there waiting for a recently laid-off auto worker to wander in…well you may be looking at that wall for a while, and you’d better have something that he can afford! It is in times like these that your customers become more and more selective and you should be too! At Saga, we are confident that very selective customers will sooner or later find us! If you have read product reviews of Blueridge Guitars, Kentucky Mandolins, Regal Dobros, and Gold Star Banjos you will notice, as we have, that these instruments are consistently being compared (and very favorably!) to those high-end wall hangers…and that is what your customers are searching for…VALUE!

In times like these it is always tempting to respond with a buying freeze — if you have inventory that is moving it might be the way to go. But if your inventory turnover is slower than molasses in January it might be a good idea to take a close look at The Retail Music News and get some products in there that will put a smile on your face!

Richard Keldsen
San Francisco
January 2009