a new best buy just opened in my neighborhood (it's actually attached to my subdivision)  i had heard the were going to have a 2500 sq ft music store, but i figured they would have only low-end stuff.  not!  they actually had a roland rd700-gx, yamaha motif, v-drums, etc...i dunno what to think...
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i saw that too. they realized that guitar center and such are cashing in on face 2 face. being able to try the real stuff versus buying on-line. i guess they want a share. bestbuy better get smart or else they'll lose to online retail.
best buy's first test market store when moving into the music gear arena was in riverside, ca (where i happen to teach).  

there are two guitar centers within 15 miles of riverside, and a sam ash next to one of those guitar centers.

within one year after best buy opened up, all five of the other mom and pop music stores in the immediate area (most of which had been happily in business for anywhere from 10 to 25 years) shuttered their stores (directly because of best buy).

and this was last year, waaaaay before the current economic crisis.

as it stands now, the music store that i teach at is the very last independent music store within a 25 mile radius.

i'm all for seeing guitar center get their come-uppance, but what's really happening is that the independents are the ones taking the hit.

like the "wal-mart ghost towns" (wal-mart moves into a town, drives all the little guys out and then decides they're not making enough money so they leave and then the tumbleweeds roll down the street), best buy's move into the music retail market dumbs down the music retail business.

the majority of people selling these musical instruments and what-not at best buy are not musicians and haven't spent a lifetime in the music retail biz learning about ins and outs of the gear they carry. they know more about refrigerators and washing machines, and their main aim is to sell you stuff.

at least at guitar center and sam ash, they hire mostly musicians and people who both know and use the gear they sell.

don't believe me? next time you're in best buy (after you've made your way past the appliances and the dvd players) ask the salesperson whether it's better to use seymour duncans or emgs in your sg or which is the most realistic rhodes patch on the motif for 70's fusion, etc.

your local independent music store would know the answer without having to refer to "the manual" (oh, but they went out of business last year when best buy moved in, didn't they?)

that's all right, america isn't about a man who can carve out his own destiny and create his personal version of the american dream through the fruits of his own labor.

nope, america is about big corporations that control every facet of your insignificant little life and who pay you the lowest possible wages to bust your ass to turn their ceos into billionaires while you struggle to make the rent each month.

who needs the independents anyway? the never have everything in stock that you need and often have to do special orders. so it's a hassle shopping with them even though the independents will always price match the big boys.  

and even if you buy your stuff from people who don't know squat about the gear they sell or if you buy it online from people that you don't know and who don't give a rat's ass about you and won't answer your questions, the independent music stores are still happy to answer all of your questions for you (or they used to be back when they were still in business).

it's sad that small business owners are forced to close. but you can't really blame bestbuy. it's the same for costco, wal-mart, carrefour (i know you know this one) or giant.  
people like myself go to costco because, quite frankly, the meat is fresh, well-priced, the service is good, and i can also do the rest of my shopping there. back in paris, we used to shop at the local shops on a daily basis. when carrefour came, very many of them closed. the only that lived where those that served exceptional merchandise, that the big stores cannot carry. for example the local cheese vendor still lives, because he "affines" (translate this for me) himself. one or 2 awesome bakers are still there. and the butcher because where else are you going to find "hampe"?

i don't think bestbuy targets guys like you. i think they target people who know little or nothing about music, and would like to purchase an dp for their kids or themselves.  
probably they have a decent budget, come in to bestbuy, say i want a keyboard, oh, here's a 700gx, i'll get that. done.  
would they get better service from a small shop? maybe. we have one here, i hate them, the sales guys are so pushy, i simply cannot stand it in there. and their selection is what it is.  

in my views, bestbuy is in jeopardy of closing their stores, just like compusa, circuit city and towerrecords. because of the internet.  
the internet has to be the worst place to test a dp.  

if gc or bb weren't there, where would i try that 700gx?

yes america is about big corporations, and when the big corporations go under, the supporters of free market give them a free pass. take that small business owners!
here are the numbers i've gotten so far:  

best buy apparently has about 900 stores; 80 will have the music stores
guitar center has about 200 stores - which best buy wanted to purchase...hmmm...

this new complex that is ruining my neighborhood will have costco; the world's largest walmart (until they build another:)' best buy, and many other large chains...they forced a small music store out of the area in order to develop this thing.  i wondered why they wouldn't just include the music store in the new development - i guess the reason is now obvious.

among the brand names i saw in best buy were:

i even saw a room that said "lessons" ha!

so what's a fella to do?  boycott lower prices and the convenience of proximity? oy -
those "lower prices" don't reflect the actual cost of doing business at those places - the full bill gets tallied when the business owners who lost their business can no longer afford to pay you to give their kid piano lessons, because now they have to take a crappy paying job at walmart.
yeah - this discussion should probably  move over to the politics room now...oy...
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