The Deering Banjo Company shut down their Nashville showroom this Monday, January 5. California-based Deering established this central US beachhead in July ’06 to help make their product line more visible to both country/bluegrass pros living and working in Music City, and the many tourists who visit there each year.
The positions of Todd Wright, who managed the Nashville showroom, and Lawson Peet who represented Deering from North Carolina, have been eliminated.
Todd tells us that he will continue to host banjo workshops in Nashville, and plans to do a bit more picking himself.
Despite many jokes to the contrary, government bailouts to instrument builders won’t be on the horizon in the new US administration. Hanging onto cash in an uncertain economy may be sound advice, but do keep in mind that all the people who build, repair, teach and sell the musical instruments that are required to play bluegrass are small businesses, those least able to weather tough times.
If you are in a position to support any of them, please recognize how much they will be missed if they don’t survive.