Viewing the Latest Entries From Ric's Blog


Posted February 23rd, 2019 by Ric Overton | No Comments »

Gebr. Schulz pianos are known as a regional piano brand that has been in existence since 1888. The Schulz family was involved for almost a generation before. The original Schulz and his partner, Mr. Helfferich owned the famous Grotrian Steinweg GmbH Pianos company. At that time Mr. Schulz’s son Albert was a designer for the iconic Ibach pianos in the early 1900s. Together they set up Gebr. Schulz Piano Company. They made and sold pianos from their factory in Wiesbaden Germany. This is the headquarters and workshop to this day. At this time Gebr. Schulz was available mostly in Germany.

Five generations later Christoph Schulz continues the legend. Globalization in manufacturing brought in Frederik Steffes and Colin Taylor. Steffes who, until recently owned the Wilh. Steinberg piano factory in Eisenberg, Germany. Taylor, formerly with Bösendorfer was also one of the founders of Joseph Brodmann pianos. The collaboration of these three men has launched Gebr. Schulz into a global network. Schulz is now extending their reach to include Europe, the USA and the Far East.

Using global partners the journey goes on. The dedication of building German scale designs and European influence continues. Schulz has coupled the heritage of traditional construction with intelligent global manufacturing processes. At the same time keeping the prices affordable and realistic. Today they are investigating improvements of the piano action and keyboard. These investigations are producing lovely European sounds and smooth action results. This combination is seldom found in instruments in this price range.

An interesting story is found here about the heritage of Gebr. Schulz:

Frederick Steffes and Scott Shebeck at NAMM 2019

In the USA, Gebr. Schulz is distributed by Piano Marketing Group. For more information contact Scott Shebeck at Piano Marketing Group or send message below.


Posted February 17th, 2019 by Ric Overton | No Comments »

The Beginning

The infamous Joseph Brodmann was born in 1763. As a young man he made his way to Vienna, Austria to become an apprentice. The piano builder that hired him was none other than Frederick Hoffman. And there in that Vienna studio Brodmann learned the art of piano making. The finest craftsmen in the world were his teachers.

Joseph Brodmann

In 1800 he was listed as “Joseph Brodmann – instrument maker, excelled in constructing horizontal fortepianos of solid finish”. By 1805, government records along with business logs listed Brodmann. He was recorded “Piano and Organ builder”.

His inventions and inputs throughout his career are still in practice in some part today. He made some of the most important improvements ever. Additionally, Brodmanns changes in the soundboard alone were groundbreaking for the time. His input on rib design makes the soundboards more stable.

Joseph Brodmann Pianoforte

Highly Respected

Many famous musicians, conductors, writers, composers and enthusiasts owned a Brodmann piano and wrote about it in their diaries. The charm of its tone, the tenderness of its touch and the character in its performance made it famous.

Ignaz Bosendorfer

A Slight Twist In Fate

In the early 1800s Ignaz Bosendorfer began his apprenticeship under the talented hands of Joseph Brodmann. In 1828 Bosendorfer produced his first piano and gave honor to Joseph Brodmann. The fallboard said “Made in the workshop of Joseph Brodmann”.

The rich Viennese character of Brodmann pianos continue to this day. Each piano is carefully constructed using only the very finest components available creating the European Scale Design it has always been famous for.

Brodmann PE 162 in Applewood

How Can I Own A Brodmann Piano

Today, Brodmann is represented in the U.S.A. by Piano Marketing Group. From the home offices located in Tustin, CA Brodmann is distributed throughout the U.S.A. to caring dealers. Each dealer is specifically chosen because of their reputation and dedication to fine pianos.

To find out more visit


Posted February 12th, 2019 by Ric Overton | No Comments »

I have written about these guys before several years ago. I just had to spend a moment talking about them again.


Hope Walter and her husband Kevin have an unrivaled team of professional piano movers at Walter Piano Transport . They expertly execute professional and private piano moves all over the United States.


Some wrongly assume they can handle their piano move by themselves. They put their prized possession in the hands of furniture movers who know nothing (all though all movers say they handle pianos) about moving pianos.

I get calls on a regular basis from customers who have moved across country or across the state or across town complaining that they have lost parts of their grand pianos or have a broken pedal on their upright. Worse yet, there are a lot of broken legs and damaged case parts because “the guy who said he knows how to move pianos” doesn’t.

Hope and her staff are not only pros at moving but more importantly, they love what they do and do it with the care your piano needs.


Generally speaking they are going to need to know where you are moving from and if there are any steps, strange turns, etc. Then, of course, they need to know if they are moving an upright or a grand and what size they are. If you are not sure, if you can provide a model of your piano they can help figure that out.

Trust me – if you are moving across the country trust a group of professionals to handle the job. You will be glad you did. Take a look at their website here, give them a call and get a quote on your next job.

Ric Overton


Posted February 8th, 2019 by Ric Overton | No Comments »

Wilh. Steinberg is by no means a new brand to the United States but it is simply being reintroduced with a new marketing strategy.

What’s the Story with Steinberg?

Wilh. Steinberg was established in 1877 in the quaint village of Eisenberg, Germany. They thrived very well through the years and built quite a name for themselves as what one might call a “salon piano” or a specialty piano that was built to order.

Signature Series Hammers By Renner

Quality workmanship and handcrafted pianos are a norm in Germany. Wilh. Steinberg positioned themselves as a silent giant because of their tone character and unusual finishes. Some industry experts consider Wilh Steinberg an unsung hero of the industry raising the bar in tone and appearance. They never garnered the iconic German names of Grotrian or Steinway, etc. but have always managed to do business in a simply elegant approach.

Latest Update:

In July, 2013 a company based out of Hong Kong named Parsons Music Ltd. purchased the Wilh. Steinberg factory because of it’s unique position in the market, the positive value and their reputation. Parsons has piano investments all over the world they are also among the largest piano manufacturers globally. Most importantly, Parsons decided to leave the German factory intact and add an additional line that would enhance Seinberg sales and profits.

Ina From Wilh. Steinberg Factory

Presently the company offers two lines of pianos. The more economical line is based on the German scale design but is hand assembled in China by some of the finest craftsmen available in the piano industry. This series of pianos are called the Performance series.

Different Models

The Performance Series incorporates the German scale design by including a German soundboard, German action and action parts, German strings and German hammers. It is available in both upright and grand models with a few different color variations available in most models.

The more professional line is made in German by Master Craftsmen with the experience that comes with a handmade German piano. The Signature Series are made in Germany. This series feature some of the oldest techniques in manufacturing and are entirely built by hand in their factory in Eisenberg. The unique qualities of their manufacturing process make these pianos very attractive. The price is affordable, the cabinets are lovely and the tone is strikingly elegant.

Wilh. Steinberg S130 in Ash Wood

Under the watchful eye of Ina Lehman and her staff at the direction of Parsons, I believe we are about to see a real mark with Wilh. Steinberg in the United States. Wilh. Steinberg is distributed in the U.S. by Piano Marketing Group. For more information simply fill in the comment area and someone will get back to you.

Ric Overton


Posted February 1st, 2019 by Ric Overton | No Comments »

Of course I am a little biased BUT it is my blog so I get to start wherever I want to……..LOL.


Along with my job as General Manager at Hollywood Piano, I work with Scott Shebeck and Peter Hong in a distribution company called Piano Marketing Group. We are distributors for such top brands as Dynatone Digital Piano which is based out of Seoul Korea, Wilh. Steinberg Piano which is based out of Eisenberg, Germany, Brodmann Piano which is based out of our offices in Tustin, CA, A. Geyer Piano which is also based out of Eisenberg, Germany and finally Gebr. Schulz Piano which is also based out of Wiesbaden, Germany.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Dynatone-Brodmann.jpg
Brodmann and Dynatone at NAMM 2019

The guys that make up this three man team are industry veterans who make up a very unusual trio. Peter who owns the company is in charge of inventory and finances, Scott is the National Sales Manager and myself who does as he is told. Together with Scotts understanding of the wholesale market, I have an understanding of the retail market and Peter who seems to be the master of all bring an unusual perspective to the table.

Steinberg at NAMM 2019


In the present market we find several different perspectives. We have to remember first our dealer base but also bearing in mind the “end user” as well. From purchasing to selling to dealer sell through we have to think for our customers AND their customers.

Geyer and Gebr. Schulz at NAMM 2019

I can say that from my perspective I am very proud to stand with these guys as we market our products across the U.S. and also VERY proud of the products themselves. Each MFG uses quality materials and employees very talented people that make the instruments that we sell.

Thank you Scott and Peter for allowing me to be a part of your team for almost 5 years now. I really appreciate it and I can say now, more than ever we have a VERY bright future ahead of us.

Ric Overton


Posted January 30th, 2019 by Ric Overton | No Comments »

NAMM 2019 has been as exciting as ever. There are a few highlights that I need to tell you about. Lots of products are the same as always but there are a few things that are so different that they have to be talked about and noticed.


Some of the differences are so out of the ordinary that I will try and break them down by brand name to make it easier to understand.

The highlights include Sauter, Steingraeber, Brodmann, Geyer, Gebr. Schulz and Wilh. Steinberg and others, Grotrian gets special mention along with a couple of others.

While I am here I am going to make every attempt to interview each of these companies and get their thoughts of the changes and report accordingly.

Its always great to see old friends and meet new ones, see the exciting products and visit with newcomers. All in all I feel as if NAMM 2019 has been a great success.

Of all the news I have heard, Every single dealer has expressed an uptick in business in 2018 and a bright expectation of 2019. More on that to come.

The show was incredible and as far as I can tell every single manufacturer had the same opinion and that was that the dealers and people “in the know” we happy with the results and optimistic about our future.

Some highlights will follow.

Ric Overton


Posted January 16th, 2019 by Ric Overton | Comments Off on IF YOU CARE – NAMM 2019

There will be over 24 important piano related vendors at this years show. You can find the directory here

Practically anyone can attend as long as you go through the proper steps. I would suggest becoming a member to everyone. NAMM is an important part of the music industry. Each year NAMM will bring together the right blend of people that shapes the music industry as we know it. For more information on becoming a member click here.


This is a time that education becomes vitally important. NAMM will present an entire wing again this year which will focus on education. If you want to hear about new teaching techniques or partner with another teacher on the other side of the globe, NAMM 2019 will be the time to make that happen. More information about the learning center is here.


Friday night and Saturday night at 5:30 feel free to join us for a ROOMFUL OF PIANOS on the 3rd floor. I was there last year and it was quite exciting. Some very talented musicians gather there to play all of the pianos and it was very entertaining.


Don’t miss this years NAMM show. It promises to be a very special event.

NAMM 2019 Is Coming

Posted January 10th, 2019 by Ric Overton | Comments Off on NAMM 2019 Is Coming


I have said many times that the holiday season for me starts in October with Halloween, then Thanksgiving, Christmas, of course, New Years and finally NAMM. This year is no exception. I am always very excited when NAMM arrives.

For some people NAMM is a drudgery of 2 days of set up, 4 days of standing and hard work. For me it has always been fun to show our latest projects, see what other people are doing and having the opportunity to build relationships.

Lots of great opportunities await us each year as NAMM opens. NAMM has been in the business of team building and relationship among people for many years and is still going strong.


The piano world has suffered some set backs in the past and continues to have its challenges. However, all in all the piano business seems to be holding its own and the dealers that have embrace the internet are being successful.

Each year in January NAMM has four unbelievable days that allow the most popular manufacturers, distributors and music companies to show their wares. This is our chance to see and sample different products.

Most every piano company, keyboard company, organ company in the world will attend on some level.


People from all over the world will gather for 4 days where we have the opportunity to do business or simply develop a relationship. this is the reason for NAMM.

In my next article I am going to discuss who will be there and what you can expect if you are attending.


New PianoSD Vision

Posted July 7th, 2018 by Ric Overton | No Comments » is starting a new chapter.  We are embarking on a new direction to promote every aspect of keyboard instruments.  Today you will hear the opening podcast that is the first of several to come.  These podcasts are designed to help increase interest in keyboards.

Through cooperation with Troy Rawlings and the team that make up LA Radio Now we going to promote the keyboard instrument industry.  Whether its the piano, digital piano, harpsichord or the mighty pipe organ we will be introducing manufacturers, performers, teachers, technicians and all aspects of our industry.

In the coming months you will learn some amazing things about our industry that possibly you never knew.  We are a globally intertwined industry today.  I believe it will  be very interesting how each and every part of our business from top to bottom is related to each other.

The piano business has had its challenges over the past few years, the organ business has been decimated and so many various parts of our industry have faltered.  There are more bright lights and opportunities out there now there than ever before and many more bright lights in our future.

New Tools

There are many new tools available  today and we are going to implement as many promotional opportunities as possible.  The podcast is just the beginning.  In the coming weeks and months you will see more podcasts.  Additionally, you will see streaming video soon and the implementation of live events.

Globally there are many exciting events.  In Europe there are classical concerts the are not only rare but also the instruments that are used haven’t been heard for hundreds of years.  In Korea there is KPOP which utilizes digital pianos, in Italy there are pipe organ concerts and the list goes on.

Bottom Line

The bottom line is that is going to become your “go to” site for everything keyboard related.

I hope you enjoy the new site and that you will come back often to see what is new  AND invite your friends.

Piano Trends in Crystal Lake, IL Shares Part Two

Posted May 8th, 2016 by Ric Overton | No Comments »

As we learned in the last post by Tim Paul of Piano Trends in Crystal Lake, IL, Tim has built a business that gets the word out and brands his business by careful use of Social Media.  In Part Two we will see some examples of his success and learn more about how he is successfully using all of the tools he has at hand AND able to do that in just a few minutes of his time for FREE:


Piano Trends piano 1


Recently, one of our Facebook followers who has posted comments and likes on our page contacted me through Facebook messenger. It started out with just general questions. We found out that he was the keyboard man for a world famous rock and roll band that is playing small concerts from time to time. After some conversations back and forth he wound up buying a grand piano from us. He said he was thrilled with the value and was happy because he felt like he was supporting someone he had known for a long time. Now we service the piano for him and our follow through with the things that we have promised him over the Facebook posts he had become familiar with. I’m sure you can understand what I mean by earning trust.


blue piano

Piano Trends piano 2Piano Trends piano 3

Never second guess the need for Social Media to your small business and especially with regards to your music business. Be ready to take advantage of new technology and realize that the “old fashioned way” is not necessarily the best way to promote your business.

I would be more than happy to discuss or help you develop a strategy to brand your business regardless of you position. If you are a musician, teacher, salesman or some other part of the music business, the same ideas work and you can become proficient enough to take the next step in a very easy and concise way. Over 40 years in the music business has helped me understand how to adapt and continue in business. If you keep your customers as the center and always know how to understand their needs you are on the right track.

Please feel free to email me at anytime or visit our consulting site at

I look forward to hearing from you.

Tim Paul
President, Piano Trends

35 Berkshire Dr, 
Crystal Lake, IL. 60014
(815) 564-2773

Thank you, Tim for your contribution.  Coming soon we will read a great article by another friend of mine that has gained much success in the music business and an explanation of what Music has meant in his life.


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