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Sales of Musical Instruments and Gear Spike During Coronavirus Lockdown

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Large parts of the world remain locked down with businesses forced to close and record levels of unemployment, with the music industry being particularly hard hit. But at least one segment of our little world is doing well: musical instruments and gear.

With folks isolated at home, record numbers are turning to their musical hobbies or digging up old projects to help pass the time. Rolling Stone reveals that a number of different companies in the musical instrument and music gear sector have reported increased interest in their products and a spike in sales since folks started isolating en masse in mid-March, including Apple, Reverb, Sweetwater, Roland, Guitar Center and Apogee.

Jim Tuerk, director of business development for online retailer Reverb, explained:

“We are seeing extraordinarily high order volumes, outpacing even the amount of orders we see during the busy holiday season. Several of the music shops that sell gear on Reverb have even told us that March was one of their best months ever…
“Compared to this time last year, searches for music gear are up nearly 50%, with several categories – like ukuleles, MIDI [Musical Instrument Digital Interface] keyboards, and drum machines – seeing search spikes of 100% or more when compared to this time last year.”

Sweetwater CEO Chuck Surack said that a recent week outpaced the week after Thanksgiving last year, typically the company’s busiest time of year. Sweetwater’s website is getting 500,000 visitors a day, double the amount of typical traffic, and is shipping between 15,000 and 20,000 orders every day.

Guitar Center has seen online sales double since the lockdown took effect, as well as an uptick in its online lessons programs.

Apple has reported a 55% increase in searches for its GarageBand recording software with hundreds of thousands of downloads of free trial software for the program’s more robust siblings, Logic Pro X and Final Cut Pro X.

Read the full report here.

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