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Author Topic: Yazoo: Sales, Service, and Sound Quality  (Read 8243 times)

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Offline uncle bud

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Yazoo: Sales, Service, and Sound Quality
« on: December 10, 2004, 05:26:01 PM »
Just in case some folks don't know, Yazoo is having a holiday sale, 10% off everything ordered through their website.

http://www.yazoobluesmailorder.com/00holidayspecial.htm

"From now through December 20th, we are offering a 10% discount on all orders from the website, calculated after all bonuses and special offers have been applied."

Recent scuttlebutt that some folks here will be aware of is that business is not great and there is a possibility that new projects may stop. Hopefully it doesn't come to that. This would be a tragedy, especially in light of the extraordinary quality of the recent "Best of" series that includes Blind Blake, Willie McTell, Charley Patton, Blind Lemon and more, not to mention some of their specialty collections. They are quite simply the best remasterings out there. Even if you have JSPs, Documents, or others, IMO it is worth picking up these "Best of..." discs given the tremendous job Rich Nevins has done with them. I have bought a number of them recently and have not regretted any purchase despite having all material on them in various other forms. A great label that deserves support.

Offline Alexei McDonald

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Re: Yazoo: Sales, Service, and Sound Quality
« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2004, 11:28:09 PM »
I've ordered ?50 worth ; even with shipping and duty, it's miles cheaper than buying them locally.
« Last Edit: April 17, 2005, 05:53:11 PM by Johnm »

Offline uncle bud

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Re: Yazoo: Sales, Service, and Sound Quality
« Reply #2 on: December 11, 2004, 07:55:33 AM »
I've ordered ?50 worth ; even with shipping and duty, it's miles cheaper than buying them locally.

Hi Alexei - that's great. I should have added to my earlier post that I have no connection at all to Yazoo myself, aside from enjoying their products immensely.

Offline Bluesygirl

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Re: Yazoo: Sales, Service, and Sound Quality
« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2004, 02:55:02 PM »
Picked up about $80 or so worth of CDs, and a couple of DVDs!  Love the stuff they put out and would hate to see it stop!
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Ignatznochops

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Re: Yazoo: Sales, Service, and Sound Quality
« Reply #4 on: December 25, 2004, 03:00:33 PM »
Has anybody received their orders since the sale started? I put in a big one, no CDs yet. Trying to cut them some slack due to the holidays but am getting a bit impatient.

Offline Bluesygirl

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Re: Yazoo: Sales, Service, and Sound Quality
« Reply #5 on: December 25, 2004, 11:42:25 PM »
Nope!  >:( Still waiting for mine.  Had a devil of a time trying to place the order on their website. Had to send several emails and make one phone call before it got fixed finally. I hope my order comes in the next week.
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Offline uncle bud

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Re: Yazoo: Sales, Service, and Sound Quality
« Reply #6 on: December 26, 2004, 09:52:48 AM »
There was a story on the news here (Canada) the other night about shipping nightmares in general in the US because of the Xmas load but in particular the storm systems you guys (and gals) have been experiencing, even in Texas (Slack, I'm assuming you haven't been out building snowmen down there). UPS and FedEx et al were not guaranteeing delivery times and USPS was saying essentially it'll get there when it gets there... Not reassuring to folks waiting for their stuff...

I have always found Yazoo and Grossman to be slow on delivery as compared to the big folks like Amazon etc. It always shows up though. My dvds arrived safe and sound after much waiting.


Ignatznochops

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Re: Yazoo: Sales, Service, and Sound Quality
« Reply #7 on: December 26, 2004, 04:24:33 PM »
It's unfortunate that the little guys need to work harder than the big ones in order to keep their customer base, but such is the nature of the "market". There are some independent distribution specialists who seem to do a very good job, CD Baby for instance. Maybe Yazoo should hand distribution over to somebody like CD Baby so that they can hopefully keep doing what they do best, which is keep the kind of music that we all love in circulation. I'd like to help Yazoo out by allowing them to capture maxmum profits by buying direct, but I don't really have time to screw around with trying to get them to fill an order in a reasonable amount of time. 2 e-mails and phone call? You got to be kidding...

If any of you are in contact with the higher ups there you might suggest that they look into some alternatives to the status quo.

Joe

Offline GhostRider

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Re: Yazoo: Sales, Service, and Sound Quality
« Reply #8 on: December 27, 2004, 02:32:13 PM »
Joe:

Your absolutely right about CDbaby, they are independant (the ultimate) but provide top quality shipping service, and rather inexpensive too.

Alex

M.Vidrine

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Re: Yazoo: Sales, Service, and Sound Quality
« Reply #9 on: December 29, 2004, 09:45:28 AM »
Hello All,

   The way I understand it is that Yazoo is a smaller offshoot of Shanachie records (the real money maker). Rich Nevins has been a 78 rpm collector for a long time and keeps Yazoo around because this music is what he is most passionate about. Yazoo & Shanachie are both distributed through a major (independent) distributor called Koch - http://www.kochint.com/, which allows any mom & pop store with an account (as well as industry giants like Amazon) to buy their product at wholesale prices.

CD Baby is a relatively new idea where individual artists, who put out their own music out (not signed to a label), are able to sell their product direct to public. CD Baby will buy (at a wholesale rate), stock and sell any CD that you want them to. As they grow, they may be incorporating some sort of distribution arm where they sell product direct to stores, but as of now they only sell direct to customers. I too think it's a great idea & will probably be listing my bands CD on the site when it is available (in January).

As chops stated, Yazoo's main business is that of a label in creating the re-issue CDs that we buy. There are other independents such as Venerable Music (my company  :D), County Sales & Elderly Instruments whose primary responsibility is customer service & filling orders from many different labels. You may have a better experience dealing with one of these companies.

I can console with Yazoo as for slow business this year. March through October was absolutely dismal & I contemplated shutting down several times. November & December have rebounded nicely & I have a sale total higher than the previous seven months combined! Thank goodness those three wise men decided to come bearing gifts!

Malcolm
« Last Edit: April 17, 2005, 05:54:29 PM by Johnm »

Offline NotRevGDavis

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Re: Yazoo: Sales, Service, and Sound Quality
« Reply #10 on: December 29, 2004, 11:19:30 AM »
I have never waited longer than 4 days for an order from Yazoo (NJ to SF Bay area) non-holiday. I usually call and do phone orders from Yazoo everyone I've spoken to there has been very helpful and really nice.

Here is my personal comparison to other small company web/phone orders: Stephan Grossman's Guitar workshop, all time record 2 days, no longer than 5 (also from NJ); Arhoolie (close by) 4 days during Christmas; Fat Possum no longer than 5 days; Wolf 7 days, Document 8 days (both from Europe); and my all time longest 73 days, 5 e-mails (promised product, no product, refund) from Amazon.
The good thing about these small labels is that if you call most times you meet the people behind the product. I called Fat Possum a couple of weeks for some help about some unrelated information I needed and they were more than happy to help one of their customers.
I also find that if I keep the cool meter high I get things quicker when there is a problem.
Good luck,
Gary
Got the name, still workin' on the licks!

Offline Bluesygirl

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Re: Yazoo: Sales, Service, and Sound Quality
« Reply #11 on: January 03, 2005, 04:06:47 PM »
I got my shipment of CDs finally from Yazoo and I must say that I am not at all happy with the sound quality of the CD "Mississippi John Hurt - 1928 Sessions."  I'm assuming that these 13 songs are exactly like the ones from the Okeh recordings of the same year. However, the Yazoo set is very hissy and sounds nothing like the much cleaner and clearer audio samples from the Okeh recordings that I heard on Amazon and iTunes.  I'm not even bothering to get a refund from Yazoo because they never return phone calls and they are very slow at returning emails.  So, I went ahead and bought the Okeh set from another seller. On a happier note, I absolutely love the two Stefan Grossman CDs I bought, "How To Play Blues Guitar" and "Shake That Thing."  The recordings are excellent and it's quite fun to listen to performance versions of the songs I've been learning. Bg

Offline uncle bud

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Re: Yazoo: Sales, Service, and Sound Quality
« Reply #12 on: January 03, 2005, 06:54:06 PM »
I haven't actually heard Yazoo's John Hurt CD, and own the Okeh/Columbia one myself. One thing about Yazoo is they will allow more hiss in the interest of preserving more of the sounds of the original recording (hiss and pops aside) so you can actually hear the music better. The raves about Yazoo apply in particular to their newer releases (The "Best ofs" and the tracks that appear on their various newer compilations like the Times Ain't Like They Used to Be series etc). Still, a lot of the older Yazoos I have (which is most of the CD releases) are better sounding than anything else I've encountered. Columbia often runs the music through their de-hissifying CEDAR noise reduction technology and the result is often crappy, to be honest. Clean does not necessarily equal good. I confess to listening to most of my John Hurt from the postwar recordings so don't have much of an opinion of the original prewar material aside from being relatively satisfied with the Columbia release, compared to some of their other material.

We need Montgomery to chime in here and offer a pointed opinion. ;)

Again, I guess I need to say I have no connection to Yazoo, just like their products overall. :)


Offline Bluesygirl

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Re: Yazoo: Sales, Service, and Sound Quality
« Reply #13 on: January 03, 2005, 09:00:33 PM »
Well I don't have any qualms about pre-war purity myself and if I had my choice between "authentic" hiss and pops and a re-mastered version run through noise reduction , I'd take the less noisy version any day. I as mentioned, I already heard audio clips of the Okeh recording online and based my opinion/decision on that. Didn't sound that crappy to me. Bg

Offline Rivers

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Re: Yazoo: Sales, Service, and Sound Quality
« Reply #14 on: January 04, 2005, 08:41:07 PM »
Bluesygirl, I have both. I think you have to look at the release dates to understand why the Yazoo is different. The Yazoo CD came out quite a few years before the Okeh Legacy one and was pretty definitive at the time, being the only CD version of the early recordings.

During the interval between the two releases a lot of progress was being made in digital remastering software and tricks. I remember on the old weenie list this discussion came up frequently. I also remember being struck by the good quality of the Okeh release when I received it as an unsolicited birthday gift.

But based on Yazoo's excellent recent re-re-re-releases I daresay if they did it over again they would achieve a much better master, and I would be out another few bucks shortly thereafter.

 


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