About Us

About Retail Truths

There are thousands of lessons every surviving retailer learns.

Many of mine were in the school of hard knocks, where the tuition is high and the lessons are often brought home with a punch to the gut. But I was also fortunate to have had mentors who more than occasionally rescued me from the deep waters I was getting into. They are, no doubt, the reason I still have a shop to keep.

My grandfather found busywork for me in his store (Amro Music in Memphis) long before the law would have approved.  I liked the spending money; he liked sharing his passion.  Saturdays, holidays, and summers it was understood where I'd be.

When I graduated from college a job was waiting for me—the one that I'd been interning at for more than a decade.  Only now I was working for my father and uncle who then ran the store.  They had lots more to teach me, most of which I insisted on proving for myself, much to their dismay.  Somehow the store survived despite me and grew to be one the largest musical instrument stores in the country.

Then came twenty-five years with the buck stopping on my desk.  The lessons are much more vivid and memorable when they're on your tab!

Now it's my turn to pass on what I've learned—my youngest brother and my son are taking over the company.

And that's how the book and this project came to be—combined with an irresistible enthusiasm for the world's most engrossing, gratifying, challenging, and sometimes rewarding, profession.

I hope you'll join us here and share some of what you've learned.

And if you're ever in Memphis, stop in.  We have lots to talk about.

Chip Averwater