"I want to tell you how much I appreciate your business here at Sierra Music.
You know, this company has remained a small, one-owner operation from the
beginning (July, 1976). Because of that, growth has always pretty much depended
on me ..... alone. All, not some, all of the 700+ charts (and growing) in our
catalog have been chosen by me on the merits of their historical importance
and/or (in the case of new works) on their musical and educational value. This
is work that I have loved doing.
Because I am a musician first and a businessman second, this company has a very
different "vibe" than most. There have surely been times when my
musical choices have not been great business decisions. But I have never
regretted any of that, because I have not ever regretted putting
any of our wonderful music into print. I've also made many, many decisions to
put standards into print. Even though the royalty costs are high, standards
are, and always have been, a huge part of the language of jazz. So, even though
this cuts into our profit margin (now there's a hilarious thought .......
profit, that is), I never hesitiate to "go for it" when a classic
chart on a standard tune deserves to be made available to all.
Making charts available to all, by the way, is also a real cancer in this or
any business dealing in intellectual property when the charts are stolen
(copied, made into PDFs, sold for pennies or given away) by those who don't
understand what kind of damage this does (or maybe they don't care). It isn't
just that it is a threat to any company trying to stay in business, it is a
threat to EVERYONE who has ever created something original. Whether someone
copies a CD, a movie, a book, an architectural design, or a chart from us,
Alfred, Kendor, Hal Leonard or (well, there aren't many of us left) ........ it
is not only illegal, it is a violation of all of us; a violation of a basic
right to protection from theft, whether it be an idea or your car.
SO ...... when you see those free charts (or cheap ones), think about where they
came from. Believe me, whoever is selling or giving away those charts had
NOTHING to do with their creation. They are common, simple, ignorant thieves.
PLEASE DO NOT HELP THEM!
I am a lucky guy in
that I am able to edit, compose or arrange music most every day. I live with
Finale for hours, preparing music for print and for you. We continue to provide
music from Kenton, Maynard, Holman, Hooper, Metheny, Basie and so many other
established sources, and we also strive to continue to add the music of new, younger
composers who just knock me out with their charts.
Please feel free to write to me or call me at any time with your suggestions or
comments. Those things are important to me. And above all ......... SPREAD
THE WORD. Please let your colleagues know where we are and what we are
doing. That is how we'll stay in business. I thank you for that.
I continue to be grateful for your support of this company and our music,
especially in these hard economic times.
Best wishes, and thank you again for your support."