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Local stores and musicians experience serious delays ordering music supplies

Local stores and musicians experience serious delays in supplies.
Posted at 5:26 AM, Oct 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-15 13:23:57-04

TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — Nationwide supply chain issues are directly impacting Tucsonans, especially in the music industry.

“It’s very frustrating and it’s out of the norm,” Mark Levkowitz, Owner of Chicago Music Store.

The Chicago Music Store ordered items months in advance to tackle delays in shipping.

“It's very strange for us not being able to call up and ask for something and get it in a couple of days,” Levkowitz said.

Levkowitz says he’s specifically had difficulty getting supplies from Yamaha, Fender, and Martin. His supplier says shipping companies are taking twice the time to bring in supplies while charging five times the normal cost.

“We had a gentleman come in yesterday and he was interested in a very fine quality martin guitar," Levkowitz said. "We’ve had one on order for quite some time but we’re not going to see it until next year."

Even professionals in the music industry are experiencing delays.

“A couple of months ago, in preparation for the new season with the Tucson Symphony, I needed to change my strings,” said Sandra Um, a violist for Tucson Symphony Orchestra.

Um has played the viola for the Tucson Symphony Orchestra since 1998. She recently called multiple stores to order new strings for her instrument, but nothing was available.

“I’ve been using the Larsen A string for over 20 years so it’s been a little frustrating not being able to get the string that you want,” Um said.

The instrument shortage here and across the country is partially due to to the supply chain backlog at California ports.

“I think the combination of the problem at the docks and the tariffs and the pandemic, it just all was a perfect storm,” Levkowitz said.