Yamaha Artist Services Hollywood Celebrates Grand Opening

11/8/2006 [Guitars & Basses]

Event featured sake ceremony and celebrities.

BUENA PARK, Calif. — Yamaha Corporation of America held a grand opening ceremony for Yamaha Artist Services Hollywood on Saturday, October 21, 2006. An All-Star band performed for over 300 guests and many Yamaha artists attended, including Troy Van Leeuwen (Queens of the Stone Age, A Perfect Circle), Wes Borland (Limp Bizkit, From First to Last), George Pajon, Jr. (Black Eyed Peas), Nathan East (Eric Clapton), Russ Miller (Nellie Furtado, Ray Charles), and Ndugu Chancler (Michael Jackson, Frank Sinatra).

Teddy Campbell, Nikki Glaspie and Felix Pollard
Yamaha Drum Artists (l to r) Teddy Campbell (American Idol), Nikki Glaspie (Beyonce) and Felix Pollard (Clay Aiken).
The event featured a Kagami Biraki sake ceremony hosted by Yoshihiro Doi, president of Yamaha Corporation of America. The ceremony, which featured the breaking open of a wooden sake barrel, symbolizes a new beginning.

"The creation of Yamaha Artist Services Hollywood signifies our deep commitment to artists, who have helped us design some of our most innovative instruments," said Mr. Doi.

Jerry and Rick Marotta
Yamaha Drum Artists the Marotta brothers, Jerry (l) and Rick.
The festivities marked the opening of Yamaha Artist Services Hollywood in North Hollywood after an extensive renovation expanded the space from 5,000 square feet to 11,000 square feet. In addition to the company's Drum Artist Relations and Guitar Artist Relations services, the facility also houses guitar and drum showrooms, a recording studio, a photo studio and a repair workshop. An intimate performance space will host artist clinics and concerts.

The site is also home to the Yamaha Guitar Custom Shop and the Yamaha Drum Custom Shop, which are state-of-the-art research & development centers where designers and craftsmen work with artists and retailers to create innovative new guitar and drum products.

Red wall with hanging guitars
Wall of Guitars
Several of the company's most innovative new guitars have been developed here, including Queens of the Stone Age guitarist Troy Van Leeuwen's signature model and the AES-series guitars, including the Sammy Hagar signature model.

The drum artist program is spearheaded by International Artists Relations Manager Joe Testa, who is assisted by Jordan Barth. The guitar artist relations program is led by Yamaha Artist Services Hollywood Director Ken Dapron and Artist Relations Manager Michael Tempesta.

"This new facility allows us to expand our custom shops and artist and repertoire capabilities in an effort to offer our musicians better service, and to design exciting new products with input from them, along with Yamaha marketing teams and dealers," said Dapron.

Yamaha maintains two other facilities to deal directly with the company's 3,500 affiliated artists around the world. Yamaha Corporate Artist Affairs (YCAA), based in Nashville, Tenn., handles worldwide relationships with Yamaha artists, including Elton John, Alicia Keys, Norah Jones and Paul McCartney. Yamaha Artist Services, Inc., based in New York City, serves as an artistically active space geared toward classical performers that hosts semi-public musical events, press conferences, experimental performances, master classes, seminars and artist showcases. It also supplies concert-related public relations and marketing support for up-and-coming classical musicians, and exposes artists to its substantial network of patrons, customers and industry contacts.

Yamaha Artist Services Hollywood is located at 11049 Weddington St., North Hollywood, CA 91601.

For more information, write Yamaha Corporation of America, Pro Audio & Combo Division, P.O. Box 6600, Buena Park, CA 90622; telephone (714) 522-9011; e-mail infostation@yamaha.com.

About Yamaha:
Yamaha Corporation of America is the largest subsidiary of Yamaha Corporation, Japan and offers a full line of musical instruments and audio/visual products to the U.S. market. Products include: acoustic and digital pianos, portable keyboards, guitars, acoustic and electronic drums, band and orchestral instruments, marching percussion products, synthesizers, professional digital and analog audio products, wireless content, and innovative technology products targeted to the hobbyist, education, worship, professional music, and installation markets. Yamaha Corporation of America also owns Yamaha Exporting, Inc., a subsidiary engaged in exporting many products and materials to overseas markets including Japan.

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