#1
Hi!

I'm a new member, but I've been playing guitar for last 10 years. I recently requested endorsement from two pickup companies, and they both responded positively.

Company A offered artist pricing on their pickups, with no firm commitments. They responded first and I made an agreement to purchase their pickups. I ordered a custom set of pickups, they should be made in 4 weeks.

Company B replied 10 days after company A, and their response was more serious, in terms of contract that I have to sign. Contract doesn't mention that I'm not allowed to use other companies' pickups. Again, I'm not getting anything for free, I get artist pricing.

Both companies requested photos of me and my equipment.

I agreed to make a deal with company A because I thought that company B won't reply to my request (10 days without answer), but I would rather use company B pickups.

I'm not sure should I politely withdraw from agreement with company A, or just swallow it and make a deal with both companies. If I do the latter, I'm afraid it would create a conflict of interest, although neither company specified that I should exclusively use their product.
Further more, I was thinking of asking both companies directly about this issue, but I'm afraid it could cause problems (worst case being they taking their offer back).

So, it's a bit of a moral dilemma and I need your advice how to approach this.

Thank you for reading!
#2
I want to move this thread to a forum where it will get more views.
We don't really have a 'music business' forum, so I'll move it to a gear forum.
But boys will be boys and girls have those eyes
that'll cut you to ribbons, sometimes
and all you can do is just wait by the moon
and bleed if it's what she says you ought to do
#3
Could you try to explain the situation to company A first, since you like their pickups less it's less of a problem if they break the deal. And if they do, you don't have to mention the whole situation to company B and so you could just take their offer.

The way I see it, there are two outcomes in this: either company A understands your situation and let's you withdraw from the contract without a problem. Or, they have a problem with the whole thing, break the deal and you can switch to company B anyway.

But I'm not a business expert in any way, so there might be nuances here that I don't understand completely.
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#4
If a company only wants a couple of pictures for an endorsement, go for it.

I have been playing semi-professionally for over 15yrs, and endorsements are really hard to get (good ones). They want a touring log of who, when and where your playing, video of you playing live (normally at a gig) and the amount of gigs you will be playing in the near future. Most endorsements professional musicians get is artist pricing on gear, which means whole sale prices. I have friends endorsed by Orange and Mesa Boogie, they tour the world and they have to pay for everything. But $1000 for a Rockerverb or $1100 for a dual recto new in the box is a friggin sweet deal.

If your really not full of it, from what you described you can endorse both companies. unless they have you sign a contract with a clause on what your allowed to use live. I was offered a great endorsement deal with Tregan Guitars 9ish years ago. I actually declined the endorsement because they wanted me to use their guitars at least 1/3 of the time live on stage and fly a banner. I was playing a PRS at the time and there was no way in hell I was going to use something else. I was stupid to pass up that endorsement now that I look back on it if for nothing else a couple free guitars. My bassist took the deal and he ended up with 2 really nice bass guitars.
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#5
Read your contract, if there is one. If you have an exclusive contract with them, it should outline the specific pieces of equipment (not the entire brand) that you agree to promote.

If you don't have a contract, then do what you like.

I've been offered a "artist pricing" (unrequested) that was simply a discount. They just wanted to have their gear out there in the hands of someone who would make it look good (or someone who would be out there often, or in my case, someone who would occasionally actually use it?)
#6
^ that is also very true
2002 PRS CE22
2013 G&L ASAT Deluxe
2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
Marshall JCM2000 DSL100
Krank 1980 Jr 20watt
Krank Rev 4x12 (eminence V12)
GFS Greenie/Digitech Bad Monkey
Morley Bad Horsie 2
MXR Smart Gate
#7
Sounds like the agreement with A is rather informal. The question is what about the order though? Is there still time to cancel it? If not, would you pay full price for it?

If you'd rather go with B, then I think it would be better that you make arrangements to go with B. I imagine it's more fruitful to be endorsed by someone you do support. So I'd politely withdraw.
#8
I am missing something.

If company A is making you a "custom set" of pickups they are making for YOU, why would you prefer the other company?
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#9
Hi! Thank you for your replies, everyone was helpful so far. I'll just address the last question - it's not so much of custom specs, but pickups with spacing that they don't normally offer, while company B does.
#11
Quote by dspellman
Read your contract, if there is one. If you have an exclusive contract with them, it should outline the specific pieces of equipment (not the entire brand) that you agree to promote.

If you don't have a contract, then do what you like.

I've been offered a "artist pricing" (unrequested) that was simply a discount. They just wanted to have their gear out there in the hands of someone who would make it look good (or someone who would be out there often, or in my case, someone who would occasionally actually use it?)



Important. Exclusivity is a thing and it would be spelled out in your contract. If they request photos, such as press, that's pretty standard. Godin requested that of me when I worked out a deal with them. I even gave them write ups and reviews that they asked for. They just stopped responding, which is fine I guess. Their instruments got a lot of publicity and we were even offering to work out a deal where their logo would be everywhere. I still use that Godin today.

More recently I had a non-binding "contract" with Gibson, more of a good faith agreement. I use the Godin more, but most of my music videos (especially those filmed with Gibsons help) feature their instruments.

Endorsements are tricky. Also remember that sometimes you can get an artist rate just by sending a positive email, and not just an endorsement. Sponsorships are harder, where companies give you money for events and what not.

Sounds like you have a deal with Company B that may or may not be exclusive, and a deal for artist pricing for Company A. you can easily keep both, provided that works for all three parties. I don't think there needs to be cross communication, just communication.
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