We need your support!Join our protest against corporate music giant Guitar Center this Saturday, January 25

Where: National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Show, in front of the Anaheim Convention Center
800 W. Katella Avenue, Anaheim, California

When: Saturday, January 25, 7:00 am

Parking: paid parking only - carpooling is encouraged.
(The Convention Center operates some shuttles to/from paid parking lots.)

What to bring: water, a sign and your enthusiasm.

PLEASE BOYCOTT GUITAR CENTER, KMC MUSIC AND GIBRALTAR HARDWARE!

Michelle Mangione and Steve Soest, two independent musicians and industry veterans, will launch a protest against Guitar Center and KMC Music at the 2014 NAMM show in Anaheim. The pair filed a lawsuit against the companies last year, claiming the companies stole their innovative product design idea and profited from it.

 “They took advantage of a unique idea that we presented to them in good faith, and then they ran away with it and took all the credit,” said Soest, a product designer and consultant to major music manufacturers for 40 years.
In 2011, Mangione and Soest designed a forward-facing pedal for use with the popular box-drum known as a cajon. 
The pair presented the product to Mark Nelson, then VP Merchandise Drums and Percussion at Guitar Center. Calling the pedal design an “innovative product,” Nelson encouraged a colleague at Gibraltar Hardware (owned by KMC), Ken Fredenberg, to consider incorporating the design into the Gibraltar line of products.
One year later Gibraltar introduced the “Gibraltar Cajon Pedal” for sale around the world, without the knowledge of Mangione or Soest. The product went on to win the Best in Show award at the 2013 NAMM Show in Anaheim.
To date, Guitar Center and KMC have denied any wrongdoing. They claim they had already been working on a similar product before learning of Mangione and Soest’s design.
“We have repeatedly asked for proof of their ‘prior and independent’ development of the pedal as they claim,” Mangione said. “They have yet to come up with any such evidence. Instead they are hammering us on legal technicalities in hopes of having the case dismissed on procedural grounds.”
Many music industry leaders and hall of fame musicians have lent their support for this protest.

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