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View Full Version : Fuck Musician's Friend-- you suck (long, boring rant)


Rubystreak
06-12-2007, 10:58 AM
Just got off a very aggravating phone call, one of fucking many, with Musician's Friend. Possibly the worst customer service I've ever experienced, worst delivery service, no concern for my business or my time, even though they got a $1600 order from me. Fuck them.

My fiance and I ordered a drum set for our home recording studio from Musician's Friend, the DTXpress Special. (http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Yamaha-DTXpress-IV-Special?sku=444814) The price was right, no sales tax, and the site says all items are delivered in 2-5 business days. (http://mf.custhelp.com/cgi-bin/mf.cfg/php/enduser/std_adp.php?p_faqid=3&p_created=965167202&p_sid=az4ZSXDi&p_accessibility=0&p_lva=&p_sp=cF9zcmNoPSZwX3NvcnRfYnk9JnBfZ3JpZHNvcnQ9JnBfcm93X2NudD0yNzcmcF9wcm9kcz0mcF9jYXRzPSZwX3B2PSZwX2N 2PSZwX3NlYXJjaF90eXBlPWFuc3dlcnMuc2VhcmNoX25sJnBfcGFnZT0x&p_li=&p_topview=1) Good! So we ordered it on 5/24, thinking we'd have it by the end of the following week.

First, they ship each piece separately, multiple days apart. We get the module after a week, it's fine, delivered to the door. A week more passes, no sign of the two other boxes. I'm already aggravated that it's taken 10 business days and the 3rd package is nowhere to be seen when we get the 2nd package, the drums, on Friday (pads, cymbals, etc). Worse yet, it's the wrong item, of course a cheaper one, the DTXplorer (http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Yamaha-DTXPLORER-Electronic-Drum-Set?sku=443020). There's a $500 difference on these two items.

After literally hours on the phone Friday and yesterday, they agree to ship back the box that's wrong on their dime. I have to go to Fedex and send it, then call them with the tracking #. They make me wait a full business day until the package "shows up on their computer." Fantastic. Meantime, after calling twice last week to find the lost 3rd package, it's located misplaced in the warehouse and "arrives" yesterday. Unlike the other parts, this one piece is Signature Required by UPS, and they never come when I'm home so I have to schlep out to the UPS depot between 7-8pm to get it. It barely fits in my car and weighs 57 lbs. OK, fine, I can live with that. At least it's the right thing.

So finally, today, they have a record of the drum return. Here's the kicker: after I went through all that shit to get the shipping label for Fedex and returned the drum, the customer service girl on the phone says, "Whoever set up this return did it wrong. We don't ship this package as separate parts ( :smack:-- you fucking DID send it as separate packages, and you sent the wrong one, fuckers ). You have to send the whole thing back, including the two correct packages, if you want your drums."

OK, fuck you, sister. No fucking way am I sending back correct items so you can turn around and send them BACK to me again, in separate packages at different times, possibly screwing it up again, possibly taking 3 more fucking weeks to send it. I told her if I had to send the other parts back, I was getting a refund or I'd take it up with Visa. She puts me on hold for 20 minutes, comes back, of course gets all snotty with me, going, "We're really making a big exception for you by taking back just the drum component. We never do this for anyone, just take back parts of the order. I had to get special manager authorization on your behalf for this return. You're very lucky we're allowing this. That's all I can do for you."

No offer for a discount, no shipping refund, even though I asked. I was fucking SO LUCKY that they weren't requiring me to send the whole thing back to them, I should feel grateful for that and suck it up. The best she could do, she said with her world-weary 20 year old voice, was give me 2 day shipping on the correct drum. Of course, they won't send the correct drum out until they get the wrong one back, who knows how long it'll take? Maybe I'll get it next week, if the gods of fucked shipping see fit to make it so.

Bottom line: DO NOT ORDER FROM MUSICIAN'S FRIEND. They take 3+ weeks to fill orders that their website claims should take 2-5 business days. They send things to you in dribs and drabs, each a week+ apart. That alone would be bad enough, but then they send you the wrong shit and you have to ship it back on your time. But it's worse than that-- when you send it back, they give you shit for their shipping screw up (I just followed the return directions the guy gave me on the phone!) and tell you to send everything back, even if it's the right stuff, even if it's in huge boxes and weighs 30+ lbs each and YOU have to bring it to Fedex yourself. An added bonus is that they try to make you feel honored that they will deign to take back their wrong, cheaper item, and maybe you'll get your shit in a month when all is said and done. Their phone reps are clueless at best and snotty at worst. What a total clustefuck.

Once more, with feeling: FUCK MUSICIAN'S FRIEND.

TLDRIDKJKLOLFTW
06-12-2007, 11:22 AM
They're the same company as Guitar Center, so I just go to the store and get them to match the online price. No problem, no shipping hassles.

fluiddruid
06-12-2007, 11:25 AM
Call up and ask to speak to a supervisor. Explain you will dispute the charge if you do not see the rest of this shipment.

Rubystreak
06-12-2007, 11:36 AM
They're the same company as Guitar Center, so I just go to the store and get them to match the online price. No problem, no shipping hassles.

You're right, but this price supposedly was an online special for $1599 (regular price $2300). At the store, they'd have to special order it, which would include fees and taxes. Also, the online order included some free extras, like a stool and some other shit (my fiance knows the specifics, but he seemed to think this was a great deal for this item). We thought we'd save money and have the convenience of having it shipped to the house instead of having to schlep it home in several trips. Maybe it would have been worth the extra money to be able to examine it in-store-- not $700 more dollars, though.

THespos
06-12-2007, 11:39 AM
I got a portable amp through one of their blem sales a few years ago. The thing showed up blown. I called and said the amp never worked and they blamed it all on me, saying I plugged the power supply into the wrong jack on the amp and toasted it myself. Thanks for playing.

I'm never buying from them again.

Turek
06-12-2007, 11:56 AM
Personally, I'd've returned the whole thing and told them tough shit, they were not getting my money if that's the way they treated me. I'm willing to pay more to not get screwed around with. I don't understand why people get treated badly by companies and still insist on giving them money.

Rubystreak
06-12-2007, 12:31 PM
Personally, I'd've returned the whole thing and told them tough shit, they were not getting my money if that's the way they treated me. I'm willing to pay more to not get screwed around with. I don't understand why people get treated badly by companies and still insist on giving them money.

In principle, I agree with you. The problem is, I already have 2 of the 3 boxes (large, heavy, unwieldy boxes, annoying to repack and have to ship). If the 3rd box was also wrong, I would have sent the entire thing back with a giant FUCK YOU. Likewise, if they had forced me to send back the other two boxes along with the drum to correct their error, that would have been it and I would have rescinded the order. As it is, they agreed to ship the right item, so it's only just slightly easier to finish the order. With luck, no more fuckery will occur. If it does, I will get a refund.

Crotalus
06-12-2007, 01:12 PM
Rubystreak - I'm very sorry to hear about your experience with Musician's Friend. I have had the opposite experience, and until I read your OP I felt pretty confident about telling friends that MF had the best customer service of any online vendor I use. Most of my orders are small, guitar strings and other accessories, but I have also ordered some expensive stuff, including a Fender tube amp. Everything has arrived in perfect shape and in a reasonable time. In fact, every order I've placed has been shipped the same day. Again, sorry to hear what happened to you.

Duck Duck Goose
06-12-2007, 01:34 PM
I too have had nothing but good experiences with Musician's Friend d.b.a. Giardinellis, but like Crotalus I have only ordered small single items, not a whole shipment of various components. Maybe they just can't handle large multi-item orders, but they're okay with small things.

I'd definitely ask to speak to someone higher up; the "girl on the phone" is only being paid minimum wage to sit there and handle normal problems out of her photocopied binder manual. She doesn't have the authority, or the training, and possibly not the smarts, either, to deal with genuinely complex problems like yours.

And I hope you got her name, so when you do speak to her supervisor, you can report exactly which minimum-wage phone-answering grunt it was who couldn't correctly handle your Customer Service problem.

Ogre
06-12-2007, 04:07 PM
That's what you get for ordering a set of electronic drums. :p

May I introduce you to Zzounds (http://www.zzounds.com/)? I've been ordering from them for years, and have never had any problems at all. I refuse to do business with Guitar Center/Musician's Friend. They're the Wal-Mart of the music world, and have fucked me over in the past.

Rubystreak
06-12-2007, 04:46 PM
That's what you get for ordering a set of electronic drums. :p

May I introduce you to Zzounds (http://www.zzounds.com/)? I've been ordering from them for years, and have never had any problems at all. I refuse to do business with Guitar Center/Musician's Friend. They're the Wal-Mart of the music world, and have fucked me over in the past.

Mike ordered a guitar cabinet from zzounds and they sent him the wrong one. So maybe the moral of the story is, don't buy electronics from the internet. Suck it up, pay the extra money and deal with human beings who have direct accountability if they fuck with you.

Ogre
06-12-2007, 04:49 PM
Mike ordered a guitar cabinet from zzounds and they sent him the wrong one. So maybe the moral of the story is, don't buy electronics from the internet. Suck it up, pay the extra money and deal with human beings who have direct accountability if they fuck with you.Wow. I suppose anybody can make a mistake, but I've almost come to think of Zzounds as Inerrant, since they have NEVER fucked anything of mine up.

Anyway, yes, the first choice would be to buy local, I guess. Good news is that because of online music stores, lots of bricks-and-mortar prices are coming down.

brendon_small
06-12-2007, 06:08 PM
Anyway, yes, the first choice would be to buy local, I guess. Good news is that because of online music stores, lots of bricks-and-mortar prices are coming down.

I wish this were true where I live. I can drive to Columbus (where I bought my new-ish guitar and Line 6 a few years back) and get a decent deal at a few stores, but my local shop is at least 5% higher than any other place on guitar stuff.

I used to buy things there because my friend was the repair man there, plus he was incredible. He built my electric I used before my strat and I love it. Other than that, nothing much comes out of that store. I am pretty sure they order things from MF, mark up the price slightly, and resell it. I have ordered from Music123.com, Musicians Friend, and bought a guitar from eBay. Unfortunately, eBay had the best customer service...

Musicians Friend
Not huge problems, but when I order a Djembe and recieve bongos - yes, you replaced it with the right product, but damn you sure as hell took your sweet time.

Music123
I don't own a guitar case. I did, but I don't know. When I was in high school, I bought an Ibanez from you. It arrived in a large box, and upon opening I saw that it had been shut in a case - the guitar was cracked. I assumed a return would have been in order, but apparently that is too much to ask...I have a functional guitar but damn, the huge chunk out of the wood is a bit ridiculous. Fuck ya.

Brendon Small

Ogre
06-12-2007, 06:17 PM
Just so's you know, Musician's Friend bought Music 123. They're now the same place. :)

Cluricaun
06-12-2007, 10:18 PM
MF is great bathroom reading, but that's it. I can't really imagine buying instruments on line. I'd have to hold the guitar, and I mean that exact guitar, before plunking down my cash on it. Luckily there's a Guitar Center down the road that I can go to. Not that I'm really in the market to buy anything, but I do love going in there and messing around with a few grand worth of rock and roll.

Hard to do that online or through a catalog.

WowReally
02-24-2011, 09:08 AM
You see how good or bad a company is when things start going wrong with an order. At every turn, do they try to fix it, or do they make it worse? Musicianís Friend is very bad. FYI, here's how it went down when I tried to cancel an order I thought I had a 15% discount on, but didn't:

Yamaha gear was excluded from an online sale, but Musicianís Friendís sale details web page did not have a link to the exclusions. This is deceptive.

The checkout process took the saleís coupon code and made no mention of it being rejected. This is deceptive.

Because I saw no evidence of the sale discount being applied, I sent a request to either verify the discount or cancel the order Ė this got no response or action. I think this was to allow time for the order to be shipped so it would be harder to cancel. This is unprofessional and dishonest.

After no response came, I called them before the order was charged to my credit card or shipped, and asked the same questions. They said the discount didnít apply, and that they couldnít cancel the order because it already shipped. Those were two lies Ė I knew the order hadnít shipped yet, and I knew if it had already shipped, they could request the shipping company return the package(s) to them. I told them to cancel it, but they didnít. This is unprofessional and dishonest.

Further communications sent by me prior to the shipping and billing went unanswered until I filed a claim with the BBB and notified the parent company (Guitar Center).

After all that, they still ended up shipping the gear and charging me. I had to jump through more hoops to make sure UPS didnít deliver it. After shipping, one of their customer service representatives tried to remedy the situation, but it was too little too late. Who wants to be reminded of problems like this every time they play that instrument?

As you can read above, there were too many issues to consider this bad customer service to be accidental. I think theyíre too big to value their customers anymore, and need to fix their attitude along with their processes. I wonít shop Guitar Center or Musicianís Friend because of it.

BubbaDog
02-24-2011, 01:02 PM
Did you try contacting the Zombie Customer Advocate service?

Scuba_Ben
02-24-2011, 01:06 PM
Maybe the zombies wanted to make a music video.

Bambro
02-24-2011, 01:19 PM
Brains!!!

E-Sabbath
02-25-2011, 06:11 AM
I've had good luck with Musician's Friend, myself. But I get all my custom guitar bits from www.guitarfetish.com when I can. The more I learn, the better it is. I mean, it's not Warmoth, but the pickups will match anything out there at three times the price, and the tuners are proving outstanding.

Enderw24
02-25-2011, 06:30 AM
So did Rubystreak ever get the drums?

WowReally
02-25-2011, 10:53 AM
Guitarfetish looks pretty interesting, thanks! That's a new shop to me. I've had great luck over many years with Sam Ash, Sweetwater, AMS, and Full Compass. Good enough that I'll never have to return to WalMart, er, Musician's friend or GC - I was just finally trying to give them a shot at some of my business this year. Yup, zombies is right!

E-Sabbath
02-25-2011, 11:39 AM
Standard pictures since you're interested. My guitar-made-by-em.
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v449/LaPucelle/Guitar/XV-5851.jpg
It's still the oddest guitar I've ever seen mass produced. I mean, that wasn't a weird shape. P-90, humbucker, LP shape, chambered mahogany.
My guitar-I-rebuilt
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v449/LaPucelle/Guitar/StarcasterTuxedo2.jpg
Tuners, trem (brass), pickups, pickguard, wiring, pots, jackplate, chrome black screws.

The semi-locking tuners (cross-drilled holes) are really really amazingly good at keeping things in tune. I've been thinking of upgrading the Subhuman with them. Same strings, and the guitar with a trem stays in tune better than the guitar without one.

WowReally
02-25-2011, 11:57 AM
Nice! I don't have the balls to build my own yet, but have thought about it, and when I do, will probably have to go warmoth because I'm a lefty and couldn't play righty. From the looks of it though, I'd probably still get a lot of the parts from guitarfetish. Wish warmoth had similar pricing!

E-Sabbath
02-25-2011, 02:14 PM
The rebuild project was an educational thing. I took the world's worst mass-manufactured guitar, and swapped out every part I could, learning how each change alters how it feels, plays, and sounds.
For your information and enjoyment, I'd like to invite you to the Great Ongoing Guitar Thread (http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=550219), a year old and still growing.

Still got to change the neck someday, once I decide what kind of neck I want to put on it. Maybe. It plays like a baseball bat, compared to my other two, but there's an argument in favor of that.

cosmosdan
02-26-2011, 08:36 AM
You're right, but this price supposedly was an online special for $1599 (regular price $2300). At the store, they'd have to special order it, which would include fees and taxes. Also, the online order included some free extras, like a stool and some other shit (my fiance knows the specifics, but he seemed to think this was a great deal for this item). We thought we'd save money and have the convenience of having it shipped to the house instead of having to schlep it home in several trips. Maybe it would have been worth the extra money to be able to examine it in-store-- not $700 more dollars, though.

It's ridiculous that they wanted you to send correct components back after they realized THEIR mistake. That's horrible customer service.
I wondered as I read your story why it was separate boxes. Usually an electronic drum kit is one box, any advertised bonus items , like the stool, might be separate.
Still, her job should have been to find out what components you still needed and expedite you getting them, rather than create more effort for you because of their mistake.

You can't always get extra discounts because of a mistake, especially a sale item, but they should at least correct the mistake and make it convenient for you as possible.

gaffa
02-26-2011, 08:18 PM
I refuse to do business with Guitar Center/Musician's Friend. They're the Wal-Mart of the music world, and have fucked me over in the past.
Actually, I'm pretty sure they are actually Wal-Mart. I was at a Guitar Center and noticed a maintenance man replacing a florescent light ballast. He had an ID badge, and it said "Wal-Mart".

Cubsfan
02-26-2011, 10:26 PM
My favorite thing about GC and MF is how they advertise "Guitar X an AMAZING 75% off retail price!" when the guitar is the same price every fucking place you look, many times for years at a time. Pretend sales is what I call these.