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Hello Music - a year's worth of botched orders and questionable business practices (cross post)


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  • Hello Music - a year's worth of botched orders and questionable business practices (cross post)

    Cross posted / trying to help others benefit from my bad experiences ...


    Recently saw Hello Music advertising a US Standard Strat for $798 and pulled the trigger.  Didn't hurt that it was in the color combo I'd been wanting.  Took them two weeks to ship, and yesterday I received my ... brand new US TELECASTER.

    This my third order / fourth item from Hello Music, and there have been problems with each order but one (an EHX pedal, tough to mess that up).

    In order:

    1. They sold me a Squier CV Tele as new.  It arrived with heavy strum marks in the pickguard plastic and dead electronics.  It's clear someone played it and killed it, and it was packaged up and sold.  Wouldn't have felt too bad if they advertised it as used (they were good about the return).

    But I thought it "iffy" that a supposedly new guitar was very clearly a guitar that had been ridden hard and put away wet.

    2. Purchased a Red Witch Titan delay at the same time.  Switch was defective; popped on release.  Required my time and money to fix.

    3. EHX "The Worm" pedal.   No problems.

    4. American Standard Stratocaster ordered.  Sent email inquiry about shipment date two weeks later - simply had "order is confirmed" response.  Other email to previous CSR ignored.

    Incorrect item shipped - US Standard Telecaster received.

    Given that they tied up $800 that I had scraped together to get a Strat, during one of the better deal-making times of the year, I'm a little frustrated.  I wish I hadn't tried to save $100 by shopping from them.

    However, I reflected a bit on this - no other vendor that I've ordered from has ever performed so poorly.  I should hope that my order is correct!  A cursory google search or two tells me that my experiences are, sadly, fairly typical.

    So, if you're tempted by their great pricing, I'd think twice. 


  • #2

    damn.  wanted these cats to be good.


    • notjonahbutnoah
      notjonahbutnoah commented
      Editing a comment

      Hmmm, that sucks. Never ordered anything, but I am sub'd, and have almost pulled the trigger on a few things. Usually though, their pedals aren't the most screaming deals out there.


      Perhaps I'll just unsubscribe and same my inbox some clutter.

  • #3
    That sucks. What color Tele? My local Sam Ash had American Standard Strats priced at $799 when I was there a couple days ago.
    Guitars:G&L Tribute ASAT Classic BluesboyFender 50th Anniversary Strat, Classic 50s Telecaster, and others.Pedals:Pitchblack>EP Booster>Classic 108 Fuzz> SD-1>OCD>Keeley Rat>Hoof>DLS MKiii>Small Stone>TR-2>Flashback>Spring TheoryAmp:Peavey Delta Blues


    • #4

      If they ****************ed up 2/3 previous orders, why would you use them again? Especially for such a high price item.


      • Danhedonia
        Danhedonia commented
        Editing a comment

        I used them again for two reasons:

        1. Price.  I live in a place where there is no Sam Ash, and just one GC that has a much less competitive attitude towards pricng than those I visit in other states.  We do have a local mom and pop that is sizable, and give me good prices.  But their selection is limited.

        2. The previous issues were resolved, eventually, to my satisfaction.  And here was my rationale: The second order (which was just the EHX pedal) went absolutely fine.  And they were nice / apologetic about the issue with the guitar ... so, I wanted to think the best and I'm really not going to see a $799 price match in the flesh in this town.  I wanted a black SSS with a maple fretboard, so ....

        Also, both of the first two orders shipped right away - which matters to me.

        This did not ship for 11 days; given that they were hurling US Standard Fenders at inboxes 3x/day, I find that unimpressive.  They either waited way too long to fulfill, or were looking to internally crowd-source funding to drive a price down, without informing those whose money they're using. 

        That's sketchy to me.

        Also sketchy was the Tele arriving in what looks like a Strat case (I can't be sure, this is my first look at the new hardshell cases, but it has a Strat shape inside for the guitar). 

        The Tele is black / white p/g / maple fretboard.  I'm not only not in the market for more Teles (I have 5, thanks), it really isn't that much better than my '94 MIM standard - some grotty fret ends, and fiancee (who is very fair-minded and always a great reality check on my gear issues) says the MIM has a lot more resonance.

        The thing that leapt out at me in the other online bitch-moan posts I saw was the consistency of the issues: a reluctance to refund, and bad, bad delays with shipping.

        I might STILL purchase from them, but only with the view that they would be akin to a nameless Chinese supplier on eBay in terms of low expectations and confidence.

        Having seen where their offices are in LA, and knowing some of the real estate prices around there, I sense they're spending a lot more on "brand building" (or, simply, THEIR building) than customer satisfaction.