Table of Contents
10. Yamaha Music Products
For professionals and students alike, Yamaha is known worldwide for its pianos. The company produces very fine acoustic pianos, which are respected for their pure tones and excellent construction. But, many musicians do not have space or budget for these superior instruments and opt for a digital piano. These take less space, cost much less and through the years have improved technology which gives them many of the features desired in a fine piano. These include true to life sound, keys that are weighted to feel like acoustic ones and damper pedals that sustain sound. Yamaha produces many fine beginners through professional level digital pianos, and these are available to suit any budget. Most serious players will need a complete 88 key keyboard, weighted full-size keys with the hammer-like action, and a damper pedal. Some professional models range into the thousands of dollars. But the model reviewed here is a best seller and priced so that the average family can purchase one for the piano student in their home. Piano teachers often recommend Yamaha as the best brand and then give their students the opportunity to search for the basic requirements within their own budgets.
Yamaha DGX650B Digital Piano
This Yamaha digital piano meets all the basic requirements for a high-quality digital piano. The company used its high-quality acoustic grand to source the digital sounds for this piano, which makes the tones sound clear, rich and beautiful. It has 88 keys which are weighted heavier to play in the bass range and lighter to play in the treble range, which mimics acoustic piano key action. The damper pedal unit must be purchased separately. The case is sturdy, there are a USB port and enough different sound selections to keep a synthesizer enthusiast happy.
Since 1833, the Martin family has been making some of the highest quality guitars produced. Revered for their warm, sweet sound, these guitars have been owned by the best guitarists worldwide. When C.F. Martin came to New York City from Germany, he brought along his guitar making tools and techniques learned in Vienna where he worked and apprenticed with the renowned guitar maker Stauffer. With attention to details and superb craftsmanship, his guitars from then until the present day are the first choice of many professionals. Lucky players of every level enjoy them, too, when possible.
Martin 000-15M – Acoustic Guitar
This model of acoustic guitar offers the quality and sound made famous by the Martin family company. Still, family owned since the 1800’s, this made in the USA product produces the beautiful tone from its solid mahogany body. This is an excellent choice for anyone who wants the best quality for a reasonable price. Though there are other Martin’s more costly, the sound is very consistent in all models, and that is one reason the brand is preferred by so many musicians.
Roland was established as a company in Osaka, Japan in 1972. It has developed and manufactured a long line of high quality electronic musical instruments since that time. Musicians use keyboards, synthesizers, guitars, video workstations, drums and a host of ground breaking digital products from this prestigious corporation. With partners or manufacturing facilities in Belgium, France, Spain, Brazil, the United States and several major Pacific Rim countries, the company continues to manufacture excellent quality electronic instruments for the student through professional levels at many price points.
Roland TD-11K-S V-Compact Series Electronic Drum Set
Though the bass pedal isn’t included in this set, the pre-set sounds library, the electronic precision, and high-quality construction make this product and excellent purchase. It may be one of the more expensive choices, but the durability and quality make it well worth its price. This is a set that a professional, amateur or advancing student can enjoy for a long time to come. It is not as loud as a regular acoustic set, which makes it a bit more agreeable for close living quarters, but it is not too quiet either. It received many positive recommendations from drummers who own it.
7. X8 Drums
This company is the leader in providing world hand drums for beginners through professionals. The company imports fine quality hand percussion from Africa, Peru, the Middle East and other locations worldwide. They have their own line of high-quality hand drums for use in drum circles and educational settings. Drum circles have increased in popularity in recent years, and many people around the world meet to drum together.
X8 Drums Mini Djembe Drum with Gecko Painted Design
This hand painted mini Djembe is the #1 Best Seller in Djembes. This is a smaller version of the many full-size Djembes that X8 offers for anyone who wants to participate in drum circles using an authentic instrument. This drum is 7 inches tall and has a 5-inch diameter head made of traditional goatskin. The rope ties allow for tightening and adjusting the head for the best sound. Though this drum is small, it is not a toy, but a real instrument used to create higher pitched tones. Customers who own it consider it a beginner drum for their children. Some felt it is too small, while others felt it is just right.
6. The Singing Machine
This company offers a wide array of electronic musical products including karaoke machines, microphones, Bluetooth portable audio streaming devices for use with iPhones, computers or tablets. The company is publicly traded and embraces a corporate vision of “creating joy through music”. They distribute their products through 10,000 stores in North America, and online.
The Singing Machine Karaoke System with Disco Lights
This machine is the #1 Best Seller in Karaoke Players. Over 650 customers reviewed this product model number SML-385W. It has two microphone jacks with separate controls and a flashing disco light array of effects. This is a very popular machine with all age groups, based on the reviews. Owners liked being able to hook this into their TV or stereo system for more sound and to see the words.
5. Baby Einstein
Located in Atlanta, Georgia, this company was founded 15 years ago by a mother who was passionate about teaching her baby about the arts and humanities. The company creates age appropriate products for babies which embrace music, art, language, nature and life. Each stimulating item they make is designed to focus on how babies view the world and learn best from engaging with it.
Baby Einstein Musical Toy Take Along Tunes
With over 5,600 reviews, this item is the #1 Best Seller in Baby. This toy features a colorful caterpillar handle and large button shaped toggles to find any of 7 baby friendly classical melodies. The families that own this enjoy the two volume levels which are easy to set, and the light show that goes along with the famous melodies. The shape is like a small radio, and the beaded handle makes it easy to carry. Many parents enjoyed hearing the music right along with their children.
4. Alfred Music
This music publishing company is family owned and operated. It was founded in 1922 and has branches all over the world. It is the world’s largest music educational publishing company, focusing on helping students and teachers to have the materials they need to succeed. The company owns its own materials and several other brands. The music products are reflective of every genre and culture and feature licensed products ranging from famous performing artists to film music. All of these are distributed worldwide.
Complete Color Coded Flash Cards for All Beginning Music Students
This product is the #1 Best Seller in Music Theory. This is a well- deserved rating for one of the most respected music educational products company. Alfred Publishing is well known for its graded series of theory books and accessories. Flash cards for students just starting to learn the musical language have been popular for generations. This product has been a mainstay of items for music teachers to have in their studios and to recommend for their students’ at-home studies.
3. Deutsche Grammophon
This company is a German recording label that is synonymous with classical music for many musicians and music lovers. Founded by United States citizen Emile Berliner, who was born in Germany, this company has been producing superior classical recordings since 1898. The recordings are distributed by Decca Records and the parent company is Universal Music Group. The company has maintained a roster of superior contracted conductors, musicians and singers and is known for its consistent output of the finest recordings of noted performances. Deutsche Grammophon:
Legendary Recordings Box set, Limited Edition – For lovers of classical music, Deutsche Grammophon has been the gold standard for recordings for many years. This boxed sets features the performances of beloved artists at the height of their performing careers and gives owners of this set the opportunity to enjoy these definitive performances. Some included artist musicians are Wilhelm Kempff, Martha Argerich, Emil Gilels and Mstislav Rostropovich.
2. Rico Reeds
Many hundreds of students use Rico reeds in their woodwind instruments each year. The reeds are a high quality, yet an affordable staple for the many who are not able to cut their own reeds for their instruments. The process of creating reeds is an exacting one, and many musicians do not have this skill. Rico Reeds have been made in the United States since 1928 when Joseph Rico sent reed cane to his nephew to start a reed making business. The nephew named his reeds after his uncle, and the Rico brand has been a respected and successful enterprise since that time.
Rico Alto Sax Reeds, Strength 2.5, 10-pack
This package of 10 Rico reeds is the #1 Best Seller in Alto Sax Reeds. The design, weight, and strength of these reeds are suitable for students. Educators generally purchase supplies of reeds for their students, as this part of the woodwind instruments wears out for various reasons. The product is priced so that teachers can afford to give these to students who need them. Rico has other reeds in various weights and cuts available for other instruments. Many customers refer to this tried and true product as “the reed of choice” for their beginning band and orchestra programs.
Hohner was founded in Germany in 1857 and is recognized most for making the finest harmonicas and accordions in the world. The company also makes ukuleles, guitars, melodicas and recorders, plus much more. The precision and craftsmanship which made this company famous internationally are due to its founder, Matthias Hohner. The company sells instruments in 85 countries around the world and has been creating the finest educational, folk music, and professional instruments for over 150 years, utilizing a staff of musical educators and performing artists.
Hohner Special 20 Harmonica, Major C
Over 75% of 578 customers gave this harmonica a five-star rating. They liked its plastic combs, which absorb less moisture while playing. They also liked its smooth design, which they felt is comfortable to play. Many felt that the plastic and metal construction made it much easier to clean and keep it that way. The majority of owners liked its sound the best, stating that it is a professional sound that even beginners can enjoy.