As mentioned, everyone leaves the city eventually. You become educated and your perspectives change. And sometimes you just want more peace and quiet. We are going to chronologue the years 1970 -2014. Now Ken was not in business as Beyer Music until 1981. Ken and family moved up to his hometown of Torrington , Ct when things were still simple. Coming soon! Beyer Music 1970 – 2014. See the main site for the owner’s life in the 60′s. Connecticut had a lot of small to medium sized music stores. Mr Beyer was recruited for a company called Watkins Bros while on vacation in CT. He just had to walk into this job. It was a high class outfit in Hartford, CT. It also seemed that one thing was certain. He was working in smaller towns. At Watkins he gained experience again. He made sales of all types especially the Rodgers Organ which has always been a church organ elite. But he sold Steinway and Baldwin pianos. Watkins Bros was big time in Connecticut in terms of what they sold.
Next company for Ken Beyer was Clavier Music in Avon , CT. This was as we said getting closer to a small town. Clavier was about keyboards but they sold other instruments as well. The market of Avon , Ct was very upscale and there was quite a lot of traffic and piano and organ students.Company had lots of perks like tickets to The Whalers a team which of course is no more. And that was one reason it was time to leave.
In the Summer of 1981 he found a space on Main St, Torrington and he opened up shop. Everyone was happy: his wife Betsy, mom and dad Gretchen and Oakley and his two kids Chris and Susan. Chris took off to be a freshman at Fordham University but would help on vacations. Yes this was the best day of Ken’s life. He was free to work as an independent business plan and as a musician. Things were meager at first. Most instruments were used. But no problem. He was already getting contacts by the above manufacturers and he was setting up deals. Sheet music was ordered and so were accessories from companies like Harris Teller. And of course lessons would increase.
Now here we are. 449 Main St, Torrington, CT. Ken had made it. Main street was the happening place in those days. Much more busy that it is today. He was establishing the chemistry between prospect and salesman in this town. Many people were coming in out of curiosity. They had lots of questions. Did he sell guitars? Did he sell trumpets of saxophones? Sometimes a store has to remain specialized and that was certainly the case here. One thing for sure, when the store opened up it filled a huge need for kids who were piano students. It became the hub for that type of student.
Little by little the store became a terrific after market for people in the Litchfield Hills. As it turned out the Hills were filled with more pianos than a truck could pick up. It was kind of fun for Ken to check some of these out. Then he would take them in and sell them – a new – and the process would begin again. Beyer
Beyer Music had many dedicated employees over the years. We would hare a lot of Torrington High School Interns who were really interested in music and retail. Fast workers and very open to learning about the store inventory and of course about customer service. We hired some senior people as well during the day. They were meticulous and dedicated. All of the people including the movers helped bring a lot of success to Beyer Music.
Beyer Music would establish itself as a provider of pianos and organs for all purposes and to all levels of the social echelon. Many celebrities would purchase or rent from Beyer Music. Whoopi Goldberg for one telephoned Ken the day before Thanksgiving in 1992 stating she needed a grand piano right away for the holiday weekend. Ken coolly said sure come on in. This was the story and everyone getting the news was kind of stunned.
Whoopi turned out very cool and low key in her role as shopper. With her beautiful nature she simply asked about baby grands. Ken’s son Chris ( who just graduated business school)greeted them. Whoopi pointed to a piano. Chris did a quick demo. She though she wanted either a black or a mahogany one. Yet she decided on the mahogany as it would look better in her home. She was decided. Just then Ken Beyer came out of a lesson and played a Schumann ‘s “Soaring”. Immediately Whoopi wanted lessons. Ken then proceeded to give her a lesson. And all was good. Sale was closed. We offer this information just to give one example how great things could happen in the small at this terrific store. And check this out. When piano was delivered it went to this big ranch in Sharon, CT. Everyone was partying and having a good time. Ken gave another lesson.
Other celebs – Tom Brokaw| Carly Simon| Rolling Stones Delivery
We have witnessed the rise and fall of many a small businesses in Torrington. There has been an evolution. Spurred perhaps by the computer. In the old days people would come to the small stores they loved. A music store had the business of anyone in town who played or even sang. There was true religion here. Kids formed bands for fun. Many became really good and could play at local establishments. Again they or anybody else would buy from a company such as Beyer Music.