“Fingerstyle Guitar Magazine” … !!!!!CAUTION!!!!!

MAJOR UPDATE: 25 January 2010

Has anyone received Issue #70 yet???

Just curious.

This evening I decided to check just to see how things were going with the magazine under “new management”, especially since the number of hits on this article have been steadily increasing since mid January. For the uninitiated, that’s when the next issue, Issue #70, was promised … three, not two, months, after #69 … which was about a year after #68 … all in a “bimonthly” magazine. That means every two (2) months, not three months, … not a year later, … and definitely not “never again” … until the smoke clears and we can catch a new batch of the unsuspecting.

I found it curious that there hasn’t been an “official” posting on the magazine’s Facebook page since … 9 December 2009 …, although there was a “complaint” by some one who had ordered a back issue a long time ago and still hadn’t received it as of yesterday. By the way, he was “promised” that the “back issue” issue was resolved back in October of 2009 by Mr. Foss.

Another curious thing …

When I clicked on the “official” web page of “Fingerstyle Guitar Magazine” a short while ago, I got … “PAGE NOT FOUND” …  hummmmm!!!

Maybe it was just a server error … or something.

It does appear though, if you still want to play Russian Roulette with your money, you plop the hard earned cash down for some back issues at http://www.bassics.com/. It appears the last ounce of “sucker’s money” is trying to be squeezed out of this gambit.

Good Luck!!! I think I’d prefer to take my chances with a real revolver and a single bullet.

Well, am I just spouting some more “libel” … or … does the old adage of “Where there’s smoke there’s fire.” seem to be appropriate?

So …

Has anyone received Issue #70 … you know the one that’s supposed to start this outfit off on a year of delivering a magazine every two months as promised … and paid for?

Just curious ….

——————————————————————————————————————–

(below written 5 March 2009)

Today, I got the distinct impression that I’m not the only person having problems with this outfit … or website, Fingerstyle Guitar Magazine.

This outfit also claims to produce “Bassics Magazine” for bass guitar players. Both are published by MI Media LLC.

Actually, I shouldn’t complain about the website. The design is great! Kudos to the designer!! Except, he doesn’t have anything to do with the magazine. He just designed the site.

Okay, I enjoy playing the guitar … or playing at it. And, I like books and magazines about things that I enjoy.

But …

What I don’t like … are people that take your money … and don’t even say “Thank You” … or even send you a receipt to acknowledge the fact that they’ve taken your money.

And …

We haven’t even gotten to discussing the product.

Well, I can’t honestly discuss the product … because I haven’t received it.

It’s been nearly three months since I paid my money and … no recognition of payment … no “Thank You” … and no product.  I think there’s a name for that. I won’t use it right now … but it’s one the tip of my tongue.

I’ve written their subscription department … no response.

I’ve called their subscription department … a message stating, “We’re having problems with the post office. Please leave your name and address and we’ll send you another issue of #68 our last issue.

Well, #68 was their last issue … last year. It’s March. What about this year? Let’s see … six issues a year. That comes out to … one issue every two months … right? And, it’s March. Sounds like there’s some catching up to do.

Oh … I also tried to leave a comment on their comment page. You know the blank space just below the place where they say, “We always like to hear from you.”  Well, I got some kind of “blocked server” error … several times. I’m hard headed and don’t give up easily.

Well, it’s a beautiful site … can’t argue with that … and it promises a lot … like a siren song above the crashing waves. Okay, you’ve been warned! It looks like there are some very sharp rocks and not soft sand beneath those waves.

By the way, if you guys at “Fingerstyle Guitar Magazine” have a problem with this, “Call me”. I left a message … and several e-mails.

And, you can talk to my credit card company … if you wonder where the money went.

Also, if you want a great guitar magazine, subscribe to “Acoustic Guitar Magazine“. They have a great magazine, e-letters, and a great website … that delivers on its promise. You’ll get your money’s worth … and they’ll say “Thank You”. They aren’t dedicated to “fingerstyle” but have a lot on it and you won’t feel like you’ve been “taken to the cleaners.

MAJOR UPDATE – 21 July 2009

The a comment posted on 21 July by Rich Merek included the following e-mail from an Alfred Foss who claims to be the new owner of “Fingerstyle Magazine”:

Rich,

Thanks for your email regarding the status of your Fingerstyle Guitar magazine subscription.

I recently purchased the magazine from the prior owners, MI Media, 2 weeks ago and I am working to return the magazine to a regular delivery schedule. While I acknowledge the challenges prior ownership had experienced, I wanted to personally communicate to you that I have committed the necessary resources and management changes to make sure the magazine is properly supported.

I apologize for the delay of you receiving your next issue. You will receive the next issue in about 4 weeks (it is currently finished and in production) and your subscription will continue as usual.

I have attached a press release which was just completed and will be circulated at the CAAS (Chet Atkins Appreciation Society) festival in Nashville starting Wednesday July 8th. It highlights some of the initiatives new ownership will be undertaking to make the magazine better.

I appreciate your patience and loyalty during this transition period and hope you share the same excitement I have regarding the direction Fingerstyle is going. We have some exciting new ideas and content in store for the upcoming issues. If you have any questions please contact me.

Regards,

Alf

Alfred Foss
alf@fingerstyleguitar.com

Hopefully, things will get squared away with the magazine. Until that is more positively indicated, I would continue to exercise extreme caution in dealing with the magazine under any claimed management or ownership. Note that the e-mail was apparently written prior to 7/8/2009 since it refers to an “upcoming” event on that date.

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274 Responses

  1. These comments are regarding a magazine that went out of business three years ago. They are not connected with the digital magazine Fingerstyle 360 which have no connection with Fingerstyle Guitar. Please understand this and if you need more information write Bill Piburn piburnguitar@gmail.com

  2. Ripped me off too…Feb 2014..

  3. A professor at our college recently asked me to purchase an entire back run of this magazine for the library that I work at. We forked over the $300 + and never received a thing! So frustrating. Do you have any recommendations on what I could buy for music students instead of this?

    • Lisa,

      I’m really sorry about your problem. Unfortunately, since I never received a copy, I’ve never seen the magazine, … other than the covers. Possibly some of the other commenters may be able to help you regarding similar content. I can only speculate.

      I have a background in piano, both classical and contemporary; therefore, most of the guitar music I’ve accumulated for personal instruction is classical since it progresses from learning notes to chords rather than vice versa. If you or your professor wouldn’t consider me pretentious, I’d be glad to recommend some that I think is very good for people interested in self instruction. After all, classical players are the ultimate in “fingerstyle” players from a technical standpoint.

      Earl

      • As a side note, I was watching an old British movie, “Sea Fury”, several nights ago and noted that Julian Bream played the soundtrack for it.

        Earl

  4. hmm, well I ordered issues 70 & 71 from the website, went through Yahoo checkout for a total of $28.29 after shipping. This was 6 weeks ago and haven’t heard anything.

    I just went to the link in the email (to the Yahoo store, i.e. “status information”) and it just goes to a blank page that says “Store Cancelled”! So that doesn’t sound too promising! I sent an email to subscriptions@fingerstyleguitar.com so hopefully I’ll get some sort of response.

    • Sorry about the late approval, Carl. My ISP was having some problems.

      I had hoped, by posting this 2 years ago, that I might save people problems and disappointment … or spur FSGM to deliver on their advertising and prove me wrong. Unfortunately, for many people, the latter hasn’t proven to be the case.

      I would suggest trying to get your money back as quickly as possible. Those issues are already more than a year old from publication or promise.

      You might also check their Facebook page to get a little more insight to the problem, primarily posts from people like yourself with no input from FSGM for about a year.

      Earl

  5. I finally saw Issue #70 at a music store yesterday. The magazine did not have a cd with it and someone had cut out the part of the cover that stated that the magazine came with a cd. Whether it came to the store this way was not able to be determined. A good thing is that this issue seems alot thicker than the previous issues and it has a great section on patterns that Chet Atkins used.

    • Interesting. You didn’t happen to ask the folks at the music store how they happened to acquire it? And, did you buy it?

      Earl

      • I asked the cashier why the magazine was missing the cd and he went and spoke to some other employees. A total of six employees were asked and all were mystified as to why it was out of the plastic with the cd missing and a part of its cover cut out.

        I didn’t ask how they acquired the magazine. I did buy it for half price since it was missing the cd.

  6. looking for “TRUE” copy by martin Taylor, don’t need the entire magazine but a copy of the piece is fine. Thanks John

  7. I subscribed to Fingerstyle Magazine in August of 2010 and haven’t received a single copy. I have emailed them repeatedly and haven’t received a response. However they did take my money. I do have one copy of their magazine and it is a good magazine. It’s too bad that they’re too incompetent to deliver their subscriptions.

    • If you subscribed and paid with VISA – dispute the charge. I’ve lodged a dispute/request for my money back from VISA. If enough people do this VISA will pull this scam “magazine’s” ability to accept credit cards.

    • I have been an FG subscriber for 15 years and I haven’t received a single magazine since I resubscribed for 2 years in November 2009, let alone the free guitar strings that were supposed to come with the renewal. I filed a complaint with the NJ Attorney General’s Office. Does anyone know if there has been any talk of a class action lawsuit?Foss & Piburn should be indicted for fraud and I think that we should pursue that route.

      I contacted Visa, but there is only a 60 or 90 day time limit on disputing a charge.

    • I have been a subscriber to FSG Mag since 1991 and never had a problem until now. I had a current subscription so it’s past the point of being able to dispute a charge through my credit card company.

      The last issue I got was (I think #69) but nothing else. I have written to the email given on the website, but I have no idea if that’s going to help. Anyone have a better course of action?

  8. Anyone interested in selling the Fingerstyle Guitar Magazine issue # 58?

    Cheers!

    Leandro.

    • Sorry, don’t have it.

      But I would like to point out that the fraudulent PUKES who run this magazine have MOVED yet again, back to New York State. Earlier this year they were in New Jersey. They are probably trying to avoid the Attorneys General of whatever state they happen to be at the moment. They are still advertising 2-year, 6-issue-per year subscriptions when they publish one or two issues a year, and then stop altogether. I spent $60 and got three issues out of them in as many years.

      Do NOT waste your $70. To subscribe to this magazine is to flush your money down the toilet.
      Contact any advertisers and tell them of your experience.

      • Peter,

        Can you or anyone provide a list of advertisers in FSGM?

        Remember … they’ve presumably paid for space on the assumption that the magazine is going to put out 6 issues a year. Just like subscribers, they aren’t getting what they paid for either.

        I’ve never received a copy of the magazine so I don’t know who advertises in it. If I had a list I’d publish it here so subscribers could contact them and complain. Frequently the major source of revenue for a publication is advertising.

        Earl

        • I’ll see what I can do. But I may not get around to it until the end of the year. I’ll be out of town all next week. But when I’m back, I’ll try to remember to look up the few issues that I received and see who the advertisers are that the magazine also ripped off. Can you remind me in a couple weeks?

          • Thanks Peter.

            I’ll send you an e-mail after Christmas. Just remind me! (Just kidding.)

            Earl

      • How do you know they’ve moved to New York, the website still has NJ addresses? Need to get an exact address to be able to file a complaint in New York.

        • John,

          I don’t know Peter’s information, but I have seen an indication Mr. Foss may be back in Binghamton, NY.

          Earl

  9. check bottom of this press release, there is another contact number that may be helpful, I doubt it but it might be worth a try.

    Fingerstyle Guitar Magazine Announces Sponsorship Of 7th Annual International Acoustic Music Awards
    IAMA Honors The Best & Brightest In Acoustic Music and Fingerstyle Guitar Magazine Is Proud To Be A Sponsor Of The Only Awards Show Of Its Kind

    FSGM_IAMA
    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    PRLog (Press Release) – Aug 09, 2010 – Bedminster, N.J. (August 5, 2010) — Fingerstyle Guitar, a bi-monthly magazine devoted to honoring the legends of fingerstyle guitar, as well as giving exposure to the top players of present and future generations, is proud to be providing Platinum Level sponsorship of the 7th Annual International Acoustic Music Awards (IAMA) for 2010.
    “We’re thrilled to be involved with the International Acoustic Music Awards in helping to provide a stage for musicians of all types to showcase their talents,” said Alfred Foss, Publisher of Fingerstyle Guitar. “Each year, IAMA recognizes the best and brightest talent in acoustic music, which does so much to further this beautiful style.”
    The International Acoustic Music Awards promotes excellence in Acoustic Music Performance and Artistry in a number of categories, and is the only awards of its kind geared toward performing musicians. Judging is based on excellence in music performance, songwriting/composition/song choice, music production and originality/artistry. Last year’s Overall Grand Prize Winner was Liz Longley for “When You’ve Got Trouble.”
    Entries for the 2010 IAMA’s must be received by November 9, 2010. Information can be found IAMA’s website at http://www.inacoustic.com.

    # # #

    ABOUT FINGERSTYLE GUITAR MAGAZINE
    Fingerstyle Guitar Magazine, in publication for over 15 years and the only publication solely dedicated to the fingerstyle artist, is the consummate source for guitarists and fans of guitar music. Each issue contains an Enhanced CD that is packed with audio & video tracks, transcriptions and workshops featuring the world’s greatest guitarists. For corporate and subscription information please visit http://www.FingerstyleGuitar.com, or e-mail info@FingerstyleGuitar.com or subscriptions@FingerstyleGuitar.com.

    All inquiries regarding ad placement, sponsorship packages and other printed, digital and website opportunities should be directed to Marcus Ippolito, Director of Sales & Marketing, at (973) 553-9463, or marcus@fingerstyleguitar.com.

    • Seeing the mention of Fsguitar’s sponsorship I sent this email to inacoustic:

      You should check out:

      http://ebfromga.wordpress.com/2009/03/05/fingerstyle-guitar-magazine-caution/

      before linking your name to these guys!.

      The reply I got was:

      Thank you for alerting us. We will contact Fingerstyle Guitar.

      They also invited me to enter their awards competition (promo.) but anyway the word is being spread!

      • Thanks for YOUR information, Christopher.

        I wonder if their way of getting in touch with FSGM is any different from the subscribers … which seems to be nonexistent now based on all of the comments I’ve read both here and on their Facebook page.

        Earl

  10. Sorry I didnt see this until to late. I to tried to get a subscription in September 2010 and got taken. No replies or contact. Dont trust Alfred Goss, Bil Piburn,Tim Thompson all work for the mgazine

  11. Thank you Peter for the copy of the New Jersey Consumer Affairs complaint form. here is a copy of an email I’m sending them:

    To Fingerstyle Guitar Magazine,

    I regret to inform you (after more than 10 years of being with your magazine) that I have reached the end of my rope trying to deal with you through these many correspondences, regarding my recent 2 year subscription renewal…of which I have only received 1 issue… and the fact that you made no real effort to rectify this problem, instead you’ve (Alfred) have given me the continuous runaround. You have left me no choice but to lodge an official complaint against you with the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General Consumer Affairs Division. I am sending them all our correspondences along with my order receipts and copy of my Wells Fargo credit card statement, which they can verify through my bank.

    I am a guitar instructor and have been teaching full time for over 30 years and have recommended your magazine to many of my students over the course of time….NEVER AGAIN!!! In fact I currently have a student who signed up for a one year subscription with you and has had the similar experience with not receiving her issues (she too only received one for the money she spent). I’ve tried to convince her to lodge a complaint, but she doesn’t want to bother with it. I wonder how many more there are out there that you’ve ripped off. By the way there is a blog out there http://ebfromga.wordpress.com/2009/03/05/fingerstyle-guitar-magazine-caution/ specifically set up to warn others about these dealings of yours (that’s how I was made aware of, and received, the complaint form). Hopefully there will eventually be enough people taking action to finally let you get what you deserve (I guess you people don’t understand the basic universal law of nature that what goes around comes around). What you’re doing, the taking of peoples money without returning the product or service, is thievery.

    Perhaps too (in this day and age) the Attorney Generals Office won’t be bothered with a few complaints from some of us against you, but at least I’ve done my part to make people aware within your department and through Consumer Affairs and will continue to spread what I can by word of mouth.

    It’s really too bad because you have a great product and I REALLY don’t understand why you are running your business like this.

    Sincerely,
    George Schmidt

    • George,

      Thanks for sharing your letter with everyone. On reflection, it is a sad state of affairs. This is one of those situations where I would have been glad to be proven wrong.

      I wish your student would reconsider her stance. Sometimes, it just important to do something for others.

      Earl

  12. I tried doing a change of address and they said they could not find my old address in their records. I forwarded them my previous two addresses ( I’ve been with them for many years) plus copies of my subscription invoices as well as my credit card invoice showing the recent payment made for a new 2 year subscription. I still have not received the latest issue (#71) nor can I make contact with them or get them to respond to me as to whether the problem has been rectified. VERY FRUSTRATING!!!

    • George,

      I hear what you’re saying.

      I just tried (3:00 pm EST, 2010,August 30) to access FGM’s page on Facebook and got an ominous pinkslip colored “PROFILE UNAVAILABLE” message. Maybe it’s a Facebook glitch. I’ll try again later to see if there’s any news … or if the message is the news.

      Good luck.

      Earl

  13. I have received FGM for many years and know a great many of the people featured in the magazine. I truly hope this magazine has not failed. It is a perilous time in the magazine industry. For those of us that always wait for the publication and live for that moment, perhaps we should hold tight and keep our fingers crossed. Mean while we might turn to some of the featured artist that have great publications and great music available, such as John Knowles, Craig Dobbins, and many others that you can look up on the internet. If you ever meet those people you will be captivated.

    • Thanks for the comment, Stan.

      Whatever FGM’s problems may be, it’s not from a lack of talented and interesting people to write about or have contribute to the magazine … or a subject we all love.

      Earl

      • (Giving you) the Fingerstyle Guitar Magazine is over, done, kaput, without so much as a reach around. And the fact that they are still taking new subscriptions is the final insult. Move now, people, to those other magazines mentioned that actually deliver and notify the advertisers by email that you are doing so and be sure to name names (ALFOSS, etc). Chalk up those lost funds to a life lesson although having been ripped off is always a hard pill to swallow.
        Play On
        Nancy

    • Frankly, I am fed up with the magazine. It has been playing games with subscribers for two or three years now, publishing one issue a year. It is time for it to go bankrupt and for the present owners to be hauled into court. Hopefully it will be sued by other businesses that have paid for advertising that they are not getting.

      • Here is the State of New Jersey consumer fraud complaint form. I hope a few people consider filling it out and submitting it.

        http://www.state.nj.us/lps/ca/complaint/ocp.pdf

        I am guessing that Fingerstyle Guitar, in addition to publishing one (or two) issue a year, has decided to cut its costs by THROWING OUT the list of subscribers from more than a couple years ago. I notice they are now making excuses that they “can’t find” addresses. They have clearly lost mine, since they did NOT send issue 71. They owe me eleven issues which they now apparently have no intention of sending me.

        File a fraud complaint. They are selling subscriptions under false pretenses (they know fully well that they don’t intend to honor the commitments made in their two-year subscription advertisement; they haven’t been keeping those commitments for over three years).

        • Peter,

          Thanks for the link to the New Jersey consumer affairs site.

          Hopefully, those who are still owed a subscription or their money back will take action.

          Earl

    • I subscribe to John Knowles’ “Fingerstyle Quarterly” and highly recommend it. I’ve subscribed for several years now and have purchased back issues a few times. My orders are filled promptly, and the quality of the publication, CD and music is excellent. The only time I’ve experienced a delay in receiving my issue was when Becky’s mother passed away. Becky sent a letter explaining the situation, and shortly thereafter I received my issue. There hasn’t been a hiccup in my subscription since then. I happily renew my subscription every year and look forward to the arrival of each issue. I’m sure glad there are such great alternatives to “Fingerstyle Guitar.”

      • Thanks for letting us know about this magazine, Margaret.

        It’s one I haven’t heard of. Do they have a web site?

        Earl

        • Regarding “Fingerstyle Quarterly”:

          http://www.johnknowles.com/quarterly.htm

          Earl

        • yes, John has a website… johnknowles.com. Look him up on youtube. He is as good of a person as they come. He is a great composer as well as one who makes the music we love accessible. I have always been a fan of Chet even though I tend strongly to the classics. John makes chet’s works something we can play. Over the years I have come to favor John’s compositions and use them regularly when performing. They are refreshing and work well in any setting. Now, for me thats what I call GREAT.

      • Margaret:

        You are so right. Who has the time or resources to fight this. I think sometimes that “scam” artists count on just that. Thanks for your input on “Acoustic Quarterly”. I will check it out as soon as I can.

        Lee

    • Hello: Earl, George, Stan, and Nancy, et all:

      I was thinking that I should give everyone an update on the Fingerstyle Guitar Magazine problem from my end. You know, the more I think about it, I realize I haven’t much to say.!!! I believe I have tried everything that everyone else has tried. There is some morbid comfort level here knowing that you are not the only one who’s been f—-d over. As I said, it’s a small bit.

      I believe that Ms. Nancy has figured it out for the rest of us. I am going to give up (not worth the time & effort) and form the best looking “FINGERSTYLE” that I can, and send it their way, and continue to enjoy “FRETBOARD MAGAZINE”, ACOUSTIC MAGAZINE (a wonderful magazine), ACOUSTIC GUITAR MAGAZINE, and, if I ever calm down enough to read the three issues of FINGERSTYLE GUITAR MAGAZINE that I did receive, I may get over it. You know, it wasn’t a half bad magazine after all.

      I’ll keep on the blog here as I do enjoy communicating with all of you.

      Lee

  14. Hi,

    I will be out of the office until Monday August 23rd. Please email
    info@magazinesusa.com with any further inquiries.

    Thank you so much for your patience. Have a great day!

    Tamar
    Customer Service
    MagazinesUSA.com

    I JUST RECEIVED THIS EMAIL TODAY. NOT SURE IF MagazinesUSA.com IS THE NEW REPRESENTATIVE FOR Fingerstyle GuitarMagazine (?) OR WHAT. I guess I’ll need to email again after August 23rd to find out. Not quite sure how to take this email. Is it legit or just a stall/put off/cover up.

    Has anyone else received this email? Is this guy really “out to lunch” until August 23rd?

    Lee

    • Lee,

      … sounds like spam or phishing and may have nothing to do with FGM. I checked their site and would be careful with that one.

      Earl

      • Lee,

        I just took a longer look at the magazine site you mentioned. They don’t have FGM listed.

        I suspect Google is either monitoring your “Gmail” account for keywords to direct advertisers or you did a Google search and, likewise, took a hit by some Google directed spam.

        Earl

  15. Hi Everyone:

    I am a new member with a paid for two year subscription to “Fingerstyle Guitar.
    I must be one of the lucky ones as I have received issue #70. It is beautifully done and most enjoyable. Issue #71, which is pictured on their website hasn’t arrived as of this date.

    It’s hard to believe that a magazine of this quality would be in trouble unless a cash flow did in fact exist. The first indication of trouble is always the lack of communication. Answering phone calls, emails etc. Thanks to Earl for his alertness here. I always don’t like to borrow trouble before it happens, but I don’t have to have numerous hits with a two-by-four between the eyeballs to get the picture.

    I am a retired retail business owner who has faced issues in these past forty years due to no fault of my own, in producing product in a timely manner. If a legitimate business owner wants to avoid misery, his customer base must always be kept up to date. One can’t live behind the guise that they’re too busy trying to correct things and don’t have time to contact the customer base.

    If, within a reasonable time frame here, we don’t receive our magazines, we need to take action. In my opinion, (for what it’s worth) we should all work together to file complaints with State Consumer Affairs Advisors, the State Attorney General’s office in the State last known that the business was or is registered in. Sometimes even the Chamber of Commerce can help.

    The catch 22 is who among us has the time (and sometimes needed funds) to tackle this for us. Is there a lawyer within our group willing to act on our behalf if needed. As a Class Action Suit may turn out to be the best way to go, are we prepared to jump from that frying pan into the fire. How many of our readers are willing to pursue this rather than just forget it and go on to the next issue in their life.

    Let’s hope that the above is all unnessary and that issues start arriving on a timely basis. Just as a point of interest. The magazine called “ACOUSTIC”
    is incredible. It is the UK’s only dedicated acoustic guitar magazine. It even smells like it iis just off the press when it arrives. A bit spendy to subscribe, but well worth the price. Great stories, wonderful instruction and lessons, outstanding photography. Look them up on the web and see what we’ve been missing on this side of the pond.

    Lee Gilliand
    Eugene, OR

    • While complaints should be filed, who has the time to spend over ~$60 or so. Better to dispute with our respective credit card companies and let “Fingerstyle Guitar” wither away. It was a great magazine there for a number of years, but unfortunately all good things must come to an end. I think “Fingerstyle Guitar” has already done it.

      • Thanks for the comment, Margaret.

        By the way, has anyone else noticed there’s a second “Fingerstyle Guitar Magazine” site on Facebook? Apparently, it was started by some people promoting a song writing contest and offering a free subscription to Fingerstlye Guitar Magazine “valued at $39.95″ as a prize for entering.

        I just thought it was peculiar that they were heading their site by the magazine’s name (although they don’t appear to have anything to do with the magazine) and not their association name and that they’ve placed this value on a subscription for the magazine.

        Any thoughts or comments?

        Earl

    • Lee,

      Thanks for the input. I really appreciate it.

      Since you’ve received the magazine, I have a curiosity question. How much advertising is in it?

      Cash flow for magazines is from two primary sources, subscriptions and advertising … excluding owners, investors, creditors and/or benevolent entities with extremely deep pockets.

      And I agree with you 100% about communication.

      Success may breed arrogance, but failure breeds absence.

      Earl

      • Hi Earl:

        Thanks so much for your reply to my emails. Great question concerning the number of advertisers remaining in the latest issue #70. I went to the “Advertiser Index” in the back of the magazine and counted the number of advertisers. There are 64 listed and that is in line with prior issues. That’s a dynamite way to tell what’s going on with a magazine. Good thinking Earl.
        So, as far as we know now, the advertisers are still in the fold.

        Not quite sure what the email I got today from Magazinesusa.com was referring to. Note that in their email to me, they don’t mention FGM at all.
        What’s more interesting is that the same magazine company sells “Acoustic Guitar Magazine”. I have never had a single problem with this company’s delivery of that magazine. I’ve been subscribing to AGM for over five years and never missed an issue.

        If any of the members to this blog are not subscribing to Acoustic Guitar Magazine, then I highly recommend that they look into this magazine. As mentioned in a prior email to all, I am thrilled with the British magazine “ACOUSTIC”. A little pricy to get it across the pond, but so worth the price.
        The quality is the best I’ve ever seen in a magazine.

        Since folk music is very popular over seas now, this magazine is devoted to covering all the folk festivals and events throughout Europe. Their interviews with top flight artists is quite good. I am an “Old Folkie” from the sixties who has never drifted away from acoustic Folk, Mountain, Bluegrass and Mississippi Blues, and Gospel. I still play professionally today and have been fortunate to be a member of several highly rated folk groups in the past. Anyway, this isn’t about me, but about what’s happened to FGM.

        I wish to thank Margaret for her suggestion of “Fingerstyle Quarterly”. Like you Earl, I have not heard of that magazine before but will definitely check it out.

        We all should keep the faith concerning FGM. In the meantime I’ll change my name from “Sleepless in Seattle” to just “Pissed off in Eugene”.

        Lee

        • The advertisers do not necessarily know the status of the magazine.

          The artwork may have been done way back and included now to pad out the issue. An advertiser may keep mum about an ad appearing, even if they no longer use the medium, because its free.

          I stumped up cash back in Jan 2009 for back issues, CDs, and a subscription renewal. I live overseas (Italy) and was in any event used to delivery being “sporadic” (though I paid a lot extra for overseas postage).

          The thing that for me is most disenchanting about the whole business is that I, like all the readers I believe signed up, am an enthusiast, for whom the guitar has been and is an important companion for a lifetime. If some-one had come to me and said that to keep me in the loop the subsrciption needed doubling or even tripling or beyond, I would have said “Fair enough. If that is what it takes I am with you”

          The silence from the publisher is the shameful thing, not the economic difficulty they may be in and which we can all encounter from time to time.

          Christopher

          • Thanks for the comments, Christopher.

            “The silence from the publisher is the shameful thing, …”

            I don’t think anyone would disagree with you on this point.

            Earl

          • Hi Christopher:

            In your email above, you bring up some very interesting points that maybe some of us haven’t given a thought about. And, I might say, a very
            well written piece. What is your take from over there about the other sites & magazines suggested? Have you seen the Magazine called
            “ACOUSTIC”? You might/may be able to subscribe to it at a
            substantial reduction in cost than what we have to pay over here.
            in the States.

            If anyone cares to write The Department of Consumer Affairs
            for the State of NJ, that might help get the ball rolling from
            back there. Sorry, I haven’t yet gotten the address.

            Thanks again Christopher for your input.

            Lee

  16. I love the magazine! I have received all issues except #71 and am looking foreward to it. My companion cd for #69 did not make it with the magazine. Hoping to get a replacement.

    • Great Howard!!

      Everyone who has received the magazine loves it. That’s not and never has been one of the issues.

      It’s about customer service (… hope you get your missing CD but issue #69 did come out in 2008, right? ), communication ( or lack there of ), and timeliness (delivering the product on schedule as advertised … or for some people … getting it at all).

      Earl

      • Sorry Howard,

        I have to correct myself. Issue #69 came out in the fall of 2009, Issue #68 in the fall of 2008. I suppose there is still hope of receiving that CD.

        Earl

  17. I have been reading all the comments and I do feel bad for everyone waiting on the issues to come out. My brother has been waiting forever and he’s not very happy about all this either. Hopefully it will get worked out.
    BTW, we found out that Ron Garant is in no way associated with Fingerstyle Guitar and he hasn’t been for quite some time now so we can’t be blaming him.

    I understand that the problem with the previous publisher was a cash flow problem. Who knows what the problem is now.

    Sandy

    • Thanks for the information, Sandy.

      Regarding Ron Garant, as noted in my comment on 3/9/2010, as late as that date he was listed as an associate editor for the magazine. That was barely over a month ago. Maybe that “oversight”, which has since been corrected, is just one more symptom of the intrinsic problem.

      Thanks again.

      Earl

    • I filed a dispute with Citibank for the $$ I paid “Fingerstyle Guitar” (2-yr renewal). I just received notification from Citibank that the conditional credit is now permanent. Yippee! I got my money back. I’d rather have had issues of my used-to-be favorite magazine, but since no issues are forthcoming, I’m satisfied with $$. Too bad “Alf” didn’t refund it voluntarily despite promises to do so….

    • I paid for a subscription 2 months ago at the Newport
      Guitar Festival in Fort Lauderdale Florida. I have my credit card receipt BUT NO magazine!!! Have sent E-mail and left phone messages. NO luck.
      What is going on. Was this scam? Has anyone received copies of the magazine???
      from BRIAN

      • Thanks for commenting, Brian.

        To answer your last question first, apparently, according to their Facebook page, some people have received a copy of issue #70. And, like you, a number of people haven’t. Also, like you, a number of people don’t get responses to their queries regarding their subscriptions.

        If you subscribed two months ago, that would have been a few weeks or so (it’s hard to tell) after issue #70 was reported to have been shipped. It’s possible that they’re “saving” your subscription to start with #71, unless you specified otherwise.

        Now, according to their schedule posted on Facebook and their website (if I remember correctly), Issue #70 was to be mailed in mid to late January … but wasn’t reported to be shipped until mid to late March. And, Issue #71 was due in mid April … but now it’s nearly mid June and no hint as to when it will actually ship.

        Fingerstyle Guitar Magazine has been advertised to be a bimonthly magazine, but … someone from the magazine insinuated on their Facebook page in the last several months that it’s “not really” a bimonthly magazine. So … go figure.

        If you look at their Facebook page, it’s apparent that someone, or a number of someones, are doing a lot of traveling, or “going and blowing”, to all of these music events at someone’s expense because that’s primarily what the Facebook page has been about … along with a lot of promises about what’s going to be in future issues of the magazine. But, other than the now defunct schedule, there’s no mention regarding when the next issue of the magazine will actually be delivered unless something has been mentioned today. Last year, they published one issue. So far this year, they’ve published one issue.

        Is it a scam? That’s for you to decide regarding your situation. It’s your money.

        If you’ve read some of the comments, you know your situation isn’t unique. If you paid with a credit card, you might want to check on the time limit for disputing a payment … just in case.

        Earl

        • After letting my 2010 subscription expire, I was able to renew FGM online in March ’11. After getting nothing in the mail, I emailed the publisher months ago but didn’t get a response. Called the contact phone numbers today (8.31.11)-they were disconnected, and the online pay site was disabled. Then found your page after searching around online. Thank you for the posts. Good news, tho-I called Citibank and THEY ARE GIVING ME A CONDITIONAL CREDIT, EVEN 4 MONTHS AFTER THE PURCHASE. Will be sure and fill out the NJ and NY consumer affairs complaints for those who can’t get a credit with their banks. Shame such a great magazine has been reduced to what looks like a ponzi scheme now.
          Kevin B.

    • I think that it is time that people started filing fraud complaints with the New York State Attorney’s office to make sure that Fingerstyle Guitar is shut down and stops collecting fraudulent subscriptions.

      They have made excuse after excuse, and promise after promise, but the truth is that they are NOT publishing the bimonthly magazine that they promise in their subscription advertisements. And they haven’t been for years, and they are not “getting their act together.” They are blowing smoke.

      I notice that there is no report listed on Ripoff Report yet, but there should be:

      http://www.ripoffreport.com/Search/Fingerstyle-Guitar.aspx

      • Peter,

        Good to hear from you.

        As best I can tell, the magazine has moved its operations to New Jersey according to their web site. I don’t know if that move applies to the publishing company as well.

        Earl

        • Sounds suspiciously like the New York authorities found out, and they are on the lam now.

          They list an April 19 mailing date for Issue 71 on the web site. I never received that issue and it is already July. This story plays out over and over. They publish one issue a year and promise that they’ll be back on a regular schedule NEXT year.

  18. I haven’t received the latest issue and no one at Fingerstyle magazine has responded to my voice messages or emails about the matter. If I need to I will dispute the subscription charge with my bank.

    • Thanks for everyone’s information.

      I’m in the UK and just sent another email to subscriptions, editor and Mark – the email to Mark came back as undeliverable.

      I guess will wait and see what happens. Thanks to Earl for organizing all of this!

      Regards,
      Greg

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