is a musical instrument
retailer in Lansing, Michigan
, United States
, with a reputation as a "megastore", a repair shop and a locus for folk music
and "twang". Specializing in fretted instruments, including acoustic
and electric guitars
, and ukuleles
, Elderly maintains a selection of odd or rare instruments. Elderly is known as the premier repair shop for fretted instruments, as one of the larger vintage instrument dealers in the United States, and as a major dealer of Martin
guitars in particular.
Industry publications, music retail trade, and bluegrass music journals have featured articles about the Elderly repair staff. The company also provides consignment services for rare and vintage instruments. Since its foundation in 1972, Elderly has undergone two major expansions: into mail order in 1975 and then into Internet sales in the 1990s. In 2005 it was the subject of a lawsuit by Gibson Guitar Corporation concerning trademark infringement. Today it is recognized internationally for its services and products; its mail order and Internet business account for 65–70 percent of its total revenue. Elderly grossed $12 million in 1999 and by 2007 was grossing $17 million annually.
In addition to retail and repair services, Elderly Instruments is noted as a center of local music culture for bluegrass and "twang" music. Elderly Instruments operates a wholesale record distribution business, Sidestreet Distributing, in the lower level of its complex, servicing more than 300 small retail businesses.