The Well-Tempered Ear

Classical music news: Exclusive Company now offering deals and discounts to texters

August 9, 2010
1 Comment

By Jacob Stockinger

It’s no secret that local record stores have suffered hugely from on-line retail behemoths like Amazon and downloading services such as iTunes.

And this is especially true for classical music, which I read somewhere accounts for only about 5 percent of all CD sales and downloads.

So you can hardly blame the local sellers like Border’s and Barnes and Noble outlets for cutting back on their classical stock  —  even if that becomes a chicken-egg question.

By that I mean that I usually prefer to buy something new local. But if they don’t stock new releases or a certain label, then why do I want to wait a couple of weeks to get something by ordering it from them instead of a faster on-line seller.

Anyway, local retailers aren’t just complaining. They are taking steps to attract customers.

Take the Exclusive Company in Madison, for example, seen in an old photo below with Charles Lunde, who ran the classical section for many years and who died last year.


The store at 508 State Street in Madison has redesigned its sales floor and its stock. (See the photo of the interior below.)

But there are also offering something new – for everyone and all kinds of customers, not just classical fans.

If you sign up for the text-messaging program, you get an immediate discount of 20 percent on any new CD, DVD, LP, headphone or storage system.

Also, if you buy two pre-owned items (that used to be “used”) you can get the second one free if it is of equal or lesser value.

From then on you also get special sales pricing on new releases as well as chances to win free concert tickets, autographed merchandise, headphones, turntables and more.

Here is what you have to do: Text MADISON to 98341 to sign up and join.


Texting was used recently by the Madison Opera for fundraising at Opera in the Park. And the New York Philharmonic used it as a concert in Central Park to allow the audience to select an encore by the pianist phenom Lang Lang.

If you are concerned about your privacy, the Exclusive Company (the west side store is below) says it will not sell your telephone number to others. They will remain “safe and secure.”

Plus, if you aren’t satisfied, you cans opt out of the program at any time.

It sounds like a pretty good deal, at least worth trying.

Questions? Call 608 255-2433.

If you do it, tell them you read about it here on this blog.

Has anyone done the texting deal at the Exclusive Company?

What do you think of it? Would you recommend it to others?

Do other local retailers have similar programs?

The Ear wants to hear.


Posted in Classical music

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