• Instruments

    August 3, 2022

    How We Set-up New Violins

    All of our instruments get set-up upon arrival with us, this is to ensure they’re in perfect condition when you take them home. My name is Frances, I work in the Instrument Department here at Forsyth and in this post I’ll take you through the process of setting up a Stentor Student Violin so you can see exactly what’s involved!

    The violins arrive with bags covering their cases to ensure they arrive in pristine condition. So the first step is to unwrap them! Opening up the case reveals the violin, which is carefully padded to protect it during delivery. This is then removed so I can begin inspecting the violin.

    The first job is to have a peak through on of the f holes and make sure the soundpost is still standing. You can just see it below, to the left of the bridge inside the f hole closest to the camera.

    The soundpost rarely falls in delivery, but it’s always a good idea to check just in case!

    Next up I check the bridge is in order, starting by moving it into the correct position. On this one the bridge was slightly to far to the right, so I’ll move it level with the end of the fingerboard.

    I then look down from the scroll of the violin and see how high the bridge is. This is why I moved the bridge, so I can accurately check it’s height!

    This bridge is a bit too high, particularly on the right hand side here under the lower strings. This means the strings will be too high off the fingerboard and therefore difficult to press down. So we need to lower the bridge slightly to make it more comfortable to play!

    Here’s where I pass the violin over to James. He carefully carves the bridge, taking material from the top of the bridge in precise strokes to get it to the right height. This is a very delicate job, especially as this is a 1/4 size violin so the bridge is very small! When it’s been fully carved James will gently create grooves in the top of the bridge for the strings to rest in, before he passes the violin back to me so I can finish the set-up.

    Now the bridge is back on and in position, at the correct height! I’ll do one final check of the bridge to make sure it is perfectly perpendicular to the body of the violin.

    Last, but not least, I’ll check the violins pegs. Here I tune up the violin and check the pegs hold their tuning without slipping. I’ll apply a little peg paste if the pegs do slip, this makes sure the pegs are nice and grippy and that the violin will hold its tuning.

    All Stentor Student Violins come with rosin, this one has a lovely iridescent swirl in it.

    The last step is to give the bow a once over and make sure it survived the journey to us intact. This is perfect and ready to go!

    And there we go! A Stentor Student Violin all ready to be sold!

  • Instruments

    July 31, 2022

    The Adventures of Mozart and Bearthoven

    If you’ve been following our social media accounts over the past few weeks, you may have noticed two composer bears who have been getting up to mischief in our instrument department. Mozart and Bearthoven (see what we did there?) have thoroughly explored our various instruments and accessories, and here’s what they recommend!

    When they first arrived, Mozart and Bearthoven investigated our acoustic guitars. They found two excellent Eastman acoustics, the E3DE and E3OME. These are both solid wood guitars with sitka spruce tops and ovangkol back and sides. They come gig ready with Fishman Sonitone pickups and a stylish deluxe gig bag.

    We have plenty of acoustics to choose from in a variety of brands, shapes, sizes, and woods, so Mozart and Bearthoven had a hard time choosing just two!

    Have a look at our acoustic Eastman guitars here

    Climbing in a saxophone...

    Next, Mozart and Bearthoven had a look through our brass and woodwind selection. They really like this Trevor James horn 88 tenor saxophone, although falling in the bell was a little scary for such small bears! They loved the Champagne gold frost finish, and though it really stood out against the traditional brass finish of the other saxophones.

    These two bears then travelled over to our guitar straps and found our Forsyth branded leather guitar straps. These high quality straps come in a range of colours, and some feature the Manchester Bee! Mozart and Bearthoven were a little unsure how people use these straps, as they’re wider than the bears are!

    Investigating our conductors stand...

    They decided to have a look at our other accessories and Bearthoven was surprised at how big conductors stands have got! He’s sure he couldn’t sit on them back in his day, but he didn’t mind having a nice rest!

    After relaxing for a while, the bears decided to get some exercise and began climbing our wall of ukuleles. Mozart was quite happy to reach the sparkly green ukulele that’s part of the Elements range by Ortega.

    See these ukuleles in more detail here

    Next, Mozart and Bearthoven ventured beyond the instruments main floor and found our string room. They spent a bit of time brushing up on their violin skills, but it was a two bear job!

    And being made official members of staff!

    And finally, as a reward for all their hardwork we made these two bears official Forsyth Staff! Keep an eye out for them instore and across our social media as they continue to explore everything we have to offer.

    Follow us on social:

    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Forsyth.Music.Shop

    Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/forsythmusicshop/

    Twitter: https://twitter.com/ForsythMusic

  • Guitar Department

    July 31, 2022

    July Guitar Highlights

    Guitar recommendations!

    This month we’ve been running a feature on some of our fabulous Atkin Guitars! Featuring custom graphics and expert demos, we’ve been sharing our love of these guitars across our social media platforms.

    The Atkin 000-14 ‘Dustbowl’

    Brand new from Atkin, this guitar is based off the classic Dustbowl guitars of the 20s and 30s. An all solid Mahogany guitar with a torrefied top and pre war scalloped bracing, the guitar also features a period correct ebony nut and an Indian Rosewood fretboard and bridge. With the classic Atkin lacquer finish, this is one of our current faves in the shop.

    Atkin L-36 Custom Goldtop

    A very limited run from Atkin, this beautiful guitar features a solid Adirondack spruce torrefied top, solid pomelle back and sides and a Madagascan rosewood fretboard and bridge. The beautiful engraved gold and cream pickguard, combined with the gold painted neck and gold top makes this stunner stand out from the crowd, and the quality of this Atkin guitar is true to form.

    Have a look at our YouTube channel to see some demos! ->https://www.youtube.com/c/ForsythsCoUkMusicShop/featured

    Follow us on social:

    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Forsyth.Music.Shop

    Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/forsythmusicshop/

    Twitter: https://twitter.com/ForsythMusic

  • Sheet Music

    July 30, 2022

    July Sheet Music Highlights

    A round up of our sheet music recommendations for July - Follow our social media to keep up to date!

    Sheet music recommendations:

    Musicals and Video Game Music

    We have an extensive collection of sheet music for musicals and an ever expanding selection of video game music. These have been prominently displayed in our sheet music department this month, and we’ve enjoyed colour coordinating the displays!

    Pop Chart Singles Sale

    This month (and continuing while stocks last!) we’ve had a sale on our sheet music of Pop Charts Singles. Check it out instore, and grab yourself a bargain!

    Follow us on social:

    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Forsyth.Music.Shop

    Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/forsythmusicshop/

    Twitter: https://twitter.com/ForsythMusic

  • Piano Department

    July 15, 2022

    #mjfpianotrail 2022 winners announced!

    After hours of whittling down the 100+ entries to this years #mjfpianotrail we are pleased to be able to announce the winners!

    The overall winner is 9 year old Leo with his own composition being performed on the piano that was in Manchester Art Gallery. You can see his entry here:-


    Special thank you to the Spinningfields branch of Wagamama for offering a £30 Wagamama gift voucher to each winner.

    About the mjf 2022 piano trail

    13 street pianos were dotted around the city for passers-by to play in the build up to this year’s jazz festival. Over 2000 pianists, young and old bought the city alive with music and the search to find Manchester’s best street pianist resulted in over 100 entries.

    The 13 pianos were located at The Arndale Centre, The Corn Exchange, Forsyth Music shop, Great Northern, Harvey Nichols, Manchester Art Gallery, Manchester Central Library, Manchester Piccadilly Station, Quayside Media City UK, Royal Exchange Arcade, Spinningfields, The Trafford Centre and Manchester Victoria Station.

    Praise for Leo and all the winners

    Congratulations Leo on winning this year’s MJF Piano Trail competition! Your performance was fabulous and all of us at Yamaha were super impressed with your composition too! Enjoy your prize and keep playing, you’ll be a star one day!” – James Sargeant, Yamaha

    It’s been a fun if tough job whittling down the many and varied competition entries to find the eventual winners. We were impressed with Leo’s creativity and poise at the piano at such a young age! We are sure Leo will benefit from the Yamaha digital piano he has won and look forward to watching him grow as a composer and pianist! – Emma Loat, Manager of Forsyth’s Music

    Leo’s skill and musicality combined with his amazing creativity impressed us all. He’s a worthy winner of the mjf piano trail competition. – Steve Mead, Manchester Jazz Festival

  • The Forsyths Blog

    June 26, 2022

    Closed Thursday 30th June - Annual stocktake

    It is the end of our financial year and therefore time to count and value all our stock. This does mean, however we will be closed to cutomers on Thursday 30th June to undertake this mammouth task! We will be open on-line so please do browse our website, however we won’t be able to despatch any goods until Friday.

    Thank you for your patience, and we look forward to welcoming you in-store and over the phone any other day - normally we are open 7 days per week 10-5.30pm Monday to Saturday and 11am-5pm on Sundays.

  • The Forsyths Blog

    June 20, 2022

    Part-time jobs available at Forsyths in Sheet Music and Instrument Departments

    We are adding to our team and need either one person 4 days per week who works in our Instrument Department on Saturday and Sunday and then 2 days a week in the Sheet Music Department or two people working 2 days a week in each department.

    You can view all 3 job descriptions on our website here:- https://www.forsyths.co.uk/content/category/12-Jobs

    Deadline for applications is Monday 4th July. Please send a covering letter explaining which role(s) you are applying for and why you would be the best candidate for the job and a current, relevant CV to [email protected]

  • Piano Department

    May 5, 2022

    13 ‘Street Pianos’ across Manchester for #mjfpianotrail

    We’re proud to be the official piano partner for Manchester Jazz Festival 2022. As part of this partnership we have provided 13 pianos to be the #mjfpianotrail that have now been installed in venues across the city centre.

    Preparing pianos at Forsyths for the MJFpianotrail

    Preparing pianos at Forsyths for the MJFpianotrail

    We’re bringing music to the streets of Manchester this May with the mjf piano trail #mjfpianotrail, from May 6 – 29. There are 13 pianos scattered across Manchester for pianists to discover and enjoy. Many of the host venues have also asked to keep their piano after the Festival has finished which is great news for the ’street pianists’ of Manchester! The map below reveals where you will find them.

    And for those who think they can give Elton John a run for his money, a competition to find Manchester’s best street pianists will also run, with a whole raft of prizes up for grabs including a Yamaha P-45B piano, return ticket for 4 anywhere on the Northern Rail Network, a gift package and vouchers worth over £100 from Quayside Media City UK and a £30 Wagamama voucher for each prize winner.

    Technical talent or formal training is not necessary, and the competition is open to all from concert pianists to the occasional ivory tickler.

    The 13 piano’s will be located around the city at: The Arndale Centre, The Corn Exchange, Forsyth’s Music shop, Great Northern, Harvey Nichols, Manchester Art Gallery, Manchester Central Library, Manchester Piccadilly Station, Quayside Media City UK, Royal Exchange Arcade, Spinningfields, The Trafford Centre, and Manchester Victoria Station.

    #mjfpianotrail piano at the Arndale Centre near NEXT

    The previous #forsythspiano now installed at Manchester Piccadilly

    The previous #forsythspiano now installed at Manchester Piccadilly

    Emma Loat, Manager of Forsyth’s Music, said:

    “For many years, we’ve had a street piano at the front of the Forsyth’s shop on Deansgate so we know that Manchester and the surrounding areas is full of talented musicians and those willing to have a go.

    “We’re really excited to supply 13 pianos for the mjf piano trail and we’d urge all those budding performers to come forward, have a go and be in with a chance of winning some fantastic prizes.”

    mjf piano trail competition

    Whether you play professional jazz or have never touched a note before there are no rules regarding who can apply, what kind of music you play and what your performance involves. At the end of the piano trail mjf and Forsyth’s will select 9 winners based on who showed the most creativity, ingenuity and gave the best performances.

    To be in with a chance to be named one of Manchester’s best street pianists:

    1. find one of the pianos in the trail
    2. capture a short video of your performance
    3. post the video to your Instagram, Facebook and/or Twitter account
    4. tagging in @manchesterjazzfestival / @manjazzfest and using the hashtag #mjfpianotrail

    If you don’t have a social media account, you can upload the video to an online player such as YouTube or Vimeo and/or email the video directly to us, using #mjfpianotrail as your email subject line.

    The prizes up for grabs are:

    • Yamaha: Yamaha Digital Piano P-45B
    • Wagamama: A £30 Wagamama gift voucher for all winners
    • Doner Haus: Meal for up to 4 including pre/post drink
    • Lion’s Den, Deansgate Mews: £50 bar tab
    • Manchester Art Gallery: Afternoon Tea for two
    • Jenny Jones: a pair of saxophone cufflinks or a soul stone necklace
    • 20 Stories: Afternoon tea for two with a glass of fizz
    • The Lawn Club: A complimentary pod booking and a bottle of Prosecco, for up to six people.
    • Northern Rail: Four tickets at any time to anywhere on Northern rail network
    • Quayside MediaCityUK: prize package includes:
      2 x £25 Quayside Gift Card
      Two lots of two tickets to Vue Cinema
      Copy of Salford Edition Monopoly
      Two lots of two tickets for ITV Jungle Challenge

    Read the mjf2022 piano trail competition T&C’s here