The Genesis of The Bedford Consultancy:
BEDFORD AUDIO MARKETING (1989-2002)
In the early 1980s Lewis Frisch managed a number of audio related businesses in Atlanta. At Soundd Investment (The Tape Warehouse) he helped a supplier of audio magnetic tape to hobbyists expand into a full range supplier of recording media and accessories to both consumers and professionals. By 1983 he was also selling a wide range of audio equipment through his own company, Soundd Technical Services and he initiated a program of personal visits to recording studios throughout Georgia and the Carolinas.
At the end of 1984 he joined with Kevin Witt and Cliff Johnson to form a professional audio division at Showcase Photographics. Showcase Audio/Video Systems quickly developed into a marketing powerhouse with sales throughout the southeast. By 1987, Showcase Audio had successfully challenged the major Nashville studio supply companies and emerged as one of the most progressive and dynamic pro audio dealerships in the United States.
Showcase Audio achieved great success with manufacturers such as AMEK and Neumann. But the owners of Showcase Photographics were never quite comfortable with their audio division and they were unwilling to finance its expansion into the Nashville market. In mid-1987 Frisch and his staff decided that it was no longer feasible to continue their sales program under Showcase's ownership.
Initially their plan was for Showcase to sell the audio division to the TekCom, the leading Pro Audio dealership in the Mid-Atlantic region. New business cards were printed and a few sales were made under the TekCom South banner, but within a few weeks the pending deal collapsed due to internal divisions within TekCom management.
Frisch then coordinated an orderly shut-down of the Showcase audio division which concluded in late 1987. Several dealerships attempted to fill the gap left by Showcase Audio but none could duplicate its success. So by 1989, a number of manufacturers sought to employ Frisch as a representative with their dealers and professional clients in the Southeast. This was the beginning of The Bedford Consultancy, which operated as Bedford Audio Marketing from 1989 to 2002.
AMEK appointed Bedford Audio Marketing as its manufacturer's representative in the Southeast. Bruel and Kjaer microphones chose Bedford as one of its three specialized representatives to the recording studio market. In 1990 Bedford brought AMEK into Evans Sales and Marketing (Nashville), and Frisch joined Barry Evans, who was a widely respected representative for a prestigious list of manufacturers including Panasonic/Ramsa, Studio Technologies, Mogami and Community Loudspeakers.
In 1990, AMEK appointed Frisch as its Press Officer for their US Operations. Frisch worked closely with AMEK CEO Nick Franks and their English Press Officer and for the next four years the Bedford Audio Marketing letterhead appeared on hundreds of press releases during this period of AMEK's greatest success. Bedford was also appointed as a special representative to broadcast equipment suppliers throughout the Eastern US.
In 1991, Community and AMEK both honored Evans Sales and Marketing for outstanding representation and AMEK decided to bring Bedford on board to manage all their sales east of the Mississippi.
Frisch ended his association with Evans and achieved great success during his subsequent four-year tenure as the eastern regional sales manager for AMEK. Pioneering placements to US broadcasters and broadcast suppliers, he developed a customer base that included ABC, CNN, NBC, Univision, Telemundo and Turner Broadcasting. Frisch was personally involved in the sale of over 300 AMEK consoles.
During these years (1991 - 1994) he worked extensively with the renowned console designer, Rupert Neve and developed close relationships with many noted producers and engineers throughout the United States.
During the 80s and 90s Frisch's various sales and marketing activities supplied recording equipment to hundreds of studios throughout the southeastern US. He is particularly proud of his efforts to support the studios in Athens GA and the Carolinas that birthed so much indie music during the years when the alternative/college rock movement first blossomed. He also worked extensively with historically significant studios in Memphis, Muscle Shoals and Jackson, Mississippi.