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Roseville hit by the end of 140-year company, Sherman Clay

Store on Pleasant Grove Boulevard was the site of many concerts
By: Scott Thomas Anderson, Editor
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Lovers of crisp sounds and pristine chords are losing an institution in Roseville, after piano-seller Sherman Clay confirmed that a company buyout spelled the end of its storied run in California.

Sherman Clay was founded in 1870 in San Francisco and ultimately evolved into one of the top-selling dealers of high-end pianos in Washington, Oregon, Texas and the Golden State. Its product lines include concert-level pianos from Steinway & Sons, Boston Piano and Essex Piano.

In the end it was a company that provided one of Sherman Clay’s main instruments that led to its California liquidation.

“Steinway & Sons has bought the Sherman Clay,” Roseville store manager Tom Masi told the Press Tribune. “They won’t be keeping the store in Roseville open … I found out March 1. I think it’s safe to say we’ll have the doors open until around the first of June.”

For Roseville fans of music, Sherman Clay was more than just a store — it was a local performance venue for big-name musical talent. To the back of the spacious showroom is a large, fully contained recital hall that seats more than 100 people. The elegantly styled space is lined with sleek pianos and has a $150,000 Steinway and Sons sitting on its hardwood stage. Internationally known jazz pianist Jim Martinez was a frequent luminary in the Roseville location’s recital hall, playing six to seven shows a year. Noted piano soloist Kevin Kern was also scheduled to play there this summer.

“We had music happening here every weekend,” Masi said.

Sherman Clay will start clearing out its inventory with a private liquidation, by appointment, April 18 and 19. A blowout sale for the public will follow April 20 and 21.

In a public statement, Sherman Clay CEO Eric Schwartz said, “We’re confident that Bay Area musicians and piano lovers will be in good hands with Steinway, the world’s premier piano manufacturer with whom we’ve worked closely for well over a century.”

Schwartz added that the company will continue to operate its stores in Seattle and Houston.