We reached out to Jim Shelley who was Lance Benedict’s “Artist Representative” for TTM Guitars until they parted ways back in February. James told All That Shreds:
Earlier this year, at what would be our final meeting, Lance and I discussed what would be my objectives… my agenda… my plans to improve the relations between the Artists… the consumers… and TTM corporate. I won’t reveal the details of that ~2 hour meeting but, in summary, I believed I laid out a fairly solid plan to deal with the disparate consumer narratives. The narratives including TTM fanciers and defenders… and those who wanted to know where the fuck was their guitar. It all boiled down to honest, transparent, and authentic communication. It was absent a decade ago, and history was repeating itself.That final meeting concluded with Lance considering what would be my salary continuing on in the capacity of Artist Representative. He did get back with me a week or so following that meeting, and our association was terminated. It was amicable. Please note: Unpaid for three months I performed in the capacity of Artist Representative. Aside from a stipend I received for representing TTM Guitars at the 2019 NAMM show, my motivation to represent the Artists… the fellas buying the guitars… was fueled by a desire to serve them, the musicians. I knew what I was getting into that first day I contacted disgruntled customers… as I familiarized myself with the TTM of a decade ago. A customer is a customer, and all they want is to be heard, and be treated with fairness, respect, and dignity. In my opinion, as 2018 TTM business picked up… and delivery deadlines were failing… it didn’t take a rocket surgeon to see where 2019 was heading. TTM customers simply wanted a voice. I gave it to them, I tried to, until earlier this year when TTM and I parted.