Avedis Zildjian Company

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Avedis Zildjian Company
Private
Industry Cymbal manufacturer
Founded Istanbul, Ottoman Empire (1623; 395 years ago (1623))
Founder Avedis Zildjian
Headquarters Norwell, Massachusetts, United States
Key people
Avedis Zildjian, Founder
Armand Zildjian
Craigie Zildjian, Current CEO
Debbie Zildjian
Products Cymbals, Drum sticks
Owners Craigie Zildjian, Current CEO
Debbie Zildjian
Website zildjian.com

The Avedis Zildjian Company, simply known as Zildjian (/ˈzɪlən, -iən/),[1] is an American-based cymbal manufacturer founded in Constantinople (present-day Istanbul, Turkey) by Armenian Avedis Zildjian in the 17th century. It is now based in Norwell, Massachusetts. Being nearly 400 years old, Zildjian is one of the oldest companies in the world. Zildjian also sells drum-related accessories, such as drum sticks and cymbal carriers. It is the largest cymbal manufacturer in the world.[2][3][4][5][6]

On December 20, 2010, it was announced that Avedis Zildjian Company had merged with Vic Firth, Inc.[7] According to the announcement, both companies will continue to run autonomously.[7]

History[edit]

Beginnings[edit]

The first Zildjian cymbals were created in 1618 by Avedis Zildjian, an alchemist who was looking for a way to turn base metal into gold. He made an alloy of tin, copper, and silver into a sheet of metal, which could make musical sounds without shattering. The Sultan Osman II gave Avedis the name Zildjian (Zilciyân) [8] (zil is Turkish for "cymbal," dj means "maker," and ian is the Armenian suffix meaning "son of"), and in 1623 granted him permission to leave the palace to start his own business in a suburb of Constantinople named Psamatia.

The Zildjian Company moved from manufacturing noisemakers that frightened the enemies of the Ottoman Empire to manufacturing its cymbals as musical instruments in the 19th century.[9]

1900s[edit]

Avedis Zildjian III in front of Zildjian Quincy Factory

Around 1928, Avedis III, his brother Puzant, and his uncle Aram Zildjian began manufacturing cymbals in Quincy, Massachusetts, and the Avedis Zildjian Co. was formed on September 19, 1929, the month before the Great Depression began, in competition with the K. Zildjian company in Turkey.

In 1968, the K. Zildjian Co. and all European trademarks were bought back on behalf of the Avedis Zildjian Co. Also in 1968, Avedis split production into two separate operations, opening the Azco factory in Meductic, New Brunswick, Canada.

Gravestone of Puzant and Arpine Zildjians, Mount Auburn Cemetery, Watertown, MA

In 1970, Zildjian needed all their production capabilities at Azco for their regular Zildjian line, so the factory in Quincy (the then location of Zildjian) would send up castings to be finished into cymbals at Azco.

In 1975, Zildjian began making K. Zildjian cymbals at the Azco plant. These were made until 1979. Within four years (1980), all K Cymbals were being made in the Norwell USA plant, because the Ks demanded far more oversight. Armand worked with friends, the great Elvin Jones and Tony Williams to relaunch the K Series.

In early 1977, Armand Zildjian was appointed President of the Avedis Zildjian Company by his father. Soon after, Robert Zildjian split from the company amidst conflict with his brother, Armand. Shortly thereafter, in 1981, Robert started making Sabian cymbals in the Meductic Azco factory.[citation needed]

Recent history[edit]

Armand passed the Zildjian Secret Alloy to his daughters, Craigie and Debbie (14th generation), both of whom continue to run the family business from the current factory in Norwell, Massachusetts.

Other than cymbals, the Avedis Zildjian Company produces products such as drum sticks and other drum accessories.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Pronunciation of zildjian". howjsay.com. Retrieved 2010-12-21. 
  2. ^ Robert Kreitner, Carlene M. Cassidy (2011). Management (12th ed.). Mason, OH: South-Western Cengage. p. 35. ISBN 9781111221362. Company, based in Norwell, Massachusetts, is the largest cymbal maker in the world and the oldest continuously family-run business in the United States. 
  3. ^ Lamb, Charles W. (2002). The Subject is Marketing (2nd Canadian ed.). Scarborough, Ont.: Nelson Thomson Learning. p. 26. ISBN 9780176169558. Avedis Zildjian of Norwell, Massachusetts, can trace its history back to 1623 in Constantinople. It is the world's largest maker of cymbals for drummers and musicians. 
  4. ^ Newsweek, Volume 71, Issues 1-9, 1968, p. 71 "As the only producer of cymbals in the U.S., the Zildjian company dominates a world market rapidly expanding with the proliferation of per- cussionary rock 'n' roll bands."
  5. ^ The Music Trades, Volume 135, Issues 1-6, p. 90 "Maintaining its position as the world's largest cymbal producer, the Avedis Zildjian Company has announced an exciting joint venture with Barcus-Berry, Inc."
  6. ^ "Robert Zildjian Dead: Founder Of Sabian Cymbal Company Dies At 89". The Huffington Post. 29 March 2013. Retrieved 25 May 2013. 
  7. ^ a b "Vic Firth Company and Avedis Zildjian Company Announce Merger". VicFirth.com. Archived from the original on 2010-12-22. Retrieved 2010-12-21. 
  8. ^ "About Zildjian". Avedis Zildjian Company. Retrieved 2018-02-04. 
  9. ^ "Zildjian Bios-Avedis Zildjian I". zildjian.com. Retrieved 2 February 2015. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 42°9′42.30″N 70°53′11.15″W / 42.1617500°N 70.8864306°W / 42.1617500; -70.8864306