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Jeff Gottlieb is the new president of Music & Arts.

Gottlieb New Music & Arts President

Replaces longtime Guitar Center executive Steven Zapf.


Jeff Gottlieb, a seasoned retail executive, has been named president of Guitar Center’s Music & Arts division, which operates approximately 200 stores nationwide serving the school music market. He replaces longtime Guitar Center executive Steven Zapf, who headed the operation for the past seven years.

Guitar Center President and CEO Ron Japinga said, “One of the things that excites me about Jeff is his experience leading complex retail operations, including managing companies through strong growth initiatives. While his track record includes strong financial performance, it was very clear to me that Jeff has a people-first mindset and is passionate about customer service.” 

Gottlieb previously held executive posts at Sur La Table, Jockey International, and Banana Republic. While at Sur La Table, a chain that caters to cooking enthusiasts, he developed a successful cooking school program, which he says has parallels with the lesson programs at both Music & Arts and Guitar Center. Music & Arts runs approximately 1.5 million lessons a year.

Gottlieb, who is an amateur guitarist, said, “I have a deep appreciation for all different genres of music, and that appreciation is part of what attracted me to Music & Arts. This business is so much more than a retail store; as one of the largest music lesson providers, we offer tremendous value to our customers and students by giving them valuable skills they will use for the rest of their lives.”

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