Harrison Harmonicas has Customers Worried

ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- A Rockford company known for its unique product across the country is now nowhere to be found when it comes to answering what some call shady business practices at Harrison Harmonicas.

The nation's only harmonica maker was from right here in Rockford and recently gained national attention on the CBS Early Show attracting new customers like Bob Ditmer.

"My brother loves playing the harmonica so I looked at my wife and I said we've got to order this for a Christmas present for him." says Ditmer.

Bob placed his 200 dollar order with Harrison Harmonicas one year ago expecting it to arrive by last Christmas.

"I got a couple of emails throughout the last 12 months say its coming, we have lots of back orders since so many people saw it on CBS, they've got just thousands of back orders and everything. The next thing I knew I get an email yesterday from Brad Harrison that says hey we sold the company." says Ditmer

Harrison Harmonicas was based out of one of Eiger Lab's buildings here in Rockford, but left months ago without warning and without filling existing orders.

"We've noted that they've moved from Rockford to the operation in Chicago. And in the same time they have made this move the number of complains have increased. Right now we currently have 21 complaints." says Dennis Horton from the Better Business Bureau.

We did try contacting Harrison Harmonicas to ask why there has been so much confusion as they transfer their oreders to a new business but we were unable to get a hold of them.

Customers like Bob who have tried to track their order but found the phone number to their central office in Rockford disconnected, while their number for their office in Chicago goes straight to a voicemail box that is full. Now some customers like Bob are afraid they may have fallen victim to a scam...

"Just send me my money back." says Ditmer

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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Neil Location: Sebastopol, California on Apr 2, 2012 at 02:02 PM
    Just came across this site and it both saddens me and pisses me off again. My story is virtually the same as Jeff's posted last November: excited order (substantial), long delay and many excuses, notice of ready to ship and last payment, and, so sorry, sold the business but the other guy ( unfortunately couldn't see the wink wink) will take care of you. Whether it began as a scam and transformed into one later I do not know. In the end it amounts to the same thing. I guess I will contact the BBB and Ill. Attorney General if only to help put it to bed emotionally. Heart goes out to all of the rest of you who were also such suckers to want to support an American company and play some music.
  • by Albert Location: Midland, Texas on Jan 10, 2012 at 10:51 AM
    I ordered my harmonica on May 23, 2010. I paid $197.00 on July 14, 2010. I never recieved my harmonica, and Harrison harmonicas is nowhere to be found.All their numbers are disconnected.
  • by CHAOSTOPHER C. Location: DALLAS, TX on Jan 2, 2012 at 08:45 PM
    I guess I was one of the lucky ones! I ordered 2 harps after I saw the story on CBS Sunday Morning. 10 MONTHS LATER and many phone calls and emails later, I actually got both harps! I'll have to say that these harps are some of the best sounding and well designed that I have ever had. Unfortunately I have blown a reed in one of them, so it is useless, but my "A" harp is still working and sounds great. I would have gladly ordered a complete set from these guys if they would have gotten it together enough to send me the harps in a reasonable delivery time. But, after the first 10 month wait, my instincts told me to wait awhile to see if they ever got their Production lines up and running like they kept promising, in order to fulfill their orders in a prompt and reasonable time. It is sad that they could not keep it together enough to keep the business running. They actually had a great product that most pro Harmonica players would have loved to own! They could have easily stayed in business if they would have gotten their production down! I hope Mr. Brad Harrison is hiding in a remote area, cause if any of the harp players that I know that he ripped off ever find him......... I wouldn't want to be any where near that meeting! The saddest part is that they lied to good people, and then ripped them off, when they could have stopped taking orders, fulfilled the back orders, and/or refunded the money to those people whose orders they couldn't fulfill in a reasonable time. I hope this guy doesn't get away with this scam!
  • by Bob Location: Elizabeth,IL on Dec 23, 2011 at 07:15 AM
    The BBB will not help you. You must contact the IL.Attorney General
  • by Arlene Location: Concord,MA on Dec 16, 2011 at 07:17 PM
    I ordered one harmonica on May 27th, 2010. I sent one-hundred and ninety-seven dollars to HH. I do have an order/receipt number. I have many correspondence emails over the past 1.5 years, but no harmonica. Never shipped. I shall also file with the Better Business Bureau of Illinois.
  • by Cinda Location: Hansville, WA on Dec 11, 2011 at 09:07 PM
    I ordered one of these much touted harmonicas for my husband in April of 2010. I have had the same run around emails as the others. If anyone has and idea of what we should do, please let me know.
  • by Will Location: Utah on Dec 6, 2011 at 08:26 AM
    Paid $180 for a "ghost" of a harmonica. How can we track this guy down. what better way to make free cash than to get yourself on 60 minutes and laugh all the way to the bank. Media hype does it again. WZ
  • by Susan Location: Idaho on Nov 29, 2011 at 05:13 PM
    I ordered a HH on Aug 23,2010 for my 16 year old grandsons birthday. Yes, they are expensive . Because of the story about HH on the Today Show I thought they sounded great and would be a perfect gift. I really could not afford to loose $200.! I sent several e-mail questioning when the harmonica would arrive. HH always replied giving excuses and new arrival dates. Is there any recourse? I am out the money and over a year later still owe a birthday present to my grandson. I feel totally scammed.Is there really a company that bought out HH? The last e-mail I received said the "new" company would honor HH's unfinished orders.
  • by Jeff Location: Chicago on Nov 25, 2011 at 04:58 AM
    I ordered my HH in March 2010. I periodically questioned where my order was, and got a load of excuses each time from their customer service person. What really upset me is that in May this year (15 months after the order was placed) I got an email stating my harmonica was ready to assemble and requested the $120 balance. I paid this immediately, then waited for the harmonica that never came. When i followed up after a month, they said the parts were not acceptable quality and had engaged another supplier, but that the order would be filled. You guessed it, a month after that the "gone out of business" email comes along. They clearly did not have it ready to assemble, and were making a last ditch effort to swindle as much money out of their customers as possible, before folding nup and running off. This guy is a crook and needs to be prosecuted for fraud. I have no hope of ever seeing an instrument from them.
  • by Greg Location: Albuquerque, NM on Nov 3, 2011 at 01:32 PM
    I ordered a HH on August 31, 2010. Several communications occured as I was told 6 months order filling time. I then received email from the company stating another company would be buying them out. I have all the emails stored on my PC. Looks as though I'm out $187.00. I'd be glad to join any class action against Harrison Harmonicas. Also, CBS should be notified as they supported their cause in August 2010. Greg
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