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JML pianos family business in fayetteville, nc


We are a family owned and operated business owned by the Donald family. Jim & Linda Donald retired from the business in late 2013, and their son Mike is now keeping the business going in it's second generation.  Sadly, Our Founder Jim Donald passed away peacefully on Dec 16, 2021.


In early 1980, Jim Donald retired from a management position from Sears, Roebuck & Co in Raleigh, NC. Jim's wife Linda Donald ran a successful children's clothing in Knightdale, NC until 1980. Jim, a long time musician, always had a dream of owning a music store. One Sunday he was reading the Newspaper and saw that a music store was for sale in Morehead City, NC. So... He and Linda drove down to Morehead City and made a deal with the store owner and bought Coastal Music in Morehead City, NC. Shortly after Mike graduated high school in June 1980, They started operating Coastal Music. After attending College Mike joined the business at first teaching, then selling & helping in the store. Coastal Music was a full line music store that sold pianos, organs, and everything from guitars to drums and accessories. From 1983 - 1986 Jim had a partner in the business. The Donald family relocated from Morehead City to Fayetteville in late 1986. Shortly after a short stint working with a partner in another company (that is now out of business), Jim, Mike, & Linda started JML Music in late 1987. Yes... JML stands for Jim, Mike, and Linda! Their first location was in Eutaw Village shopping center in Fayetteville. JML Music was a full line music store that focused primarily on pianos. In 1991 they moved JML Music to a larger location on Robeson st. in Fayetteville. After just a few short years of being a full line music store, they discovered that pianos, organs, and digital pianos were the best sellers. So, in 1992 they stopped selling all guitars and accessories and focused on pianos, organs, and digital pianos (which were starting to get popular). In late 1992, they purchased a piano store in Columbia, SC from a close friend. Now JML Music had 2 locations selling only pianos, digital pianos, and organs. During these years JML did lots of Piano Sales in National Guard Armorys, hotels, convention centers, etc. in NC, SC, and even VA. In 1997 they opened a store in Indian Trail, NC (a suburb of Charlotte, NC). This store was very large and use to be a skating rink at one time. This store became the central warehouse for the company, and typically had 75 - 100 grand pianos on display, and had lots of crated pianos in large quantity in their warehouse. Jim always said... "If you don't have it, you can't sell it". We found this to be true. This store was very busy, and business was booming! Shortly after they opened another store in Charlotte, NC, and added other stores in Greer, SC, Richmond, VA, and Fredericksburg, VA were opened. These other stores were not called JML Music... .they were called either Piano Outlet, Piano Showcase, or other names.
Some of the other stores had partners.

Along the way, JML Music received many top sales awards from Kurzweil (digital pianos) - dealer of the year several times; Young Chang piano - dealer of the year, Roland - top sales awards, and other awards. JML also had their own line of pianos (built for them by Young Chang under the J. Howard name) that were sold exclusively through Costco wholesale for several years. JML also started to sell lots of pianos and digital pianos to school systems, universities, and churches and still do to this day.

In 2013, the Donald family decided to sell their store & property on Robeson Street in Fayetteville after being there from 1991 - 2013. At the same time, Jim & Linda were ready to retire so they closed Piano Outlet in Indian Trail in late 2013. Both stores were combined in 2013 and the company name was changed to "JML Piano". In November 2013, JML Piano opened at it's current location: 1800 Owen Drive in Fayetteville (in Bordeaux Shopping Center). Mike now manages and runs the business, and even in these crazy times in 2022, the business continues to flourish.

The Donald family have had many customers who have became friends over the years in the business, and some are now lifelong friends. Some of these customer's children have now become customers of JML too! They appreciate all their customers, and treat them like friends. For years our company slogan was "Shop us or pay too much". Now we add to that.... "Over 40 years of quality".

A sincere thank you to all of our customers, friends, and companies we have dealt with for our first 40 years that have helped us get to where we are today. We appreciate you, your business, your support, and it's an honor to serve you. A heartfelt thank you to all of our military & first responders.... Thank you for your service to our country!

~ Mike

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