BeyerPrinting History

HUMBLE BEGINNINGS

In 1965, Tex Lyons' Printing establishment in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, was an unlikely hangout for a 14-year-old. But Philip Beyer - already showing the earmarks of a budding entrepreneur - was fascinated with his visits to the shop and watching his brother William, a new apprentice there, 'man the presses'. Young Philip marveled at the workings of the new Multilith "offset" press which was still considered by some to be a mere toy in the industry. It wasn't long before Tex offered him a job collating in the bindery department. To be able to work beside and do like his brother-learning such exciting skills, drinking Cokes all day, and making fifty cents an hour-was an opportunity not to be missed. For Philip Beyer it was also the beginning of a deep appreciation of the printing trade-a life-long calling to a business that had revolutionized the world-and changed the very course of history.

Even a short 35 years ago, printing was much different than it is today, entering the new millenium. Printing was a craft that found young men working as apprentices for years to learn how to become journeymen printers. Master printers were and still are a rare breed. Back then, printing was done mainly on "letter presses"-slow by today's standards but able to produce high quality results. The "offset" press was just making its entrance into the world of printing, and being met with the same skepticism that had plagued aviation's Wright Brothers as the twentieth century began, when their "insane dabblings" with something called an Aeroplane caused many to doubt it would ever 'fly'.

But the face and pace of trade was changing rapidly. Business people no longer cared so much about "the art of printing" as more and more they needed an almost instant and endless supply of forms and materials to help them do their business more efficiently.

Philip Beyer had entered into this creative industry during one of its most significant changes in half a century. Other higher-paying jobs drew young Philip away briefly, but they lacked the sense of satisfaction and craftsmanship he had experienced as a printer; turning him back to his 'first love' where-at another firm, Kennedy Printing-Philip believes he "truly learned the trade that would build the foundation" for his future.

After graduating from high school, Philip took on college studies for awhile, until the lure of yet another, powerful 'love' began to fill every spare thought. He had begun playing music and singing while still in school. Music. in the early 1970's, was just about every young man's fantasy, and for this particular young man, with the heart of an entrepreneur and a head full of dreams, music became his all-consuming reality! Now, with assurance that he had found his true calling, he left college and worked all the harder as a printer to be able to pursue his music interests at night and on weekends in Louisiana. This new incentive found him operating most of the letter presses around-Klurgies, Heidelbergs and Hand Presses. He also made it a point to learn everything he could about offset printing, and all other facets of the printing business-even keeping up with the latest industry trends. But music had become his greatest passion, and printing would allow him to afford it.

By 1974, Philip's music was keeping him busy full-time, and although he would not enter the printing trade again for many years, his printing experience was put to good use in promoting his increasingly popular band, Papa Joe and Riverboat [link], later known as Philip Paul & Patrol [link]. Looking at printing from the other side of the fence was teaching him lessons that would prove invaluable later as he related to his customers.

But the success of Philip's music [link] was the very thing that began to take the greatest toll. After years of heavy performance and rehearsal schedules; late nights in crowded, smoky venues; endless hotels and motels; the incalculable rigors of the road; and-worst of all-missing his family, Philip Paul Beyer hung up his microphone. Finally he would return to a lifestyle he had longed for, instilled by Christian parents [link] whose values and ideals were to become the solid basis of all his future endeavors. Philip Beyer returned to printing-only this time, he would build his own company, Beyer Printing of Nashville.

Philip Beyer had learned much from being a disciplined performer, band leader and manager of a touring show-how to market and promote his skills and art. He learned how to take care of business, plan and keep schedules, meet payrolls, manage his finances and accounting, and the importance of well-considered tools and equipment. Mostly, he learned about people-relationships--that's where real success begins!

With a strong commitment to
Integrity-Service-Quality-Excellence