Music Retail

Syndenn Sweet was the first woman hired as a luthier at Bookmans Entertainment Exchange in Tucson, Arizona. This distinction is one she makes with pride, especially considering her father was a luthier as well. After earning her business degree, serving on the board of the Tucson Folk Festival, and...
Rebecca Ensley studied clarinet in college and yet somehow got caught up in the crazy world of stringed instruments as a luthier and repair technician. It all started in 1991 when a friend who was working at Southwest Strings in Tucson suggested she apply for an opening in the mail order department...
Leslie Stirm is the owner of the Instrumental Music Center in Tucson, Arizona. Joining the store in 2001, Leslie has helped develop the store’s team, which has a strong focus on customer service and a strong knowledge base on the products and instruments they sell. Leslie is also a strong advocate...
Michael Campion has attended the NAMM Show since the late 1970s, first as a wide-eyed musician, then as a retailer and finally as an exhibitor. Tracing his evolving roles at the show mirrors his fascinating career in the music industry. Playing in garage bands led to his involvement with...
Kelly Wheeler and her husband Dorsey run a music retail business in Idaho with several locations. Dorsey Music was established in 1969 and just three years later Kelly walked through the doors looking to buy a guitar. She soon began working in the store before they were married a few years later....
Dorsey Wheeler attributes some of the success of his music store to the training and ongoing support he has received from companies such as Peavey Electronics and Cannonball Musical Instruments. Having a strong relationship with his suppliers has been a key element for his business, as is attending...
Katelyn Summerhays was 11 years old when she had her first official job in her family’s music store. Her grandparents opened Summeryhays Music in the Salt Lake City area in 1936, and her family has owned and operated the multi-location business ever since. Katelyn started out answering the phones...
Laurel Summerhays was 11 years old when she received her first paycheck working in her family’s music store. Her parents, Hyrum and Colleen, opened Summerhays Music in 1936 and their family has served the greater Salt Lake City area ever since. After college, she pursued a career in banking but...
Ken Donnell is often regarded as the foremost authority on close-mic applications for stringed instruments. While he has an extensive background across the music products industry, first watching his father work in a music store, Ken eventually honed his skills as a luthier, alongside his good...
Joan Fox was just 15 years old when she met her future husband, Maurice. His parents started a music store in South Carolina, Fox Muisc House, in which Joan would work for many years. She married Maurice in 1953 and become passionate about their employees and customers, treating both as members of...

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