Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Business

June 22, 2014

Vinyl is back in Kokomo

New record store opens its doors on Center Road

It’s a distinct sound: light, airy, filled with the vibrations and hums that only a record can produce on playback. The LP of yesterday is making a comeback.

Just this month, Jack White’s latest album, “Lazaretto,” proved the resurgence of vinyl. The LP sold over 40,000 copies in the U.S., the biggest first-week vinyl sales since Soundscan began tracking that data in 1991, publicists announced on White’s official webpage.

Mike Wilson and Adam Romanak are bringing that love for vinyl to Kokomo, in the form of a new store called American Dream Hi-Fi.

“About three months ago we were talking about how there was no record store and no place to get used vinyl and how somebody needed to start a store up,” said Wilson. “I thought, ‘Not somebody needs to, we need to.’”

Wilson has been a musician since he was 15. He moved to Kokomo to work for Weber Speakers and became friends with Romanak. They played in bands, including a joke ‘90s cover band called X103, over the years. For fun, they did a podcast called Burger Night. The podcast focused on listening to records and talking about the music. It wasn’t terribly popular, Wilson said, but it led to talks of opening a store.

Originally, the entrepreneurs wanted their store to be in downtown Kokomo, excited by the surge of growth the city’s core has experienced. But, Wilson said, that wasn’t meant to be as the location they choose fell through and financial factors prevented them from considering other, more central options.

“We really dig this building,” Wilson said. The location at 407 E. Center Road is likely to provide a destination, he added, as Gabe’s Pizza expands to include a dining room.

“Our record store is going to need support from Logansport, Marion, anyone who doesn’t want to have to drive to Indy could come here,” Wilson said. He sees having a popular pizza shop next door as the perfect pairing of dinner out and a stop at the record store.

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