The Putnam Examiner

Business of the Week: Radovich and Dean Music Store, Carmel

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Music has been integral and significant to Dave Radovich for most of his life.

One way or another, Radovich has been active within the musical world, instrument always in hand, the music always surrounding him. He conducted in the public school system for countless years and still plays on a daily basis, but undoubtedly the most prominent way he’s been involved with music is being the owner of Radovich and Dean Music for the past 40 years.

Radovich and his father-in-law opened the store together in 1973 when a gallon of gas was roughly 40 cents and the top hit single was “Tie A Yellow Ribbon ‘Round The Ole Oak Tree”, performed by Tony Orlando and Dawn. It still comes as a surprise to him the store along Glenieda Ave. has remained opened all these years.

“I never thought we’d have a business for 40 years, I never thought that,” Radovich said. “That’s a long time to have a business.”

Both Radovich and his father-in-law, Dean, played in a band together. Once Dean was nearing the end of his engineering career, he suggested the two open a store together. Radovich was just 24-years-old at the time.

All those years in the business have resulted in plenty of change.

For one, the business has continued to expand the area that it serves, going down into Westchester County school, and dealing with schools as far up as Dutchess County, where Radovich will go to band directors and understand what instruments they need fixed or music they need provided.

The use of the Internet has also been a major shift for the business and digitizing copies of music is a necessity now, as well.

“We constantly have to reinvent ourselves,” Radovich said. “You think it’s easy after 40 years, but it’s not.”

One consistent has been the fact children still need someone to teach them how to play the instrument, something a computer can’t really do effectively. The repair part of the business also thrives because Radovich said it’s hard to find those types of shops anymore.

Radovich said parents that once learned from him now send their children to learn at R&D Music.

“Saying, ‘I took lessons here when I was a junior in high school and now this is my daughter and they’re studying,’” Radovich said with a laugh.

And Radovich understands the connection music can have in a family. His wife, Cindy was also a music director for many years within the Brewster School District. Their daughter is an oboe player and got a degree in music performance and education at a school in Boston. She runs the education building behind the main store and is responsible for all the music teachers and students.

It’s one, big, happy musical family.

“We found our passion and we all seem to enjoy it and we’re good at it,” Radovich said.

Last April marked 40 years in the music business, but Radovich doesn’t want the major milestones to end there. It might be another ten years away, but he’s looking forward to the 50th anniversary.

“Sure, why not,” he said. “My daughter will probably take over the business at some point soon so it’ll just go on.”

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