Musician’s Hub offers new, used and vintage instruments, as well as tube and solid state amplifiers, PA systems, percussion instruments and accessories, guitar and vocal accessories, and lesson books. The showroom features a repair workshop for stringed instruments and two near-soundproof rooms for lessons and personalized acoustic guitar demos. A showcase at the front of the store spotlights local band merchandise.
A musician since the age of 13, owner Dana Hartwell began tossing around the idea of opening his own business while serving in the U.S. Air Force. After several years of working as a service and business operations manager following his enlistment, he fulfilled his longtime dream by opening the store.
With nearly 2,600 square feet of dedicated retail floor space and walls lined with equipment, Hartwell hopes his expansive inventory of hi-profile product lines and hands-on approach to support creates the experience for his customers that he always wanted to feel in a local music store.
“Showrooms will always be important to the music industry,” said Hartwell. “What we do in the store is provide an experience. The internet has made searching for instruments convenient, but nothing will ever compare to holding various instruments in your hands and being able to ask questions as they come up. Also, knowing that you have a place to turn if problems occur offers peace of mind that you don’t get when you purchase through an online retailer.”
Frustrated with distracted customer service representatives and lack of connection from the music box chain stores, Hartwell decided to take the modern music store model and throw it out.
“Here, it’s not about the gear, the brand, or what ‘corporate’ wants you to push today,” said Hartwell. “It’s about community, what customers want, and how we can work together to create the best music possible.”
Hartwell plans to leverage the customizable nature of his small business to support local musicians. He showcases their CDs and merchandise in the store and online and provides readily accessible technical support. Musicians playing within Auburn, Lewiston, or the surrounding areas can call a direct line, staffed 24 hours a day, if they forget any equipment or experience mechanical difficulties after hours.
“We’re here to redefine what people expect from a retail music store,” said Hartwell. “Once the word gets out that, in addition to all this, we also have incredibly competitive pricing, I think the business will take off. And when it does, it will put us in a position to start giving back to the community and the musicians. That’s all I’ve ever really wanted to do.”
Musician’s Hub is open Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday by appointment only. For more information, call (207) 333-6700, or see www.mymusicianshub.com.