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Get that Family-Owned, Small Town Feel Alongside Austin's Largest Selection of Musical Fare

By Marina Jokic

In 1963, Dan Strait moved from Houston to Austin to open his first store, Strait Piano and Organ, which occupied a small space in a shopping center along Lamar at 9th Street. In 1967, Strait Piano and Organ was incorporated and renamed Strait Music Company, expanding their product range to include a wide variety of instruments, from acoustic guitars to band and orchestra. A reputation for quality products, friendly service, and affordable prices contributed to a steady growth for the business. Eventually, Dan acquired the neighboring retail space and Strait Music gradually quadrupled in size, notably sharing the block with the original Whole Foods Market.

Skirting major destruction, Strait Music withered the Memorial Day flood of 1981. During that time, Dan decided to pass the reigns to his son, who assumed the role of vice president. Because of a shortage of space and parking, the company moved again in 1995 to a larger warehouse on 5th Street, which was formerly the site of Austin Toyota.

In 1997, Strait Music opened its second location to serve the growing Northwest Austin area. Finally in 2001, Strait made the move to their biggest store in the Lakehills Plaza shopping center where the team undertook a major remodel.

The company has not only been selling and renting instruments, they also offer service and repairs at reasonable prices. On their website, you can review the profiles of their dedicated staff. Each department has its own group of specialists. From guitars and fretted instruments to percussion and drums, Strait Music covers the musical spectrum.

For instance, their sheet music sales department offers piano methods and instruction, repertoire, classical piano, popular artists, sacred books, vocal books and methods, and band and orchestral. From the budding to the veteran pianist, Strait Music will take care of customers at absolutely any level of experience. Some of the popular instrument brands offered include Roland, Yamaha, Tama, and Mapex.

Pro audio and recording equipment is a very popular department as Strait Music is the premier venue for renting microphones, live sound gear, and lighting in the Austin area. Strait also provides on-site consultation and installation services for churches, schools, marching bands, restaurants, and other establishments. The band and orchestra section features tuners, metronomes, mouthpieces, ligatures, rosin, strings, cleaning supplies, mutes and protective cases for pretty much any instrument you could think of.

Luckily for Dan, all of his children have been actively involved with the management of the store over the years, including daughters Nancy and Danna and son David, who has managed the piano department since 1987. The family-owned business has been thriving for over four decades, a real milestone by any standard.

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About The Author

Marina Jokic holds a bachelor's degree from Connecticut College in Russian and East...

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