Music store Mt. Pleasant celebrates 20 years with a movie – The Morning Sun

B’s Music is half the age of its owner.

“I’ve done this for exactly half my life,” said Brian Hansen, of Mt. Pleasant. “It’s a weird thing.”

The store turns 20 next week, and to celebrate — in addition to in-store sales — Hansen has commissioned one of my employees to interview former employees for a documentary telling the story of B.

“It’s really a celebration of the store,” said Jake O’Brien, a Mt. Pleasant native who worked for B’s for about two years.

O’Brien is finishing up the 30 interviews he’s done and is preparing to travel to California next week as part of Hansen’s team for a musical instrument dealer convention in Anaheim. The convention is one of the last two pieces of the documentary puzzle. The other is an interview with Hansen.

Hansen said he was indifferent during filming and would not watch the film until it premieres this summer.

“I just paid for it and bought some gear,” Hansen said.

They wait for O’Brien to enter the final assembly stages before renting the Broadway Theater for a one-night performance. When they do, Hansen said he plans to introduce it and sit in the front row and drink it.

“I think I have to rip the bandage off and watch it with everyone,” he said.

Hansen began working at what was Cook’s Music in 1998. He opened his own music store in Alma a few years later and acquired Cook’s Mt. Pleasant store a few years later and opened B’s Music, 613 N. Mission St.

Last year, he acquired another former Cook location, the building next door at 615 N. Mission St. It was a tobacco store that closed. It now houses the main operations of B’s ​​evolved business model, its studio where web content is filmed, and the shipping and receiving department of the company’s thriving online retail operations.

In 20 years, B’s has grown from Hansen employing itself to 20 employees. Last year, it made sales of $1.2 million, about half of them online, he said.

The Bs grew a lot during the pandemic, and it was while everyone was avoiding the crowds that they really set up the guts for the store’s online presence. While some retailers are increasing in-person sales with a web presence, Hansen said he wants to get it right, but tying sales to inventory. It took them about six months.

Hansen said they’ve also taken a close look at how they manage inventory to ensure they always have musical instruments and backing gear to sell. This includes B brand pedals and products.

Branding has taken on its own importance. Hansen said he wanted to make the company a regional destination for musicians to purchase equipment. This means making the store known on the web. They have hard-to-obtain equipment while maintaining a basic stock inventory knowing that it could take up to a year for orders to be fulfilled.

Parliamentary Commissioners Rethink Broadway Central

Stock is stored at Mission 615 location — known around what Hansen jokingly calls Campus B — with the basement filled with boxes designed specifically for shipping guitars.

615 is also a former location of Cook’s Music, and before that was Bobo’s Bar. Beyond that, it has special meaning for Hansen. In the 70s, his father built the lime green oval up front.

“I own my father’s oval,” he said.

Web content is filmed in the front, with shipping and receiving in the back. There’s no sign, but sometimes people confuse it with the music store and he had people asking about the guitar re-recording while they were in the middle of filming.

One benefit of owning both buildings is owning all of the parking lot in between, which he plans to resurface. He said he could even put arrows on the ground in front of 651 to direct people to in-person sales and service.

B’s has yet to monetize his YouTube channel, but that would provide another welcome source of income.

However, success does not come from revenue. It comes from the organization, Hansen said.

“You have to be tight and good at it,” he said. Organization and discipline are key, and staff meetings involve “spreadsheets, numbers and math.”

it’s also a set-up for another 20 years of activity, after which there are two different endings.

Either the process of owning B’s is so easy that the store practically runs on its own, Hansen joked, or “in 20 years there will be a closing sale.”

Mt. Pleasant resident honored for excellence in nursing

Alice P. Darby