Name: Chris Rogers
Business address: 121 Langtree Avenue, Mildura
Social media: Facebook: The Soundtrap Music Centre
Open since: September 1989
Growing up, Chris Rogers always had a close association with his local music shop, having taught music and played semi-professionally since he was 15 years old.
He learnt piano in primary school and, when he moved into high school, was encouraged to continue his musical studies and take up guitar.
“Within 12 months of guitar lessons, I was teaching alongside the teacher. I was a fast learner,” Chris says.
Local musician Bill Tyers, who people may remember from the band the Rhythm Rockets, was Chris’ teacher and mentor for many years.
“I worked for him until the late 80s where I had been teaching for him and decided to set up my own tuition business,” Chris says.
“Within 18 months, all music shops in Mildura including Bill’s business had closed down so I had a whole bunch of students, both privately and in schools, with no music shop.”
It was then that Chris expanded The Soundtrap into the retailing of musical instruments.
“This fitted perfectly with the music lessons, sound equipment hire and repair services that I had already established,” Chris says.
“As musicians ourselves we are always keen to help, whether that is just advice or repairing and maintaining our customers’ instruments.”
Customers visiting The Soundtrap can expect friendly, efficient staff, a good range of instruments, accessories at competitive prices and an opportunity to speak face-to-face with other like minded people in Mildura’s music community.
Whether it’s the young beginner or adults looking for a hobby, Chris says he welcomes all into the community.
“There are quite a few people going back to music as they mature and there is quite a musical community here, despite a lack of gigs and outlets for original music.”
“That’s what it’s about – to try to get people out and about to enjoy some live music again.”
What does shopping local mean to you?
Wherever I can I try to support local businesses who employ and train local people. There are many competitive online options in the retail space and lots of cost pressures associated with local stores maintaining a profitable position. It is important for this remote region to support businesses to provide face-to-face customer service for our residents.
Why did you choose Mildura City Heart?
Originally we were just out of the City Heart zone on the other side of Deakin Avenue but were forced to move by the State Government. Finding a suitable building was the main consideration and our location in the main shopping strip I hope is convenient for our customers.
Other than your own store, what is your favourite shop within Mildura City Heart?