The Sound Station
 

Kevin McGuire - Owner

I’ve always had a love for music and electronics and a family that embraced it. At the age of 4, I played vinyl on my own and first of many turntables.  In Junior High I played the drums in school and recorded 8 track tapes off my LP’s. I built my first component home stereo system consisting of a BSR turntable, La Fayette preamp, Dynaco amp and Sony speakers. “Those were the days.” At 15, I built my first pair of home speakers in shop class, I made an “A” I might add!   I worked at Target in the electronics department in High School and thought I wanted to go to school in the field of Radiology. I was working at a car audio store in 1975 and nights in x-ray while attending Tulsa Junior College for Radiology. Every one at the hospital complained about their job and people around me were dying! At the Stereo store everyone loved their job and only the radios were dying! It didn’t take long to find the “radio” in RADIOlogy. I started playing guitar and proceeded to take my Beatles Vox Guitar Amplifier apart and install it in my Chevy Van along with an Audiovox 8 track and a Craig Power Play Amplifier (top of the line back then). I gained more knowledge by working at a couple of other car audio stores and then opened my own business in 1977. I had a partner and we worked out of my van in Tulsa, OK where we would install in parking lots, garages, driveways (where ever) for Team Electronics, Radio Shack, Sevco and the likes. Life was simple. My Grandparents had owned a Phillips 66 service station in Bartlesville, Ok since the early 30’s and when the opportunity to give my own store a try became available to me, I took it!  In October 1978 “The Sound Station” was born. I thank my father for the name.

The business grew and during the early years I was fortunate enough to stay very busy working on some fun projects. I installed for many of the car dealers and one Tulsa BMW/ Mercedes Dealer brought me many exotic cars.  I loved the challenge of something new, Rolls Royce, Bentley, Porsche, and Panterra to name a few. I designed systems for businesses, boats, semis, airplanes and even a hot air balloons. I once installed a system in a large red shop tool box custom designed for a surgeon to house his stereo and play music while doing surgery.  It was fully automated, but of course!

In 1985 we held the first of many car audio contests in the region with Fosgate and Pioneer. The early Alpine IASCA Contests really taught us about the business and high quality car audio. We won 1st in Oklahoma, Dallas and Chicago with my Mercedes which qualified us for the first 1987 Iasca World Finals in San Diego.   At this show we were highlighted in magazines, video training tapes, and a special treat of a full page article with picture in Rolling Stone Magazine! The next year we took several cars to world finals and I finished 2nd in the world in my class. We even entered the Semi Cab that hauled the cars to the show with a customized sound system in it! Those were fun shows! It was about the sound quality and installation, not the ridiculous thing it became. In 1989 I won all of the 7 qualifiers in the region and was invited back to the IASCA world finals in Tempe Arizona. I took 1st in the world competition in my class.  That was enough.


           



In the midst of IASCA I had turned the living areas of the old station, where my Grandparents had once lived into a new showroom for The Sound Station’s Home Audio and Video Departments.  Transitioning into the world of home audio was a natural progression and we tried everything, technicians, repairs, satellite, cellular, surround sound, custom division for new home pre-wires. In the end it all came back to the basics, “I love music”. I relinquished everything that drove me crazy, wasted my time and frankly “was not fun”. I do Hi-Fi. I want to always do it well. If we’re not going to have fun doing it, let’s not!  

I feel so fortunate to do what I love everyday in my business. I have always pushed technology, design and myself to maximum levels. I have embraced Hi-Fi and Home Theater with the same enthusiasm and intensity now. I share my office space and travel with my lovely wife Rhonda. Every day is like Christmas or like a vacation. There is always a new box to open and a new technology to discover. Travel often lets me finally get to meet the voice from the other end of the phone line that I have worked with for years and already consider a good friend.  I have truly enjoyed helping these clients develop wonderful sounding systems. I can’t wait to see what the future holds in this industry. I look forward to the many new clients and rekindled friendships I’ll have along the way. I just hope that I am able to do this for another 30 years. “Knock on wood”  



Sincerely,

29 years of attending annual Consumer Electronic Shows and CEDIA training.
Kef factory training in Maidstone England 1987,
Paradigm factory training in Toronto Canada 1989,
Symbol Technologies manufacturing New York, NY 1990
Martin Logan factory training Lawrence, KS 1991 and 2002
Montana Loudspeaker factory training in San Diego, CA 1996 and 2005