Irving, TX (February 22, 2023)—Pro-Audio and AV retailer Sound Productions is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year—and it owes it all to Elvis Presley. While SoundPro began as a scrappy, forward-thinking backline rental company and evolved into its current role as an industry mainstay, supplying professional AVL gear across the industry, none of it would have happened without a chance call from the production team behind The King.
In 1973, Presley had returned to touring, circling the U.S. to great acclaim and adoring fans, but it was still the early days of tour production and professional audio. As it happens, a young guitar player, Charles Kitch, was working in a Texas music store one afternoon when the phone rang—it was Elvis Presley’s tour producer, Charles Stone, asking to rent backline gear for The King’s show in Dallas the next day. Whether the store’s owner was appalled or perhaps angling to make more money, no one knows, but regardless, he refused to rent equipment and told Stone that Elvis would have to buy the gear just like everyone else. No sale was made…but standing nearby, Kitch knew an opportunity when he heard one.
Racing against time, Kitch scrambled to pull together the necessary equipment to meet the show’s needs—and pulled it off. Amazingly, what started as a single gig turned into a 30-day tour with Elvis, and that soon led to other requests for backline gear and tech support for some of the biggest names in Rock ‘n’ Roll. Kitch’s fledgling business, Sound Productions, was on its way.
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In the years that followed, the company expanded into fabricating custom electronic and speaker systems for touring bands, as well as custom-designed installs. Some bands and production companies wound up buying the equipment they rented outright—a move that presaged SoundPro’s transition into pro audio sales. The company began selling new and used gear around the country, and by 1985, it shifted focus to sales and distribution. Continuing to grow, in 2012, SoundPro moved to a new, larger location in Irving, TX, and opened a second office in Madison, WI eight years later to better serve its growing customer base.
Today, SoundPro provides AVL products to diverse customer segments, including businesses, bands/artists, contractors/integrators, DJs, houses of worship, live productions and more. “We are thrilled to celebrate 50 years of serving customers in an industry that we have so much passion for,” said SoundPro CEO Joshua Curlett. “With our rich company history, we will continue to honor the past while we build a better future for our team members, our vendors, and our customers. As SoundPro continues to grow, I’m truly grateful for those who have taken part in making SoundPro what it is today, and I look forward to what we can do together in the years to come.”
The company will be celebrating its 50th milestone throughout the year. An event bringing together team members, valued customers and vendor partners is tentatively slated to take place in Fall 2023.