Sosonic: One of Madison’s Best-Kept Secrets
Madison has its share of well-kept secrets but there is one that is ready for prime time. Dale Sticha has been operating out of a south side warehouse for over thirty years. Originally under the name of Sticha Brothers, the company is now named Sosonic. Strictly a sound and lighting company at the beginning, Sosonic has grown into a national service provider that is now expanding the range of services offered at its Latham Street location just off of Fish Hatchery Rd.
In this unassuming warehouse there have been some major events. Over the years the facility has seen the likes of Bob Dylan, Cheap Trick, Garbage, Sevendust and Mudvayne, who have all taken advantage of the low profile and ample gear to rehearse new material for recording and touring. Recently the building has undergone a major facelift. There are now several soundproofed rehearsal rooms, a retail outlet, a recording studio and a wide range of services. Sosound is now seeking instructors to provide lessons for aspiring musicians and is adopting an open-door policy of sorts, encouraging fledging artists, especially youths, to hang out, observe and soak up various facets of production, business matters and even lifestyle.
Sticha is another one of those unassuming, quiet individuals who have major accomplishments under their belt. He’s built his company from a small sound and light outfit working with Madison-area acts to providing the production for Concerts on the Square to producing large-scale events of all sorts around the country. But Sticha has another range of experiences that come about as a result of his decades-long stint as Elton John’s personal sound tech. He’s acquired a wealth of knowledge from all of this which he now feels compelled to share with young people. I had a nice conversation with Dale recently where he expressed a desire to become a mentor of sorts. While I gathered that his vision is still formulating, Sticha is a man of strong emotions who really wants to make a difference in young people’s lives. He wants Sosonic to be a place where they can soak up a positive ethos in music that they can carry out into the world, a world Sticha sees as increasingly disassociated with things that really matter: relationships, integrity, family, respect and an honest effort to strive toward excellence.
Sosonic houses a retail store of modest size that offers a variety of everyday musician’s needs and sells instruments. With the Internet devastating music retail around the country, it’s nice to have an outlet in this area. You can find some of their offerings on Craigslist where they frequently advertise deals but overall the music store has not yet advertised on any scale.
Instruments of all sorts are also available for the recording and rehearsing aspects. In this way Sosonic offers the means and knowledge to take a curious seeker from instrument acquisition, through lesson-taking and on to recording and production, all while instilling a vibe that promotes a positive outlook and sensibility. You can even buy or lease the sound and lighting gear required to take a show on the road.
In addition to actively seeking music instructors, Sosonic is looking to fill other jobs such as sound and lighting technicians.
With years of world touring with someone of Elton John’s stature under his belt, Sticha has a wealth of experience and insight that he now seems willing to share. The number of people in Madison that have these stories and experiences never ceases to amaze and a mentoring opportunity like this, housed in a facility as complete as Sosound, is both noble and needed.