John Radakovitz stands in front of a makeshift assembly line in the back warehouse of Dimple Records in Roseville in July. One by one, he picks up a record, places it gently in a sleeve, affixes an orange price sticker to the front and sets it aside.
Music has been at the core of John’s entire adult life. He’s made a career of trading tonal poetry captured on vinyl, then magnetic tape, then polycarbonate plastic disks — and somehow, in this era where millions of people lease music encoded as zeroes and ones, the company he cofounded more than four decades ago is still going strong. People still walk into his seven stores scattered throughout the Sacramento area, and they’re buying music, movies, video games and books, both new and used.
But John knows many people are walking into his stores for what could be their last time: In June, John and his wife, Dilyn Radakovitz, announced Dimple would close, and they immediately started liquidating the remaining inventory. He’s putting the records in plastic sleeves, placing stickers on each one of them, priced to move, because everything has to be gone in just a matter of weeks.
He pauses only when asked this question: What’s one thing he’ll miss about Dimple Records?
“I don’t think he was ready for that question,” his son Andrew Radakovitz says from a corner of the warehouse. John never answers the question: He falls silent, his hands start trembling, and, for a man who likes to crack wise at any opportunity, he is left speechless. Then he leaves the room.