The Drum Pad to Close

After 30 years of serving local drummers, The Drum Pad in Palatine, Illinois, will close its doors at the end of October.

The store, which sells drums and other percussion instruments and provides lessons, has been the epicenter of celebrity drummers, including Sheila E. from Santana, Anton Fig of The Late Show with David Letterman, Steve Gadd with the Paul Simon band, Steve Smith of Journey and others holding workshops and sometimes performing.

Owner Jim Streich plans to retire and has been running a clearance sale since August. "A lot of the older students and their families have been returning and saying they bought their gear here," said Streich told the Daily Herald. "It has been wonderful helping drummers solve their performance problems or get their right gear here."

A native of Maywood, Illinois, Streich earned a bachelor's degree in music at the University of Iowa and worked at a local music store for about 11 years. He had hoped to one day buy that store, but it didn't work out. So, he decided to open his own.

He cashed in a $2,000 life insurance policy and rented a room at a house used by other businesses just a few blocks from downtown Palatine.

Eventually, he rented more space there as his business grew. He then sold his condo in Schaumburg to finance buying more merchandise and eventually moved the store to its current location.

"It was more visibility," he said about the move to downtown, "and I had built up enough credibility to help the business grow more."

About a year ago, Streich started to plan for his retirement, including the closure of the store. While he said he would consider selling the business, he's moving ahead with liquidating his merchandise.

After the store closes, he plans to live at another home he and his wife, Lynda, own in Galena. He hopes to work for a Galena-area vineyard and its store because of his interest in the wine industry.