‘You can get a lot for very little at our shop’: Skeleton Dust Records moving in September

Credit: Natalie Jones

Credit: Natalie Jones

Skeleton Dust Records is planning to move from Dayton’s Fire Blocks District to the Huffman Historic Area on East Fifth Street in September.

“I love that location and part of me will miss being there, but I’m excited for what’s to come,” said Owner Luke Tandy said. “This part of town, there’s stuff happening and I want to be a part of it.”

After being located on East Third Street for nearly seven years, Tandy said he is ready for a change. The move is largely motivated by the opportunity to be located next to Pink Moon Goods, which is owned by his wife of six years, Kathleen Hotmer.

Credit: Natalie Jones

Credit: Natalie Jones

What to expect with the move

Tandy is expecting to have a “seamless as possible transition.” He’s planning to close the record store in mid-August.

With the move to the Huffman District, the record store will be a little bit bigger. Tandy said customers can expect an expanded selection of music, as well as a new selection of books and movies.

Meet the owner

Originally from Fairland, Indiana, Tandy moved to Dayton in 2007 after graduating from Ball State University with a degree in telecommunications with an emphasis on audio production. He chose Dayton as his home because he had a few friends that were living here and they needed a roommate.

“Thankfully I ended up here and that kind of set me on the course for where I am now,” Tandy said.

Music is something he has always had a love for. Growing up in a rural, small town, he tried to expose himself to as much music as possible.

“I wanted to experience the world outside of mine through music in a way,” Tandy said. “To me, something like dance music and house and techno was so far away.”

He grew up on CDs and tapes, but started listing to records in high school when he was gifted a set of turntables.

“When I was in college, I started exploring more and more music, going to record shops all the time,” Tandy said. “I remember I was in a small business class I think and we had to come up with a small business for a project and mine was a record store.”

At the time he didn’t take it seriously, but it did plant a seed for what the future could hold.

Before he opened Skeleton Dust Records in 2017, he was working as an office manager at Catapult Creative — an ad agency in downtown Dayton.

“That was when I really started thinking about opening a store,” Tandy said. “A lot of that was because I was the office manager there and it really kind of taught me a lot of important things about running a business and gave me the confidence to believe that I could actually pull it off myself.”

Skeleton Dust Records has variety

Skeleton Dust Records is known for offering a wide variety of music at affordable prices. From noise and experimental music to classic rock, all generations can find something special in the store.

“You can get a lot for very little at our shop,” Tandy said.

Customers can buy records, CDs or tapes. Records are “incredibly popular right now, probably the most popular they’ve been in the last 20 years easily,” Tandy said.

An average new record costs around $30. Skeleton Dust Records has bins of records starting at $3 and some for only $1.

Tandy said there has been a growing push for records since 2010, but during the pandemic there was a huge spike. He attributes this to people having the extra time at home to listen to records and wanting some sort of physical connection to the world.

With the popularity of records and the increase in record prices, Tandy said he’s also seeing more customers buy CDs.


Skeleton Dust Records, located at 133 E. Third St., is open noon to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. The record store’s new location will be at 2101 E. Fifth St. With the transition, Tandy plans to have a collaborative event with Pink Moon Goods to celebrate his opening and his wife’s second year of owning a brick-and-mortar retail shop.

For more information and updates, visit skeletondustrecords.com or the record store’s Facebook (@SkeletonDustRecords) or Instagram (@skeleton_dust_records) pages.

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