About Us




Robert Kagan, original owner and founder of Kagan & Gaines Music, established the store on Wabash Avenue in downtown Chicago in 1930. Kagan strived at being Chicago's purveyor of find stringed instruments, catering to students and renowned musicians alike. 

In 1941, Joseph V. Cali, a 16-year-old high school sophomore, got his first full-time job working at Kagan & Gaines. After many years of hard work, learning the trade and managing the store, Cali, along with business partner and symphony bassist Harold Carnes, purchased Kagan & Gaines Music Co. from Robert Kagan in 1962. In June of 1982, Kagan & Gaines Music made its new home in Forest Park, IL after Cali purchased the remaining stock from Carnes. The Cali family has since been the sole owners of Kagan & Gaines Music Co. Nevertheless, the reputation that Robert Kagan set long ago precipitates still as we continue to provide fine quality orchestra and band instruments to our patrons. In addition, we offer lessons, rentals, and repairs for a number of neighboring schools and churches. We even continue to provide services for customers out of state and abroad. Please stop into our store to view our instrument showrooms or inquire about other services that we offer.