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Music Makers

Meg McGuire | April 26, 2017 | Feature Features

Josh Turney and Victoria Vulaj turn their dreams into reality by opening Deja Vu Audio West.

“I’ve been interested in audio equipment and, to an even bigger extent, music since I was 12 years old,” explains Josh Turney, who recently opened Deja Vu Audio West, a high-end audio equipment retailer, with his fiancee, Victoria Vulaj. “I was obsessed with jazz music, and I went out and found every Miles Davis, Duke Ellington and John Coltrane album I could—I took the ball, ran with it and gained a deep musical knowledge early on.” He adds: “And then I got into high-end audio, which is a small subset of the consumer electronics industry but makes hundreds of millions of dollars each year—[the equipment is for] people who are passionate about the sound quality of the music that they listen to. This hobby paralleled my obsession with music and collecting records. [While] some kids dreamed about having a Lamborghini or Ferrari one day, I would see tune amplifiers [in my future].”

Much of Turney’s extensive expertise in this niche can also be accredited to his mentor, Vu Hoang, whom Turney met when he was 15 while looking for a particular piece of equipment that Hoang carried at his store in McLean, Va. Their relationship flourished over the years, and today, Deja Vu Audio West handles coveted brands like Audio Note, Harbeth and Western Electric thanks to Hoang’s willingness to share his audio manufacturing contacts with Turney and Vulaj. “The equipment we sell is far from mainstream, even within the very small world of high-end audio,” says Turney. “What we carry is [on] another level—we sell a certain type of sound for a loyal client base.”

When it comes to the day-to-day operations, Turney can be found educating and conversing with customers, while Vulaj is more behind the scenes, handling the store’s finances and daily paperwork. “I do the nitty-gritty stuff and he’s face to face with our clients,” explains Vulaj, who moved with Turney from NYC to California to pursue their shared ambitions. “Music has always been a huge part of my life, but Josh is an audiophile—he is so versed in everything audio and it’s completely his passion. I am helping him live out the dream he’s always wanted,” she says. Turney continues: “I want Deja Vu Audio West to be known as the finest, high-end audio boutique in all of California. But most importantly, music is a human activity—it’s about people coming together and making something that sounds good. This is my way of contributing to music—it’s not necessarily [only] about the gear, it’s about making a musical experience.”


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