Baldwin Piano Company

Joe Phelps started playing drums in the 7th grade. While in college, as a marketing major, he opened an off campus concert hall, played in bands, and ran a recording studio for the music retailer, Ben Jack, in Arkansas. In 1975, he moved to Los Angeles and formed a small ad agency, which has become...
Allen Riley served as the district sales manager for the Baldwin Piano Company.  Allen learned guitar as a child and continues to play music.  He became a Minister for several years before he found an opportunity to work for Mississippi Music as a piano and organ salesman in 1981.  He worked in one...
Vic Russelavage was hired by Chuck Levin as a repairman while Vic was playing his trumpet professionally. Chuck became a mentor and encouraged Vic to focus on the details and to take as much time with each customer as needed. As a result, Vic was inspired to open his own repair shop, which became a...
Brian Schmidt opened up a small piano and organ retail store in Calgary, Canada, in 1973 with a strong focus on the Baldwin Products.  He was just 21 years old at the time and benefited greatly from a number of mentors who helped him, several of whom were Baldwin employees.  After Baldwin was sold...
Joe Seawright was a piano designer and engineer for the Baldwin Piano factory in Greenwood, Mississippi, beginning in the early 1970s. Joe created several improvements to the workflow of the operations as well as designing new features to the piano line of products. When the Greenwood factory was...
Doug Segars was the controller for the Baldwin Piano factory in Greenwood, Mississippi, beginning in the early 1970s. Over his 25 years with the company, Doug oversaw the time studies in many of the company’s factories beginning with the operations in Greenwood. Doug studied the cost of the...
Frank Seta began his career in the music industry working for Baldwin Pianos before working for Gibson and then establishing his own retail store. Frank has built lasting friendships within the music industry due to his passion and drive; as a result, he was one of the most suggested people to be...
Ron Sfarzo may be the only interviewee within the NAMM Oral History collection who served as a police officer in California!  Ron has been involved with music his entire life, with both his father and brother involved with music retail.  While working in his brother’s San Francisco store, Ron was...
John Simpkinson had a strong background in advertising when he was hired by the Baldwin Piano Company in Cincinnati, Ohio.  Bob Cosgrove and James Mixter hired John for company and product branding.  John worked closely with the dealers and district managers to communicate promotional ideas and...
Al Slivinski was in the third grade when a salesman visited his school with the pitch “you too can be an accordion player!” Al developed great techniques on the accordion that served him well when he began playing the organ in high school, which he continued throughout college. He sold pianos and...

Pages