Electric Organs

Thomas Austin was a key part of the Sherman Clay team for over 40 years!  The store chain focused on pianos; however, Thomas recalls the home organ boom in the 1970s as the company was a Hammond Organ dealer.  The company was formed in San Francisco in 1870 and grew to be the biggest (for a time)...
Dennis Awe is passionate about the organ! As a recording artist he has performed on many products, endorsing the Lowrey Organ for many decades. As a keen salesman, Dennis has written books on the process of marketing and selling to encourage others. As a music maker, Dennis has brought the sounds...
Rosemary Bailey was ten years old when she was hired by Hammond as a concert artist. Over the years, she took part in the growth of the organ market in the 1970s and had first-hand experiences bringing music to millions. Her interview was filled with remarkable stories of being in the industry...
Kyle Barker began working in the piano retail industry in 1969 when the Sherman & Clay Piano Company in Northern California hired him. Five years later he established Barker Music in Modesto, where he would later expand the line to include guitars and percussion. Kyle also opened a second store...
Mike Bates is the senior member of the Institutional Solutions Group in the Keyboard Division of Yamaha Corporation of America. Over the last 28 years with the company, Mike’s career has included nine years as the general manager of the Music Education Division. In his long career with Yamaha, he...
Marty Baxter entertained the troops during World War II as a member of a singing quartet.  While with bands, such as Frankie Master’s Orchestra, she not only sang but arranged the four part harmonies. When she met and fell in love with the band’s piano player, Eddie Baxter, her life in music would...
Carma Lou Beck was an active musician and teacher when she began working in music retail in Iowa in the 1960s. She opened her own store in Cedar Rapids in 1967, after working for a few other stores, including one owned and operated by the Wurlitzer Company.  By the time Carma Lou's House of Music...
Keith Beckingham recalls watching his father, a church organist, playing the piano at home and then sitting down and copying the music he heard. He grew up fascinated by the piano and organ and played throughout his school years. A job at Boosey and Hawkes, London as a Hammond Organ demonstrator...
Lyle Bird grew up in a musical family with his mother playing the piano daily. As a teenager he played trumpet in several swing bands during the big band era including with such leaders as Henry Busse. He played in a band during his navy service during World War II and again played in several small...

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