Folk Music

Hiroaki Oh-oka sat on a thin mat in front of a leg-less table in his traditional Japanese home where he outlined the history of the bamboo flutes his five- man company produces. The company, which his father started as a street vendor in Tokyo, holds a patent for the colorful plastic ends on the...
Milt Okun was the founder of Cherry Lane Music Publishing. His career in music, outside of his own playing, began as a record producer. He had success during the folk movement of the 1950s and 60s with performers such as Peter, Paul and Mary. While he continued to produce, he established Cherry...
Tom Paxton spoke eloquently about the role folk music played during critical events in American history, such as the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s for which he was involved with. Tom marched, wrote songs, and played the songs of others, such as Pete Seeger, in order to bring about...
Norbert Putnam is a studio musician’s studio musician.  With a career that includes playing on most of the early Muscle Shoals recordings as well as hundreds of tracks with Elvis Presley, Norbert also played with and produced such artists as Jimmy Buffett, Dan Fogelberg and Joan Baez.  At the heart...
Mary Faith Rhoads Lewis grew up on a farm outside of Allentown, Pennsylvania, where her mother played the piano and encouraged her children to play an instrument.  Mary Faith began playing the violin at the age of eight and soon discovered she had a love of folk music.  She built her own Mountain...
Bob Riskin started working for McCabe’s Guitar Shop in Santa Monica just a few years after it opened in 1958.  Before long the shop was abuzz with the folk music boom and later played an equally important role in the folk-rock craze that expanded the shop to include electric guitars for the first...
Pete Seeger was the American folk icon who made it a personal goal to bring peace to the world by getting people to sing!  His role in the folk music movement, beginning in the 1930's, forever changed the role music played in protest, celebration and sorrow.  Within the music products industry,...
Bob Shane is among the most influential performers of the folk music boom of the late 1950s and 60s.  As an original member of the Kingston Trio, Bob was at the cornerstone of the American folk explosion that helped define a generation and inspired millions to make music by picking up a guitar or...
Marc Silber has had a series of music stores during his long and colorful career including Fretted Instruments, located in Greenwich Village, New York and Marc Silber’s Music in Berkeley, California. While he owned Fretted Instruments in the early 1960s, Marc sold a guitar to Bob Dylan, who hung...
Bob Smakula built his first dulcimer when he was 14 years old.  Having grown up all around the roots music of West Virginia, Bob loved all aspects of musical instruments.  Along with playing and building, he developed great skills at repairing all stringed instruments and took great joy in playing...

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