Home Organ Boom

Glenn Dodson played bass for a band he started with his schoolmates called Purple Haze. The band was high class, right down to their purple shirts! It was a fun experience that provided an entry into the music industry when Glenn took a “real job” at CBS Musical Instruments to supplement his...
Lee Donais may be the only industry member who played piano (as part of the Navy Band) for three United States Presidents: Johnson, Nixon and Ford.  After his career with the Navy Band, Lee was hired by Gordon Keller to help run His string of piano stores on the east coast.  Lee moved to Florida...
Ken Edgington has many friends in the music industry, several of whom suggested he be included in the NAMM Oral History program, but when approached Ken was rather humble about his role in the music business, “are you sure you have the right guy?” Ken worked for the Baldwin Piano Company in Ohio...
John Felice likes to say he was in the right place at the right time when he opened a Hammond Organ dealership in the 1960s. As the home organ market began to take off John had the staff and inventory in place to meet customer’s needs. His creative marketing led to many special promotions within...
Jim Foster had worked for a few piano stores before opening his own store, with his wife Marilyn, in Bettendorf, Iowa.  Foster Family Music focuses on piano and sheet music for pianos and has come to be known throughout the area as a center for musical events, recitals and a strong supporter of...
C. Darby Fulton’s father opened a music store, which seemed the perfect place for Darby growing up. He enjoyed the business and worked with his father as the company grew into 26 locations during the boom of the home organ craze in the 1960s. Having been a music retailer for years Darby became a...
Paul Graves began delivering pianos in 1957 up in Minnesota before moving to Alabama where he continued to deliver.  He soon discovered that he would make more money if he sold the pianos and the love of selling soon took hold.  In 1960, Paul opened his first piano store in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.  He...
Mike Greene is the president of Greene Music in San Diego, California, a store he started with his father in 1974.  Mike grew up in the business and recalls dressing up like a circus barker to help his dad sell chord organs at state fairs.  After the boom of the home organ, Mike focused on pianos...
Kevin Hague is the Managing Director and founder of Australasian Music Supplies. He started his wholesale business in 1978 and grew it to become one of the biggest in the country. Australasian Music Supplies, known as AMS, all started when Kevin began importing the Zachary Organ from New Zealand...
Charles Hale had an idea to hire a monkey to show how an easy-play organ could be operated by anyone. The hysterically funny ads were one of a million clever ideas Hale used in selling keyboard instruments. As the founder of Hale’s Piano and Organ Company in Florida, he established himself as a...

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