Library - In Memoriam

Remembering oral history interviewees who have passed away.

Karl Hirano was an electronic engineer for Yamaha in Japan during the great MIDI boom of the early 1980s.

Bob Hale had a long and successful career as an engineer and was able to devote his retirement time to his passion for music as a docent at the NAMM Foundation’s Museum of Making Music in Carlsbad, CA.

Jimmy Johnson was a co-founder of the Muscle Shoals Sound Studio in Alabama along with fellow studio musicians Roger Hawkins, Barry Beckett and David Hood.

Donnie Fritts was born in Florence, Alabama, the right place at the right time to grow up to become a studio musician and songwriter.  Just a little way down the road from where Donnie grew up was the epicenter of the Muscle Shoals Sound –and Donnie was there, front and center! 

Clora Bryant was billed as the female Louie Armstrong in the era of the Ed Sullivan variety show. Her raspy-voiced imitations were a big favorite among viewers but the gimmick often over- shadowed her incredible talents as a trumpeter.

Jack Martin was a leading piano sales rep for Wurlitzer from 1959 until 1963. Although he spent most of his career in the music industry it was those four years that Jack cherishes the most.

Larry Taylor joined the rock/blues band Canned Heat in 1967 just before the band’s string of hit recordings. The gig came after nearly 6 years as a recording artist playing both guitar and bass.

Aspen Pittman grew up in the 1960s as a student of the folk music movement. He studied the art form and performed on every type of string instrument there was to play.

Joe Cardinale played jazz bass in clubs and theaters all around New England. He created his own trio and studied at what would be Berklee College of Music. He joined the wholesaler Harris-Fandel in the pre-Beatles era and witnessed first hand the impact the British Invasion had on the industry. Along the way Joe remained passionate about music and music making. In 1986 he formed Joe Cardinal Sales and picked up lines such as G&L Guitars and Jupiter band instruments.

Harvey Vogel was having a difficult time finding and purchasing quality percussion instruments and accessories for his daughter Lauren while she was in high school.

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