Library - In Memoriam

Remembering oral history interviewees who have passed away.

Kern Kennedy tickled the ivories on a number of early rock and roll and rockabilly recordings back in the 1950s. It was the heyday for Sun Studios in Memphis right after the success of Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis.

Artur Teller created a successful career by producing highly regarded violin bridges and supplying them to luthiers in and around his hometown of Bubenreuth, Germany. Like many of the instrument builders he sold to, Artur and his family moved to Bubenreuth after World War II as the small town sought to bring luthiers to the area in order to help redevelop the town following the war. Artur expanded his business over time by selling his products outside of the area and soon around the world.

Scott Rodgers was offered a whopping $5.00 an hour from his friend’s dad to help with the staging at a Deep Purple concert in 1973. It was the start of his career in the music industry and the beginning of a passion to provide the best staging and rigging services possible.

Ace Cannon grew up in Mississippi singing with his father on street corners and in church, and he knew even as a small child that he wanted to have a life in music.  When he was ten years old his father drove him to Amro Music in Memphis and let him pick out an alto saxophone by

Carl Janelli played several instruments but was most fond of the saxophone. He began his career during the big band era and performed with Jimmy and Tommy Dorsey before embarking on a wonderful career in the Broadway show orchestras.

 Shep Shepherd co-wrote the now classic instrumental “Honky Tonk Part 2” while playing in the Bill Doggett band.  The recording became a hit in the late 1950s and helped build a stronger audience for rock instrumentals, which remained popular throughout the mid 1960s.  Shep began

Roy Clark, the Country Music Hall of Fame guitar player, was always proud of his connection with the music products industry. In addition to the products he endorsed over his long career, Roy helped design his signature model for Heritage Guitars.

Kurt Kaiser worked for Word Music beginning in 1959.  Not only did he witness many of the changes to church music, many credit him for creating what is now known as contemporary Christian music.  As an arranger and songwriter, Kurt worked with several leading church music artists

Jack Shallat was a professional violin player who landed several gigs with traveling bands in the 1930s and 40s.  During that time he met Buddy Rogers and both men opened separate music stores in and around Cincinnati in the early 1950s.  In 1967 they decided to merge their busin

Mitsuo Kasahara served as the first president of Yamaha Corporation of America after setting up the branch office in Southern California in 1961.  Three years earlier he established the first Yamaha office in Mexico as well!

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