Library - In Memoriam
Remembering oral history interviewees who have passed away.
Philip Dodds seemed to always be drawn to electric musical instruments as a teen, so it was no shock that he made a major contribution to the field of keyboard and synthesizer development over his long and successful career.
Mr. Menchey founded the Menchey Music Service in 1936 out of his mother’s sewing room in Hanover. By the time he retired in 1982, Menchey’s Music grew into the premier full-service school music and piano dealer serving Central Pennsylvania and Northern Maryland.
Specs Powell played jazz drums during the hey-day of 52nd Street in New York City. He worked hard -- sometimes four gigs a night -- playing behind such legends as Billie Holiday, John Kirby and Red Norvo.
Jerry Hershman was a regular fixture at the NAMM Show. In fact, in 50 years, he never missed a convention. During one of his last shows before his retirement, Jerry was interviewed for the NAMM Oral History program. His father formed a New York wholesale company called Hershman Musical Instrument Company and the day after college graduation Jerry joined his father in the business and never left. Jerry was also the founder and president of J&D Music Services, and was very active in the trade associations and conventions.
Richard Bennett served many roles during his long career in music, perhaps most notably as the sales rep for Wurlitzer towards the end of the 1960s.
Sandy Feldstein played an important role in the publishing of music and method books on percussion.
Robert McDowell was president of the NAMM Board of Directors from 1969-1971. During that time he assisted William Gard in the expansion of the NAMM organization, including more hands on involvement with AMC and its publication Music USA. As a retailer in St.
Kay McDowell now (and may always) holds the record for the most NAMM shows attended --83 in a row! As a very young girl, she accompanied her father, the owner of Ludwig Aeolian of St. Louis, Missouri, to the show.
Boots Randolph was the capable saxophonist who proved the instrument could serve a vital role in both rock and roll and country music. His sax can be heard on a range of recordings in which he was both leader and sideman. His “Yakey Sax” hit brought a renewed energy and interest to the saxophone in popular music.
Edna Mae Burnam authored the now classic piano training books “A Dozen a Day” to help beginners learn in a fun and meaningful way. Her books have been critical to millions of young pianists around the world for over 60 years.