Library - In Memoriam
Remembering oral history interviewees who have passed away.
Lynn Sheeley Jr.'s father opened a small piano store in east Tennessee in 1908. After serving in D-Day during World War II, Lynn returned home to work in the store, which he later took over. Along the way, the business grew to four locations, two of which are in Knoxville and tha
Peter Pulham had a distinct place in the history of the music products industry, in part because he helped preserve it!
Robert Averwater’s father, M. J. Averwater taught music, wrote a method book and opened up Amro Music in Memphis, TN, with a fellow music teacher. Robert recalled some of the challenges of the store in the early days after World War II.
Bob Scheiwiller taught music for three years before landing a job at a music store; the very first store he would later purchase. Bob bought and opened several music stores over the years beginning in the early 1970s, with a strong focus on band instruments.
James McDonald was known simply as Boom Boom to his NAMM family. Following in the footsteps of his father, Boom Boom’s career focused on the trade show industry and early on he became involved with the NAMM Show. Soon, he became a part of the organization’s annual events.
George Westjohn was hired by Lowell Samuel to oversee the expansion of Mr. Samuel’s interests in the wholesale music business. Mr.
Bob Rissi was the founder of Risson Amplifier Company, which produces Made-in-America products based on Bob’s own designs. He began designing amplifiers in 1960 when he was hired by Leo Fender himself. He later worked at Rickenbacker before forming his own company in 1971. In
John Gronemeyer enjoyed his career in the school band instrument segment of the industry, which included sales positions at CG Conn, King, UMI and Jupiter Band Instruments.
Ron Griggs dreamed of being a band teacher as a child.
Evelyn Brue-Roeder opened her music store in 1940! Her main focus in the early days was music lessons, however she soon added sheet music, accessories and musical instruments. She developed a passion for steel guitars as she witnessed their development over her career.