Oral History -

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DJ Grandmaster Flash combined his love of music with his passion for electronics to become one of the pioneers of Hip Hop music. His innovative style of mixing records and blending beats provided the foundation for a generation of DJs and MCs, as well as set the stage of EDM and other forms of music.

Phil Ealy is an award-winning lighting designer who established West Coast Concert Lighting in the late 70’s. Having produced and designed the lighting for several large rock tours, Phil became known for his attention to details with a focus on smooth and eloquent color transitions.

Terry Oliver grew up in Southern California and remembers the day his father took him for guitar lessons at RC Allen’s guitar shop in 1964. The famous luthier had dozens of projects in the works including building a hollow body guitar and a banjo. In 1967, Terry’s father requested that Mr. Allen build a guitar for his son, which Terry plays to this today.

Ken King performed in several Country and Western bands in and around Los Angeles beginning in the 1940s. While playing his guitar as a guest on the Spade Cooley television show in late 1949, two fellow musicians in the band (Jimmy Wible and Cameron Hill) showed Ken the new solid body Fender guitar.

Tim O’Brien joined the Taylor Guitar team in the marketing department back in 2013. At the time, the digital world was changing with the rise of smart phones and social media. Tim assembled a team that took a fresh approach to marketing and helped the company make great use of their own unique and compelling story.

Mike “Monte” Montefusco played both trumpet and piano as a kid before playing bass guitar professionally for several years. Like many touring musicians, Monte worked in several local music stores while off the road, which ignited his passion for the music products industry.

James Harman is a Blues harmonica player who shared the staged with some of the biggest names in music history. James was just a young man performing at clubs and bars in the 1960s and 70s when many of the old time Blues musicians were still performing.

Cesar Rosas was born in Hermosillo, Mexico, in the state of Sonora, and was greatly influenced by the music he heard as a child growing up. He was exposed to traditional Mexican music and instruments, and continued to play the music of his heritage even after moving to East Los Angeles as a teenager.

This audio only interview was conducted for a radio program by Dan Del Fiorentino and donated to the NAMM Oral History program: Jac Winroth was born with a handicap that his mother insisted would never limit her son. She often played the piano for young Jac, which served as a great inspiration for him.

Matt Guzzetta loves to design things. He designed a motorcycle that won a place in the Guinness Book of World Records for a coast to coast ride on only one tank of gas. As it turned out, one of his car shops was next door to the American Dream guitar shop where Bob Taylor and Greg Deering (among others) were building musical instruments.