Oral History -

Download Complete Oral History List

Marvin Snyder became president of Rico Reeds in 1976, after managing the cane plantations, which were used to make the reeds. His father worked with the Lockie family, who owned a chain of music stores in Southern California and brought the Rico Reed products to the United States.

This is the full length NAMM Oral History interview with Marvin Snyder, which was captured on September 11, 2007. For his biography and web clip, please follow the link: https://www.namm.org/library/oral-history/marvin-snyder

Greg Snyder has been the Director of Bands at Lakota West High School in West Chester, Ohio for 25 years. He talks here about some challenges that come with leading a music program and how to overcome them.

Steve Soest played in several local rock bands and studied hard on the makes of electric guitars and amps, an expertise that came in handy around 1972 when he began repairing musical instruments. His shop was opened in 1974 and since that time Steve has become one of the leading experts on guitar models, production, promotion and marketing.

Jose Manuel Solis knows manufacturing!  As plant manager for Remo Inc., Manuel seeks to continuously improve production processes.  His manufacturing knowledge spans several decades and has drawn the admiration of the industry for his ability to manage a plant that is able to adapt and respond to product changes and consumer demands with a speed and efficiency that is rarely ma

Ewald Sommer’s grandfather, Ignatz Sommer, started building machine heads for stringed instruments in 1911. Early on, he supplied Höfner with his products for basses, guitars, mandolins, and zithers. Once the company resettled in Bubenreuth after World War II, Höfner’s successful Beatles bass became a success story for the Sommer company, who supplied the tuners for the bass.

Ervin Somogyi began his career as a instrument repairman, which is how he learned the important elements of a guitar. He studied what went wrong with guitars, their weaknesses, and what he could do in designing and building his own guitars that would make them unique and stronger. He developed his own style and went on to teach his craft.

Ed Soph toured as the drummer and percussionist for several noted jazz bands during the 1970s. His noted work with the Woody Herman Orchestra led to gigs with the Glenn Miller Ghost Band and countless recording engagements. Ed has taught clinics throughout the world and has been a long supporter of the Percussive Arts Society International Convention (PASIC).

Ralph Sordyl believes in music! Having started a music repair business in his living room while teaching music, Ralph grew the company, Sordyl’s House of Music, to one of the best known in the country. It is remarkable that Ralph had the time considering he has nine children. Upon asking Mr. Sordyl if he knew all of the names of his children, Mr.

Bob Sowell had a long run as a Baldwin employee, beginning in 1969 in the Greenwood, Mississippi, factory and running until 2010 in Trumann, Arkansas, when the Gibson Guitar Company owned the company. Bob specialized in safety and helped create many of the Baldwin plants operational manuals as they pertained to federal rules for waste and safety.