Oral History -

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While there are many facets to the development and building of a guitar, acoustic guitars are able to take the raw wood and, via build and design, let the sound ring true.

One of the most archaic yet essential instruments in the music and percussion industry is the cymbal.  With its origins dating back as far as 3,000 B.C., the cymbal has been used in various settings including rituals, celebrations, worship, military purposes, and enjoyment.   After alchemist and cymbal maker Avedis Zildjian migrated from Istanbul, Turkey to the United States in the early 1900’s

jj Babbitt Co. Inc. was established in 1919 by Jesse James Babbitt and as of 2019, as the family owned and operated company embarks on their 100th year in business, they are preparing for the fourth generation to take over the business.

This vignette highlighting the Krell Piano Company is representative of the many “gems” of history from the Music Products Industry throughout the collections gathered in the NAMM Library and Resource Center.  Krell, like many other companies and families comprising the Music Products Industry, developed wonderful connections and experienced amazing growth during different periods of operation.

The piano sticker program was a NAMM program in the late 20's to the 30's and again briefly in the 1950's. The sticker program was an effort to authenticate dealers and pianos in a time when there was stenciling (counterfeit branding) of pianos and some disreputable dealers. Unfortunately, we do not have any records pertaining to those programs.

Long time music store owner and rights advocate, Fat Dog, was looking for a way to pay tribute to his all-time favorite blues musician, Howlin’ Wolf. Howlin’ Wolf was born Chester Arthur Burnett on June 10, 1910 in Clay County, Mississippi.

Having a very long history, the trumpet dates all the way back to at least 1500 BC.  Trumpets were used in the early days as a way to signal battle or hunting. Today they are used in several different genres, ranging from classical to popular music.

The harmonica is a free wind instrument used in several genres of music worldwide. The reeds are pre-tuned to individual pitches, which can be done by changing the length or stiffness of the reed.  Bending, tongue blocking, over bending, and lip pursing (among several others) are different techniques used for playing the harmonica.

William Gard (1915-1987) served as the NAMM Executive President for over 35 years, beginning right after World War II.  In fact it was Mr.

Women’s role in the music industry has progressively grown and developed over the years.  When the NAMM Oral History program began, many of the women interviewed kept the books of their retail store.  However, the role women have played in the industry grew to include more and more women in top managerial positions.  These are decision making roles, and roles that allow more involvem