Oral History -

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John Tumpak is the author and music historian who has focused most of his writings on the golden age of swing during the Big Band Era of the 1930-40s.  As a result, John has interviewed and written about many of the big names during that time as well as documenting some of the lesser known musicians, arrangers, singers and leaders.  In 2008, Marquette University Press published

Bert Turetzky likes telling stories in his playing. He likes to make his listeners think about new ideas and in doing so he often creates a way for people to feel something they may not have felt without his music. When Burt plays his bass your soul needs to listen. As a teacher and educator, Burt has few equals.

Chuck Turk has been active in the music industry in both manufacturing and in retailing. In fact his experiences have included working with small independent retailers as well as large chain stores. Chuck worked for several suppliers such as Gibson and First Act before joining the team at Armadillo in Tampa where he currently focuses on DDrums.

Archie “Hubby” Turner served in the US Army during the Vietnam War and always felt the experience taught him, among other things, to appreciate the opportunity you have to add beauty and music to the world.  Archie has done just that as a session player in Memphis, including at Hi Records.  His impressive career as a pianist, keyboardist and composer has included working with A

Rick Turner is well known for his innovative handcrafted guitars and for pioneering the resurgence of American luthiers in the 1960s and 70s. With an ear for quality sound and an eye for design, Rick created a new approach to the art of guitar making and in so doing promoted the fine art talents of in-lay design, and acoustic electronics among many facets of instrument building.

Rob Turner’s first instrument was the drums; in fact it was the drums that brought him to establish one of the world’s best-known guitar pickup companies! While on tour in the early 1970s his drum kit was stolen, forcing him to rent a kit for the remaining tour. The experience caused him to rethink his goals and he went back to school to learn all he could about business.

Benny Turner grew up in a music family and after his brother, Freddie King, took him to a session with Howlin’ Wolf and Willie Dixon, he was hooked. While Benny played guitar with the Kindly Shepherds in the 1950s, he also spent time playing bass with Freddie and touring with R&B singer Dee Clark.

Ike Turner was well known for his role in the life of Tina Turner and as the guitarist and arranger of her early career. However, during our interview with him, Ike took the time to discuss the early part of his own music career beginning with the first rock and roll song “Rocket 88” for which Ike played the great piano boogie-jump style that defined the early days of rock.

Russ Turner opened his own organ repair company in the early 1960s in the early days of the home organ boom. He worked with all of the organ dealers in and around the San Francisco Bay Area for nearly four decades. During this time he also repaired other electronic products with a focus on radios, which he has collected for over 65 years.

Ron Tutt is best known for playing drums behind Elvis Presley during most of the king’s tours during the 1970s. Ron grew up with a deep passion for music and the drums, which led him to audition for Elvis as he was putting a band together for his Las Vegas comeback.