Oral History -
Frank Fendorf served as a school band director for many years beginning with the high school band in Warrensburg, MO in 1947. He enjoyed the role of band director and in fact was doing just that when his friend Merle Jones called. Mr.
Norman Erickson was hired by the Lowrey Company in 1947. At that time, the company was still producing cement powder mixture. However, Lowrey’s owner had an interest in the electronic organ that was being developed by Laurinz Hammond, so he sought Norm as an engineer.
Luella Derwin was one of the first women owners of a music store in America. In 1937, when her bandleader husband Hal Derwin went on the road, Luella was left behind, “So one day I was thinking of all the fun we had with musicians who would come to town and look for a local place to have their instrument repaired or went seeking strings or valve oil. I thought why don’t I op
Thomas Burzycki served as President of Selmer Band Instruments while at the same time being on the NAMM Board as one of the first four commercial members to do so. He followed that term as President of the American Music Conference during the important transition and growth of the organization during the 1990s. His long career in the industry was followed by a part time teach
Ray Anthony has only endorsed two products during his long and successful career-- only two because he doesn't give use of his name lightly. As a teenager he played trumpet for the famed Glenn Miller Orchestra during the swing era.
John Aldridge has become one of the leading experts on the history of drums, percussion companies, and their products. As a publisher and editor, John established the magazine “Not So Modern Drummer” and dedicated its pages to the vintage drum, the history of which otherwise might have been lost. John has been instrumental in preserving important percussive collections and documentation to ensure the material could be accessed by those interested. John’s NAMM Oral History interview was
Joy Akerman was one of the first volunteers in the NAMM Foundation’s Museum of Making Music docent programs back in 1999. Over the years, she became active in many elements of the museum, including the store and the monthly volunteer training classes. Her love of people and music made her role at the museum a perfect fit. More recently, Joy was hired as the receptionist who
Kenny Burrell is among the most beloved guitarists of post-war jazz. Kenny’s influential recordings and strong interest in musical education has helped establish his name among students and educators alike. His expertise on all things Ellington has parlayed into a popular course at UCLA begun in the late 1970s on the life of Duke Ellington.
Eleanor Anderson helped establish Woodbury Music Company with her late husband, Leroy Anderson. The company is managed by their three children (Kurt, Rolf and Jane) with a third generation very active in music as well. As composer and arranger, Leroy Anderson published popular classical music that helped create a whole new musical genre during the late 1940s and 1950s. The
Takehiko Akaboshi, the legendary Japanese music therapist and founder of the world renowned Japan Music Volunteer Association, began his career as a popular singer who recorded traditional and new folk songs as early as the 1950s. While singing around the country he began seeing the benefits of music on the ill and in 1972 created “ryouiku ongaku” or therapeutic music programs that hav