Oral History -

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Luis de Pablo is a Spanish classical composer who provided works for symphonies, chamber orchestras, operas, choir and film over his long and successful career. He was born in Bilbao, Spain and by age twelve was composing his own pieces. Among his influential teachers was the German composer Max Deutsch, who was like a second father to Luís.

Gabriel Lara was asked to create a series of music books with the Hal Leonard company for the Spain market beginning in 1972. Along with his business partner, Antoni Punti, Gabriel worked with Keith Mardak to form Hal Leonard Spain. During a trip to Milwaukee, Gabriel sat in Keith’s office and they selected songs they felt would be successful in Spain.

José Vinhas is the founder of Música.com, a retail store in the heart of Coimbra, Portugal. Coimbra is the third largest city in Portugal and most known for its university for which the store is located nearby. José began working for the music store Teclado where he not only learned the business but realized he had a true passion for the music industry.

Consuelo Diez was strongly encouraged by her piano teachers growing up. One in particular suggested she focus on composition, which altered her career. As a composer, Consuelo wrote works for piano and full orchestras as well as electronic musical instruments.

José Nogueira was eight years old when his parents started a music business in Porto, Portugal. He took accordion lessons as a child as well as guitar and piano. In 1974, a group of friends formed a rock band combining elements of R&B and jazz, but they already had a piano player so one of José’s band-mates asked if he would play the saxophone instead.

Agostinho Rodrigues, known by his nickname Tico, is the owner of Porto Guitarra which is located in the center of Porto, Portugal. Even though his education focused on being a mechanical engineer, he grew up playing and admiring the guitar. In fact, he was given his first guitar from an uncle when he was just a baby.

Takashi Yamazaki developed a passion for music at an early age. He played guitar and piano and was encouraged by music teachers, which became an inspiration for him in starting his chain of 50 music schools in Japan. In addition, Yamazaki-San opened a music retail store, which grew into five locations.

DJ Ralph M still remembers a Halloween party he attended in 1982, where he was first introduced to hip-hop and break dancing. He was fascinated by the turntable and his dream was to become a Mixmaster on KDAY, a famous Los Angeles radio station. When he was thirteen, he received that opportunity which was an inspirational and educational moment for him.

DJ Babu enjoys his journey teaching the artform of turntablism, a term he is credited for coining.

This video is of our annual NAMM Tribute, created in honor of our members and music industry friends who passed away in 2003. All moving images within this video indicate those who have been interviewed as part of the NAMM Oral History program. Larger segments of their interviews are posted here on the NAMM website (use the "search this site" white box type their name).