Oral History -

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Chris Wellons was playing percussion in grade school, and about the same time, he took an interest in wood working. He was hired as a cabinet builder while still in school and continued in the field until he was made aware of a job at Taylor Guitars in 1992.

Johnny “Vatos” Hernandez is the long-time drummer for the rock band Oingo Boingo, playing on all of the band’s big hit songs including “Deadman’s Party” and “Just Another Day.” He played jazz drums for several years before the band was formed. Johnny has been involved with the NAMM community for decades and has been close with DW Drums and Sabian Cymbals.

Craig Doerge played keyboards in the famous group of Los Angeles based studio musicians known as The Section. The Section, which also included Leland Sklar, Russ Kunkel and Danny Kortchmar, recorded a string of hit records with artists such as James Taylor, David Crosby, Jackson Browne and Linda Ronstadt, as well as for television shows and movie soundtracks.

Chuck Davies is the founder of American DJ, which provides a long list of innovative products, many of which Chuck designed and engineered. He opened his own audio store in 1979 selling Hi-Fi equipment, which has since branched out to include six locations in Southern California.

John Avila was greatly influenced by the Ampex recorder his father owned and let John use. He recorded his friends and later his own bands on the two reels he had access to.

C.J. Chenier is the son of Clifton Chenier, known as The King of Zydeco. C.J. was always encouraged to play music and fondly remembers his father purchasing a guitar for him at a very young age. While in school, C.J. began playing the saxophone, which is the instrument he played on stage with his father when the two toured together for nine years.

Frank Murphy opened Frailers Guitar & Banjo Shop, which is situated in Runcorn, Cheshire on the banks of the River Mersey - just southeast of Liverpool England. The store was established as a retail outlet of quality new and used vintage stringed instruments from Dobros to Martin guitars.

Keith Mulholland is a rock bass player from Liverpool, England who played with the signed band, Nutz. He also played the Reading Festival twice as well as toured with Queen and Status Quo during the 1970s. Keith also played in a band with Ian Gillan of Deep Purple.

Melvin Dunlap played bass on several classic soul and R&B recordings beginning in the early 1970s. When he was a kid, he was sick and stuck in bed for an extended period of time and started playing an old Fender bass his parents purchased from a pawnshop in his hometown of Cleveland, Ohio.

Alan Peters is a trumpeter and guitarist who was brought up on blues and R&B and formed the group Almost Blues in the 1960s. Alan backed many artists in the famous club, the Cavern, including Junior Walker, Lee Dorsey and Stevie Wonder. While playing on a session with Frank Zappa and the Mothers, he was asked to join the group.

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