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The Music History Project

Author: NAMM Resource Center

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NAMM’s resident Music Historian Dan Del Fiorentino and co-hosts examine the innovative creations, evolution of musical instruments, the changing world of music retail, music industry icons, and other topics covered in NAMM’s Oral History program. The NAMM Oral History program boasts over 4,500 interviews and is continually growing. For more information about NAMM’s Oral History program please visit
139 Episodes
This episode of The Music History Project highlights the important philanthropic work of the Otis Redding Foundation — launched in 2007 by Otis’ wife, Zelma, to honor his memory. Otis’ grandson Justin Andrews, director of special projects and outreach, and his daughter Karla Redding-Andrews, vice president and executive director, describe the foundation’s music and arts education programs, which are designed to empower, enrich and motivate young people through music, writing and instrumentation. As a special treat for all Otis Redding fans, Justin and Karla gracefully share their insights about Otis Redding as a father, his music and his support for education.
Ep - 138 Yes

Ep - 138 Yes


Joining the Music History Project podcast team for a special episode dedicated to the band Yes with our guest longtime musician, arranger and our friend Mr. Bill Kilpatrick! Together we will explore the incredible talents of those in the band we have interviewed over the years including Jon Anderson, Bill Bruford, Rick Wakeman and Trevor Rabin!
EP - 137 Sylvia Massy

EP - 137 Sylvia Massy


Back by popular demand! While listening to our favorite music, we often overlook the unseen force, creativity and vast knowledge of the recording engineer. We repost this exciting episode of the Music History Project (with a special guest) as we discover the background and techniques of a true pioneer, Sylvia Massy!
The final podcast in our series dedicated to the 50th anniversary of Hip Hop provides the views of leading DJs and how equipment advanced as well as the growth of the mobile DJ and DJ battling. Check out this episode with DJ Qbert, Dave Lopez, DJ Imperial JayCee (may he rest in peace), DJ Aladdin and DJ Sir Jinx. Join us and our very special guest musician, curator of culture, and frontman of the Lyrical Groove, Kendrick Dial.
For this third episode of the hip-hop series, the focus shifts to the West Coast with interview segments from Chris The Glove, DJ Tony G, Chopmaster J and Arabian Prince. Join us and our very special guest musician, curator of culture, and frontman of the Lyrical Groove, Kendrick Dial.
The second installment of the hip-hop series focuses on several more East Coast DJs from the early days of hip-hop. This program includes segments from our interviews with DJ Jazzy Joyce, Johnny Juice, DJ Cash Money and hip-hop advocate and historian Christie Z. Join us and our very special guest musician, curator of culture, and frontman of the Lyrical Groove, Kendrick Dial.
This podcast begins with an introduction to hip-hop by the one and only DJ Grand Master Caz, followed by three interviewees speaking about the founder of hip-hop, DJ Kool Herc! These remarks are provided by Caz, Christie Z, and Kool DJ Red Alert. You will also hear from other pioneering DJs from New York including GrandMaster Flash and Grand Wizzard Theodore. Join us and our very special guest musician, curator of culture, and frontman of The Lyrical Groove, Kendrick Dial.
The Audio Engineering Society (AES) was formed in New York in 1948 and is celebrating its 75th anniversary! Join us as we learn about this important organization through the words of Past President Frank Wells. Frank served as a radio and audio technician during his long career and became a Life Fellow of the society, an honor given for his decades of service to the audio community.
EP. 131 - Bob Dylan

EP. 131 - Bob Dylan


To celebrate the artistry of Bob Dylan, the Music History Project team brought our special guest, NAMM’s own Zach (Dylan’s No. 1 fan) Phillips, to the table. Zach provided his views on Dylan as related to interviews in the NAMM Oral History Collection with the likes of Garth Hudson, Robbie Robertson, Pete Seeger, Emmylou Harris, and the “father of festival sound” Bill Hanley and brother/partner Terry.
Join us for this special episode of The Music History Project featuring an interview with Solomon Burke who is known as one of the founding fathers of soul music. In addition to hearing first-hand from Solomon listen to NAMM’s music historian Dan Del Fiorentino as he recounts fascinating memories of his visit in 2006 with the King of Rock and Soul.
EP. 129 - Latin Jazz

EP. 129 - Latin Jazz


Join us, Suzanne, Alex and Dan, as we celebrate Jazz Appreciation Month with a fun discussion about Latin Jazz! This episode will feature two legends of Latin Jazz, bandleader, percussionist and songwriter Tito Puente and percussionist and drummer Walfredo Reyes Sr. Hear firsthand from these innovative musicians and help us spread Jazz appreciation!
EP. 128 - Boden Sandstrom

EP. 128 - Boden Sandstrom


In celebration of National Women’s Month, the Music History Project podcast team is thrilled and honored to highlight the career of Boden Sandstrom, a pioneer of the live sound industry. Over her career, she provided sound and gear for countless rallies in Washington DC and was key in the development of the Women’s Music Movement, thanks in large part to the company she formed, Women Sound. Join us as we showcase the career of this gifted and gracious innovator.
EP. 127 - Allen Toussaint

EP. 127 - Allen Toussaint


In celebration of Black History Month, we are honored to share with you the full NAMM Oral History interview of multitalented songwriter and musician Allen Toussaint. Mr. Toussaint (1938-2015) penned such classic hits as “Southern Nights” and “Lipstick Traces” and spent decades in music studios as a musician, arranger, musical director, and producer for some of the greatest songs of his era. Please join us as we uncover some rare facts and personal insights into a true musical legend.
Following the first episode of Sun Records sit back and enjoy Sun Records Part 2. This completes our two-part series on Sun Records in recognition of the Music History Project’s fifth anniversary.
In celebration of the fifth anniversary of our podcast, we are reposting some of the most popular episodes over the next year. Let’s begin with our first two episodes of the Music History Project. Here is Sun Records Part 1.
Our final installment of this Rhythm and Blues podcast series uses the interviews of two important pioneers, band leader, trumpeter and songwriter (“Blue Monday” etc.) Dave Bartholemew and studio drummer Earl Palmer, who was in the first class of inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a sideman. Join us and our special guest, Jonah Del Fiorentino!
Continuing on from our last episode, which looked at the early development of Rhythm and Blues, part two focuses on the amazing career of Lloyd Price. When he was interviewed for the NAMM Oral History collection in 2016, Lloyd provided an up-close and personal look at some of his classic recordings and how they influenced a generation of music makers. Join us and our special guest Jonah Del Fiorentino!
EP. 122 - R&B Pioneers Part 1 by NAMM Resource Center
Join the Music History Project team as we dive a little deeper into gospel music as told by those interviewed for the NAMM Oral history program. Our special guest is Jonah Del Fiorentino, who chose to discuss the interviews of legendary vocalist Betty Wright and Jonah's own grandmother who has been a life long pianist and piano teacher.
Gospel and Contemporary church music have changed greatly over the last 50 years. One of the key elements of this development has been catchy and relatable songs churchgoers can sing along to. Join us as we explore the contributions of three such songwriters, Kurt Kaiser (“Pass It On”), Karen Lafferty (“Seek Ye First”), and Robert Watters (“The Shepard’s Song”). Our special guest will be Jonah Del Fiorentino!
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