Posted by themusicsover on October 28, 2010
DOB Unknown – October 28, 2010
Photo By James A. Parcell (The Washington Post)
John Olsson was a longtime music retailer who started his career at Washington DC’s Discount Records in 1958. In 1972, he left to open his own store which, after he expanded into books, was called Olsson’s Books & Records. With nine stores at its peak, the eventual chain claimed nine stores and over 200 employees. It was easily the DC area’s most popular music and book retail destination. In 2008, Olsson closed the chain due to economic factors beyond his control. On October 28, 2010, John Olsson passed away. Cause of death was not immediately released.
Posted in Retailer | Tagged: John Olsson | Leave a Comment »
Posted by themusicsover on July 6, 2010
Ann Spencer Gates
March 25, 1959 – July 6, 2008
Ann Spencer Gates was a Boston area disc jockey and later, publicist for Matador Records. Moving from Buffalo to Boston for college in the late ’70s, Gates soon had a radio program on MIT’s hip WMBR radio station. She, along with friend Lisa “Sheena” Bucholz hosted “The Mystery Girls” where they were one of the first to champion such local bands as Lemonheads and Mission Of Burma. By the late ’80s, Gates was living in New York City where she went to work for Matador Records as a publicist, working with such acts as Liz Phair, Pavement, Cat Power and Bettie Serveert. Ann Spencer Gates died on July 6, 2008 after a long struggle with breast cancer.
Posted in Punk, Record Label, Retailer, Rock | Tagged: Ann Spencer Gates, Bettie Seveert, Cat Power, Lemonheads, Lisa Buchholz, Liz Phair, Mission Of Burma, Pavement, The Mystery Girls | 2 Comments »
Posted by themusicsover on May 5, 2010
Clement “Coxsone” Dodd
January 26, 1932 – May 5, 2004
Coxsone Dodd was the pioneering Jamaican DJ and producer that many credit for early development of reggae and ska. Dodd’s career in music began at an early age when he would spin records at this parents’ store. He grew that into a popular sound system business, employing the likes of Lee “Scratch” Perry an U-Roy to run the sound systems. Having spent some time in the United States, Dodd featured early American R&B records, first introducing many Jamaicans to the music. Realizing that he couldn’t keep up with the local demand for new music with imports from the States, Dodd decided to start his own record label and shortly thereafter, open his Studio One recording studio. Over the next two decades, Dodd would produce and release some of reggae’s greatest songs and albums from such artists as Bob Marley, Burning Spear, Sugar Minott, Ras Michael and Horace Andy. To many, he was to reggae what Berry Gordy was to R&B, and his “studio one sound” would become the blueprint for ska and rocksteady. Dodd died of a heart attack at the age of 74.
Posted in Producer, Record Label, Reggae, Retailer | Tagged: Berry Gordy, Bob Marley, Burning Spear, Coxsone Dodd, Horace Andy, Lee Scratch Perry, Ras Michael, Sugar Minott, U-Roy | Leave a Comment »
Posted by themusicsover on April 30, 2010
August 28, 1925 – April 30, 2010
Gil Ellman was a big band musician and longtime Chicago area musical instrument merchant. Ellman began his life of music as a youngster when he learned to play the saxophone, clarinet and flute. His skills developed so well, that when he hit high school, he became its concert master. Shortly after graduating, and at just 18 years of age, Ellman opened his own shop where he repaired radios and such. He later became an instrument tech, working with the likes of Benny Goodman and Tommy Dorsey when they came through Chicago. Ellman played in the Coast Guard Band during WWII and continued to play in local groups well beyond that. Over the years, he shared the stage with such legends as Patti Page, Milton Berle and Ronald Reagan. In 1958, he opened Ellman’s Music Store which remained an area institution up until the time of his passing. Gil Ellman was 84 when he died in his home on April 30, 2010.
On May 7, 2007, Ellman was interviewed as part of the National Association of Music Merchants’ Oral History program. Click here to view a 2 minute segment from his interview.
Thanks to NAMM Historian, Dan Del Fiorentino for the assist.
Posted in Jazz, Musician, Retailer | Tagged: Benny Goodman, Gil Ellman, Milton Berle, Patti Page, Ronald Reagan, Tommy Dorsey | Leave a Comment »