music business Archive

Moraz and Moog’s Field Trip

[This feature originally appeared in Electronic Sound Magazine.] On a Spring afternoon in 1975, Swiss keyboard virtuoso Patrick Moraz found himself bounding through a field in upstate New York, carrying with him a synthesizer. Accompanying him on this unlikely outdoor jaunt was the electronics pioneer Dr. Robert A. Moog. “We used to have field trips

Book Review: Rip it Up: The Specialty Records Story

BMG Publishing launched a series of books, the RPM Series, a few years ago. Superficially similar in scope to the 33-1/3 series, these volumes are designed to chronicle the history of some of music’s most important record labels. Gillian Gaar’s World Domination: The Sub Pop Records Story is among the best, as it traces the

Asheville’s Grey Eagle: Soaring at a Quarter Century (Part 2)

Continued from Part One… Food and photos Over the years, the Grey Eagle has also been home to some quality food options. Whitworth, manager John A. Zara and current owners Russ and Sarah Keith all reminisce warmly about the various eateries that have had runs at the venue. They mention Yo Mama’s Snackeria, Sassafras Cafe,

Asheville’s Grey Eagle: Soaring at a Quarter Century (Part 1)

One of Western North Carolina’s most popular music venues, the Grey Eagle is taking a well-deserved victory lap this year. In celebration of the hall’s 25th anniversary, the Grey Eagle recently hosted a music festival. Too big and varied an event to fit inside the roughly 550-person capacity of the venue, Grey Eagle 25 took

At the Heart of the Vinyl Revival: ORG Music

Founded in 2010, ORG Music was launched in response to renewed interest in vinyl records. Kicking off with reissues of Nirvana’s classic Nevermind, the label quickly established itself as an intelligent outfit with a thoughtful approach to bringing releases to market. In addition to wide-appeal releases (early offerings included titles from Tom Petty and the

Musical Matchmaker: Paul Heumiller of Dream Guitars (Part Four)

Continued from Part Three… Service Brings a Smile Asked what he enjoys most about his work, Heumiller has a ready answer. “It gets back to that idea of service,” he says. “But really, it’s that look when we hand somebody a guitar, and we know that’s going to change their life.” He admits that phenomenon

Musical Matchmaker: Paul Heumiller of Dream Guitars (Part Three)

Continued from Part Two… Life and Livelihood Entwined With success, the demands of running Dream Guitars grew over the years; Heumiller loved the work but found that his life/work balance wasn’t what it should have been. A few years after relocating to North Carolina, he attended a real estate buying seminar (“a momentary dabble of

Musical Matchmaker: Paul Heumiller of Dream Guitars (Part Two)

Continued from Part One… The Inspiration of Handcrafted Instruments Heumiller explains the inspiration that guides him. “It’s a combination of things,” he says. “Of course, there’s my love of guitars and music, and how much guitar affected my life.” And he relishes the opportunity to match players with instruments. “I just had a 14-year-old classical

Musical Matchmaker: Paul Heumiller of Dream Guitars (Part One)

A dealer in the highest of high-end acoustic guitars, Paul Heumiller is in many ways an unlikely entrepreneur. While his company, Dream Guitars, sells fine handcrafted acoustic instruments from the world’s most highly regarded luthiers, he doesn’t even consider himself a salesman. Instead, he’s a guitar sherpa serving up metaphysical soul food. Heumiller’s interest in

Van Duren: If You’re Happy That’s Where You Belong

Note: an edited version of this feature appeared previously on Rock and Roll Globe. From a certain perspective, Van Duren is a shadowy, little-known part of the 1970s Memphis power pop scene that gave the world Big Star. His story and music is caught up in the same overlooked narrative that encompasses the Scruffs, Prix,