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Browsing: C.C. Rider
Until August 10, 1920, record companies didn’t even try to sell music to—or by—black people. But on that day Mamie Smith, a 37-year-old medicine show singer from Cincinnati, barreled into a New York studio.
It all started with a flat on West Grand Boulevard in Detroit and an 800 dollar loan. Former boxer and Korean War Vet Berry Gordy had a dream…to create a place where a black kid could quote “walk off the street into the studio and leave a polished performer.”
In the early ‘20s a Vaudeville guitar player named George Beauchamp paid a visit to a stringed instrument shop. His complaint: no matter how loud he played, his guitar just couldn’t compete with the rest of the instruments in the orchestra.
So, the owner of that shop, John Dopyera, developed the idea of fitting a guitar body with aluminum cones. Discs of fine-spun aluminum that vibrate to amplify sound. Make the body out of metal, and you’ve got a National guitar.