MMR, Sister Publication to SBO, Donates Archived Magazines to the NAMM Resource Center

Mike Lawson • News • April 15, 2021

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CARLSBAD, CA – To preserve the industry’s history and provide a deep body of research spanning more than a century, the NAMM Resource Center is honored to receive the physical archives of Musical Merchandise Review magazine.  The magazine archives, which saw its first issue in 1879, were generously donated by President of Timeless Communications, Terry Lowe, and will add a wealth of information and editorial documentation to the existing collection.

More details from NAMM (

Publisher Terry Lowe

Lowe shares, “We at Musical Merchandise Review are very happy to have NAMM become the depository for our extensive collection of MMR back issues. With the oldest issues in the collection dating back to 1927,  the collection will become more accessible to researchers who would like to view the evolution of the musical instrument industry through the decades. We appreciate this opportunity to add to the collective base of knowledge NAMM has put together for the musical instrument industry.”

Dan Del Fiorentino, Music Historian of The NAMM Resource Center, says, “The donation of the MMR archives is a welcome addition to the NAMM Resource Center collection and will serve our industry for decades to come.  We all know it is important to learn from our past, and now thanks to Terry Lowe and his team, we have a wonderful opportunity to do just that!”

Musical Merchandise Review published its first edition in August 1879, filing with the Library of Congress, and counted the New York Public Library among its subscribers. Since that time, and through several ownership changes, the magazine has shared stories of perseverance and evolution of the music product landscape. Lowe continues, “It is an amazing story the collection tells. There are many brands you will see in the pages of MMR in the 20’s you will see in MMR today. This is a great testimony to the hard work and dedication of generations of entrepreneurs and employees who have given to these brand’s longevity. In turn, it illustrates the timeless value and support Musical Merchandise Review has provided the MI industry for the past 142 years.”

The NAMM Resource Center is both the industry archive and producer of the Oral History Collection and The Music History Project podcast. The collection of artifacts within the Resource Center currently includes over 150 years of history including photographs, video interviews, catalogs, marketing and advertisement materials, and documentation of NAMM’s history going back to 1901, with the donation of the MMR issues providing a complementary editorial perspective for NAMM Members to access.

“Each issue is a snapshot in time, and with it, providing insights into products, companies, and preferences of music makers going back nearly 100 years,” comments Del Fiorentino.

The Resource Center also produces The Music History Project podcast and the NAMM Oral History Program. Since 2000, the Oral History Program has sought to preserve the rich history of the music products industry through first-person accounts from the entire breadth of the industry including retailers, suppliers, sales representatives, publishers, instrument and product creators, innovators, founders, and artists. To date, the program counts over 4,500 interviews as part of its collection.

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