Howard Durbin

Howard Durbin was hired by RCA following World War II and worked within the engineering department on improving the phonograph record.  He was assigned to the team that addressed unbreakable 78s and later on the team that developed the 45 record and still later the Red Seal LP.  He attended the NAMM Show during those years, which often showcased performers from top record companies, such as RCA, who were selling to the same dealers who were selling musical instruments.  The stand-alone record store was a rare thing to find in those days, so most records especially in smaller towns, were sold by the music store--the musical instrument music store!  In the late 1940s Howard worked for Electro-Voice, then moved to Los Angeles in 1973 to work for JBL.  He retired from the industry in 1982 but recalled names and events as if it was the week before when he was interviewed for the NAMM Oral History program in 2012.

Interview Date:
June 16, 2012
Date of Birth:
April 26, 1925
Deceased Date:
August 10, 2018
Job Title:
Former Executive Vice President

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