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Molinari
Gathering of Molinari Barrel Organs
by Craig Smith (080718 MMDigest)

Hi All,  You might recall that last week Michael Lawrence wrote in to ask for pictures of a Molinari street organ [080710 MMDigest].  He had purchased a small organ at a flea market and it was missing the front panel.  I replied that if he could send me some pictures of what he had, I would be happy to send him pictures and help him rebuild it.  I also mentioned that I had arranged a concert of small Molinari organs at a past MBSI meeting.

Well, he did send some pictures and the organ had a few more problems than just a missing front panel.  In fact, a small rodent had apparently developed a love for music (and pine) and had taken up residence between the pipes and the barrel.  One thing led to another and Michael offered to sell the organ to avoid having to start another project.  We agreed on a price and, with the help of Phil Jamison who lives nearby, I bought the organ.  (Now _I'm_ the one who has another project!)

So, a this morning I received a lovely message from Walt Kehoe inquiring about the Molinari organ concert that we arranged at the MBSI chapter meeting at the Genesee Country Village and Museum in 1991:

  "And a wonderful job you did on organizing, and overseeing, that MBSI Meeting.  The open houses, including your own, that you arranged as well, were wonderful.  If I recall correctly some of the MBSI's most notable members were represented in that picture.  ...  If you can share the pictures of that event with the MMD, I'm sure every one would appreciate it.  Thanks for stirring up great memories."

And great memories they certainly were.  Fortunately my wife, Kathay, was able to find the picture that I took of the concert.  Bob Conant and I were in the audience and Harvey Roehl was busy tootin' the calliope but on the porch of the Town Hall at the Museum you will see (from left to right) Jere Ryder, Jeff Vincent, Jim Feller, Jim Foote, Ray Zapata and Marion Roehl, along with seven Molinari organs.  And no, we did _not_ play them all at once.

So, go to the MMD Archives and take a look at the largest array of Molinari organs ever assembled, outside the Molinari factory in New York City.

Craig Smith
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2008 19:42:44 -0400

smithcMolinari.jpg (108 kb)
Left to right: Jere Ryder, Jeff Vincent, Jim Feller, Jim Foote, Ray Zapata, Marion Roehl.


21 August 2008

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