(Includes updated comments from responses to these web pages)

(Latest update 01.06.15)

Ken’s Greatest Hit Record
(Scanned from my original 78's)


First recorded on New Year's Eve 1947 and sold over 3 and a half million copies.
Re-styled and recorded in the early 50’s and selling in equal numbers.

===================================

14. 02. 13. NEW 2-CD SET OF KEN's RECORDINGS

 

DISC ONE BROADCAST RECORDS                                     DISC TWO RONDO RECORDS
1. Ballad To A Lovely Lady                                                                              1. Yes Sir, That's My Baby
2. Sentimental Journey                                                                                    2. College Days Medley
3. Darktown Strutters Ball                                                                                  3. Margie
4. Melody In F                                                                                                  4. The Donkey Serenade
5. Bummel Petros                                                                                            5. The Whistler And His Dog
6. That Naughty Waltz                                                                                     6. Tipi-Tin
7. The Griffin Blues                                                                                         7. Souviner Waltz
8. Apple Blossom Wedding                                                                              8. Twelfth Street Rag
9. Indian Love Call                                                                                          9. Heavenly Hawaii

10. Red Wing                                                                                                  10. Sentimental Me
11. A Gay Ranchero                                                                                        11. Music, Music, Music

12. Oh! Why Did I Kiss That Girl?                                                                    12. Stardust
13. Lazy River                                                                                                 13. The Wedding Of Lilli Marlene
14. Lili Marlene                                                                                               14. Half A Heart
15. Do You Ever Think Of Me?                                                                        15. Bautiful Wisconsin
16. St. Louis Blues                                                                                           16. Funiuli Funicula
17. Mickey                                                                                                        17. Ceilito Lindo
18. Missouri Waltz                                                                                            18. Beerbarrel Polka
19. Blond Sailor                                                                                              19. Wabash Blues
20. Hawaiian Echoes                                                                                       20. Jumping Beans
21. Glow Worm                                                                                                21. Santa Lucia
22. Every Little Movement                                                                              22. Under A Red Umbrella
23. Barcarolle                                                                                                  23. Love Was The Cause Of It All
24. Have You Ever Been Lonely? (???)                                                          24. You Didn't Want Me When You Had Me
25. Cuckoo Waltz                                                                                            25. Bayadare
26. Baby Rocks On (???)                                                                                 26. Your'e My Love Song
27. My Isle Of Golden Dreams                                                                        27. Someday You'll Want Me To Want You
28. The Prune Song                                                                                       28. Leibestraum
29. You Can't Be True, Dear                                                                          29. MIss You

 

01.06.15. Three new newspaper clips from Wilfred Hosteland.

11.12.13. David Cross who is an Austrailan organst has been aded to the Organists famour in their own countries & Internationally
                page. As this page was imbedded within Frank Pugno's Electrnic Organs pages I have moved this page to it's own link 45
                on the Home Page.

18. 10. 13 It is with great sadness to report that Frank Pugno died on the 12th September 2013. Frank became a very dear friend and it was a great pleasure to meet him during and over the periods I was in Chicago for the Ken dedication shows. We also shared
                 a number of years exchanging emails and chatting on the phone. I shall miss him and I know that his many friends will also.

29.05.13 Fresh photos Of Ken at the Wurlitzer Electrostatic organ (Link 23) below

14th June 2012   Rondo "The Griffin Years" By Bryon Young. (Link 43.)

15. 02. 2011. You Can't Be True, Dear and Love In Bloom mp3 tracks from the Spike Jones Show 1949 (Link 18)

22. 11. 11.  New Internet Address. See bottom of Home Page.

16. 08. 11 Royce (Doc) Brown. Bob Potts made contact with Royce and learned some news. Link 42.
                   Ken Griffin Compositions. This mp3 page has been made permanent at link 41

13. 08. 10 Discology updated. Most Columbia 78's added, including date of publication. Link 26. My thanks to Bryon Young for the link to the
                  web site showing Columbia recordings. Bryon's page has been updated to show this list and link, at Link 39. You may find this of
                  interest for other Columbia artists.
                  N.B. Link 28 is a blank link due to work not yet beings started on the Album photo collection. 

04. 01. 10. Eric Larson's report on the Dedication Show on the 27th December at Woburn, Massechusettes. Click on date or go to the Home
                    Page.

14.12.09. 28th Dec. 2009. The 100th Anniversary of Ken's Birth. 12 Christmas mp3 tracks by Ken Griffin and Eric Larson. Link on Home Page.
 The 2009 Dedication Show takes place at the  North Suburban Home Organ Society  Centre in Woburn, near Boston, Massachusettes on the 20th of December. We would like to wish Eric and everyone involved a very successful
day. Sorry that I couldn't be there this year. Link at top of Home page, or click on the '2009' link above.

01. 10. 09. Marjorie Meinert: It was sad to receive the news from Bryon Young that Marjorie passed away on Saturday the 29th of August at 88 years old. Click on Marjorie's name to go to the report, which has been entered in
Marjorie's page on our web site.

20. 07. 09. Home Page rearranged. Links renumbered. Ken's Discography (26), Ken's Record Covers (27) and W.I.P Ken's
                    Record Lables (28). Marjorie Meinert link now at (29).

14. 07. 09.   Bruce Mclean sent this interesting link, which includes a mention of Ken. Click on the date to go to the Latest
                      News page link.

25. 05. 09. New Rexx double CD available from June 22nd. 
 
16. 05. 09. On the Home page you will find the two latest mp3's by Ken of Golden sails and You Didn't Want Me When
                    You had Me with vocalists Jerry Wayne & Johnny Hill. Both Rondo recordings.

 

14. 07. 09. Bruce Mclean sent this interesting link, which includes a mention of Ken. It's in the 7th Paragraph.
                    http://home.earthlink.net/~jaymar41/thisandthat.html 

 The article is about records that are unexpected 'double hits as in this case, the instrumental version became as successful as the vocal arrangement.
It's a pity that these comments seem to insist that Ken's music was very mundane and that somehow his music never  'changed'. Ken's music was melodic and always allowed the natural harmonics of the organ to sing to the listner
and his counter melodies and overdubbing was excellent and always in excellent contrast to the melody. Ken already made his music swing where it was neccesary. What was he supposed to change to 'Jazz'!. It's a musical style
that has stood the test of time.

Even after all these years Ken's music does exactly what it was meant to do. Catch your ear and make you whistle or sing along to the melody, where even a tune you have just heard for the first time quickly sounds as if you have
always known it. Just to prove this point here are comments sent to me just yesterday by Bryon Young in an email. Bryon attends to a Carousel near his home town, which he works on at weekends. He tells me that he always
includes Ken's recordings whever possible and likes to watch the reaction of people on or in and around the Carousel.

"Today I played Ken's I Don't Know Why (I Just Do) among other KG tunes at the carousel and one woman was swaying to it while going around standing next to her granddaughter who was on a horse.  She was
laughing and dancing to it as she left the carousel area!  It is a great rendition with such a catchy and tuneful bouncing rhythm and among my favorites.  Ken was very articulate on this one with his fast triplicate
keystrokes".

Bryon refers to the fast righthand pizzicato sound that Ken overdubbed on many recordings. You may not know what's it's called but you never fail to hear and be amazed by the affect.

By the way. Have you viewed the new Record Label Pictorial! Just click on the link (date) below.

09. 07. 09.  Ken's Record Covers. Click on date. This page shows the many different records that were produced of Ken's recordings from all over the
                     World. Proving that Ken was indeed an International recording artist, popular with people of all backgrounds and languages. Ken's music
                     and playing style 

30.06.09. New Discography of Ken's records. Click on Date. This is still an on-going work.

31. 05.09.   Found an interesting web site with information and photographs of Marjorie Meinert when she worked at
                     the WOC Radio & TV stations in Iowa. Click on the date to go to the page which is in Frank Pugno's
                      'Electronic Organs' section (Link 32).

25. 05. 09. New REXX 334. CD by Ken "Drifting & Dreaming" available from June 22nd. Click on photo. Price: £8.95
                     N.B. This is not a Jasmine Recoprd as first mentioned.

16. 05. 09

The full EP cover picture is used on my EP collection page at Link 4.  Extended play


The latest addition to my record collction is a Philip's EP, Hammond Rythm, purchsed from a dealer in Rotterdam,
via Ebay, which has what may be the only colour photo of Ken that we know of. The full picture appears on the
Columbia  LP & EP of 'The Organ PlaysAt Christmas but in B&W. This was taken at Ken's flat in Chicago. Note that
he  is wearing exactly the sameclothes as in the photo below, which suggests that they were taken very close together. 

=============================

My thanks to Wilfred Hosteland who sent me this interesting photo of Ken.


The last photo taken of Ken at Old Heidelberg Restaurant in Chicago on March 5, 1956.
This was only 6 days before he died. An interesting co-incidence is that Wilfred sent
 me this photo on the 5th Of March 2009 exactly 53 years to when it was taken.

 
A Cropped Head & Shoulders from the group photo

Also from Wilfred are a few photos of Ken's Flat in Chicago. The number is 1617. Ken took the 6 and 7 to form the
name of his TV show 67 Melody Lane. The flat is only a short walk from 56th Street Station, which Ken used regularly

================================

27. 08. 08.

A report on the 2008 Dedication Show, which took place The North Suburban Home Organ Society, Woburn, Boston, Massachussettes. Scroll down to see the photos. Click here "2008 Woburn Dedication Show Report" or go to
the Home Page Link..

25. 08. 08.

A few new links to internet information about Sterling Yates, Johnny Costa. At link 9. With thanks to Louis Doutt of Waynesburg, PA.
The New CD set 'Skate On' has become one of Jasmine's best sellers of 2008. A new CD is on the cards.

Two mp3 tracks by Ken are available above. If I Had You and The Shades Are Down On Cobble Street. Both with vocals.
Tune into Alan Ashton's Internet Radio Organ Show on the 1st September, where he introduces Eric Larson by playing two of Eric's recordings. Click on Alan's name to go directly to the link.
I have also added two additional tracks to Eric's web page, at the link at the botton of this page along with my personal web sites.

26. 07. 08.

After quite a quiet spell it is always nice to find that there is sonething still going on behind the scenes to prove that interest i still active. The sale of the 2-CD set by Ken has been very good and I have had some response back room
as far as the

States to Australia and here in the U.K. to express their delight both in the quality of the recordings and on finding a good number of tracks that they have never been heard by Ken before. While sales have been goo, due to the
present financia
l slump that is affecting everyone I am told that it isn't an easy task getting companies such as Jasmine Records to take on a new project but activity is in place to try and get more recordings by Ken onto the market. I will keep you
informed
through these pages and from emails.

My thanks to Alan Ashton, who runs the Internet Radio Programme over at Organ 1st's web site for  playing Ken's records on his monthly show. Alan plays two more in this month's (July) show, which you can find
at:
http://www.dolgellau.net/radio/show10a.html
You may just have time to catch it before the month ends and a new programme begins. However, you can 'Listen Again' to this programme and many earlier programmes at the 'Archive' page, which is at:
 http://www.organ.co.uk/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=CTGY&Store_Code=organ&Category_Code=AUDIO-HOME

Another interesting page I found was of Interviews by well-known organists, such as Reginald Dixon and Klaus Wunderlich, which is at: 
http://www.organ.co.uk/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=CTGY&Store_Code=organ&Category_Code=INT

And, of course don't forget to check out the sourcse of much of what's going on in the organ world at the Organ 1st web site:
http://www.organ.co.uk/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=SFNT&Store_Code=organ

If all goes well I hope to be able to tell you about some  more Ken CD's in the near future. Finger's crossed.

N.B. Jasmine is a small business and need feedback to know how customers, and in this case, Ken's fans feel about the new CD's. They are very approachable and you can contact them at: http://www.jasmine-records.co.uk/acatalog/Contact_Us.html
If you really would like to see more CD by Ken made available then please contact them and let them know that WE are out there.

Recently Wilfred Hosteland kindly emailed me some photos of Ken that most of us will have never seen before. One is of Ken in his army uniform and the other is taken along with his father (Artie) and his sister Virginia. It also shows what
lengths Ken went to in advertising his shows. His name and a nice floral arrangement is on and around the windows of the venue. Ken liked to have a good presentatiuon.

The third photo is a Ford advert in which we see Ken, his convertable and the trailor van that he used to transport the Hammond AV around in. Quite a combination. Averaging around 165,000 miles taking in one night stands annualy must have been
quite an effort, let alone getting the Hammond on and off the trailor. However, a very interesting photo.

The photos are at Link 22 on the Home Page.

Eric Larson presented another Dedication Show at the venu near Boston on Sunday 20th of July. Sadly I missed being there due to a knee problem that has troubled me for 6 months but Eric reported that it was another very enjoyable show which was
well attended. I hope to have a report and some photos to add by the time this update is published.

I thought that it was time that Eric was given fair publicity for the great organist that eh is and also for the very precise performance he gives on the Hammond and Wurlitzer Electrostatic in a way that many people can't tell whether it is Ken playing, or
not. Eric really should have been far more well-known than he is as you don't find that kind of artistry very often and I have really wished for him to have been far more successful with his organ playing.

In my own little way of correcting this I have made up a page in dedication to Eric and you will find it linked on the Home Page. However, as this is a Ken Griffin dedication web site I have not put Eric's page in with the main links and have added it to the
list of my 'personal' web sites at the bottom of the page. The direct link is: http://theatreorgans.com/hammond/keng/kenhtml/EricLarsonPage.htm

I have added 12 mp3 tracks for your listening pleasure. I have chosen tracks that are either composed by Eric or are out of copyright. They are both on the Hammond and Wurlitzer Electrostatic and with Midi. I think that you will find them very interesting
and that they give a fair representation of Eric's own playing style and artistry in composing and arranging, as well as being a dab hand with the synthesizer.

I think you will agree with me that this dedication is well overdue.

---------------------------------------------------

04. 05. 08.  A Great new tw-CD set available from Jasmine Records

 

 

"SKATE ON" On sale from the 16th of May 2008 from Jasmine Records (U.K.) and what a great price, only £8.95. That's approximately $17/18. Click on the CD photograph for purchase information and track list.

52 GREAT TRACKS on two CD's
(Many tracks never heard in the U.K. before)

 

If you only know Ken from You Can't Be True, dear and Cuckoo Waltz, this fantastic collection will introduce you to the greater depth of Ken's playing styles and prove what a great organist and musical arranger he was.

-----------------------------------------------------

25. 01. 08. My thanks to Kerry Griffin, and the family for sending me a copy of the Music Sheet for You Can't Be True, Dear. There are numerous copies of this item available but this copy is a little special in that it is
signed by Kerry's father, Kirby  and Kirby's sister, Kay, who are Ken's nephew and niece. This is is a lovely keepsake, which I appreciate very much and very welcome to my collection of items associated with Ken.

 

11th ONovember 2007:

Report on the latest Ken Griffin Dedication Show at Woburn, Boston, Massachussettes on Sunday 28th November. Included many photos, including the transport of Ken's Hammond AV from Main to the Woburn venu, pictures
of everyone involved  and the audiance. Also included a little-seen advert with Ken Griffin and Ann Gilbert at the Hammond AV that was made for pre-publicity when he was travelling or appearing on TV. Another great
Dedication Show with lots of that great 'Griffin Sound'. Go directly to the report at:
Woburn Report.

Another Dedication Show is planned for Woburn next year but it is also hoped that there will also0 be another Dedication Show in Chicago around the same time, so watch thes epages for the latest news on these events.

Latest mp3's by Ken, for your enjoyment. Our Christmas Waltz and Star Of The East. From a Rondo 78. Link on Home Page

For The latest addition to my record collection, apart from the above 78 is the 12" Rondo LP "Christmas Organ" by Ken. You will find this on the 12" record list at Link 6.

06/07th June 2003:

For the first time I found some of Ken's records being offered on EBay.co.uk  there were two dealers, David Smith in Staffordshire and Fred Becker in Norfolk. I won the bid for the two LP's from Fred and when he e-mailed, mentioned
having further LP's of Ken's. I added one to the list and Fred quickly sent them all to me within a few days. The LP's are:  Ken Griffin Organ Favourites Vol. 2 (CBS Embassy), Ken Griffin And His Organ 'Hawaiian Magic' CBS
Embassy EMB 31390 and 'Memories' Harmony H 30273. There were no new tracks for me on these LP's but as they are of the American label versions, with different cover photo's etc they are a welcome addition to my collection.

Dave had an Esquire EP on offer and I was pleased to win this bid too. Esquire EP's and LP's are very scarce in the U,K. though they were the U.K. version of Ken's Rondo recordings and I only had one EP in this series and it was
nice to add yet another. The record is Esquire E.P. 22 and contains four tracks of which are all new arrangements to me. Put Your Arms Around Me, Honey, which is completely different from Ken's 67 Melody Lane LP arrangement,
as are, Funiculi Funicula, Margie and La Golandrina. Each represent Ken's early work.

According t the back cover there at lest two more EP's in this series and I shall be watching out for them. If anyone comes across any Esquire EP's and LP's I would appreciate hearing about them.

Full details and cover pictures have been updated to the 45rpm/CD page and the 12" LP pages.

30. 06. 03.                           Dedication Evening Audio CD Response

Mike McCormick of Oklahoma send this nice comment on receiving a copy of the Dedication Evening Audio CD that I have made from Joan & Craig Brown's video.......

Hi Bill -- 

                Thank you for the KG Evening CDs, the ultimate concert souvenir. While anyone in attendance that night would want the video, the CD sound quality is so sharp and dynamic. I didn't even know a CD project was in the works!

Songs like "On the Trail," "Bumblebee in a Blender," et al. make it sound like you're right there at the Lincoln.  I can't believe how "You Belong to Me" sounds just like the album track of the original. I can see how Sally noted the resemblance
to Ken's own playing as 'scary.' And Eric 'airing his differences' on "Ain't She Sweet." That was a riot -- and I'll bet it took a lot of gumption on his part to do that. Had there been 100 in the audience that night instead of twenty-six, he might
have had reservations! Again, thanks. They arrived just yesterday, so I haven't really had time to listen to the second CD, but they're both certainly of historical as well as sentimental significance.

Geoff Wellbank of Fleetwood, Lancashire, writes on having received a copy of the 67 Melody Lane video and the two audio Cd's. Geoff first wrote......

(1) Hi Bill, 
                 Can you help? I'm trying to obtain videos of 67 Melody Lane, are they available and where do you think I can find them, any info would be great?

(2) Hello Bill,

                      I was born here in Fleetwood Lancashire England in 1934. Thanks very much for your prompt reply, yes I would be very interested in your copy of 67 Melody Lane and the two C/D'S of the dedication evening , which  is greatly
appreciated. In 1949 I visited our local cinema and was very interested in a record that was played in the interval, after three or four visits to the same cinema i was told by one of my ex school friends that the record was by an American called
Ken Griffin & was playing the Cuckoo Waltz, a day or two later found me in the local music shop ordering a copy of the same, i still have this record today although its about shot at!!! Over the next 20 or so years i managed to find a few more
of Kens records mostly in second hand shops or car boot sales, Sometime later I was listening to the radio program called  "The Organist Entertains" hosted by Arthur Lord, he said the next record is by the late Ken Griffin, I was stunned, I had
no idea that Ken had died. By now, my son & daughter both grown up & in their own homes & on The Internet, I see them both quite often & we are on line for an hour or so, we have learned a lot about Ken, his instruments and his playing
ability. I have a large book of info made up by my daughter Karen, from the information that you and your fellow enthusiasts have written, I myself have a Wurlitzer  630TA white & gold which I play very badly, a shame really as the organ is
in mint condition having had only one owner from new, looking forward to your reply.

67 Melody Lane Video
and
Dedication Evening Audio CD Response

(3) Hi Bill,
                 Once again, many many thanks for the video & CDs of Ken, I never thought that I would never see Ken in the flesh as it were, the recordings and the video are excellent considering the time of the recordings, the wow you spoke of does
not appear to be on my copy, I must be the lucky one! The thing that stuck me most was how easy Ken makes it look, and I know that it isn't, I've always thought that I could tell the difference between Ken and those who strive to sound like him,
but after listening to Kurt, Frank & Eric I'm not all that sure, I admire them immensely.
 

Once again my sincere thanks.

Yours Geoff .

30.06.03.   

Geoff Wellbank of Fleetwood, Lancashire, writes on having received a copy of the 67 Melody Lane video and the two audio Cd's. Geoff first wrote......

(1) Hi Bill, 
                 Can you help? I'm trying to obtain videos of 67 Melody Lane, are they available and where do you think I can find them, any info would be great?

(2) Hello Bill,

                      I was born here in Fleetwood Lancashire England in 1934. Thanks very much for your prompt reply, yes I would be very interested in your copy of 67 Melody Lane and the two C/D'S of the dedication evening , which  is greatly
appreciated. In 1949 I visited our local cinema and was very interested in a record that was played in the interval, after three or four visits to the same cinema i was told by one of my ex school friends that the record was by an American called
Ken Griffin & was playing the Cuckoo Waltz, a day or two later found me in the local music shop ordering a copy of the same, i still have this record today although its about shot at!!! Over the next 20 or so years i managed to find a few more
of Kens records mostly in second hand shops or car boot sales, Sometime later I was listening to the radio program called  "The Organist Entertains" hosted by Arthur Lord, he said the next record is by the late Ken Griffin, I was stunned, I had
no idea that Ken had died. By now, my son & daughter both grown up & in their own homes & on The Internet, I see them both quite often & we are on line for an hour or so, we have learned a lot about Ken, his instruments and his playing
ability. I have a large book of info made up by my daughter Karen, from the information that you and your fellow enthusiasts have written, I myself have a Wurlitzer  630TA white & gold which I play very badly, a shame really as the organ is in
mint condition having had only one owner from new, looking forward to your reply.

67 Melody Lane Video
and
Dedication Evening Audio CD Response

(3) Hi Bill,
                 Once again, many many thanks for the video & CDs of Ken, I never thought that I would never see Ken in the flesh as it were, the recordings and the video are excellent considering the time of the recordings, the wow you spoke of
does not appear to be on my copy, I must be the lucky one! The thing that stuck me most was how easy Ken makes it look, and I know that it isn't, I've always thought that I could tell the difference between Ken and those who strive to sound
like him, but after listening to Kurt, Frank & Eric I'm not all that sure, I admire them immensely.

                                                                                                                       Once again my sincere thanks.

                                                                                                                       Yours Geoff .                                                                                                         

Comment: I am greatly pleased that Geoff has found so much enjoyment from the video and CD's. It is not my intention to make any profit from Ken's memory or involvement in this web site but my thanks to Geoff who kindly sent a cheque,
which covered the postage and packaging. A month or so back Wilfred Høsteland kindly sent me a European PAL VHS copy of 67 Melody Lane, which left my earlier NTSC copy free and I was more than pleased to pass this onto Geoff.

06. 07. 03.

Hi Bill:
I received the package of CD's this morning and have spent the rest of the day listening to them. What a beautiful and wonderful surprise. It never ceases to amaze me how much material keeps turning up from the past, and I always listen in
awe to the incredible talents of people like Eric and Frank. I would dearly love to have that talent. Every time I listen to music like that I always have a picture in my head of them playing. I love to watch someone play the organ. When we lived
in Houston there was a program called the Joy of Music and it featured Diane Bish playing organs in churches all over the US and Europe. To me seeing those magnificent organs and watching someone play them is just about the most
beautiful and heartwarming experience there is.

It would certainly be wonderful to be able to get those (old radio) recordings of Ken. He did so much and left so little, what a shame they didn't have the technology then that there is now, so much more of it would be saved for future generations
to love as we love them as we do.

Thank you again for thinking of me.
Don Boudreaux. La.

27. 07. 03.

Hello Bill, 
                    How nice of you to send me this wonderful recordings from the Dedication Evening in Chicago 2002. I really understand, what a good evening it was for you, and when I listen, I understand, how talented they are, Eric Larson and
Frank Pugno, and how nice to hear Kurt Armsden playing. Kirby Griffin singing 'You can't be true, Dear'. This is very nice.

It is wonderful, when I couldn't come to the Evening, to sit and listen to this wonderful music. You hear the audience sound, the applause. It is like being there. Elizabeth Larsen is singing. What a fit organist playing in the background. Brian
Wessel is playing on his accordion. He is a clever soloist. But The Hammond is a better organ.

It is full of atmosphere, when an organist is playing My Best To You, and people say goodbye and farewell. I am very happy and thankful that you sent this wonderful record from the Ken Griffin Evening.Then I too have the 67 Melody Lane
TV Audio on CD!

Johs Larson (Denmark).

==========================

30. 06. 03.                                        MUSICSTACK.COM

Thanks to Wilfred Høsteland for finding this new (to me) web site. I very much appreciate the link they have made to my 'History' page about Ken and that they have kept the 'back' link, which takes you to our Home Page. Anything that gives
our pages more publicity is very welcome.

Whether you are searching for Ken's records or anything else you are interested in Musicstack appears to be a very good search engine.

www.musicstack.com

Update 12. 07. 03.

I received  a really great package from Mike for which I thank him very much. The main item was the Rondo 10" LP RLP-25 of the Ken Griffin 'At The Organ' series, a very welcome addition to my collection. I have all of the tracks, except If I Had You,
which is the instrumental version. Others I have on mp3 and CDs which others have kindly sent but it is nice to have them on the actual LP. Full details of this LP have been added to the 10" LP web page. Also from this LP cover I have gained a list
of other Rondo LP's, which I have added tot he 78rpm web page and other recordings which include vocalists, which I have added to the 'Vocalist's web page. This all adds up to bring together a growing list of Ken's records that actually include
the record label and numbers. A surprise find is that of record R-328 Du Kannst Nicht Treu Sein and R-428 Dziadunio (Clarinet) Polka with German vocalists Jolly Franzel and Alice Kusak, respectfully.. It would be very interesting to hear these
numbers. It is well known that You Can't Be True, Dear was an original German tune, as many of Ken's great recordings were, but it is very interesting finding that there was a German vocal version made of it too. Does anyone have copies of these
two records!

There is also a very interesting couple of cover pictures, one of Ken, which I already have as a siluhette but in this copy there is good face details.. The second picture is one of Ken's hands at the organ, which we don't get to see very often.
These two pictures are blended together on the cover, one of them upside down, and both at an angle and in 'green' bias. Below I have separated and squared them up and converted them back to B&W for display.
 


   

Mikes nice present was completed with a great 12" LP by the late Chet Aitkins and an A4 page full of very colourful stamps in the "Greetings from ------" States series. Another example of how rewarding having these Dedication
web page
s to Ken has been.

14.07.03.

Cuckoo Waltz (Early Arrangement)

On the Rondo LP, mentioned above, I suddenly realised that Ken is playing a different arrangement of Cuckoo Waltz than I have ever heard before! For the most part it is very similar to the later Rondo arrangement but I was sure that I heard
a 'clipped' note on one occasion and approx three parts through Ken makes a strange 'chord' that doesn't quite seem correct for the pace of the piece, in fact, almost stops it dead!. Surely, our Ken would never have produced a recording that
wasn't more than perfect! However WE must understand that this a very early recording and there could be numerous reasons for these 'anomalies'! Just look at the two photo's above and it is very obvious that this is a very young 'Ken' and,
very young hands at the keyboards.

I quickly e-mailed  an mp3 copy of this recording to Eric to get his experienced views and below he gives a very practical reply........ 

"Very interesting, this early sample of Ken's playing. I would say definitely he made a couple of minor finger slips right near the end. The strange chord actually fits, but it is not a good choice. He is making the transition from the key of F, for
the middle part, back to the key of C for the finale. He plays an F, then follows it with that F#major, which does sound a little out of place. Then he plays the G7th to get himself back to C. What sounds strange is that it is a straight F# chord.
Almost any other form of F# chord other than just a straight one would have been a better choice here. I think this is so early in his career that he probably didn't know too many other chords yet. Certainly the key changes in his later playing
are much more melodious and much better. An F# diminished would have sounded a lot better and made a better transition. (He uses the F#dim in several other, later songs). He could also have played an F9, then an F#9, and then followed
that with a G9 and then made a one note change to make the G9 with a +5, and then the key change would have been very much improved. But, that chord does fit, so it's not a mistake, just shows a lack of musical sophistication, due, as I said,
to it being early in his career and it probably would be several more years before he learned how to make his more familiar and more interesting key changes.

I remember early in my learning-to-play period when I was criticized by Doris Tirrell for also using unimaginative modulations, but I did the best I knew how to do at the time, just as Ken evidently did here. It is interesting to note, however,
that he was at this stage very adept at countermelody playing, so it seems that he learned the countermelody technique very early and then (as the radio transcriptions prove) became much more creative with harmony later on.

Also interesting that there is little if any reverb here. All in all, this recording is an interesting study that, when compared with Ken's other versions of Cuckoo Waltz, shows his playing proficiency increase with time".

-------------------------------

There we have it, a unique look into Ken's early recording career, and as Eric explains, is a prime example of how Ken learned and progressed over the years, until he reached the later stages when he produced all those brilliant recordings.
And also proof of why Ken rehearsed and rehearsed so hard. From these early arrangements it is proven that Ken had understood countermelody extremely well and was probably inborn musical ability. I wonder if Mike realised that he
has owned quite a unique recording!

The LP again! is Rondo RLP-25, if you have it perhaps the next time you give it a spint, it will be from a completely different point of view, or look out for it when you are next browsing the secondhand shops for Ken's records and grab
it up quick.

Update 14th August. 2003

 We have a new contact, Bruce Craig, and his brother, John from Oregon. For the moment they don't wish to have anything they talk about mentioned in the web pages. However it is nice to know they are still fans of Ken and his music
and enjoy theses web pages. Bruce plays in a Marimba band and plays the marimba, xylophone, and orchestra bells.

09.10.03 Update 
Bruce sent these corrections and further information about themselves........
John has the record collection dating back to 1950, and among those were "Sweet and Lively" (which is
in the package I sent to you) and a Columbia 78 #40254 with Ferry-Boat Serenade #CCO 5482 and My Best to You #CCO 5477 tracks (just found in his box of 78s about two weeks ago). I have yet to play it so don't know its condition
. I am not active in any group playing the marimba anymore. I've done
some since, but not since 1990. I still have some instruments, the Deagan Bass Marimba being the most rare and unusual - about 18 made. I also have Wurlitzer Orchestra Bells my father bought used in 1918; we
don't know when they were made. Both instruments are heard on the CD I sent with some of the selections from our performances.
 

=========================

It was very nice of Bruce and John to send me a CD copy of themselves and their family playing the Marimba & Wurlitzer Orchestra Bells, some tracks being accompanied by an organ, all recordings are from live performances. Bruce
adds: "The tracks are from several venues, with anywhere from 200 (Salem, Oregon) to 2000 (College Place, Washington) in the audience. The three Christmas tracks were at Temple
Baptist Church here in Portland, and there were about 2000 there also"
It is a very pleasing and tranquil sound and certainly relaxing and ideal for when you wish to unwind a bit. They are recordings I can easily return to time and time again and thank John and Bruce for the CD..
They also very kindly sent a copy of Ken's CBS LP "Sweet & Lively", which I appreciate very much and pleased to add to my collection. I have added this information to my 12" LP Collection web page (link 3).
Another example of how lucky I am on meeting so many great people who have responded to the web site.
Update 29th August 2003.
My name is Larry Cates, born in Cleveland in 1953 and now reside in Hiram, Ohio home of Hiram College. Growing up in Garrettsville, my Mother listened to WSOM radio from Salem, Ohio. On weekdays the station played organ music
from 12-1PM. I loved the music, contacted the station, found out about Griffin, Lenny Dee act. Over the years I have collected dozens of Griffin records, LPs and 78's. I LOVE his music. In 1974, I bought a B-3 and try to imitate Griffin.
I wish I would have been aware of the Chicago concert. I would have been there. How can I get a copy of 76 Melody Lane? I would like to meet you, discuss Griffin and see the mother of pearl organ. I have been searching for Griffin
info for years. Wrote to Columbia, searched the libraries, and finally found his Memorial Page about 3 years ago. WHAT A FIND! His birthday, death, and many unanswered questions.
Thanks so much
Larry Cates.
Larry was pleased to learn that the second Dedication Evening was booked to take place on the 19th of October, 2003 and is making plans to be there. It will be nice to see him there, and indeed our latest contact Doug Koempel is
planning to be there too......
Update 24th Sept. 2003.
Nice to hear from Doug Koempel who comes from Iowa. Doug wrote:
Hello friend,

And I thought, I was the biggest Ken Griffin fan alive! I came across your web site and really enjoy it.

I first started listening to Ken Griffin from my grandmother's record collection back in the early fifties (I'm now 54 years old.) Some of my all-time favorites are Souvenir Waltz, Tippi Tin, Anniversary Song and Estrellita; however, almost
all his recordings conjure up strong nostalgic and sentimental feelings.

I learned to play the organ at a very early age (6 or 7) and modeled my playing after Ken Griffin's style. I still enjoy sitting at my A-100 playing those great, old tunes.
I remember as a kid being so amazed by how "big" Ken's sound was despite how "minimalist" his playing was. When I'd attempt to emulate his style, I would always find myself wanting to put in more notes than what were warranted
in an attempt to fill up the spaces.
Ken Griffin was probably the one most important musical influence in my life. As a kid I was exposed to his music through my grandmother. She had the Anniversary Waltz album - both the 12" and a 10" version. She also had a couple of
45s, one of which remains a favorite of mine - Souvenir Waltz b/w Tippi Tin. I believe she had one or two additional LPs. After I was hooked on those records, I then purchased every Ken Griffin LP I could find, so I've accumulated about 
dozen additional LPs - maybe more. I've really never counted.
Having started piano lessons at a very young age, 4, my grandmother saw to it that I began organ lessons when I was about 7. To the chagrin of my organ teacher I would come in to my lessons with all my Ken Griffin arrangements that
I'd worked up by ear. She did not appreciate Ken Griffin which always bothered me, and that was the one disagreement we've had over the years (she's still alive and in her late 80s.)  But I got a lot of mileage out of my Ken Griffin repertoire
having performed many, many functions as a kid. In fact I still use Ken's arrangements of Elmer's Tune, You Can't Be True Dear, Sunday, Anniversary Song, Estrellita (sp?), Souvenir Waltz and a couple others in my live performances
today. And as many times as I've performed his tunes over the past 45 years, I'm still amazed at his playing when I re-visit his recordings.
Sincerely, 
Doug Koempel.
Doug is part of a group called The Memory Brothers whom some of you may know of. You can catch their web site at: http://memorybrothers.iuma.com

=====================

N.B. Joe Negri and Johnny Costa News now at Link 14 on the Home Page

=====================

January 2004:
Gordon Forcier hails from Cincinatti and preserves Fun Fair organs. He kindly sent me an audio CD of the magnificent deKleist Monster Style 155 Military Band Organ he has preserved and it sounds in fine fettle and I thank him for being
able to listen to it in great sound quality. Gordon's brother owns and runs a Carnival and still plays Ken's records, albeit, on CD's these days, but it is good to know that Ken's music is still being played while the Carousel waltzes around 
Gordon also sent me a couple of CD's of Ken's music and while I have virtually all of the tracks already I discovered three tracks, Mexically Rose, which is a different arrangement than on the 78rpm record I have and well adding to my
collection.  worth hearing. Jalousie is from Ken's Skater's Waltz LP, which I have never been able to find. The third track is 'Marchita'. Again I have this but it is from an internet download and is of poor quality and it is nice to have this
much improved recording.
It is really interesting receiving all these recordings from you all and eventually I shall have virtually every recording we know of by Ken and then not only know what the tracks sound like but eventually build up a comprehensive listing
of Kens recordings.

==========================

Update of items not directly connected with Ken: Frank Pugno's new page on Electric Organs (link 25) has been updated with information on Lenny Dee which you may find interesting. Please feel free to add information about your own
favourite organ or organist, local or internationally known.
 
DANISH CONNECTION.
 
"Johs Weinberg-Larsen, our dedicated Danish Ken Griffin fan and organist has recently started his own web site. Obviously, he has added an article about Ken. However, it is a pure home-grown effort and in Danish. Even if you can't read
or speak Danish it is well worth Browsing the web site, at:
 
www.sitecenter.dk/wienberg-larsen
N.B. Johs has now added an English version of his Ken Griffin Page. With thanks to Wilfred Høstland for assisting in the English translation.

==========================

Update 01. 02. 04:

Welcome to Karl France from Ohio, who is is enjoying finding our web pages and learning about Ken and everyone involved. Karl writes:

I grew up listening to Ken Griffin as my parents loved his music. At that time, we were living in Alamogordo, NM and the local radio station used to play his music. My dad had an old Wollensack reel to reel tape deck and used to record the
music when it was played. I remember so well that my dad had a nick name for Ken...."One finger Griffin" I guess because his music was so simple. We listened to those tapes for many years and even after we moved to Ohio in 1971, we found
another radio station, WSOM FM from Salem, Ohio, played what was called "transcribed organ melodies".  So we were off to recording more organ music. My dad passed away in 1979 but his love for organ music lived on with me. A song
that I really like, by Ken, is Auf Weidersein. He could really make that organ talk.
 
I have since been collecting Ken Griffin's records and have spun them off onto reel to reel tape with my Pioneer reel to reel on 10" tapes. I can sit back all day 7days a week and listen to them. I have had the elderly look at me funny when I start
humming some of the old tunes. They ask me how I know the tunes...and I proudly say that I'm a Ken Griffin fan. 
 
I think the reel to reel tape deck is the best in music reproduction still today.  I have 2 of them, my second is an Akai X-330D that I paid a total of $5 for at a local outdoor flea market...It plays up to the large 10" reels and I use my hubs from my
Pioneer and this deck plays amazingly good...not as good as the Pioneer that I have .... but still excellent. 
I didn't find out until a couple of years ago that Ken Griffin passed away before I was born. I have found a few albums of "In the Ken Griffin Style" that as far as I was concerned, was nowhere close to how he used to play. That is until tonight.
I have never heard of Eric Larsen before and played the 2 samples of "Lazy River"(which is one of my favorites) and I can't believe how close Eric can play like Ken. My hat is definitely off to Eric as the best "2nd Ken Griffin" I have ever heard ...
my jaw dropped to the floor when I heard Eric and the first part of "Lazy River". 
 
I hate to say it...but I think I like Eric's version just a little bit better than Ken's was .... I can just imagine Eric and Ken playing that song with like Ken starting it off and Eric picking it up in the middle or so. I totally respect Eric for what he is
doing and has already done. Talent like his should not go to waste.  I'm so glad we have a "modern day" rendition of Ken Griffin. 
Over the years, I have picked up a few LP's of people doing organ music in the Ken Griffin style and got mad because it sounded like they were "butchering" the music up and that is not right.  I heard the 2 different versions of "Lazy River" with
Ken and Eric and almost had a heart attack.  I couldn't believe how close that Eric sounded with the style and now his beginning of Lazy River is stuck in my head. I used to get mad whenever someone would call Ken's music "roller skating"
music but now I realize that it has a perfect beat for roller skating. 
 
Ken Griffin is not the only organist I listen to tho...I found a couple of "Jackie Davis" records and he is good too...with the beat as well as Lenny Dee (the old style Lenny Dee).  I also enjoy Leon Berry and, of course, George Wright on the pipe
organ.  But Ken Griffin will always be my favorite to listen to.
 
I personally want to thank you and all the other people that have worked on and come up with the tribute web sites for Ken.  I was awed to see all the info that is on those pages. You all have done an excellent job. KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK!!!
I'm sure if Ken were alive today...he would be happy that people have not forgotten him and his music lives on. 
Karl France.
08.02.04:  Karl's Response to listening to the first Dedication Show CD and the complementary CD with Eric, Frank and Johs.
 
Hi Bill....I received the package today in the mail....and I must say....it is just "breath taking".  I was completely overwhelmed with the excellent music and totally enjoyed the CD from the Dedication Evening.  The other CD was good too...especially
the tracks from Eric.  Frank and Johs are also good but, of course, I was basically interested in the selections with the Ken Griffin style.  The dedication CD was by far my favourite one and I almost started tearing up listening to how good everyone
was...especially with the last selection with all 3 of them playing.
 Just a note....Eric is still my most favorite one playing tho...but it was good to hear Kirby play again too.  The selection of "Love Letters In the Sand" is ever bit as good as Ken was....I know if Ken were to be alive today...he would really be smiling
if  he were to listen to that CD. 
I read a little on the site on the latest update.  The tribute CD's are an superlative idea and I would love to know when they are available....I don't care what they cost....I will endeavor to buy them to add to my collection.  I will spin off those 2 CD's
you sent me onto reel to reel tape as well as the rendition of "Lazy River" by Eric.

Eric is good enough to play professionaly and I wonder if he has ever thought about it. Unfortunately, there probably isn't the demand for the organ players like there were when Ken was around and that is sooo sad.  But you all are doing a
fantastic job of keeping Ken's spirit alive and for that I want to thank you.  You know...a lot of times I find myself listening to the newer ez listening music and think how Ken would have played it.  Wonder if Eric and the others have ever thought
about that.
 
By the way, Bill, when I wrote you the first letter about our local radio station, WSOM in Salem, Ohio....I hadn't read anyone elses letters at all..and got the shock of my life when I read the letter from Larry Cates.  He is correct about the radio station
playing the organ music everyday from 12 to 1.  I think that is so ironic that we talked about the same radio station.  I'm not sure...but I think they are no longer playing the organ music anymore.
If Eric doesn't consider himself the "current" Ken Griffin...maybe he should.  He definately has the talent and its really good to hear someone who can play like Ken used to and not "botch" up the songs. 
Karl.
 
Marjorie Meinert and Rondo-lette Records
Many thanks to Phil Gunsal for sending information of where you can find information on recordings by Marjorie Meinert and a great history about Rondo records.
Its a pity there wasn't a way of making contact with Marjorie but from this search you will see how many records that she made and where to get them. The search string is quite long and may not work if your text box splits it up, but Phil adds that
you will find most of these pages by simply typing "Marjorie Meinert, organ" into the Google search engine.
http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&lr=&ie=ISO-8859-1&q=%22Marjorie+Meinert%22+organ&btnG=Google+Search

I was very taken by the colourful web pages giving a history of Rondo-lette Records, and of course, our Ken features in the record sections and early beginnings of this record company. I am sure you will also enjoy having a browse through these
pages. Just go to:
 
While they state that they don't generally reply to e-mails I was pleasantly surprised to receive a reply to my e-mail comments about the Rondo-lette LP (A30) Ken Griffin 'At The Great Organ' and explaining that while the cover and record label text
give information of it being a Ken recording, it is in fact a different organist altogether. The webmaster is kindly taking steps to show this error.
 
03. 02. 04:                                    CBS 67 Melody Lane LP
 
I have added the LP 67 Melody Lane (CL 724) to my collection. Purchased from a Cindy Hoover who lives in Texas. She wrote to me just before Christmas enquiring about how much to charge for the record if put on Ebay. After some exchange of
e-mails she kindly offered to let me purchase it directly for my collection. I have had the Philips LP since 1961 but over the last year or so have been adding the CBS issues whenever they become available. In some cases only 10" versions were
available in the U, K. and contained less tracks that the 12" versions and those LP's became very well worth having as it helped my collection of tracks to grow. The LP and cover photo have been added to the list on LP 12" Pt. 3 on the home page.
Cindy's LP belonged to her late grandparents Mr. & Mrs. D. R. Hoover, who were great fans of Ken.
 
04. 02. 04:                       Eric Larson/Kurt Armsden 'Tribute' CD's
 
Eric and Kurt have begun preliminary moves into obtaining the necessary licensing, on what will be the first of several Ken Griffin tribute CDs, all of which will feature the same type and vintage electronic organs that Ken used, and will be played
as closely as possible to Ken's original versions. The CDs will be announced when they are ready and will be available at a price to be determined later. We'll also have ordering information available then as well. The CDs will contain some newer
songs that were written after Ken's death and every effort made to interpret them as Ken might have done and play them with the same sounds and effects that he would have most likely used.
It isn't known when they will be available or how long the actual recording will take or how involved making the master CD will be but keep watching these pages for the latest news.
On February 26 and 27, Eric Larson undertook a complete restoration of the amplification system in the Wurlitzer electrostatic organ that we plan to use for the Ken CD for those numbers which Ken played on that instrument. This work mainly
involved replacing all of the old ca. 1955 "paper" capacitors with new capacitors because many of the old ones were leaky or partially short-circuited, making the tone quality of the instrument very weak and poor, and also preventing the vibrato
from working properly. After completing this work, Eric says that the instrument now performs as it did when it was back in the dealer's showroom; all hiss, pop, crackling and power hum have been eliminated, and the vibrato is fully functional.
The instrument is now functioning at the quality level that Ken experienced when he used the factory-new electrostatic Wurlitzer on 67 Melody Lane. For a more comprehensive explanation of the electrostatic Wurlitzer, see the write-up elsewhere
on this website under the title, "The Instruments Ken Griffin Played."


15.02.04.
 "On Feb 10, Kurt Armsden and I met to discuss the song selection for the CD, and also a few minor aspects of the recording technicalities so that he will likewise be somewhat familiar with the recording techniques to duplicate Ken's special effects.
Our next meeting will be next week, date not determined yet, to make financial arrangements for song licensing and also for Kurt to take a few practice runs on the Wurlitzer electrostatic, and for me to get more proficient at operating the virtua
l recording studio software that is now in this newer computer. We plan to start laying actual tracks in about two more weeks. About that time, we should also know if we will have a Conn model 703 available. The Conn 703 is the model Ken used
for Side By Side, Elmer's Tune and the other selections where he used that instrument".
 
05.03.04.
 
On Wed, March 3, Kurt Armsden and I met to begin work on the Ken tribute CD. Now that the electrostatic organ is repaired and working properly, we can use that instrument as intended without having to work around any problems. We decided
on either three or four songs each on that instrument. The exact number of songs depends on whether or not I am successful in obtaining the Conn 703 and getting it properly working and fit for recording. If we do have the Conn available and
working, then we would include at least two songs on that instrument. Regardless, the remaining 6 songs each will be on the Hammond as that was Ken's main instrument for the majority of his recorded work.

We now each have four songs arranged as we want them for the electrostatic Wurlitzer instrument. We also used this time to make trial recordings on tape so that we could judge the results, tweak registrations and make changes and corrections as
necessary in preparation to the actual recording session which is still probably two or more weeks away. Some might say, "why don't you just get a microphone, turn on the tape, sit down and play?"

To this the answer is that to achieve a true and faithful imitation of the "Griffin Sound" requires a much more involved approach to the recording. Part of the involvement concerns Ken's combination of the miked sound from a Leslie and the direct
sound of the Wurlitzer's signal from its amplifier, which he varied from song to song on 67 Melody Lane. However, I am now satisfied with the sound that we have obtained as being a true and faithful representation of the "Griffin Sound" from the
Wurlitzer 4600 series instrument which we are using; an instrument essentially the same as the 4600 series instrument he used on 67 Melody Lane. Our next meeting will involve the Hammond, and choice of songs to play on that instrument.
Meanwhile, to get ready for the actual recording, we must now devote considerable time to listening to Ken's own recordings and also practicing the songs that we will use. For me comes the additional practice at operating the virtual sound studio
software in the computer which will be used for recording and editing.

Eric.
 
04. 04. 04.
 
Kurt Armsden and I were successful in obtaining a 1950s Conn 700 series instrument. This is the third electronic organ of that era which Ken Griffin used, although he played perhaps no more than five or six songs on it as far as we can determine
as of the above date.

The Conn uses vacuum tube oscillators, one for each pitch on both keyboards. We will have a new installment to add to the section on the instruments Ken Griffin played in a few weeks. Currently, the CD project awaits my completion of repairs to the
Conn, which include replacing a number of questionable vacuum tubes and also replacing leaky and defective capacitors. In a preliminary trial, I found that I could indeed exactly duplicate the sound Ken used in Side By Side and Elmer's Tune, two of
the songs he played on the Conn.

At this point we now have available a representative example of each of the three electronic organs that Ken used. The particular Hammond that will appear on the recordings is a late 1940s CV, to which I added a Hammond chorus generator. This
makes it capable of exactly duplicating those songs where Ken used a Hammond with a chorus generator. It also has the subtly different sounding vibrato that the early Hammonds with the big vibrato line boxes had.

The Wurlitzer that we will be using is a model 4602, whereas Ken used a 4601. Both of these are very similar in both external appearance and internals. Both utilize the exact same electrostatic transducer tone generating system. However, the 4602 is a
32 pedal instrument designed for churches whereas the 4601 was a 25 pedal organ intended as a pops instrument. Because of this, there are slight differences in stop nomenclature and also in the amplification system, however the 4602 is capable of
producing virtually every tonality and effect that Ken used in all of the recordings which he played upon that instrument.

Once the Conn 700 is ready, we will be ready to obtain the necessary licensing and begin the actual recording of the master CD for what we hope will be the first of a series of Ken Griffin tribute CD.
 
Eric.
 
 =====================
 
Sad news from Oregon 
Bruce Craig and his brother John, in Portland, Oregon, have thoroughly enjoyed their contact with us over the last year or so and I have always enjoyed sharing communications with them. Sadly, John passed away on the 27th of February, 2004.
It was such a brief contact but as Bruce explained, he and John enjoyed discovering our web pages and learning more and more about Ken, and particularly, listening to the Dedication Evening audio CD and other recordings of Eric playing like Ken.
A fleeting moment of learning about the existence of someone in another part of the world, who has shared the same enjoyment and interest in Ken and his music as we all do and while sad in itself we can but be happy that through these pages Ken
has been able to bring together many of his fans through the wonder of the internet and that John was one of them.. My condolences go to Bruce and the family.
 
"I'm truly sorry to hear of John's passing. Although I didn't have the pleasure of meeting him, I'm sure I would have liked him, as followers of Ken certainly have to be good people. My sincere sympathy to his family.

Don Downin, Arizona.
"My deepest condolences to the family and friends of John Craig."
Frank Pugno, Illinois"
 
13. 03. 04.    Bruce Craig's Response:
 
"How very nice of you to post the comment about John, and how nice of people to express their condolances. Much appreciated".

==========================

15. 03. 04.    Frank Pugno Writes:
 
Since we put that link on the Ken Griffin site about electronic organs, I have been getting emails from all over the United States asking for information about organs that these people own.  One even asked about the best way to move a Conn organ.
They are sending notes with their problems and I have been able to resolve every one of them!  They write back with thanks. 
This type of website has been needed for a long time.  The Internet has tremendous resources about pipe and Hammond organs, but little about any others.  I even referred somebody to Eric's article about the Wurlitzer reed organs.  They needed
information about them.
 
Comment:
It is nice to know that the web site is working so well, in many ways other than simply talking and learning about Ken and proves that the organ is still a great favourite in homes all over the world.

==========================

N.B. Added to link 3, on Home Page (78RPM Page). A colourful German lable of Ken's Tipi-Tin and Bumblebee On A Bender.
Seen on Ebay:
I came across this unusual label LP but couldn't work out which country it belongs too, but may well be Canadian.........

 

 

28. 03. 04. Record Sales Source:

With thanks to Bruce Craig for sending details of this web site with numerous sales of Ken's records. 78's, 45's and LP's.  Have a browse at:

http://dev.coolforever.com/m/browse.cfm/artist/KEN_GRIFFIN/

LATEST NEWS JULY 2004

After a rather quiet period we received some new and very interesting material during the start to July.
First, Sharon Kopina from Illinois sent me a copy of a 1942 postcard photo of Ken, which has been given a page to itself under new Link 30 on the Home page, where you will se and read the full information. A lady carer from a nursing home in
Swansea, South Wales e-mailed a request as where to find a copy of The Cuckoo Waltz for an old lady who has been looking for a copy over many years. I put her onto a copy and not only made an old lady very happy but the carer, who had
never heard of Ken enjoyed it so much that she too is now looking for Ken's records. I have sent her the internet address as where to get the Magic Organ Moods CD. It is nice to know that our web pages continues to grow and be of such
useful and interesting information to those who find us on the Internet.
Frank Pugno has completed and interesting article, with photos for the Gilbransen Organ and this has been linked to his page at Link 27.
A 'near' future additional 'small' web site I am working on is a Pictorial Family Tree History, that will be added to the Home page. It will be different from the general Family Tree in that while it will show text details of the oldest relations known,
on both sides of the family, they will be linked by photographs of the individuals up to the present day. It is hoped that this may help me increase my family tree and find new direct links via our web site. N.B. The link on the Home page is not
working at present.
 
Update 30th March 2005
I haven't added much to this page over the last year. Most updates have simply been added to the respective pages and noted on the Home Page Links and/or the Latest News Page. It is always interesting hearing from and learning about new
contacts, from all over the World and their shared interest in Ken and his music.
 
The Links on the Home Page have been reformed to rebalance the columns. The Latest News Page is now Link 19.
 
My thanks to Mike McCormick of Oklahoma for the Rondo Christmas Box Set of of three 78's. A very nice addition to my collection. These have been added to the 78 rpm page (Link 3) including a photo of the box cover.
 
My search for further recordings by Ken continues and has grown considerably over the last 3 - 4 months. Firstly, by winning four Rondo and Broadcast 10" LP's on EBay. The quality of these LP's was excellent and have cleaned up virtually
to full CD standards with my track cleaning programme. The LP's are: Rondo RLP-34, RLP-43 and RLP-33, and Broadcast 606. There were actually nine LP's on bid at the time. I had one of them already but lost out on four others. A month or so
later one of them came up on EBay again and I managed to purchase that one 'Rondo RLP-38'. All five LP's now appear in the 10" LP Page (Link 5). An extra point of interest is that I have also added short comments about each track, which you
may also find of interest.
 
My next finds came by the way of Gemm.com when I came across two 78 rpm records 'Love Me, Love Me, Love Me & Mistakes and 'I Feel So Lonely'. These are still in the post as I write. However, I also purchased 'Yah Dear & Ebb Tide' and
'Black Orchid & The Bumpity Bump' 45 rpm Singles and these have now been added to my collection and also to the web pages at Link 4. Yah Dear is a great number very much in the way of You Can't Be True, Dear and Ken uses the same
organ settings. Ebb Tide is already in my collection. Black Orchid intrigued me with it's title but Andy Antonczyk has this in his collection and played it for me and I was surprised to find that it was 'I Saw You' with a different title! Ken often
changed title names to suit the time of year or any particular 'local' venue, but Black Orchid/I Saw You isn't a seasonal type tune. It would be interesting to learn the reason behind these changes. Both Black Orchid/I Saw You and The Bumpity
Bump was composed by Doc Swaine, who was an aquaintance of Ken and makes mention of him in the 67 Melody lane TV Series.
Another purchase from EBay was the 12" LP 'The Cuckoo Waltz'. There were no new tracks on this LP but the quality is excellent, only let down by being produced in 'Electronic Stereo'! This never really works and is a distraction. It hasn't helped
either in that far too much echo/reverb has been added, which I am sure Ken wouldn't have been pleased with. The fine settings for echo and reverb was Ken's personal choice and always added just the right amount to enhance the mood of the
arrangement. I have converted these tracks to 'mono' and it certainly brings back the more 'solid' sound that we are accustomed too, but in some tracks the extra echo/reverb remains a distraction. If this particular LP had been produced in mono,
I am certain that it would probably be the finest quality LP that I have ever heard
.
N.B. Through the kindness of you good people out there, I have already got 99% of Ken's recordings. However, as thankful as I am for this I don't accept these tracks (from mp3's CD's and Tapes) as 'official' part of my collection, therefore these
don't show up in the main directory (web pages) as official part of the collection. This means that I am still looking for those 'original' records, be they 78's,  45 (Singles/EP's) or LP's. One 'single' in particular is 'Once In A while'. I know there is a
vocal version of this, but is there an organ solo arrangement too! Of the LP's that I am looking out for, are: Rondo RLP- 44 and Broadcast 602 and 604.
These need to be in very good condition as I convert all of Ken's records to audio CD's and clean them up on a WAV computer programme, which brings them up to CD quality.
31st March 2005.
Additional information added about Hammond Organs on Frank Pugno's 'Electronic Organs' page at link ----'
26th & 27th of August 2005:

''HAWAIIAN MAGIC'' CD AVAILABLE

My thanks to Byron Young of Iowa for letting me know that a new CD by Ken is on the market. Sony (Japan) have published 'Hawaiian Magic', which includes Andy Nelson on Steel guitar. You will find some internet addresses below.  Check
them out but, also ask at your local dealer and let them know the CD is available.  If WE want to see more Ken CD's made available then WE really do have to let our local Record/CD dealers know that WE are interested.
As this CD has been produced by Sony (Japan) it proves that they are aware of Ken's continued popularity and that Ken's 'Master' recordings are still in store and that further CD's can be produced. However, they do need to know that there
are enough people interested to make their production economical and YOU can help by going out and buying a copy in greater numbers. Don't forget to mention the Web Site and the Ken Griffin Organ Society, including our Annual
Dedication Show.
 
A Google searxch found that Amazone.com and Songsearch.com  are selling it at $36.98 not including postage, which sounds a little overpriced for a single LP conversion! However Frank Pugno writes.....
 
Hi Bill, 
 
I found this and ordered the Hawaiian Magic CD from them in Japan.  I used the lowest delivery and it is only costing me $19.22, the cheapest I found.  That is with shipping.  They gave me 100 points which applied to a discount which
lowered the price, but it was stated in yen, so I don't know what the actual figure was, but my discount was 100 yen.   I saw prices on the net at $36.98 just for the CD, before shipping and handling.  It's only a 33 minute CD.  Just wanted Ken's
fans to know.
  
Frank.
 
What better way could we have of letting Sony (Japan) know that we want more Ken' CD that puying direct from Japan.! I hope that you will all buy a copy.
===============================================
Frank Pugno has added an interesting artticle on the Thomas Organs, which you will find linked on the Electronic Organ Page at link 30.

A KEN TRIBUTE CD

I found this interesting tribute CD to Ken by accident while browsing the internet.. It has been around a while but have never  heard of it. The CD was made by a group called The New Session People and titled ''Famous Songs From Days Gone By''
On Amarillo (ACM-605) CD 1997. It is particularly interesting that they have used a number of Ken's known recordings, plus 'Oh Why Did I Kiss That Girl' all in their own arrangements. Check it out at:

http://www.gravelvoice.com/sessions/griffin.html   You can go to the Home Page at: http://www.gravelvoice.com
 
If you have this CD I would appreciate your comments on it. Thank you.
26. 01. 06

KEN GRIFFIN 'EP' MASTER PRESSINGS FOUND

   

Bob Hutchinson of Ohio came across original Master Pressings and has done an excellent job of cleaning them up and getting them copied onto CD. Full story at Link 36 on the Home Page.

=======================

17. 02. 06. 

LENNY DEE DIES AGE 83

It is sad to report the death of another great old time organist. Like Ken, Lenny played very strict tempo Hammond organ and became famouse with his recording of Plantation Boogie.  One of Frank Pugno's favourites, whom he met a number
of times and became frioends with. Frank has kindly sent an obituary for Lenny, which you will find at Link 30, on the Home Page.

=======================

19. 04. 06.

Thanks to Frank Pugno who found this picture on EBay and passed it on for inclusion on our  web
 pages. Both interesting to see Ken fully backing the Wurlitzer Electrostatic and without his toupie.

 

The 5th Ken Griffin Dedication Show has been set for
Sunday, October 29th 2006

More information at 2006 Dedication Show News

This page will be updated as further news is available and a link page for purchasing tickets via the internet.
Keep looking in and I hope that we will see you there in October.

====================================== 

30th November 2006:

My grateful thanks to Andy Antonczyk for the present of the 1948 Rondo recording of You Can't Be True, Dear and Cuckoo Waltz. I managed to get it home from Chicago as hand luggage, sandwiched between a double LP album by
Sidney Torch, which I received from David Sylvester, as a present and managed to stay in one piece, via the 'L', plane, bus and train, which wasn't bad going. Two very nice additions to my record collection.

 

 

=======================

====================================

Report on the 5th Dedication Show in Chicago, on Sunday 29th October 2006. On Home Page.

Update to  The Sanfilippo Estate after a visit on the 28th October 2006. Nine new pages of pictures added. Linked from the bottom of the present page, at link 33, on Home Page.

Two 78's, the 1949 Rondo arrangements of You Can't Be True, Dear and Cuckoo Waltz added to the 78RPM page at link 3. Record label photos at the bottom of this page.
Tivoli Memories updated. Report on attending the 80th Birthday Celebration party on behalf of Scottish Comedian Johnny Beattie, in Glasgow. (Story & Pictures).
Kittybrewster Memories updated. New sections added, with pictures..

(update 09. 11. 06)

Two new articles! A 'basic' report of the third Dedication Show in Chicago on the 17th of October 2004. Due to a serious illness in the family I haven't been able to give this and the web site much attention over the last 2-3 months.
However, keep looking in as a full report on the Dedication show will appear in due course.
Through the kindness of the Griffin Family, in particular, Kirby and his son, Kerry, at link 32 (Home Page) we have a very nice photo of Ken with his brother (Kirby, and sister Virginia, taken around 1913/14. It is hoped to add more photos
in time, but please respect any copyright due t these photos, thank you.
 
=======================================

Update 14th. April 2007:

LITTLE PRAYERS FOR LITTLE PEOPLE
Recently Wilfred Hosteland emailed to let me know that a rather unique 78 rpm record by Ken was on offer at EBay. He couldn't bid for the record as it was only for sale within the U.S.A. Therefore, I got onto Andy Antonczyk and asked if he would try for it.
However, I should have known that Andy was already on the Ball and was just waiting for the final day to try and grab it. Thankfully, Andy was successful and now owns this interesting Rondo recording.  The record is "Little Prayers For Little People"
and quite different from Ken's usual work in that he both composed and played the music, accompanying the St. Nicholas Boys Choir of Aurora, Illinois. The recording was made in 1950. I was surprised to learn from Sally that she had never heard of this
recording and it was a surprise to her too.

  This 78 represents a great find and a very welcome addition to our overall collection and knowledge of Ken's work.

 


The 78 is in pink, transparent vinyl


The very colourful carboard cover

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On the back of the cardboard cover there is an interesting description about Ken and the making of this recording

 It was really great to listen to it. The recording is clear and very noise free and the children's singing is delightful. Something quite different from Ken. My thanks to Andy for winning the bid and having this unique recording within our group.

Andy has kindly given his consent  to have these recordings on the web site so that you can all enjoy listening to them. You will find the links near the top of the Home Page. Your comments would be appreciated.

Photo scans are also by Andy.  

14. 04. 07.

Sad news of Ken's sister, Virginia's passing (Link 20)

15. 06. 07.

Frank Pugno has added a new page to his Electronic Organ Makes section. An interesting article on the Roger Organs. (Link 31).  

The latest mp3 tracks by Ken are, Jolly Peter and Dreamer of Dreams. On the Home Page. However, the two tracks of 'Litle Prayers For Little People' have been retained and can be found at Link 38, on the Home Page.

This years' Dedication Show is to be held in Boston on the 28th of October. More information and on-line booking can be found on the Home Page.

15. 06. 07. 

A New organ CD source. The Historical Recording Company This is run by Robert Ridgeway who has recently retired from the Sanfillipo Estate where he worked for many years on preserving the mighty Sanfillipo Wurlitzer Organ and
hundreds of mechanical musical instruments and all types of Funfare machines. Robert was in charge of the recording of live performances on the Wurlitzer which many well-known organists played and there is a wealth of fine recordings available.

=======================


"Ken's music just goes on and on"

============================================

And to conclude for now! I have been asked by many where you can purchase Ken's records today! Obviously you can purchase the excellent CD "Skating Time" as advertised on theatreorgans.com and there is another CD called "Organ Moods",
which you can find at www.spaceagepop.com  On the main you need to search out every secondhand and Charity shop in your area, or wherever you come across them. As shown on my record (LP) collection pages, I have recently had excellent
bargains from Internet sales and can fully recommend Tim Barron at worldwidewax@qwest.net and Jim Ukey at : jimeukey@execpc.com These and other dealers can be found on www.gemm.com again simply by typing Ken's name into the search
engine.

Tim is in Phoenix and Jim is in Milwaukee.
LP's vary between $5 and $9. Don't forget to give theatreorgans.com and Ken's Memorial web pages a mention.

You may also like to try www.EBay.com where you can find singles, LP's and boxed sets on auction. Type Ken Griffin into their search engine or Ken Griffin, CD and you should find those pages easily enough. Thanks to Brian Wessel for pointing
these page out to me. Ken's records may also be found on www.EBay.co.uk

Want to see more Ken CD's! The Skating Time CD is marketed by "Collectables Records" who have a web site at www.oldies.com Type Ken's name into the search engine and you will find the page with the CD. There is a box for sending in your
comments. I have already made my request. Adding your own request may be just the encouragement CBS need to look into the possibly of producing more CD's.

Happy Hunting.

=====================================

Please contact me at reidcrcwdr@talktalk.net

"Griffin is something of a phenominum on the organ. His styling of the old German tune "You Can't Be True, Dear" hit the 3,500,000 mark in record sales".

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