Lou Ragland is a musician, singer, and record industry veteran. He was born in 1942 in Cleveland and grew up in the Cedar-Central and then Hough areas of the city. The interview covers his childhood in segregated Cleveland and his life in music. He recalls being the first in the neighborhood to have a television set. Ragland discusses his musical influences, especially radio; buying records at Record Rendezvous; experiences being an African American musician amid growing white interest in Black music; Boddie's Records; the O'Jays; his experience of the 1966 Hough uprising; Don King; and thoughts on the modern music industry nationally.
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This collection of interviews covers topics of race relations and rock and roll music in Cleveland between 1952 and 1966. The interviews were conducted by Dana Aritonovich as she researched her thesis – The Only Common Thread: Race, Youth, and the Everyday Rebellion of Rock and Roll, Cleveland, Ohio, 1952-1966 – in pursuit of a Master of Arts in History at Cleveland State University, which was successfully completed in 2010. Interview subjects are music fans, musicians, and disc jockeys from…