The Company You Keep: The Epic Story of Zildjian Cymbals and Popular Music in America

Welcome to a very special episode of Deeper Digs in Rock, a production of the Rock N Roll Archaeology Project. This episode is a joint effort, created by the RNRAP team with the support of the great folks at the Avedis Zildjian Company - makers of Zildjian Cymbals.

The Zildjian story spans two continents and four centuries, but at its essence, it is an American story. So the show begins with the story of Zildjian’s move to America, in the closing years of the 1920s. This old-but-new American company has only been operating a few weeks when the Great Depression hits, but Zildjian somehow manages to survive, and eventually, to prosper.

Then to the origin: 1618, in what is now known as the city of Istanbul, Turkey. A young metalsmith has developed a secret bronze formula that produces high-quality cymbals with unique musical properties. The Sultan is impressed, commissions his work, and grants him a name.

Maker of cymbals: Avedis Zildjian. 

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