"The Cincinnati USA Music Heritage Foundation’s mission is clear – let it be known that Cincinnati is one of the most important American cities to the history of popular music.” (CityBeat, 12/23/09)

“Now Cincinnati is rediscovering a landmark it barely knew it had.” (The New York Times on the Cincinnati USA Music Heritage Foundation’s partnering efforts with Cincinnati organizations and the Rock Hall of Fame to honor King Records, 1/30/09)

 “One of fifty reasons why real music fans were lucky to live in Cincinnati in the ‘00s.”  (CityBeat, 12/23/09)

Honored in “Arts highlights of 2009” and “Arts highlights of 2010” lists in Cincinnati Enquirer. (1/10, 1/11)


The Vision: 
The Cincinnati USA Music Heritage Foundation will be an internationally acclaimed organization that serves to preserve and promote the region’s rich music heritage and culture to the nation and the world.

The Mission:  The mission of the Cincinnati USA Music Heritage Foundation (CUSAMHF) serves to elevate the region's rich music heritage and the contributions of the past, present, and future music community through preservation, education and celebration.

Board of Directors – Officers & Founders:

Officers:  Marvin Hawkins, President; Vice President, Sean Rugless; Patti Collins,  Treasurer; Elliott V. Ruther, Secretary.

Board of Directors: Patti Collins, Marvin Hawkins, Sean Rugless, Elliott V. Ruther, Kelly Thomas, Ed Vardiman

Founders:  Darren Blase, Christopher Burgan, Raymond “Buz” Buse, Patti Collins, Russell Driver, Marvin Hawkins, Sean Rugless, Elliott V. Ruther.

Godfather: Bootsy Collins

History:  Since its formation on December 3, 2007, CUSAMHF has become an active, important member of the region’s arts community.  Relying on the hard work and dedication of board members and volunteers, and despite having no staff, CUSAMHF has managed to organize numerous events, raise awareness of Cincinnati’s music legacy through press coverage and grassroots organizing, and preserve local music landmarks.  CUSAMHF has done this by aggressively pursuing partners in both the public and private sectors to help advance the Foundation’s mission.

In addition to the various programs and events that CUSAMHF has sponsored, the Foundation moved into and began renovating the former Herzog Studio space at 811 Race Street in 2010.  From 1945 to 1955 Herzog Studio was one of the premier recording studios in the world.  It is Cincinnati’s first professional recording studio, led by Earl T. Herzog, a WLW engineer who worked at Crosley Square.  Preceding Nashville Row, Herzog’s operation and practices were used as a model for the first Nashville recording studios like Castle.  At Herzog, Cincinnati’s first professional R&B recordings were made, along with landmarks in bluegrass and rockabilly.  In 1948 and 1949, Hank Williams recorded “Lovesick Blues” and “So Lonesome I Could Cry” at Herzog.  In fact, the Herzog space is the last standing structure where Hank Williams recorded professionally.  In addition to Hank Williams, Patti Page, Rosemary Clooney, and early King Records artists also recorded at Herzog Studio.

A Bootsy baby!