did he make mouthpeices or valve oil first

Hi, the mouthpieces were first.

It was Eldridge who turned Diz onto the pieces. In fact, Diz did not use the piece right away. He kept it in his trumpet case and pretty much forgot about it, until one night, before a show, Diz was washing his mouthpiece as he does before every gig and dropped it down the wash basin. He couldn't retrieve it so he had no choice but to use that other piece that had been floating around in his case. That night, after the gig, about 2am, my father got a call from Diz praising him and that's when it all started up. Later, possibly a year? Diz said to my father, something like "you made these mouthpieces that work, how about some lube that works!?" ANd so.... after 18 months of R&D, Diz put his OK on the oil and that was when the oil began, so yes, the oil came after. In the 80's it REALLY took off like a rocket. This and among other major changes, in 1980 he was diagnosed with 5% of his liver at 56 years old, this and his mother passed away at 99 and it was a sort of wake up call to smell the roses and thus he buried the custom mouthpiece work, as far as non-special clients. Normal mouthpiece production came to an abrupt halt. It was because of the success of the oil that allowed him to make that decision. (we were selling about 1500 bottles a day(some days double) at this time) He was also tired of , as he put it, "solving everyone else' problems". And saved his brain for those that had been faithful in the earlier years.

He then moved his family from "the projects"(NOT THE SAME PLACE THAT HE GREW UP AND WHERE HIS SHOP WAS) & built a disney type back yard for his youngins. I was 21 when he died, so all those teenage years I wasn't filling bottles I spent digging holes in the back yard, burying ROCKs(actually some were HUGE boulders) that stuck out even a half inch for he feared that his other two sons, that were very young, Joe was 3 in 80(b.1977) and Al the 2nd came in 1982, that they might fall and crack their heads open, so that was a huge priority. I clearly remember that's what I was doing on my 16th birthday. My friends all came over and we were in the back yard digging. No one could believe me made me stay there to dig so we made a fun
day of it. (it wasn't just for them, I had a full sized pro batting cage, like the redsox had, in fact, we got it from them).

But 1980 was a big year for change. This same year, his two kids from my mother's previous marriage quit the trumpet when mom said it was ok if they wanted to(they had turned 17 & 18 so they were officially adults. She told her husband, "you have your own kid, make him into a musician" couldn't believe this, neither could I, as they were incredible players. They could triple toung "buglars holiday" incredibly fast.. after they quit or about that same time...., I had won the local community auditions talent bonanza(it was the biggest show of it's type the area had seen, past/present, ( I was 12, 1980) and that's when he put me in charge of the company. He felt since I was the only person who desired to be a musician, this and the fact he thought I was the fastest pianist he'd ever seen, (I could play "flight of the bumblebee" faster than Perlman could play it on violin, the instrument for which it was created, and I could play "dizzy fingers" behind my back, but dad's thing was SPEED, just like the oil FAST, and "used by the "fastest" brassmen etc was his ad),..... I guess at this point that I had made it to pro-level and earned the position, he was actually relieved, as he felt it extremely important to have a musician running his music company, in his own words "it takes a musician to know a musician". And I find this very true. Regardless what instrument you play, if you are a musician you know what other musicians go through. You have to be one to know.

We thought he had months to live from that diagnosis in 1980. But he made it to 1989. It wasn't easy, pretty much each day was a gift. The last project he was working on was an irrigation water saving machine for drought ridden parts of the world to stop famine.