From: Patent Tactics, George Brock-Nannestad
It is reasonable to use the term "catalogue" to refer to a description of a
particular collection (and let us just discuss shellacs - they give plenty of
problems). Preferably the description should be to a level that when
comparing a disc held at a different location, it would not be necessary to
see the actual object held by the particular collection.
A discography usually relates to commercial records, and several versions of
the actual sound may exist somewhere, as an original negative (father), a
positive (mother), a stamper (son), or a pressing. Or a dubbing! For each of
the above family there may be a take that is different from another take. And
we know that a popular record that was made by means of a stamper made from
the n-th time from a mother will have a more "worn" sound than an unworn
record from an early stamper. Markings "in the wax" (although it was made in
metal) will tell you such things. Label varieties may further date the
So, if the holder of a particular record wants to completely identify his
copy, he or she will need quite a lot more information than that which is
normally found in catalogues or discographies.
Several useful indicators may be mentioned: the outer and inner diameters of
the recorded area may indicate dubbings and alternative takes (alternative to
those already known). The groove profile, run-in and run-out grooves, and not
the least: the type face or handwriting used for stamping the matrix number.
These are physical markings that usually go unmentioned, although many
collectors know about them. Rumble may identify a recording machine, as may
the groove pitch, as I have mentioned before on this list.
In February 2005 there was an officially supported meeting of Scandinavian
discographers and researchers with suitable information (including a
contribution from me, presenting a systematic approach to the physical
markings), as well as users of such information in Stockholm, and a report of
the meeting will be made available on the website www.ljudochbildarkivet.se.
Entering all this information into a catalogue or discography is strictly an
afficionado task, however the community at large would be helped tremendously