I am still looking for some discs to fill holes in my film music library
collection. All early libraries had the same tune on both sides and were on
10" or 12" 78 rpm shellac discs.
Here is some information on the libraries as extracted from a series of four
articles I recently wrote about Early Recorded Film Music Libraries for the
Robert Farnon Society in England:-
Victor Pict-Ur Music Library:
(Library recording began in December 1927, with the last recording entry in May
446 ten inch music discs numbered from 0100 to 0545,
95 twelve inch music discs numbered from 01500 to 01594
To seed the library at the start, Victor used material from their Black Label
popular catalog and they also tapped their classical catalogs for some
symphonic potboilers as well.
Also there were:-
26 twelve inch 33 rpm music discs (Overtures and Exits) numbered from OE-1 to OE-26
44 ten inch sound effect discs numbered from SE-1 to SE-44
Brunswick Mood Accompaniment Library:
(No known data establishes the start and end of issues for this library which
is also ca. 1929)
500 ten and twelve inch discs mixed, numbered from 1 to 500
Most of the Brunswick library material was extracted from their regular
consumer catalog although some original recordings were made specifically for
(Started the 0100 series in June 1928 and the last recording entry was in May
126 ten inch discs within a number range of 0101 to 0226
Unfortunately, Gennett mixed a liberal amount of sound effects in this series,
so an exact number of the music issues is difficult to determine until the data
is entered into a computer database and can be sorted and searched. It is
probably safe to assume that about half the total number, or more, within this
series are orchestral recordings that were recorded for library purposes.
The projectionist service that these records saw was brutal to say the least...
constant playing of the music to accompany a specific film would see a disc
worn out after as few as 25 plays. To compensate for this rapid wear, the
libraries would press the same selection on both sides of the disc. Gennett
tried the idea of adding a group of check boxes to the disc label, where the
projectionist was supposed to check a box for every play to keep track of wear.
This did not last long, since wear was so obvious that the projectionists
didn't need to keep track of plays! When the first side of a disc was worn
out, the projectionist would order a replacement disc, and carry on using the
second side until it was worn out, and then begin using the replacement.
There are other later British libraries such as Boosey & Hawkes, FDH, Paxton,
Weinberger, Bosworth, and American libraries such as Video Moods, Langlois(on
LP's), Mutel (on LP's), Capitol "Q" and "Hi-Q"(on LP's) series.
If you have anything like the above, please email me off list and give me the
library name and record numbers... I'll confirm if I have them or not and make
an offer for what I need. I'll make it worth your while if they are numbers I
Any pointers to where some of this material may exist will be gratefully received.
... Graham Newton
Audio Restoration by Graham Newton, http://www.audio-restoration.com
World class professional services applied to tape or phonograph records for
consumers and re-releases, featuring CEDAR's CAMBRIDGE processes.