I've worked a lot with Emersons in the LOC's collection, and while we don't have many duplicates of the same record so that I could aurally compare different takes, I did notice that the matrix information (e.g. 3391-1) was usually matched by the known discographical information. Which, of course, only means that previous discographers have taken that matrix info to be take-number information, but that may count for something.
Furthermore, for the acoustic era I don't see anything odd about one copy have 2 first takes and another having a second/third takes. I've seen similar situations on many labels in the acoustic era; Victor, Columbia, Edison, etc.
Until something definitive comes along saying otherwise, I think it would be safest to assume that the matrix information refers to the take number.
>>> David Seubert <[log in to unmask]> 6/19/2009 1:42 PM >>>
I'm de-duping a stack of 9" Emerson discs and in the dead wax there is
what appears to be a matrix followed by a take number. However, there
are too many different take numbers for me to believe they are take
numbers. For example, I have one copy of #9118 with 3391-1/3397-1 and
another with 3391-2/3397-3. Are these stampers? Does anybody know how to
distinguish alternate takes on Emerson discs?
David Seubert, Curator
Performing Arts Collection
University of California
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-9010
Tel: 805-893-5444 Fax: 805-893-5749
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