These are the 16" lacquers from which LPs and, in some cases, 78s were
From: Malcolm Rockwell
Sent: Wednesday, December 04, 2013 8:34 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] metal parts- was Barr
Aren't lacquer masters destroyed by making the father?
On 12/4/2013 12:56 PM, Roger Kulp wrote:
> I wonder what percentage of the lacquer masters got saved.Wasn't it
> standard policy later on to transfer them to tape?
>> Date: Wed, 4 Dec 2013 10:24:53 -0500
>> From: [log in to unmask]
>> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] metal parts- was Barr
>> To: [log in to unmask]
>> As a friend of AFR Lawrence at the time he was advising Columbia on the
>> metal parts issue, here's what I recall.
>> Larry was asked by Goddard Lieberson to analyze the various matrix series
>> their Bridgeport vaults. He compiled a list of prefixes and determined
>> whach were owned by Columbia and which by others for whom Columbia hade
>> custom pressings. This later group included various 16" metal parts.
>> Planning was underway for the Pittman, NJ plant to which the masters were
>> be moved. Lieberson felt there was no point in building a storage space
>> large enough for all the metal parts if a significant number of them were
>> not Columbia's property to be considered for commercial exploitation by
>> them. Space to hold only company-owned materials was to be included in
>> new building. (This sounds like good management to me.) The new
>> was opened in 1961. At that time, there were very few sound archives in
>> U.S. I believe NYPL didn't want them- Phil Miller was a friend of
>> and mine and knew about this research. Phil was in continual touch with
>> Harold Spivacke, head of the Music Division at the Library of Congress
>> (there was no separate sound section as yet.) Yale's "Historical Sound
>> Recordings Collection" had no space and a tightly defined colleting
>> that put a large, non-classical metal parts accumulation out of bounds.
>> Neither Syracuse nor Stanford had operating sound archives at the time.
>> don't know if the Vitaphone-type masters were offered back to the film
>> companies who owned them but I recall mention that most owners of the
>> non-Columbia stuff could not be traced.
>> Decisions about the fate of then-surviving Columbia-owned masters were
>> within the company. Larry's job was as "indentifier-in-chief."
>> Remember that there was a constant combing for various reusable metals
>> during both world wars in all countries, survival of the country being a
>> fairly important consideration. In my opinion, it is far preferable to
>> able to bitch freely about this loss than to be buying superb copies with
>> Nazi currency.
>> Steve Smolian
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Gray, Mike
>> Sent: Wednesday, December 04, 2013 9:45 AM
>> To: [log in to unmask]
>> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] steven barr - metal parts
>> Without stepping on this thread, here is what I understand to be the
>> of metal parts in company hands:
>> Sony Music - Holds Victor parts + some HMV; disposal of Columbia, et al.
>> metal may be related to the closure of the Bridgeport plant (cf. AFR
>> Lawrence papers at LC)
>> Former EMI - Holds primarily classical parts - most pop metal and most of
>> Columbia was destroyed during World War II. Also had virgin pressings of
>> material. Vault inventory exists. Note: for metal trasnferred for the
>> Recordings reissues of the 1950s, metals were destroyed;
>> Former EMI-France - Holds selected metal parts, primarily 12 inch
>> An inventory was made in 2005;
>> Universal Music France - Donated metal parts to the Bibliotheque
>> nationale -
>> most consist of 45/LP metal, though the donation did include on
>> unknown Edith Piaf side;
>> Former Electrola - All metal destroyed during World War II - company
>> solicited metals from affiliates to restore catalog after 1945;
>> Deutsche Grammophon - Holds ca. 5K parts pre-1914 from the 'Gramophone'
>> catalog - many DG/Grammophon electrical metals survived in the pressing
>> plant but were destroyed thereafter;
>> Warner-Teldec - 78 Telefunken metals currently survive - other metals
>> survive in Japan;
>> Nippon Columbia - Some metals survive.
>> A further note: Because Columbia 78 metal work after ca. 1939, and at
>> Capitol and Decca, were recorded from lacquer session masters, the
>> represent the original recordings and (hopefully!!) are still being
>> P.S. I don't believe the Universal deal with LC set a precedent for
>> donations ...