There is another way to look at it. Those work-parts were left alone so
preserved from repeated use. They didn't suffer as the Decca Ring Cycle
apparently did (an assumption there as to why that's all worn out). Once a
really good release format came along, they were rested and ready. Also, if
the originals had been lost, there were lots of secondary sources. The pity
is it took so long, and buyers were denied superior product for years.
Treating the 2-track mix as the "master" also makes sense given the
occasional disaster that had to be addressed. The patching of stereo masters
with bits from mono takes points to that. I'm thinking of Munch La Mer and
Reiner Symph Domestica; there may have been more or different examples.
Were the originals edited? Or was that left to the mix down masters? Again,
posterity might have been served by not cutting up the originals. More work
for Jon and Mark, et al. Hats off to them in any case. The complete Reiner
box is like a gift from heaven.
From: Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List
[mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Tom Fine
Sent: Wednesday, March 26, 2014 6:17 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Fwd: [ARSCLIST] "Why Vinyl Is the Only Worthwhile
Way to Own Music"
As far as I know, the only RCA Living Stereo issues that are all from
first-generation tapes are the BMG SACD/CD discs. Jon Samuels and Mark
Donahue will correct me if I'm wrong, but my understanding is that all of
the 3-track session tapes were mixed to 2-tracks, which were then edited
into "master" tapes. And, a third generation dub was often used to cut LPs.
For the earliest stereo recordings, the ones made on the RCA 2-track machine
at 30IPS, at least the earliest stereo LPs were cut from first-generation
tapes. Later LPs may have been cut from dubs (they must have been, because
the first generation tapes were still in good playing condition 50 years