Print

Print


I wonder what percentage of the lacquer masters got saved.Wasn't it standard policy later on to transfer them to tape?
 
Roger
 
> 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 in 
> their Bridgeport vaults.  He compiled a list of prefixes and determined 
> whach were owned by Columbia and which by others for whom Columbia hade made 
> custom pressings.  This later group included various 16" metal parts.
> 
> Planning was underway for the Pittman, NJ plant to which the masters were to 
> 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 the 
> new building.  (This sounds like good management to me.)   The new facility 
> was opened in 1961.  At that time, there were very few sound archives in the 
> U.S.  I believe NYPL didn't want them- Phil Miller was a friend of Larry's 
> 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 misson 
> that put a large, non-classical metal parts accumulation out of bounds. 
> Neither Syracuse nor Stanford had operating sound archives at the time.  I 
> 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 made 
> 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 be 
> 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 status 
> 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 pop 
> material. Vault inventory exists. Note: for metal trasnferred for the Great 
> Recordings reissues of the 1950s, metals were destroyed;
> Former EMI-France - Holds selected metal parts, primarily 12 inch classical. 
> 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 previously 
> 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 lacquers 
> represent the original recordings and (hopefully!!) are still being 
> preserved.
> 
> 
> Mike
> 
> 
> P.S. I don't believe the Universal deal with LC set a precedent for future 
> donations ...