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Hi, Brewster,

The first image is the same as that about which I'm inquiring.  Rob Bamberger is on the case and I'll hear from him Monday.  

One fellow who would know, Jeff Wheeler, ex pres IAJRC has a disconnected telephone and, from our last conversation, may have died.  

What is interesting about this item is that the address on the object conflicts with known, published data.  That you have one in your files implies that mine is not a one-off but may be the first pressing.

I hope to hear from Alan Sutton on this topic.

Thanks for your help.

Steve

-----Original Message-----
From: Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List <[log in to unmask]> On Behalf Of Brewster Kahle
Sent: Friday, February 4, 2022 11:37 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Commodore Records 526 Strange Fruit


Steve--

These are the 3 on the Internet Archive if this is helpful:

https://archive.org/search.php?query=title%3A%22Strange%20Fruit%22%20AND%20collection%3Ageorgeblood%20AND%20creator%3A%22billie%20holiday%22

There are high rez tiffs of the center of the center of the disks if that is helpful:

https://archive.org/download/78_strange-fruit_billie-holiday-and-her-orchestra-sonny-white-lewis-allan_gbia0066462a/78_strange-fruit_billie-holiday-and-her-orchestra-sonny-white-lewis-allan_gbia0066462a.tif

-brewster


On 2/3/22 11:30 AM, Steve Smolian wrote:
> Has anyone detailed information on the Commodore label/ pressing sequence?
> I've read Alan Sutton's article on Commodore in his 'American Record Companies, etc." book.
>
> I have three copies of Holiday's "Strange Fruit" on Commodore labels of slightly differing designs.
>
> All have the matrix number in Columbia's typeface of the period.
>
> Two, and others I've seen, are on the tomato red label.
>
> Both my tomato red examples have the address 136 E. 42d Street (Sutton 
> gives mid 40s- early 50s.)
>
> One has two lines of perimeter print along the bottom. The end of the 
> top line says Electrically Recorded 4-39 (matrix wp 24403 B # 
> (handwritten) and 2 (machine stamped) ) and is 0089 thick
>
> In the same place, another has 2 blank spaces followed by .39  (matrix 
> wp 24403-B and N (thin line, hand drawn) and is .0070 thick
>
> Others I've seen are variations of the above.
>
> These appear to be Decca pressings, without the Columbia shininess.
>
> BUT
>
> I also have one that is
>
> 46 West 52d Street (Sutton gives late 40s- early 50s)
>
> and gives the date as April, 1939, not 4-39 (Matrix WP 24403 B and has 
> a "6' at the 10 o'clock position, under the outside edge of the 
> label., all in Columbia's typeface)
>
> The label is maroon. The record is 0093 thick.  It looks and feels like a good shellac prewar Columbia pressing.
>
> ARC was sold to CBS in Jan, 1939, and Commodore lost its pressing arrangement.
>
> It begins again in November, 1939, pressing with Decca.
>
> TRYING TO SORT THIS OUT
>
> In the later 1930s, the Columbia Bridgeport plant, operated by ARC,  made pressings that were .0093 thick.
>
> Postulation:  The first pressings of "Strange Fruit" were made by ARC with a maroon label on shellac that is .0093 thick, sometime in  1939.
>
> Argument against: The label uses a later address for Commodore.
>
> Is it possible that Commodore had more than one location, ,say one for retail and one for stock and shipping, and the latter address was 46 West 52 St.?
>
> Confused,
>
> Steve Smolian