Who Bought It?|
I wonder if when admiring one of your 78's, you have wondered who bought it originally, and why. You will never know, but it's good to imagine.
The problem is that records (hopefully) come in sleeves, but there is no way of being sure that the sleeve is that in which the record was sold. But there are some labels that were exclusive to particular stores, for example Gamages in London, or Exo in Lancashire. Yet normally you cannot be sure of the origin of most 78s, unless, as occasionally happens, on the actually record is a dealer's stamp.
Such a one is in my left photo. Someone must have wandered in to this store in Burton on Trent around 1933 or 1934 to purchase The Oi song. This was a Zonophone record issued on its continuation label: Were the dealers Regal Zonophone factors, or was this music instrument shop merely selling off unsold stock? Maybe the buyer had originally come in to inspect a splendid piano in the showroom, and got waylaid by the bargain priced records?
The example on the right is different, with the dealer displaying their name around the rim of the label. I wonder what pilgrim tottered in to Hallowell's store in Illinois sometime in 1922 to purchase this disc? He or she must have been feeling low, needing to purchase this blues record. By what stroke of fortune did it cross the Atlantic to end up in my home?
A study of some HMV's paper sleeves from the Thirties.
Sleeves might seem rather a dull subject, and certainly I might have said the same of HMV's 'wrappings.' However at this period they did carry advertisements and indeed photos of some of HMV's other products, which makes a study surprisingly fruitful.
The 1930's light brown paper sleeves had the usual small picture of Nipper with a photo on one side of a recording artist, and another product pictured on the reverse. I can't have discovered all variations, but listed below are ones I have found.
Approx date of sleeve is indicated before the description of the HMV product advertised. Next comes the name of the artist photoed on the reverse with details of the record featured (where applicable).
10 inch size record sleeves
Record Cleaning Pad / Gracie Fields (posing by a HMV Model 157)
1929- Record Cleaning Pad / Vincenzo Bellezza, conductor (C1424) Ballet Music Carmen
Record Cleaning Pad / Elizabeth Schumann (D1632) Die Heiligen drei Konige
1932- Record Cleaning Pad / Frances Day (B4266) Ooh! that Kiss
1934- Record Cleaning Pad / Florence Desmond (B8222) Be Yourself
1937- Record Cleaning Pad / Allan Jones (B8714) Donkey Serenade
1937- Record Groove Indicator / Paul Robeson (B8572) My Way
Speed tester/ Sir Edward Elgar with Model 145 (D1649-50) Wand of Youth Suite No2
Speed tester/ Levitzki (D1775-6) Lizst's Piano Concerto No1
Speed tester/ Yehudi Menuhin (DA1482) Zapateado
Speed tester/ Jussi Bjorling (DB3049) Che gelida manina
1930- Speed tester/ Bert Ambrose with his model 145 (B5814) Cryin for the Carolines
1930- Speed tester/ Lilian Davies (B3472) Eleanor
1931- Speed tester/ Marek Weber (B3726) Gold and Silver waltz
1931- Speed tester/ Peter Dawson (B3812) I Travel the Road
1935- Speed tester / Marek Weber (C2714) Pagliacci Potpourri
Fibre Needle Cutter / Irene Minghinini-Cattaneo with Model W12 (DB1332) Aprile Foriero
Fibre Needle Cutter / Ezio Pinza (DB1088) Possenti Numi
HMV Steel needles / Sir Walford Davies with Model 520 (C1759-1767) Talks on Melody
HMV Steel needles / Jascha Heifetz (DB1246) On wings of Song
HMV Steel needles / Paderewski (DB1273) Valse Brillante
HMV Steel needles / Beniamino Gigli (DB1903) Schubert's Serenade
HMV Steel needles / Edwin Fischer (DB1991-2) Prelude and Fugue
HMV Steel needles / Alfred Cortot (DB3268) Landler
HMV Steel needles / Lawrence Tibbett (DA1383) Myself when Young
HMV Steel needles / Gigli (DA1488) Ave Maria
1930- HMV Steel needles / Joseph Hislop (B3590) Oh Maiden. my Maiden
1932- HMV Steel needles / Stuart Robertson (B4255) Silent Worship
1934- HMV Steel needles / Gracie Fields (B4471) Mary Rose
1934- HMV Steel needles / Derek Oldham (B8266) Love's Old Sweet Song
1936- HMV Steel needles / Paul Robeson (B8482) Song of Freedom
1937- HMV Steel needles / Sandy MacPherson (BD652) Londonderry Air
1930- Record Carrying Case / Raie da Costa with Model 130 (B3500) Fledermaus selection
Record Carrying Case / Chaliapine, on tour (DA993) The Blind Ploughman
Record Carrying Case / Amelita Galli-Curci (DA1095) Clavelitos
1933- HMV Record Albums / Jack Jackson (B6385) I'll Show you Off
1934- HMV Record Albums / Stuart Robertson (B8194) The Fiddler
1935- HMV Record Albums / Jeanette MacDonald (B8320) Ah Sweet Mystery of Life
HMV Record Albums / Dr Malcolm Sargent (Gilbert and Sullivan Operas)
HMV Record Albums / John McCormack (DA958) Mother Machree
HMV Record Albums / Richard Crooks (DA1284) Tell me To-night
HMV Record Albums / Richard Crooks (DA1337) Until
HMV Record Albums / Richard Crooks (DA1578) My old Kentucky Home
HMV Record Albums / Sergei Rachmaninoff (DB1333-7) his Piano Concerto No 2
HMV Record Albums /Arthur Rubinstein (DB3216) Consolation
HMV Record Albums / Yvonne Arnaud (C2455) Valse Caprice
HMV Record Albums / Miliza Korjus (C2664) Voices of Spring
HMV Record Albums / Eugene Goosens (C2916-8, C7480-2) Carnaval
1931- Loudspeaker Model No 5 / Jeanette MacDonald (B3952) Pardon Madame
1931- HMV Pick-Up No 11 / Peter Dawson (B3772) Mountains o' Mourne
1932- HMV Pick-Up No 11 / Ray Noble (B6193) Good Evening
Model 99 / Paderewski (DA1173) Minstrels
1931- Model 99 / Rudy Valee (B5951) Stolen Moments
1932- Model 99 / Jeanette MacDonald (B4210) We will Always be Sweethearts
1929- Model C101 / Dr Malcolm Sargent with Model 165 (B2981) Henry VIII Dances
1930- Model 101 / de Groot (B3489) Cavalleria Rusticana
Model 102 / Artur Schnabel / (DB1685-9) Emperor Concerto
Model 102 / Paul Robeson (C1585) Plantation Songs
Model 102 / Chaliapine (DB1511) Trepak
Model 104 / Stokowski (W929 French) Hungarian Rhapsody No 2
Model 113 / John McCormack
1931- Model 116 / Gracie Fields (B3879) Sally
Model 130 / Peter Dawson (C1313) The Floral Dance
Model 130 / Marcel Dupre (D1765/6) Passacaglia and Fugue
Model 145 / Chaliapine (DB1103) Volga Boatmen
1929- Model 157 /Jack Hylton (B5742) Piccolo Pete
1930- Model 157 / Stuart Robertson (B3322) My Bonnie
Radio Gramophone Model 520/ John Brownlee (E483) King Charles
1930- Radio Gramophone Model 521/ Marcel Wittrisch (B3583) Thine is my whole Heart
1931- Radio Gramophone Model 521/ Paul Robeson (B4052) Folks I used to Know
1931- Radio Gramophone Model 521/ Patrick Waddington (B3865) Time on my Hands
1931- Radio Gramophone Model 521/ Derrickson and Brown (B3805) When your Hair has turned to Silver
Electrical Reproducer No 551 / Yehudi Menuhin (DA1003) La Capriccioso
Twelve Inch Sleeves
The SONGS of BILLY WILLIAMS (1878-1915)
Record Cleaning Pad / Fritz Kreisler (DB1463-4) Sonata in G Major Beethoven
Record Cleaning Pad / Richard Crooks (DA999) Song of Songs
Record Cleaning Pad / Elisabeth Rethberg (DA1115) Senta's Ballad
Speed tester / Arturo Toscanini (Beethoven Symphonies 1,4,5,6,7)
(Note- this was the usual sleeve found in HMV album cases.)
Speed tester / Kirsten Flagstad (DA1512) Lullaby
Speed tester / Herbert Janssen (DA1569) Widmung
Speed tester/ Alfred Cortot (DB2181-4) Schumann Concerto
Speed tester / Arturo Toscanini (DB3541) Silken Ladder Overture
Speed tester / Bruno Walter (DB3607-12) Symphony No9 Schubert
HMV Steel needles / Dr Adrian Boult (DB1764-6) Beethoven's 8th Symphony
HMV Steel needles / Fritz Kreisler (DB2117) Londonderry Air
HMV Steel needles / Leopold Stokowski (D1428) Toccata and Fugue
1930- HMV Steel needles / Maurice Chevalier (B3480) Sweepin the Clouds away
Record Carrying Case / Derek Oldham (B4091) Trees
Record Carrying Case / Frida Leider (D1723-4) Love Duet (Tristan and Isolde)
HMV Record Albums / Alfred Cortot (DA1213) Tarantelle
Model 102 / Yehudi Menuhin (DB2268-70) Mozart Concerto in D Major
Caruso's Voice Reborn (account of this "musical Miracle") / Caruso (DB1802) Vesti la Giubba
Neville Cardus on Horowitz/ Horowitz (DB1486-90) Concerto No3 Rachmaninoff
Reviews of the great man's recorded output.
Wake Up John Bull
One of my favourite BW songs. He gives a spice of satire to the topical question today of Free Trade. These were the disc versions:
Columbia 1645 (recorded c June 1911),
Homophon 929 (recorded c July 1911),
Zonophone 605 (cAugust 1911),
Pathe 8421 (c Sept 1911),
Favorite 352 (c Oct 1911).
There was also an Edison Amberol cylinder which I haven't heard. I have also failed to track down the Homophon version which wasn't reissued after his death, unlike many other BW titles, presumably because its topicality was lost.
Columbia starts with Billy announcing "Now then you Free Traders and Tariff Reformers, here's a song called Wake Up John Bull, and it's time too gentlemen, come along." After the first chorus he comments "he's quite right, too, quite right that Williams, quite right!" Then after the second chorus is repeated comes his speech: "why gentlemen, what did Joe Chamberlain say in '99? 100! (laugh). What did he say also when they asked him his opinion on Poll Tax? He got up from his chair, went down to the Front, while he was up, somebody put a tin tack with the point sticking upwards on the chair. He said 'Gentlemen, I'm in favour of tax.' He went back to his chair, sat down, jumped up very quickly and said, 'Gentlemen, I'm in favour of tax, but I'm not in favour of tax on private property.' So now then you Free Traders and Tariff Reformers all together..." he sings. "That's the line you see, 'What's the Matter with You?' That's what we want to know. I suppose everything'll come right one of these days, but it's a long time coming. Buck up old man, come on John Bull, you've been asleep a long time." (laugh).
Zonophone starts starts similarly but with a more amplified introduction: "Now then you Free Traders and Tariff Reformers, here's some good sound advice from Billy Williams in a song entitled Wake Up John Bull, come on me lads."
His comments between verses are hard to decipher but it begins "you're quite right too Williams, you're quite right."
After the second chorus is repeated, he adds: "Wake Up John Bull's quite right! Gentlemen- what did Joe Chamberlain say in '99? 100! That's right. Quite right Bill (laugh).What did Joe Chamberlain say when they asked his opinion on Poll Tax? He got up from his chair, went down to the Front, while he was down at the Front, somebody put a tin tack with the point sticking upwards on the chair. He said 'Gentlemen, I'm in favour of Poll Tax.' He went back to the chair, sat down (gasps), jumped up very quickly and said, 'Gentlemen, I'm in favour of Poll Tax, but I'm not in favour of tax on private property.'"(laugh).
Favotie starts more simply "Wake Up John, or what's the matter with England? (laugh). His inbetween patter is more brusque too: "quite right too I tell you, silly old fool" (laugh). After the repeat chorus is the most refined of the versions- "Wake up John Bull, I should think so too. Why you've been asleep a long time John. What did Joe Chamberlain say in '99?..... Why 100! And what did Joe Chamberlain say when they asked him his opinion on Poll Tax? He got up from his chair, somebody put a tin tack with the point sticking upwards. He went back to his chair, sat down, jumped up very quickly. He said, 'Gentlemen, I'm in favour of tax, but I'm not in favour of tax on private property.' Poor old Joey!" He sings and adds a final flourish possibly because there was some time to spare- "doesn't that sound a fine song? Got....(?) on that too (laugh). Ah, never mind." (laugh).
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