1959: Today at the 30th Street Studio

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by DMortensen, Jan 15, 2019.

  1. DMortensen

    DMortensen Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Seattle, WA USA
    Correction:

    The duplicate link to "It's Murder For Roberta" should have been:

     
  2. DMortensen

    DMortensen Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Seattle, WA USA
    February 14 (Saturday):

    One session today, from 10am-1pm. Singer was Little Cindy Saul (professionally known as Little Cindy), with Jimmy Carroll and His Orchestra, which consisted of:

    Leader:
    Jimmy Carroll
    Contractor and Bass:
    Frank Carroll
    Guitar:
    John Pizzarelli
    Al Caiola
    Drums:
    Herbert Lavelle
    Piano:
    Nick Perito

    Songs recorded were
    He's Around
    It Must Have Been The Easter Bunny

    Little Cindy does not seem to have substantial biographical information anywhere; what I've been able to gather is that she was something like 7 or 8 years old and was discovered or promoted by a Virginia country music DJ named George Donald McGraw, also known as Don McGraw and several other similar names, and their first record was a Christmas song. The 45 was titled "George Donald McGraw Introduces Little Cindy - Happy Birthday, Jesus", which was much later included on the John Waters Christmas Album. That should give you an idea of its character.

    That song, plus the first song recorded today, He's Around (When Everybody Turns You Down) were first put out on George Don's own record label in Salem, VA, perhaps called Mart Records, then apparently it turned into the Salem label (or perhaps the other way around, I can't tell). Here is the label of that version:

    [​IMG]

    That must be a drawing of George Don, forward and reversed.

    Here is the same song on the Columbia label and what is presumably the product of this session, since it has the Easter Bunny song on the reverse:

    [​IMG]

    I left it smaller since there's much less information on it.

    Interestingly, Columbia also put out the Happy Birthday Jesus song as a single

    [​IMG]

    again with He's Around (etc.) as the flip side.

    [​IMG]

    Note the two different catalog numbers for the two He's Around's.

    Weird. Why would they do that?

    I also found a Patti Page version of Happy Birthday Jesus produced by Bob Johnston on Columbia, so it must have sold.

    Almost finally for this topic, here is the original Salem 45 jacket showing Littler Cindy in a cute sincere pose

    [​IMG]

    That is five pictures, so I'm not going to show the 45 jacket for the Easter Bunny/He's Around record, but it is much more primitive than this one.

    Here's a bonus Youtube link to the Easter Bunny song so you can have a flavor of what we're dealing with here:



    That took some finding and I hope it was worth it.

    Funny how this year is going to go from Little Cindy and Polly Bergen to some serious Miles Davis, Charles Mingus, Duke Ellington, Dave Brubeck, and more. That studio had some range.

    McGraw went on to be credited for the rockabilly song Woo Hoo, which was used in the end credits for the John Waters' movie "Pecker", as well as in Quentin Tarantino's "Kill Bill" and numerous other TV commercials and other uses.

    Woo-Hoo (Rock-A-Teens song) - Wikipedia

    Geez, that was done in 1959, too; could it have been on Columbia?

    Nope, it seems to have been on Doral, a division of Mart Records, and Roulette, which may have been RCA (the single was pressed at RCA according to Discogs).

    I do remember when that came out...
     
    John DeAngelis and chilinvilin like this.
  3. DMortensen

    DMortensen Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Seattle, WA USA
    February 15 (Sunday):

    There were no sessions in the reports today.

    I had some time the other day and looked at my notes from the appointment books, which I have already mentioned were different than these AFM reports I'm quoting from in this thread. There were LOTS more sessions there than here, but that reconciliation will have to take place another time as this is eating up enough of my hours.

    FYI.
     
    chilinvilin and lukpac like this.
  4. DMortensen

    DMortensen Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Seattle, WA USA
    February 16 (Monday):

    Only one session today and it's at the Hotel St. George in Brooklyn, with Leonard Bernstein conducting the New York Philharmonic. Contractor was our friend and forum contributor J. De Angelis (yes, I know, but are you absolutely certain of your whereabouts in 1959? How many of us REALLY know what we were doing that long ago?).

    It was a 4 hour call but for unspecified times.

    They recorded Rimsky-Korsakov's Scheherazade Op. 35 - Symphonic Suite

    which I think resulted in this album

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Gee, you can almost read that, and it was the clearest version I could find (these are all from Discogs).

    Here's the labels, for some color

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    or not.

    There are no personnel shown on the report, but the album and other information say that John Corigliano is the violin soloist, and it turns out that he was concertmaster for the NY Phil for 23 years, 1943-66. His son with the same name is a noted composer.

    Other information says that John McClure was the producer.

    This NPR story about the Scheherazade story as well as the history of the musical composition has a couple of excerpts of this specific recording that you can listen to.
     
    John DeAngelis and lukpac like this.
  5. DMortensen

    DMortensen Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Seattle, WA USA
    I should point out that I am not picking and choosing from the Reports which sessions are at 30th St or the St. George and leaving out others. I grabbed all NYC reports and a selected few from Columbia Hollywood, Nashville, Chicago, New Orleans, and a few selections from others like the Philadelphia Orchestra there, Boston Symphony there.

    During the period of this thread I don't think I've skipped anything that was at a location other than the two mentioned in the thread. Which seems curious, that there were so few other ones. FWIW.
     
    John DeAngelis and lukpac like this.
  6. stereoguy

    stereoguy Its Gotta Be True Stereo!

    Location:
    Brooklyn
    Dan,

    Would you have any info on what was recorded on Nov 5th, 1959?

    Thanks
    Stereoguy
     
  7. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    I remember being part of one of those days of research, with me handling part of 1962 as you were handling '59. I remember vividly as if it were yesterday, apprising you of a certain Tony Piano . . .
     
    DMortensen likes this.
  8. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    I wonder, in those years, who printed LP label backdrops for Columbia on the East Coast - would it have been Ivy Hill Lithograph? Keystone Printed Specialties (by rotary letterpress or flexographic?)? I doubt it was Queens Litho . . . on the West Coast, no doubt Bert-Co. In the 1955-62 6-eye era, Masterworks' label tint looked almost like PMS 43o or PMS 431. I know by the late 1960's latter-day 2-eye era, it was either PMS 424 or 425. Those were 'cool grey'. They didn't get to warm grey until the 1970 redesign.
     
    DMortensen likes this.
  9. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    11 violins, 2 violas and 2 celli. I have lists of various string combos for pop recordings as recommended by Nelson Riddle and Don Sebesky. 8/2/2, 10/2/2, 10/3/3 and 12/3/3 are among the more common. Tony Bennett sessions at 30th Street in the final years of his first Columbia run (1950-72) usually had 16/4/4.

    As for the five saxes, seeing other sessionographies of other artists and big band leaders it usually consisted of two alto saxes, two tenor saxes and one baritone sax. Three trumpets and three trombones are usual in such sessions. Who of the three guitarists would have done the "choke" note in tandem with the (brush) snare drum on the '2' and '4', as common on pop recordings in this era? (As I'd said, Al Caiola's name does sound similar to Al Di Meola's . . . )
     
  10. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    Ah, yes, Bridgeport label typesetting, fonts later transferred to their newer Pitman, NJ plant. My most preferential of all the collections of typefaces in a print shop viz record labels. Looking at this label, the typefaces are:
    - 8 (for 'NONBREAKABLE'), 10 (for artist) and 12 (for album title) point Erbar Bold Condensed
    - 18 point Erbar Light Condensed (for '1' and '2' at right)
    - 10 point Gothic Condensed No. 1 (for cat. # and 'S I D E')
    - 7 point Gothic No. 4 (for matrix #'s)
    - 6 point Gothic Condensed No. 4 (for everything else)

    Mr. Wilson and Columbia doubtless go way back. He was one of their charter artists at the point Columbia's 'red label' pop line was first introduced in September of 1939 - along with the likes of Mr. Goodman, Kay Kyser, Gene Krupa, and Horace Heidt.
     
    DMortensen likes this.
  11. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    It was around February 1959 that Columbia began having such stamped numbers stacked closer together in a 14 character per inch layout, more or less curved to match the deadwax area. They had used that font (which has elements of Lightline Gothic and News Gothic nestled in them) since February 1952; before that it was used (in a 6 o'clock position) by RCA Victor in the deadwax of their 78's (as they would through 1954 or so). Besides Columbia, the only other major company to use that type in their runouts was Mercury Sound Studios beginning around 1959 or 1960, and continuing up to 1975 by which the mastering division had been spun off into an independent entity, Masterdisk. Columbia's use of this type would continue right to the end of 1983.
     
    DMortensen likes this.
  12. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    Those label fonts are from The Bert-Co Enterprises of Los Angeles, thus pointing to a Hollywood pressing. I'm not too keen on those typefaces, frankly. I know them, but I'm not too keen on 'em. They are . . .
    - 10 point Trade Gothic Bold Condensed (for title, artist credit and cat. #) with Condensed (for each movement)
    - 8 point Trade Gothic Bold Condensed (for 'NONBREAKABLE')
    - 6 point Metroblack No. 2 (for composer name)
    - 12 point Gothic Condensed No. 2 (for 'SIDE')
    - 18 point Gothic Condensed No. 21 (for '1' and '2')

    Here, by contrast, is Bridgeport's:
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
    DMortensen likes this.
  13. DMortensen

    DMortensen Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Seattle, WA USA
    Yes, but only from the AFM sheets. As W.B. points out, I did transcribe the studio appointment book for 1959 while we were there working, but I only did it a few days and only got as far as August. Also I don't trust that transcription since I look at it and seem to see multiple things booked for the same place at the same time, on at least one occasion.

    Since November is quite a bit ahead of February and I don't want to get into replying with specific information about random dates, I'll generally decline to do that unless there's a really good reason. Doing this sequentially is quite enough work for me.

    What are you looking for?
     
  14. stereoguy

    stereoguy Its Gotta Be True Stereo!

    Location:
    Brooklyn
    Dan....Nov 5 1959 is my birth date, AND I was born just a few blocks away from the 30th street studio. Thats why I was curious. I understand your comments tho.
     
    DMortensen likes this.
  15. DMortensen

    DMortensen Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Seattle, WA USA
    Congrats. Give me some time, today is a busy day as you'll shortly see.

    Edit 2: Won't it be more special if I post it on your birthday?
     
  16. stereoguy

    stereoguy Its Gotta Be True Stereo!

    Location:
    Brooklyn

    Of course! and Thank you. :)
     
    DMortensen likes this.
  17. stereoguy

    stereoguy Its Gotta Be True Stereo!

    Location:
    Brooklyn

    LOL......Dan, thats a LONG way away!! :)
     
  18. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    Look, I know how eager you are, but you know . . . rules are rules, and I have just as much respect as the O.P. for this thread for the process which is not only sequential and chronological, but also linear.
     
  19. DMortensen

    DMortensen Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Seattle, WA USA
    February 17 (Tuesday) I: 10am-1pm:

    Ha!

    After just writing that I didn't trust my note taking of one information source as opposed to the photos of another information source, now I look at the photos for this day and there are 5 sessions today, 3 (4?) of which were at the same time in the same place, which could not be true.

    So I'm going to make several posts, one for each time period, and perhaps some day we'll work out what was really when.

    First in the archive papers is Mitch Miller with Jimmy Carroll and His Orchestra, doing a bunch of what I assume are "Sing Along With Mitch" songs:

    Medley: Pop! Goes The Weasel
    Medley: Oh, Susanna!, Camptown Races
    Blue Tail Fly
    Medley: Billy Boy, The Bear Went Over The Mountain
    When Johnny Comes Marching Home
    Listen To The Mocking Bird
    Aunt Rhody (The Old Gray Goose)
    Red River Valley

    Musicians were:

    Leader:
    Jimmy Carroll
    Contractor and Bass:
    Frank Carroll
    Guitar:
    Al Caiola*
    John Pizzarrelli
    Barry Galbraith*
    Drums:
    Ted Sommer
    Harmonica:
    Eddie Manson
    Accordion:
    Charles Magnante

    "*These two men played on only one session. All other men played on both sessions."

    This last part refers to the fact that there was an otherwise identical session later, as you'll see shortly.

    The album from this and the next related session was indeed "Folk Songs Singalong with Mitch and the Gang", and looked like

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Anybody recognize the kid? That would be awesome if it was somebody we knew.

    I hoped that W.B. would be interested in commenting on the labels and am glad you are, so here's a couple more

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    And how could you sing along without lyrics? So they put them inside somehow, in what looks like a gatefold. It doesn't seem to be a double album.

    [​IMG]

    That's just half, but there's five pictures and you get the idea.

    Simultaneously, there was another David Tudor piano session with him recording two more of Stockhausen's Klavierstucke, Nr. 7 +11.

    We couldn't find the resulting album from the other sessions and I'm not going to try again now.

    On to the second set of conflicting sessions.
     
    John DeAngelis likes this.
  20. DMortensen

    DMortensen Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Seattle, WA USA
    When you get to be older you'll realize how soon it is and the time will go by quickly.

    You should have something to look forward to, anyway....
     
  21. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    That is definitely a West Coast pressing with Bert-Co fonts. The small type was 6 point Gothic Condensed No. 4B, a more compressed version of the Gothic Condensed No. 4 font used by Bridgeport. Speaking of which, here's their version:
    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    I have a personal reason to mention this, as one year when I was in the equivalent of grade school, they had the stereo issue (CS 8118) - a Bridgeport pressing, of course.

    Here, for 'FOLK SONGS', that was typeset in 12 point Gothic No. 16 (a Franklin Gothic lookalike which was in tandem with 18 point Gothic No. 13 - as it also was over at the Bert-Co typesetting shop; its first use by Bridgeport was in August 1957 when the yellow-label '4-eye' 45 label was inaugurated), 'SING ALONG WITH MITCH' in 12 point Erbar Bold Condensed, artist name in 10 point Erbar Bold Condensed, 'NONBREAKABLE' in 8 point Erbar Bold Condensed, side numbers in 18 point Erbar Light Condensed, cat. # and 'S I D E' in 10 point Gothic Condensed No. 1 (which use dated to the 1910's at Bridgeport, was moved along with these other fonts to Pitman in the 1964-65 period, and was last used by them in August 1967), matrix numbers in 7 point Gothic No. 4 (also dated to the 1910's, wider capital letters inaugurated in 1920-21, and used right up to the end of hot metal Linotype typesetting there in November 1974), and the ever-redoubtable 6 point Gothic Condensed No. 4 (which was last used by Columbia for label copy in February 1968) for the track selections - and see how they wrapped song selections differently from Bert-Co's typesetters.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2019
    DMortensen likes this.
  22. DMortensen

    DMortensen Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Seattle, WA USA
    February 17 (Tuesday) II:

    According to the report, the Mitch Miller session continued from 2-5pm.

    According to a separate report, Sammy Kaye and His Orchestra recorded from 2:30-5:30pm both today and tomorrow.

    Songs recorded were:

    Roses From The South
    Kiss Waltz
    Wine, Woman(sic) and Song
    Voices of Spring
    Die Fledermaus
    Sweetheart Waltz
    Blue Danube
    Artists' Life
    Vienna Woods
    Emperor Waltz
    Vienna Life
    Thousand and One Nights

    That's twelve songs in six hours, or 1.5 times the standard expectation of four songs in three hours. So, quick work.

    Musicians for the sessions were:

    Leader:
    Sammy Kaye
    (No Contractor listed)
    Trumpet:
    Luke Procopio
    John Bonafede
    John Amarosa
    Trombone:
    Larry O'Brien
    Arthur Kelly
    Sax:
    Edward Lucas
    Phil Canicola
    Jerry Mercer
    Sherman Kahn
    John McAfee
    Bass:
    Marvin Wittstein
    Piano:
    Ted Auletta
    Accordion:
    Johnny LaPadula
    Drums:
    John Blowers
    Guitar:
    Mundell Lowe

    I'm not clear about the band quantities that W.B. was talking about, but these are what they are.

    And here is the album and labels (man, Discogs is really a GREAT site!):

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Edit: Here's the full scratchy album on Youtube:



    On to the final session of the day.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2019
  23. DMortensen

    DMortensen Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Seattle, WA USA
    This all seems really definitive for those interested in typefaces and label printing. Thank you!
     
  24. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    A lot of those typefaces are very much 'lost' fonts these days. All the more reason to bring them up.
     
    DMortensen likes this.
  25. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    That was a Canadian pressing, made by Quality Records Limited for Columbia Records of Canada, Ltd. They pressed for the label - alternating between these fonts and, from 1962-3 onwards, label copy from Bridgeport or Pitman - until 1971 when Canadian Columbia opened their own plant adjacent to their Don Mills, Ontario headquarters.

    This is so rare that on Discogs, other than a promo, there is no chronicling of a U.S. pressing. Here it is:
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
    The timing (at label left) as opposed to the time of each song is instructive. There is, on a 6-song-per-side album, a 25-second gap between the total tracks and what the timing is listed. Those assembling each song for a master tape of an album at Columbia (no doubt on metal reels, thus no damage to the sound that comes with those whose tape is exposed "pancake" style) usually put 5 seconds (on a 15 ips master tape, that length would be 6' 3") of blank in-between tracks in those days, and well into the early to mid-1960's. (Of course, by the time we get to the era of Bob Dylan and Simon & Garfunkel, all that goes out the window.)
     
    DMortensen likes this.

Share This Page