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"A Porky Prime Cut"

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by ChrisM, Mar 21, 2003.

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  1. ChrisM

    ChrisM Reclusive Enabler Thread Starter

    Location:
    SW Ontario, Canada
    Back in the '70s, I remember a number of British LPs that had "A PORKY PRIME CUT" scratched into the dead wax. Later I read a story about the mastering engineer who used to write this on the records. Of course, for the life of me I can't remember who this was. Anybody know "Porky"?

    I dreaded digging into my LP collection to find an example of this but, lo and behold, the first album I picked out had this in the wax - "A Bunch of Stiffs." This was the Stiff Records various artist collection featuring Nick Lowe, Elvis Costello, Motorhead etc...

    Cheers,
    Chris
     
  2. Sckott

    Sckott Hand Tighten Only.

    Location:
    South Plymouth, Ma
    George Peckham. One of the most wild and nutty cutting engineers. He's done gobs of dance singles, and a lot of the time, he will enscribe his own humour into the A and B sides.....

    Here's a site and quote: http://www.urbanlegends.com/science/lp_grooves.html

    Those mysterious messages explained!
    (by Adrian Deevoy)

    George Peckham, record cutter by appointment, and Porky are one and the same. 'It was a nickname I got in Liverpool during the '60s,' expands Porky in melodic Scouse, ''cos of all the old slagbags I used to chase and the ale I put away.'

    Singer and guitarist with the Brian Epstein-managed '60s beat combo The Fourmost, Peckham left the group to work for Epstein's rather more famous charges when they opened the Apple studio in 1968.

    <snip>


    'The problem the lads were having was, they found they'd record something in the studio and it would sound completely different, really weak. So I said they should do an acetate on vinyl and log the information then transfer the spec when they cut the master.'

    Obviously impressed by this rather technical-sounding jargon, The Beatles offered Peckham the position of chief Apple cutter and Porky was born.

    <snip of teccie record-mastering stuff>


    'Before you make the final positive,' adds Peckham, 'you have to put a matrix number in the middle, because as far as the factory is concerned it's just another disc. Then I sneak on the old Porky Prime Cut...'

    Originally, the 'Porky' was a reference for the pressing plant should they need to contact the cutter.

    'That was the main reason I only ever wrote Porky on The Beatles' records,' Peckham enlarges, 'but I was also scared to put any weird stuff on their records because their fans were that crazy about them that they'd read something into it.'

    <snip about cutting George Harrison's and John Lennon's solo records>


    Soon everyone wanted the now legendary Porky hallmark - preferably replete with cryptic message - on the run-off grooves of their records.

    <snip about other cutting jobs for Led Zeppelin, Genesis, Stiff
    Records...>

    (UL tie-in alert)
    '(Monty Python's) Matching Tie and Handkerchief album was a bit of a bastard,' he chuckles. 'Mike Palin came down and said he wanted to cut this one track with a double groove so you put the record on and depending which groove the needle fell into, you'd get one of two tracks. Ten goes that took. A right bugger of a red eye job. I think I wrote, 'Dear Mum, Please Send Another Cuppa Down, Still Cutting The Python LP, Love Porky XX' on that one.'

    Sckott's note: I should add, his main work was for EMI in the UK and A&M, as well as Island and other smaller EMI labels. Yes, and Apple (UK)
     
  3. ChrisM

    ChrisM Reclusive Enabler Thread Starter

    Location:
    SW Ontario, Canada
    Thanks Sckott! Now I remember that old story about Porky.

    Cheers,
    Chris
     
  4. stereoptic

    stereoptic Anaglyphic GORT Staff

    Location:
    NY
    I don't have my vinyl anymore, but isn't there the inscription "John Loves Yoko" (or something like that) on Let It Be ?

    Here's a site with the inscriptions on Stiff Records

    Also, the original pressing of the Radar (UK) Elvis Costello's This Year's Model had this inscription:

    "Special pressing No. 003 Ring Moira on 434 3232 for your special prize"
     
  5. Sckott

    Sckott Hand Tighten Only.

    Location:
    South Plymouth, Ma
    Yes, that should be him on both. Not totally sure about LIB single, but I'd be willing to bet.
     
  6. The U.S. pressing of Let It Be by United Artists, on the red Apple label and the counterfeit version also on the red Apple label, both have the inscription "Phil + Ronnie" in the run-off groove. I have both copies.
     
  7. sgraham

    sgraham New Member

    Location:
    Michigan
    Awwwwwww.
     
  8. stereoptic

    stereoptic Anaglyphic GORT Staff

    Location:
    NY
    Yeah, that's it!! Thanks miike. Sckott, I'm sorry, I was referring to the LIB album, not 45.
     
  9. sgraham

    sgraham New Member

    Location:
    Michigan
    But those weren't cut by Porky, were they? IIRC they were cut at Bell Sound (with a horrible midrange peak absent on the U.K. LP)
     
  10. Larry Geller

    Larry Geller Surround sound lunatic

    Location:
    Bayside, NY
    Don't forget his other alter-ego: Pecko Duck!

    Best-ever inner grooves were for The Soundtrack For Monty Python & The Holy Grail and Emitt Rhodes' 1st album.
     
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