Carter Family Fake Stereo.....WHY????

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by sandmountainslim1, Sep 30, 2015.

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  1. sandmountainslim1

    sandmountainslim1 Vicar Of Fonz Thread Starter

    I was going thru a handful of LP's which belonged to my late Grandmother and was surprised and happy to find an album by The Carter Family (Sara, Maybelle and A.P.) . I threw it on my turntable and could tell something was NOT right about it then I noticed on the jacket "Stereo Reprocessed From Original Mono".....WHY??? These are recordings from the twenties and thirties ...why did seventies RCA feel the NEED to ruin the sound just so they could stamp Stereo on the label?? Sounds like pure crap. I also have seventies era Hank Williams and Elvis reissues also in the same crappy "stereo". What were the labels thinking? Did the fans actually LIKE this??
    I am shaking my head.
     
  2. Muzyck

    Muzyck Real inventor of the inverted firkin

    Probably the same reason some genius decided to put all of those overdubs on the Hank Williams tracks. :rolleyes:
     
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  3. JamieC

    JamieC Forum Resident

    Location:
    Detroit Mi USA
    This was done in the early 60s. When Mono was phased out in 67-68, the fake stereos became the defacto norm through all those reissues into the 80s.
     
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  4. Robin L

    Robin L Musical Omnivore

    Location:
    Fresno, California
    Some marketing genius. Probably boosted sales of back catalog.
     
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  5. JamieC

    JamieC Forum Resident

    Location:
    Detroit Mi USA
    Understand that mono records played fine on a stereo, but when they gave the "illusion" of stereo they were able to charge a dollar more for the same thing. Remember too that RCAs Elvis's 50s masters were fake stereo as we entered the CD era.
     
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  6. sami

    sami Senior Member

    Location:
    Down The Shore
    Yeah, I found a Leadbelly record in a thrift store, and it had the same thing - reprocessed stereo. I equate it to colorization of black and white movies, just outright debasing of classic art.
     
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  7. sandmountainslim1

    sandmountainslim1 Vicar Of Fonz Thread Starter

    It may actually be worse than colorizing classic movies. The "improved" sound pretty much makes it unlistenable to me. The volume is also affected dramatically by the process. Sounds like it's playing from a garbage bin.
     
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  8. J.A.W.

    J.A.W. Music Addict

    There's a simple reason for those fake stereo releases: when stereo was a fairly new phenomenon in the 1960s people didn't want mono anymore; the record companies responded by "stereophonizing" the many mono recordings in their back catalogue to meet (and create) demand. I hated it at the time and I hate it now.
     
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  9. JamesD1957

    JamesD1957 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Cypress, Texas
    If you were around in the sixties and looked down your nose at "fake" stereo, well, I applaud you. As for me, at the time, I LOVED stereo in any form. Fake, real, didn't matter to me. Heck, I probably thought that duophonic was just an improved form of real stereo!
     
  10. The Pinhead

    The Pinhead SUDACA ROÑOSO

    Same reason as most labels nowadays feel the need to ruin the sound just so they can stamp ¨remastered¨ on the label :rolleyes:
     
  11. J.A.W.

    J.A.W. Music Addict

    I was around at the time (born 1947) and I hated it because the sound was crap, even on my primitive system back then.
     
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  12. The Pinhead

    The Pinhead SUDACA ROÑOSO

    crap=phasey and excessively separated
     
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  13. J.A.W.

    J.A.W. Music Addict

    Simply put, the "separation" was lows in one channel and highs in the other, and yes, the sound was very phasey.
     
  14. JamesD1957

    JamesD1957 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Cypress, Texas
    Yeah, all us kids (I was around 8 at the time) bought those duophonic Beatles' albums because they sounded so dreadful. Yeah, that's it. ;)
     
  15. BradOlson

    BradOlson Country/Christian Music Maven

    Record companies even printed on the covers in fine print the lie that fake stereo is recommended if you have a stereo system, but it was true that a mono cartridge is what is recommended for vintage mono LPs.
     
  16. bosskeenneat

    bosskeenneat Forum Resident

    A good chunk of the Capitol Duophonics make me think of a comedic scenario; It's the 1950's, and Sinatra is ready to record. Wait! We must do it Duophonically! So Frank, Nelson Riddle & the musicians leave the studio in the Capitol Tower, walk to the middle of Vine Street, lift a manhole cover off and then, one by one they step down the ladder into the sewer beneath the street. There, in smelly wet sewage halfway up their shins, Frank calls out, "Let's cut one, Nelson!" And the Duophonic session is rollin' out on tape..........
     
  17. John B Good

    John B Good Forum Hall Of Fame

    Location:
    NS, Canada
    I remember hearing one of those Elvis albums and not liking it at the time. I've kept it though, just as a reminder of how stupid things can get.
     
  18. J.A.W.

    J.A.W. Music Addict

    Well, I'm in Europe and I got the original UK mono Beatles LPs (Parlophone PMC-xxxx) when they came out (same with the Rolling Stones) :)
     
  19. S. P. Honeybunch

    S. P. Honeybunch Presidente de Kokomo, The Door Into Mike Love

    Location:
    California, USA
    The fake stereo is Oscar the Grouch's favorite way of listening to Carter Family records.
     
  20. BradOlson

    BradOlson Country/Christian Music Maven

    There were even albums that claimed that people (the general consumer) wanted fake stereo so they got what they wanted at the time, not really realizing, knowing or caring that what they did is really poor sounding. Major record companies were for the most part NEVER audiophile labels so that they could make the massive money which is the goal of any company, especially major companies.
     
  21. ShockControl

    ShockControl Bon Vivant and Raconteur!

    Location:
    Lotus Land
    That was actually the least problematic approach: Those at least folded to mono.

    There were other, worse, fake stereo processes that involved a split-second lag between the two channels. If you hit the mono button on these, they are completely out of phase.
     
  22. JamesD1957

    JamesD1957 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Cypress, Texas
    Yeah, we (at least all of the kids that I knew) were in the dark about the differences in the Beatles and Stones. We thought what we bought was what everyone bought! At the time it really did seem great. Of course now, I have a mostly complete set of the reissued mono LP's, and several of the Parlophone stereo LP's from the seventies. My nostalgic self still loves to pull out the old Capitols from time to time!
     
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