Who wants to compile a list of pressing plant initials?

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by James Glennon, Aug 10, 2004.

  1. Stark

    Stark Member

    Location:
    Ontario
    I am going to ask this although I am sure it has been asked before but the initials are hard to search.

    Early 80's ECM pressing with a machine stamped "WW" in the dead wax where one 'W' is right way up and the other 'W' is upside down and they are back to back.

    Now this looks like the Warner "W" almost, and by this period ECM USA pressings were made and distributed by Warner and no longer Polydor.

    The vinyl is also slightly translucent which would indicate possibly it is from the Wakefield AZ plant?

    So is this "WW" indicative of Warner Winchester? or Wakefield?

    I have seen this on many LPs over the years so it would be good to have an answer.

    Also, in hand written font there appears to be the initials FH. Any ideas who this could be?

    thanks
     
  2. Buckyball

    Buckyball Forum Resident

    Isn't an upside-down W an M? If not then I am confused by the description.
     
  3. Stark

    Stark Member

    Location:
    Ontario
    Yes it could be that too.
     
  4. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    First of all, 'WW' indicated any pressing by Capitol's Winchester, VA plant - the plant's initials were the first letter, followed by a second 'W' which would probably indicate Warners'. The other two plants Capitol operated also had such codes on deadwax of their pressings of Warners' product ('LW' for Los Angeles pressings, and 'JW' for Jacksonville, IL pressings). In the late 1970's and early '80's, Capitol pressings, alas, were translucent in the vinyl department, moreso from some plants (such as L.A.-pressed 45's) than from others. I don't think that Warners' ever had any of their product pressed out of Wakefield, AZ.

    But if this is stamped on the deadwax, does anyone know which mastering house would have had the "WM" logo? And also, what's the circular indent diameter in the label area? And finally, what are the lacquer numbers of each side?
     
  5. Stark

    Stark Member

    Location:
    Ontario
    There are discussions elsewhere on this forum about AZ ECM Warners being somewhat translucent, almost brownish when held to the light. In that thread Wakefield was the pressing plant mentioned.

    http://www.stevehoffman.tv/forums/showthread.php?t=179109

    I'll get some photos together...
     
  6. Stark

    Stark Member

    Location:
    Ontario
    OK, photos as promised.

    1. The back to back WW machine stamp can be seen. I don't think it is WM as the font would have the tail of the "M" in a different location. Also the W is so much like the stylized Warner W and these ECMs were in their Warner period of pressing and distribution in the US. Hence my wondering if this is a marking for Warner Winchester or Warner Wakefield?

    2. The "FH"? signature. It might be TRH?

    3. Label shot.

    4. Shot demonstrating the translucence of the vinyl.

    Deadwax with assumptive WW and FH inclusions. The WW is the only thing stamped all else is in hand written font.

    WW 39346A ECM-1-1206 A1 FH
    WW 39346B FH ECM-1-1206 B4
     

    Attached Files:

  7. vanhooserd

    vanhooserd Forum Resident

    Location:
    Nashville,TN
    looking at some Angel classical pressings,which were a product of Capitol.
    there is an odd outline shape which i suppose could be an anvil-sort of a
    box w/indentations.i believe these were issued mid-to-late 60s.Scranton made?
     
  8. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    The 'anvil' symbol was used prior to early 1963, briefly in spring 1965 (around May of that year), and again after late 1973/early 1974 upon which North American Music Industries (NAMI) assumed ownership of the Scranton plant. And NAMI frequently pressed Capitol product on a contract basis. What label design(s) was/were on your copies?

    In addition, there were two different variations of the 'anvil' symbol: one used from about 1950 to late 1960, in the Dec. 1962-Jan. 1963 period, again in that spring '65 period, and after NAMI took over Scranton; and the other, used from late 1960 to late 1962.
     
  9. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    Looking at the contours of the label area indent and raised areas, it would appear this was different from not only Capitol pressings, but also, slightly, those of Specialty which by this time was now owned by WEA. The stamped 'WM' would've stood in this case for Wakefield Manufacturing.
     
  10. Stark

    Stark Member

    Location:
    Ontario
    Thanks W.B. :)

    Any idea who the signature might belong to? or the significance of the WW at the beginning of the matrix code?
     
  11. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    Probably their variant of Alco's "delta" numbering system?
     
  12. back2vinyl

    back2vinyl Forum Resident

    Location:
    London, UK
    Anyone recognise this symbol, etched into the deadwax of a Japanese EMI pressing of Jeff Beck's Truth from around 1976? I'm sure I've seen it somewhere before but I just can't place it.

    [​IMG]
     
  13. AaronW

    AaronW Formerly Blackie

    Location:
    Los Angeles
  14. back2vinyl

    back2vinyl Forum Resident

    Location:
    London, UK
    Hey, thanks, Blackie. I would never have guessed - though getting it the right way up might have helped!
     
  15. LondonJazzCollector

    LondonJazzCollector New Member

    Way back on this amazing thread - we are not worthy! - it was noted that Liberty used custom client facilities of RCA and that this relationship ended in 1968 with the takeover by Transamerica. My point of interest is to identify if possible who took over the pressing of Blue Note records from Plastylite in 1966, for "Blue Note Records, Division of Liberty Records Inc"and after that, where did pressing go once Transamerica was in the saddle, from 1968 until the United Artists/Liberty merger of 1969/70.

    The post where this is under discussion is here, if it is of any help, where we have photos of the three main types of label used in the Liberty Years for Blue Note reissues and new releases

    http://londonjazzcollector.wordpress.com/2012/12/08/taking-liberties-the-poor-mans-blue-note/

    If anyone can add to our knowledge it would be much appreciated.
     
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  16. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    Well, though this is peripheral, in the period up to 1968 United Artists Records (which, along with its film company parent, was acquired by Transamerica in 1967) had their LP's on the East Coast pressed by Abbey Record Mfg. in East Newark, NJ since at least 1966; I can't say for sure if Abbey pressed for Blue Note in the years leading up to the Transamerica acquisition of its then-parent Liberty, though it may be possible. What I do know is, West Coast Blue Note pressings at the point of the Liberty acquisition would have been by L.A.-based Research Craft which Liberty had taken over in 1965, while on the East Coast there was also the little matter of All Disc Records in Roselle, NJ, which Liberty acquired the following year (and which I saw was touched on in the blog post in that link).

    Based on this, it appears BST 84245 ("Liberty 1," with label typesetting by Keystone Printed Specialties of Scranton, PA) would have been an All Disc pressing, while the other two examples of BST 84170 and BST 84258 ("Liberty 2" and "Liberty 3," respectively, with label typesetting by Bert-Co Enterprises of Los Angeles) were pressed by Research Craft; the former plant had 2.75" diameter circular indent on the label area (just as latter-day Plastylite Blue Notes), while the latter had a 2.875" diameter circular indent which was long associated with Monarch pressings and the "delta numbers" on the deadwax. It is very unlikely RCA would have pressed Blue Notes in the two-year interim between the Liberty acquisition and the onset of the Transamerica era (given their 2.75" diameter "deep groove" and use of glossy paper for their labels), but then I've been surprised more than once by certain pressings that shouldn't have been.

    It should also be noted that by the time the Transamerica era was well underway, Liberty's own studios in Los Angeles (which were rebranded as United Artists studios upon Transamerica's early 1971 dissolution of Liberty and their absorption of what was left of their artist roster to UA) took over the lion's (no relation to Blue Note co-founder Alfred Lion) share of the job of lacquer mastering which may explain why the sound of those latter Liberty-era Blue Notes was "anemic." (I've quite a few Liberty/UA-mastered 45's in my collection; there was a big hunk o' compression in many cases, and some with somewhat narrow stereo. I'm also at a loss as to which lathe Liberty/UA would've used - whether it was a Scully or Neumann - maybe the former, given their use of constant [not variable] pitch and depth. Van Gelder, of course, always used Scully mastering equipment - most definitely the 1950 model that was the first to have variable pitch/depth control and preceded the 1955 Model 601.)

    Also, by the end of Liberty's existence, some 45's on Blue Note were pressed by Columbia (and maybe a few LP's, too). I have one such 45, by Richard "Groove" Holmes (one side of which was a rendition of the theme from the film Love Story); the typesetting and pressing (styrene, natch') came from their Pitman, NJ plant, and the Blue Note label design (at least on 45) was conformed to the "Liberty style" design of labels, with "Liberty/UA, Inc., Los Angeles, California" in the rim print; the lacquer mastering on that release was handled by New York-based Mediasound, Inc., on a Scully lathe by former Bell Sound mastering engineer Dominick Romeo.
     
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  17. LondonJazzCollector

    LondonJazzCollector New Member

     
  18. LondonJazzCollector

    LondonJazzCollector New Member

    Thanks very much for the extra insight W.B. it is getting a whole lot clearer how the whole thing worked during the Liberty years and the transition to United Artists. I don't know where you got your knowledge from, I just hope it didn't include human sacrifice. That whole label printing business has been an eyeopener. Thanks again.
     
  19. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    Naaah - just paying attention to vintage test pressings, and referencing vintage Billboard International Buyer's Guides. (And for identifying where something was mastered, looking at some back covers of LP's, and paying attention to reference acetates.)
     
  20. Wow. Great information. I think this asks and answers my question. Yesterday I was spinning a very early Capitol Canada mono LP copy of The Beach Boys - Surfin' Safari on the 12 o'clock black/rainbow label. Original LP release date was October 1, 1962. I'd been wondering what the symbol was in the deadwax and how to describe it. Guess you could say it's an anvil. I also have that machine stamp on other Capitol Canada LPs from the late 1950s as well, including This Is Sinatra! from 1956.

    Here's a photo. Very large matrix number as well. Identical to the Beach Boys LP.

    [​IMG]

    Thanks W.B. :thumbsup:
     
  21. W.B.

    W.B. The Collector's Collector

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    That Canadian pressing would appear to be from Sparton, with metal parts from Scranton. The label typesetting was on Sparton 45's of the 1950's and '60's. It wasn't until 1962 - when Canadian Capitol switched their 45 design to the "swirl" label originated in the U.S. in January of that year - that Canadian Capitol first used RCA's Smiths Falls, Ontario plant (albeit, on conformed to U.S. releases, with metal parts from Scranton in the early years).
     
  22. condor655

    condor655 New Member

    I have a Springboard Records (Rahway NJ) release Jimi Hendrix SP-4010 (SPB-4010). In the runout there is a "T" over a "V C" dash "A" which I think may be a pressing plant? Anyone have info on this? Thank You
     
  23. James Glennon

    James Glennon Senior Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Dublin, Ireland
    I can't believe I started this thread in 2004 and it is still running.

    I was given a sealed copy of a Doobie Brothers LP for Christmas and I was just interested in some of the deadwax info, all handwritten except for KENDUN-C which is stamped

    HS-1-3452 LW1 KENDUN-C KD/T.N.M. AM CM DM
    HS-2-3452 LW1 KENDUN-C KD/T.N.M. AM CM DM

    I know the...
    LW is a Los Angeles pressing,
    KD is Kent Duncan mastering engineer at Kendun

    Just wondering what...
    T.N.M. after Kent Duncan's initials stands for
    what AM CM DM stands for

    JG
     
  24. MLutthans

    MLutthans That's my spaghetti, Chewbacca! Staff

    Location:
    Marysville, WA
    You may already know this, but that N in the deadwax (looks like "N9," maybe??) means that the LP was cut in New York from a duped tape. A pressing that had a D in place of the N would be cut from the actual master tape at the Capitol Tower in Hollywood.
     
  25. I have an old mono Columbia Masterworks Canada LP of Schubert and Mozart recorded by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra - Sir Thomas Beecham. Label No. ML 4474.

    [​IMG]

    I ran a few different Google searches and couldn't find a release or recording date(s). I'm guessing mid-1950s.

    Then I was looking at the machine stamped matrices.

    Side 1 has the usual style machine stamp. [​IMG]

    Side 2 has a machine stamp with a different font. [​IMG]
    Also there is no dash after the matrix number. At around the 7 o'clock position there is a number 3 in the same font. Maybe that is the cut number?

    W.B. can you shed any light on this? Thanks.
     

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