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Reading The Label

January 21, 2020

Music History – Name that tune!


When I was a boy of perhaps 13 or 14 years old, I developed a unique habit of carefully studying the labels on the many 45 rpm records that I owned. Fortunately, I had a girlfriend whose father owned a jukebox supply business and I was set free in an endless inventory of 45’s to pick and choose at a nickel a record. In time, this gave me a large inventory of my own. I spent many a long afternoon dodging my school homework and quietly going through these records and learning the artists, writers and arrangers. The labels themselves intrigued me. Names that have since vanished were the standard stock in those days: Sun, Laurie, Decca and the like. I learned a great deal about their catalogs, artists and writers.

The first great fact that I discovered was that Dion did indeed have a last name just like the…

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  1. Timothy Price permalink

    That’s very cool you found the interest and have published your interests. I had a fairly large collection of 45s when I was in my teens. I often found the B-sides to have really good songs, or so I thought. I did not pay as close attention to the labels, but I remember finding it a bit of a surprise how many hit songs were not written by the performers. Now days, I sometimes find earlier recordings of hits that are really cool. For example, Big Maybelle’s version of “A Whole lot of Shakin’ Goin’ On” is fantastic.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is great! The song is hauntingly beautiful!

    Liked by 1 person

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