Pathefon

Pathéfon (Norway) / c. 1921

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Design: Label scan courtesy of collector Kjell Thorsen of Norway, who writes: "I don't know where in the world this recording was done, but judging from the artist it is probably from the U.S. The date of the recording is also unknown, though some sources say 1918. Pathé numbered their releases with the date marked in the matrix, which shows like a reversed print in the shellac, on the edge of the label. This record is marked Tuesday, 03.22.1921. William Johnsen was the exclusive distributor of Pathé records both in Norway and other Scandinavian countries. Because of the risk of being confused with others of the same name, he changed his name to William Farré. The name 'Farré' appears at the bottom of the labels here in Scandinavia. From an early date Farré had his own portable recording equipment, and travelled around Norway making recordings of the country's best fiddle players. He was also keen on march music and promoted it. Here in Norway he is known as the father of the marching band."

History: This label certainly has the appearance of being earlier than 1921, judging by the typography; the Art Nouveau-looking Farré logo would likely have been designed before 1910, and the fonts used for the imprinting are almost certainly from the late Victorian era. However, letterpress printers were usually reluctant to invest in fashionable new type, and utilitarian fonts such as this Latin bold condensed would see service for many decades.




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