Ultraphon 1

Ultraphon (Czechoslovakia) / c. 1931

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Design: The label name lettering is hand-drawn, and optically adjusted to fill the space created as the main strokes radiate outward from the spindle hole (also probably why a horseshoe shape was used for the cap A, instead of the usual triangular frame). Judging from the design, Ultraphon was a stable-mate of the Supraphon label.

History: Label scan courtesy of collector Dimitar Malchev of Bulgaria. Musicologist and collector Bill Dean-Myatt of the U.K. writes: "Ultraphon was a German company that was owned by Küchenmeister of Holland. In 1929 its Czechoslovakian operations were taken over by a Czech company, Ravitas, but in 1945 the label was nationalized and disappeared from the market [although according to Czech collector 'Johnny,' who has the last Ultraphon issue, the label existed between 1930 and 1948]. There were separate French and German companies." Thanks also to collector Gabriel Gössel of Czechoslovakia, who supplied the images below.

Georg Richter of Germany writes: "The German Ultraphon label went into bankruptcy; in 1932 the Telefunken company acquired its recording technology, artist contracts and masters for (a very cheap) 50,000 Reichsmarks, to launch their own label. The brown colour label (below left), issued in 1932, was used for language courses and pressings for the Austrian market. This particular recording is not a language course, but a musical tune from an operetta. Recorded in Prague, the vocals are sung in German by Austrian movie actors."

Design variations of this label in this decade (click on image to view page):

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