Concert Hall

Concert Hall (U.S.A.) / c. 1949

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Design: The image suggesting an orchestra director (very appropriate for the label name), appears on several other labels of the era (e.g. Crystalette, Sparton, Down Beat), this close-up of his hands being very well drawn. The label name being compact and the main components being positioned tightly around the spindle hole, plenty of space is left for the imprinting, which is evenly spread over the whole label.

History: Launched by David and Sam Josefowitz in New York in 1948 as a mail order business. 2,000 copies were made of each album, pressed directly from the master matrix, thus eliminating the "mother" and "stampers." Concert Hall specialized in uncommon, previously unrecorded material. The records could be obtained by subscribing to a series of 12 titles. Vinyl was soon brought into the production process, being more flexible and thus less hazardous to ship than shellac. According to the web site "While 78 rpm records generally were pressed on black shellac, the disks on the newly founded Concert Hall label were pressed on vinyl. Samuel Josefowitz recalls in an interesting article, written by Michelle Owens and published in Rensselaer Magazine, that his father was offered a load of plastic at a very low price. That triggered the idea to make and distribute records. In hindsight, the plastic they acquired was a gift. While other record manufacturers struggled with the scarcity of shellac and started using a mix of shellac and plastic, as Don Gabor of Remington Records did for the records pressed in the pressing plant of his Record Corporation of New England, the Josefowitz brothers were extremely lucky. Some records were pressed on black vinyl and others on red vinyl. No doubt that the red color was chosen for publicity reasons so the Concert Hall disks could easily be distinguished and could help improve sales. 'Yet,' Samuel says in the article, 'for the first two years it was a hobby. We didn't make any money.'"

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