Melodisc (U.K.) / c. 1957

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Design: Symmetry and asymmetry, two fundamentally different approaches to design, are melded here. Strong asymmetrical axis lines are created by vertical and horizontal lines (the twin underlining and the wavy edge), while the label name, being centred, is both asymmetric (the initial being reversed) and symmetrical, being centred overall, as is the imprinting. The copyright line of type, reversed out to yellow, also cleverly (and economically) completes the circumference of the broad outer border, which appears in purple. The 'gothic' script font used for the label name is Allegro, designed in Germany in 1937.

History: Label scan courtesy of musicologist and collector Bill Dean-Myatt of the U.S.A., who writes: "The label, which was in existence from about 1949 to 1960, used its own masters plus some from the U.S. West Coast and other sources. It is famous for its rare and very fine West Indian and West African records, but its catalogue has defied reconstruction." The example here indicates a gypsy ('zigane,' 'tzigane,' 'zigeuner') ensemble. Alternate label scan (below) courtesy of collector Kjell Thorsen of Norway.

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