Category: Vintage Collection

Happy 169th Birthday Thomas Edison!

By , February 12, 2016 4:11 pm

Thomas EdisonThis past week marks Thomas Edison’s 169th birthday!

Thomas Edison invented the phonograph, the very first device for recording and playing back sound, in 1877. Early machines were sold to entrepreneurs who made a living out of traveling around the country giving “phonograph concerts” and demonstrating the device for a fee at fairs.

Here at the Recorded Sound Archives, we have a collection of over 70 Edison Records which can be listened to online.

To listen or learn more about Edison Records, click here.

 

Some songs may only be available as snippets due to US Copyright laws.

These items are noted in the player with the words (Research Station) and only allow for 45 seconds snippets to be played to give you a sense of what that recording originally sounded like. Full access is available through the RSA’s Research Station access is limited to educators, students and serious researchers.

Timeless Love Songs of the 1920s

By , February 3, 2016 3:19 pm

Timeless Love Songs from the 1920sIf there’s one type of song that we will never grow tired of, it is the ever popular love song. Mellow or upbeat, mushy or filled with angst; whatever the tempo or the lyrical content…Enjoy these nine timeless love songs from the 1920s found in the Recorded Sound Archives Vintage, Judaic and Jazz collections just in time for Valentines day.

 

 

 

 

Nine Timeless Love Songs of the 1920s

  1.  Ain’t Misbehavin’ by Fats Waller written in 1929 by Thomas “Fats” Waller himself, Harry Brooks and Andy Razaf.
  2. All Alone by Al Jolson, written by Irving Berlin and published in 1924.
  3. April Showers by Al Jolson, written by B.G. DeSylva music composed by Louis Silvers originally published in 1921.
  4. Blue Skies by The Hour of Charm Girl Orchestra and Choir, written and composed by Irving Berlin in 1926.
  5. I Can’t Believe That You’re In Love With Me by Artie Shaw, written by Jimmy McHugh and Clarence Gaskill in 1926.
  6. With a Song in My Heart by Dennis Day, originally written for the musical Spring is Here by Lorenz Hart and Richard Rodgers in 1929.
  7. What’ll I Do? by Henry Burr and Marcia Freer, written by Irving Berlin in 1923.
  8. Who’s Sorry Now? by Ernest Stevens, written by Bert Kalmer and Harry Ruby composed by Ted Snyder this song was published in 1923 and featured in the 1950 film, Three Little Words.
  9. Everybody Loves My Baby (But My Baby Don’t Love Nobody but Me) by Aileen Stanley, composed by Jack Palmer and Spencer Williams in 1924.

 

Some songs may only be available as snippets due to US Copyright laws.

These items are noted in the player with the words (Research Station) and only allow for 45 seconds snippets to be played to give you a sense of what that recording originally sounded like. Full access is available through the RSA’s Research Station access is limited to educators, students and serious researchers.

Recently Added Music in September

By , September 28, 2015 3:33 pm

recentlyaddedmusicDid you know the Recorded Sound Archives at FAU Libraries has over 49,000 albums along with over 150,000 songs in its databases, which is growing everyday with the help of volunteers? With so many recordings to choose from, we have given Research Station users the ability to request items be digitized.

See a recording that hasn’t been digitized?

As a research station user you can request it using the Music on Demand forms on the website.

Please note, due to copyright some of these recordings may only play for 45 second snippet to give the user a taste of what this music sounded like back in the day, if you are interested in full access considering applying for Research Station Access.

Below you’ll find a list of recordings that were recently added in September by Collection from requests made by Research Station Users.

Judaic Collection

Prayers from Jerusalem by Naftali Herstik

Zemirot – Turkish-Sephardic Synagogue Hymns  by Los Pasharos Sefaradis

Oriental Song Festival 1973 by Various Artists

A Song of the Heights by Andrew Edison & Norman Summers

Tanchumim by Various Artists

A World of Jewish Music by Allan Michelson

Blue Star Camp – 1984 by Ted Grey

30 Golden Moments of Music by The Epstein Brothers

Lamenatseach Shir Mizmor – Oriental Song Festival 1974 – Volume 2 by Various Artists

Tsur Mi’Shelo Achalnu – Famous Traditional Sephardic Hymns by Renanim Choir

Achva by Various Artists

Ismach Moshe by Sawel Kwartin

Al Taschlicheinu by Sawel Kwartin

Erev Shel Shoshanim by Various Artists

Gems of the Synagogue by Josef Rosenblatt

My Mother’s Sabbath Candles (Sung in Yiddish) by The Malavsky Family

 

Vintage Collection

The Bells of St. Mary’s by Charlie Spivak and his Orchestra

 

Featured Collection

Hit of the Week Collection

High Holy Days Collection

 

 

 

Hit of the Week (1930 – 1932)

By , March 19, 2015 11:58 pm

Introduced in 1930 and discontinued in 1932, these records were made from a flexible synthetic resin (Durium) coasted on brown paper.

Introduced in 1930 and discontinued in 1932, these records were made from a flexible synthetic resin (Durium) coated on brown paper.

What are sound recordings made of?

Initially sound was recorded on wax cylinders. By the end of the 1920s, however, recordings were made of a heavy, fragile shellac compound.

Producers began looking for better options and started experimenting with materials that were lighter, flexible and less fragile.

One of these experiments, Hit of the Week records, were actually made of resin coated brown paper! This lightweight, flexible, “unbreakable” composition was unique and provided a 78 rpm recording with sound equal to or better than ordinary shellac.

Beginning in February 1930 a new recording featuring a current “hit” song was released each week. They were sold at newsstands, likemagazines, with past issues being available by mail order. They were recorded on one side only and sold for 15 to 20 cents per recording. The unrecorded side was often printed with advertising or the performer’s portrait. They had a tendency to curl up over time and came in flimsy rice paper sleeves.

The unrecorded paper side of Hit of the Week recordings were sometimes printed with advertising a performer’s portrait, in this case Morton Downey.

The unrecorded paper side of Hit of the Week recordings were sometimes printed with advertising a performer’s portrait, in this case Morton Downey.

These recordings were a big hit with the public in the early days of the Great Depression and provided easy, cheap entertainment to the masses. However, as the depression wore on sales slumped. the last Hit of the Week issue was released in June 1932.

The Recorded Sound Archives at FAU Libraries is pleased to share 39 of these original recordings with our website users. Due to US Copyright laws only 45-second snippets are available on our public website.  Full recordings are available to RSA Research Station users.

Click here to see and hear the Hit of the Week collection.

Songs of the Second World War

By , February 2, 2015 2:39 pm

WW2The Second World War waged around the globe from 1939 to 1945.

The impact of WWII on the daily lives of Americans and Europeans cannot be overstated. As the atrocities of the Nazis raged in Europe, American men were drafted and called to war. American music of the WWII era spoke to the soldiers far from home and also to those they left behind.

The Second World War changed the course of history in many ways. One of the things that changed was music…what it sounded like, how we listened to it and how intimately it touched our lives.

During WWII music became personal as well as entertaining. Major technological advances such as radio and phonograph recordings took music out of the theater and into middle-class homes. Big Bands, Jazz and Swing created a new vibe that defined a generation.V-disc

The Recorded Sound Archives has digitized two very special collections from the Second World War era. V-discs  were produced between October 1943 and May 1949 by the US Armed Forces for military personnel overseas.  Vogue Picture Records were produced between May 1946 and April 1947 by Sav-Way Industries using a special process engineered by Tom Saffady.

Enjoy the music that defined a generation – the best loved songs from the World War II era. Many thanks to all those who sent in the titles of their favorite songs from the 1940s and 1950s.

Click here to listen to Songs of the Second World War. Due to copyright concerns, some recordings may be limited to 45-second snippets.  Full versions are available to users of the RSA Research Station.

Click here for Youtube videos.

 

FAU events that may interest you.

wWWII exhibit2/2/15 through 2/25/15 – FAU Wimberly Library: World War II Highlights from Special Collections

2/17/15 (Tuesday) @ 5pm – FAU Wimberly Library: The Most Controversial Decision Lecture by Wilson Miscamble. Mr. Miscamble is a prize-winning author and historian.

2/18/15 (Wednesday) @ 3:30pm – FAU Barry Kaye Auditorium: Truman’s Presidency and WWII – Lecture by David McCullough. David McCullough is  is an American author, narrator, and historian. He is a two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award and is a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom. 

3/18/15 (Wednesday) @ 3:30 pm – FAU Wimberly Library: Nazi War Criminals, US Intelligence and the Cold War – Lecture by Dr. Norman Goda. Norman Goda received his Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He studies modern European history and specializes in the history of the Holocaust, war crimes trials, and twentieth century diplomacy.

 

Austrian museum explores Jewish influence on recorded music

By , October 8, 2014 4:23 pm

plakat_jukebox_webJukebox. Jewkbox! An exhibition of the Jewish Museum Hohenems in collaboration with the Jewish Museum Munich will run from October 19, 2014 until March 8, 2015.

According to the website  of the Hohenems Jewish Museum in Austria the exhibit presents the history of Jewish recordings “from the first gramophones and shellac records to the dissolution of this medium in World Wide Web.”

This sounds like a wonderful project. Looking at sound recordings as cultural mirrors of the 20th century experience, the exhibitors write that “the omnipresent sound of the 20th century, its best known songs, musicals and soundtracks was not always Jewish music – but always also a product of Jewish history and experience.”

We do not know which recorded gems are included in this European exhibit but the Judaic Collection/Recorded Sound Archives at FAU Libraries in Boca Raton FL hopes you will enjoy the following authentic recordings from the early 20th century.

Molly Picon – Abi Gesind    
Simon Paskal – Aheim Aheim    
Al Jolson – Angel Child   
Arthur Pryors Band – At a Hebrew Wedding

M Kanewsky – Auf’n Pripetchok

Andrews Sisters – Bei Mir Bist du Shon  (snippet)

Benny Bell – Celebration Freylach

FAU Sound Archives Rescues Vintage Kiddie Records Damaged by Hurricane Sandy

By , January 27, 2014 1:40 pm

By Fire Ant, New Times Palm Beach

The entrance to the Recorded Sound Archives at FAU is guarded by the remnants of hi-fi history. Walnut-paneled gramophones from the Gilded Age and the Roaring Twenties line one wall. On shelves across the way, postwar portable sound systems and reel-to-reel tape decks compete for shelf space with 78 rpm and 45 rpm records from historic labels long gone – Decca (now owned by Vivendi), RCA Victor and Okeh (now owned by Sony).

Now in its third year, the archive is dedicated to the preservation and digitization of vintage audio — music as recorded on vinyl and, before that, shellac discs, which degrade over time as needles bounce through grooves. One of the few institutions of its kind — with more than 100,000 items in its collections of jazz, Judaica and the 78 rpm records that predated the long-playing album — the archive has become an invaluable resource for musicologists and historians from around the world.

The archive’s latest addition is a trove of 786 vintage kiddie records from the collection of “Kiddie Rekord King” Peter Muldavin, perhaps the world’s leading expert on early children’s recordings. A Manhattan resident, Muldavin had the records stored in his mother-in-law’s Long Island garage when Hurricane Sandy struck two years ago. The storm surge left many of the discs mud-stained and warped, while the waterlogged record sleeves and artwork became mildewed and moldy.

With very little commercial value left for Muldavin, he reached out to the RSA. “To collectors the quality of everything counts — the packaging, the labels,” RSA director Dr. Maxine Schackman told us. “We welcomed his donation with open arms. For us, the cultural value was still there.”

Still, in addition to audio digitization, the colorful packaging that was so much a part of the kiddie records’ appeal is also being repaired and restored (to the extent possible), then digitally scanned. About one-third of the Muldavin donation has been digitized so far, the sound cleaned of crackles and hisses in the process, distilled to the nostalgic essence of what seems (and sounds) like a more innocent time.

The kiddie records database should be complete early this year. Because of copyright issues, though, access to the sound files will be restricted. Academics and other researchers will be able to listen over the Internet through a password-protected website or, by appointment, at one of the archive’s listening stations.

Dr. Schackman hopes to make song samples from the kiddie records available to the general public, as has been done with earlier RSA donations. The idea, she says, is “to make the forgetten music unforgettable.”

By Fire Ant — an invasive species, tinged bright red, with an annoying, sometimes-fatal sting — covers Palm Beach County. Got feedback or a tip? Contact Fire.Ant@BrowardPalmBeach.com.

Original Source: http://blogs.browardpalmbeach.com/countygrind/2014/01/fau_sound_archives_rescues_vin.php

 

Sophie Tucker: Last of the Red-Hot Mamas

By , September 16, 2013 10:00 am

 

Known as the Last of the Red Hot Mamas, Sophie Tucker had a career that began in vaudeville, embraced the new jazz age of the 1920’s and lasted well into the 1960s.

Widely known for her bawdy humor (which may seem tame by today’s standards) and her big personality, she never lost touch with her Jewish roots.

Sophie Tucker ‘s original Decca rendition of My Yiddishe Momme, recorded in 1928, featured an English version on Side A and a Yiddish version on Side B.  Among the recordings she made on the Mercury label beginning in the 1950s was this rendition of My Mother’s Sabbath Candles, also in both English and Yiddish versions.

Sophie Tucker quotes

I couldn’t make [Momme] understand that it wasn’t a career that I was after. It was just that I wanted a life that didn’t mean spending most of it at the cookstove and the kitchen sink. (Some of the Days, 1945)

Everyone knew the theater was to be closed down, and a landmark in show business would be gone. That feeling got into the acts. The whole place, even the performers, stank of decay. I seemed to smell it. It challenged me. I was determined to give the audience the idea: why brood over yesterday? We have tomorrow. As I sang I could feel the atmosphere change. The gloom began to lift, the spirit which formerly filled the Palace and which made it famous among vaudeville houses the world over came back. That’s what an entertainer can do. (Concerning the November 19, 1932 closing of the Palace theater in NYC, i.e. the end of vaudeville.)

Selected items from our collection of Sophie Tucker recordings.

Sophie Tucker’s performance on The Ed Sullivan Show.

Autographed inside flap from copy of Tucker’s autobiography

If you enjoyed this blog post be sure to like us on Facebook.

 

Spin Doctors: FAU restoring children’s records damaged by Superstorm Sandy

By , July 1, 2013 5:41 pm
By Scott Travis, Sun Sentinel

June 30, 2013

A pile of stained, mildewed debris from Superstorm Sandy has turned into a nostalgic treasure trove for Florida Atlantic University.

A collection of 786 vintage children’s records including “The Little Engine That Could” and “Black Beauty” were inside a Long Island garage when the hurricane-like disaster struck last October. The recordings, mostly 78 rpms, appeared to be ruined due to dirt and mud on the records and stains on their jackets.

But FAU has found a way to bring the stories and music back to life. The Recorded Sound Archives at the Wimberly Library on the university’s Boca Raton campus has embarked on a project to clean and repair the damaged records and digitize and transfer their contents to an online collection. It’s an effort that requires both modern computer software and old-fashioned elbow grease.

“We are excited to be working with such rare and wonderful artifacts from the 20th Century,” said Maxine Schackman, director of the sound archives. “I can’t wait to see the reaction when we are able to share our work online.”

The website likely will be created in November, Schackman said. Researchers, students and others who are interested will be able to access the digital versions of the recordings via FAU computers or a special password, restrictions that are necessary due to copyright.

The collection is full of literary and pop culture classics, including “Bozo Sings,” “Peter Rabbit” and “Mary Poppins.” While most combine stories and songs, some are music only, like “American Folk Songs” and “Alphabet Songs.” There’s a full array of Christmas-themed records as well as plenty of educational ones. A 1947 record called “Little Songs on Big Subjects” includes a gentle call for racial equality.

“You can get good milk from a brown-skinned cow. The color of the skin doesn’t matter nohow,” the song goes.

The record collection was donated in April by Peter Muldavin, whom FAU officials call the world’s leading expert on vintage American children’s records. Muldavin, who was out of the country and couldn’t be reached by the Sun Sentinel for comment, says on his website he’s been a lifelong collector but started accumulating kiddie records only in 1991 after seeing one in a used record store and remembering it from his childhood.

He then took out “want to buy” ads in antique newspapers and flea market magazines and was swamped with responses.

“People had these records sitting in their attics and basements but didn’t know what to do with them,” Muldavin writes on his website. “There was no established hobby yet.”

Alethea Perez sorts through some of the nearly 800 vintage kiddie records that were donated to Florida Atlantic University’s Recorded Sound Archives.

Due to mold and mildew damage, the library is discarding many of the story books and paper doll cutouts that accompanied the records affected by Sandy, but photographs of the printed matter are being taken and will be digitally restored using Adobe Photoshop.

Almost all of the records are salvageable, Schackman said. Some are warped, and many are encrusted with mud and must be washed by hand.

To help with the restoration, the archives department has bought a vinyl record flattener, a device that slowly heats the recording between heavy metal plates. The department also has software that can reduce background noise from old vinyls.

The sound archive started in the 1980s as a Judaica Collection of vintage works by Jewish artists, but in 2009 expanded into other genres, including jazz and children’s recordings, after the donation of 60,000 records from the family of the late Jack Saul, a Cleveland collector. That collection included 556 children’s recordings, all in good condition.

Benjamin Roth, a Sound Archivist at Florida Atlantic University’s Recorded Sound Archives, cleans a batch of records from the nearly 800 vintage kiddie records that were donated to the Sound Archives.

Archives technician Ben Roth contacted Muldavin, author of the book “The Complete Guide to Vintage Children’s Records,” last year, months before Sandy formed, for advice on finding some specific titles for FAU’s collection.

When a tidal surge from the superstorm brought 20 inches of sea water into a family garage at Long Beach on Long Island, hundreds of recordings stored there lost practically all their value in the collector’s market. So Muldavin asked FAU if the archives department wanted them.

The Boca Raton-based archivists were thrilled. The collection represents a period in American culture, mostly the 1940s and 1950s, when vinyl replaced the hard shellac material that had been used for records, Schackman said. Vinyl was more kid-friendly since it was less prone to breakage.

The works also represent a period before many families had television sets, and when children’s records were a popular form of entertainment.

“It’s a certain time in history that won’t ever be repeated,” Schackman said. “This was the age of innocence. Times were simpler then, more naive.”

stravis@tribune.com or 561-243-6637

Restoration operation

The process that will be used at Florida Atlantic University’s Recorded Sound Archives on the damaged records:

• A technician cleans the 78 rpm using a special ultrasonic wave machine, similar to the unit used to clean jewelry. Distilled water and a small amount of Jet-Dry rinse agent are used.

• If the dirt is excessive, the record is hand-washed. A hair dryer is used to dry it.

• The record is then digitized, using a special turntable that plays the record and captures the audio onto a computer sound card. Sony Sound Forge software is then used to eliminate clicks, pops and other surface noise.

• The album jacket and any accompanying books or cutouts are photographed. Adobe Photoshop is used to remove any dirt or deformities.

• The audio clip and album art are cataloged.

Scott Travis

Boca Magazine highlights FAU Sound Archives Collection

By , June 28, 2013 2:49 pm

In a small room on the fifth floor of FAU’s Wimberly Library, zippered bags clutch dozens of record sleeves of vintage children’s music, relics from another time. There’s Bongo, a circus bear unicycling on a tightrope and voiced by Dinah Shore. There’s “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus,” whose record sleeve depicts just that. There’s the Three Billy Goats Gruff, Pinocchio, Little Toot and Humpty Dumpty. One album cover, featuring Sylvester the Cat and Tweety Bird, includes a pencil-written note in the margin: “To: Dick Hertz. Birthday, Jan. 20, 1951. From: Mommy.”

These forgotten treasures are currently the domain FAU’s Recorded Sound Archives (RSA), which began in 2009 as an extension of its popular Judaica Sound Archives; nowadays, the institution restores and digitizes lost and important music of all kinds. These recently obtained children’s record sleeves, their once-vibrant cover art damaged by flood and mold from Hurricane Sandy, are mostly second copies from the vast collection of Peter Muldavin, the world’s foremost expert on vintage children’s records. When his Long Island storage facility suffered storm damage, he donated its contents – 786 records – to the RSA, whose passionate archivist, Ben Roth, is a friend. Some of the 78 rpm records date back to the 1920s, bearing price tags of a quarter a piece.

The restoration business, on Roth and company’s end, is a long and painstaking one. They are still in the process of entering all the data, with plans to release some of their results through their website starting in January. Roth showed me a bit of the RSA’s fascinating restorative process, some of whose accoutrements look like something out the old Mousetrap game. First, the records are dipped, like strawberries in chocolate, in a motorized tank devised for cleaning jewelry, in which ultrasonic waves eliminate the ingrained dirt. Then they are positioned in front of an industrial hair dryer haphazardly duct-taped into position on a metal stand – an appropriately primitive way of cleaning these analog goodies.

As for the damaged, crackly sound of the records, that can be polished by more modern means – Sony’s Sound Forge computer software. The sleeves have been photographed and inventoried for digital restorations, but unfortunately the originals in the zipper bags will be discarded – their damage is too severe.

If you make an appointment, you may be able to listen to some of these recordings in the RSA’s headquarters, while admiring the collection’s vintage turntables, including an entirely hand-cranked 1911 Victrola and a 1924 credenza model that Roth says “cost more than a car” at the time of its manufacture.

Link to original blog post: http://www.bocamag.com/blog/2013/06/28/record-time/

Panorama Theme by Themocracy