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Here's an oddity

99.17.90.152

Posted on December 13, 2016 at 18:46:04
michael22
Audiophile

Posts: 799
Joined: October 1, 2001


I recently acquired this fairly elusive 1956(?) tape of music by Arnold Schoenberg - one of his earliest 12-tone compositions written in 1924. When I first played the tape I thought it was running in reverse until I realized it was just Schoenberg's way with music. It's amazing that a sixty year old recording - in stereo, no less - could sound so good!

 

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RE: Here's an oddity, posted on December 15, 2016 at 05:23:50
stellavox
Audiophile

Posts: 280
Joined: June 23, 2004
Thanks Michael,

You have a very rare tape there.

All the Period's I've ever heard (3) sound great - gave them all an A or A+ rating on my 2-track Stereo prerecording listing

Charles

 

RE: Here's an oddity, posted on December 15, 2016 at 07:58:40
michael22
Audiophile

Posts: 799
Joined: October 1, 2001
Personally, I've never seen/heard this tape before, and Period tapes are, indeed, rare. This recording would be perfect (i.e. a sonic rating of A) if it were not for a low-frequency (60hz?) hum in the right channel. I assume it was either in the master recording or the duplication. Happily, a small adjustment in the bass mitigates the problem.

Speaking of Period, I recently found a mono vinyl recording of Janos Starker playing the Kodaly Sonata for Unaccompanied Cello. This was probably the best-sounding solo cello recording I've ever heard, with amazing presence and detail. One has to wonder who recorded these early Period issues, and with what equipment ...

 

That's A Keeper, posted on December 15, 2016 at 09:25:07
Inmate51
Audiophile

Posts: 8490
Joined: July 6, 2005
If you don't want it, I'd be happy to take it.

Be aware that it's not on Mylar tape, it's acetate tape. So, don't bake it!! - you'll destroy it!

:)

www.youramerica.net/tapebake.htm

 

RE: Here's an oddity, posted on December 15, 2016 at 11:17:38
ironbut
Audiophile

Posts: 1367
Location: no california
Joined: February 21, 2004
Nice!
I haven't done any collecting lately but I love those early tapes.
Most of the real early tapes were created with no expense spared. No high speed dups, purist signal paths etc..
I even have a Ampex 700 set up for full track mono and staggered playback.

 

RE: That's A Keeper, posted on December 15, 2016 at 17:58:29
michael22
Audiophile

Posts: 799
Joined: October 1, 2001
I think it's duplicated on Scotch 111 which is about as maintenance-free a tape as one can find from that era. And, judging by the label and American Molded Products reel, it looks like it might have been duplicated by the same company that did the Westminsters and Uranias. George Schowerer (on the Yahoo reeltoreel list) ran many of these.

 

RE: Here's an oddity - follow up, posted on December 16, 2016 at 13:04:44
stellavox
Audiophile

Posts: 280
Joined: June 23, 2004
Some/all of the recordings may have been made in the Stereo Sound Studios, NYC; Jerry Newman, engineer; on an Ampex 350-2 recorder.

Other information mentions that the Esoteric label may have had some tie-in with the Period label.

And Everest apparently owned Period for a while - maybe later on.

Charles

 

RE: Here's an oddity - follow up, posted on December 16, 2016 at 18:42:27
michael22
Audiophile

Posts: 799
Joined: October 1, 2001
I believe Period (and several other labels) came under the Everest label after Everest was sold by Belock.

 

Period 2-track tapes, posted on December 26, 2016 at 09:12:41
Botanico92007
Audiophile

Posts: 694
Location: San Diego
Joined: March 15, 2006
Esoteric Sound Studios in New York with engineering by Jerry Newman is credited on PST-1, 2, 3, 4, and 5. For PST-6, 8, and 9 it is Peter Bartok. Yes, this is the son of Bela Bartok. Peter was well known for having an aversion to stereo recording and usually stuck to mono recording.

PST-7 (Schoenberg) and PST-10 (Music for Percussion) have no engineering credits. However, Jerry Newman is credited on the Urania percussion recording "Breaking the Sound Barrier" with the same conductor, but the ensemble has a different name. It's likely Newman also did the Period percussion recording. Maybe the Schoenberg too.

Period recordings were also issued on 2-track tapes by Realistic (Radio Shack). Only two titles were repeated.

 

RE: Period 2-track tapes, posted on December 26, 2016 at 10:39:56
michael22
Audiophile

Posts: 799
Joined: October 1, 2001
I have a few Peter Bartok mono recordings on vinyl on the Unicorn label, I believe. They were recorded at MIT (probably in Saarinen's auditorium) and sound good.

The Urania percussion tape you mentioned - UST 1204 - is spectacular and absolutely worth listening to, if not owning. Urania tapes were duplicated at Audio Labs in NY under the direction of George Schowerer, a member of the Yahoo reeltoreel group. who recently described the duplication process.

There are also a couple of Urania stereo records of percussion music that are quite good. One of the pieces - Antheil's Ballet Mecanique, conducted by Robert Kraft - was issued on Omegatape ST 6009 and sounds good. There is no mention in the liner notes of the recording engineer.

 

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