The Talking Machine Forum — For All Antique Phonographs & Recordings

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 Post subject: Re: The "Holy Grail" of....???
PostPosted: Wed Aug 23, 2017 1:42 am 
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Victor V
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Joined: Tue Dec 14, 2010 1:17 am
Posts: 2344
Location: Where there's "hamburger ALL OVER the highway"...
CarlosV wrote:
Holy grail is the unattainable. Once you find it, it is not the holy grail anymore. Therefore, the Buddy Bolden and the Mark Twain cylinders, de Reszke discs fit in my definition, until you find them and demote them to simple rarities ...


Well, in the Arthurian mythos, Percival did find the Grail; so the definition might better be something that is "unattainable except by the greatest sacrifice".

That said, I agree that your examples are good. In the machine category, we might include the original Tinfoil Disc Phonograph, the Columbia MG, and perhaps the Diamond Disc prototypes...


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 Post subject: Re: The "Holy Grail" of....???
PostPosted: Wed Aug 23, 2017 5:11 am 
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Victor III
Joined: Sun Mar 15, 2009 6:18 am
Posts: 591
Lucius1958 wrote:
CarlosV wrote:
Holy grail is the unattainable. Once you find it, it is not the holy grail anymore. Therefore, the Buddy Bolden and the Mark Twain cylinders, de Reszke discs fit in my definition, until you find them and demote them to simple rarities ...


Well, in the Arthurian mythos, Percival did find the Grail; so the definition might better be something that is "unattainable except by the greatest sacrifice".

That said, I agree that your examples are good. In the machine category, we might include the original Tinfoil Disc Phonograph, the Columbia MG, and perhaps the Diamond Disc prototypes...


You're correct, Lucius, Perceval had the Grail at one point, but ... vanished. And while typing these, I thought of the Paramount masters: people even dived in the Milwaukee to search for them. And the machines, there is a number of them that I could only find in newspaper ads, usually weird models with multiple horns or unique cabinet designs. On the prototypes, some of them we know existed, like the Edison cement machine, the photo that Curt posted proves it, but since that time it joined the Grail (and the ark of the covenant) in Indiana Jones's warehouse.


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 Post subject: Re: The "Holy Grail" of....???
PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2017 5:58 am 
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Victor IV
His epigrams are all his own, the man's an epigramophone!
Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2011 1:21 pm
Posts: 1724
Location: UK
OrthoSean wrote:
Wolfe wrote:
As someone who enjoys opera records, I'd like to ever find some Fonotipia discs "in the wild." I've only found one. Sure, they are found on auction lists, if you want to lay out the cash for them. But they never seem to turn up in my neck o' the woods, amid the boundless Victor Red Seals and Columbias, etc.


Being a little closer to NYC, I have found those around here. One collection I bought in it's entirety had well over 300 of them in it and I still run into them from time to time. They seem to be more easily available in the greater NYC area.

Sean


Fonotipias seem to have always been collector's items, passed from one caring owner to another rather than ending up in junk shops. They are rare and expensive in the UK, which is why I only have a few of them. Slightly easier to find are the ones re-issued on the Columbia Grand Opera label, which can often be identified by the artist's signature in the wax.

As to the real Holy Grail, I live not far from Glastonbury which has long been associated with the legend.


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 Post subject: Re: The "Holy Grail" of....???
PostPosted: Sun Aug 27, 2017 9:53 pm 
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Victor O
Joined: Tue Aug 13, 2013 12:24 pm
Posts: 83
When I first heard the term, I thought that it meant something--foolishly. Several dozen usages within a short amount of time within a 78rpm Facebook group--some of them so cutely ironic, don't you know??--disabused me of that.

Just as a gratuitous swipe--those blues records don't bear listening beyond about five seconds--if that.

Over-rated, over-priced, over-hyped garbage.

I wouldn't brag about paying almost $40,000 for one of the lousy things, although the bobblehead sycophants will of course applaud. More like a candidate for "Chump of the Year."


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 Post subject: Re: The "Holy Grail" of....???
PostPosted: Sun Aug 27, 2017 10:12 pm 
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Victor I
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2016 11:49 pm
Posts: 107
GrafonolaG50 wrote:
Any military marches from wartime Germany or any 78s of speeches by any of the leaders of WWII.


I just listed a 12 record set of FDR speeches on Yankee Trader, have that one yet?


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 Post subject: Re: The "Holy Grail" of....???
PostPosted: Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:10 am 
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Victor O
Joined: Thu Apr 27, 2017 5:52 am
Posts: 64
Location: Redruth, Cornwall, U.K.
Currently, since I bought a little Columbia Q which belongs squarely to the brown-wax era and makes a surprisingly good job of playing steadily at 120 r.p.m., my dream is to find an example – almost any example – of a pre-1896 cylinder, that is one belonging to the time when there were no pantographs or dubbings and the cylinder one bought was an actual studio master. I suspect that this is a vain hope, since for reasons partly geographical and partly personal I cannot go hunting in the field, and such things do not seem to appear on the open market.

Among discs, I should dearly love to own the 1908 set of Strauss's Die Fledermaus with Robert Philipp as Eisenstein and Emilie Herzog as Rosalinde – inevitably an abbreviated performance, but including much of the spoken dialogue and with a remarkably lively orchestra conducted by Gramophone & Typewriter's musical director in Berlin, Bruno Seidler-Winkler. I once had a DVD including this and many other operatic rarities, but (ironically) that disc has become corrupted and is now mostly unplayable.

There are many other things that must be the stuff of many a collector's private fantasies, such as the 'live' recordings from the Metropolitan Opera (1901–03) which vanished from the collection of their maker Lionel Mapleson when he was living in London, or the celebrity cylinders made by Gianni Bettini, whose work I believe is now represented only by some of his lesser productions.

Oliver Mundy.


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 Post subject: Re: The "Holy Grail" of....???
PostPosted: Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:23 am 
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Victor I
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2016 11:49 pm
Posts: 107
Rastus10 wrote:
Those blues records don't bear listening beyond about five seconds--if that.

Over-rated, over-priced, over-hyped garbage.

I wouldn't brag about paying almost $40,000 for one of the lousy things, although the bobblehead sycophants will of course applaud. More like a candidate for "Chump of the Year."


Some people would say the same about opera.

But value is a matter not only of content, but of the intersection of supply (or lack thereof) and demand.


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 Post subject: Re: The "Holy Grail" of....???
PostPosted: Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:25 am 
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Victor I
Joined: Wed Jul 24, 2013 2:28 pm
Posts: 134
Location: Scotland
epigramophone wrote:
The two recordings made by Jean de Reszke for Fonotipia in Paris on 22nd April 1905. Although they were given catalogue numbers and advertised as forthcoming issues they never appeared. The story is that de Reszke was dissatisfied with them and vetoed their release, but what happened to the test pressings?



Ditto the recordings of Hariclea Darclee (who created the role of Tosca in 1900), reputed to have been made, but not seen in the last seventy years.


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 Post subject: Re: The "Holy Grail" of....???
PostPosted: Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:42 am 
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Victor I
Joined: Wed Jul 24, 2013 2:28 pm
Posts: 134
Location: Scotland
Most records of Caruso are exceedingly common (because commercially successful); but his early Zonophone and Pathé recordings are scarce and costly.

Of Tamagno's record of Messaline, only one copy is reputed to exist; Anna Bahr-Mildenburg made just one record, of which only a couple of examples are known to survive.

There are in fact quite a number of major rarities from the earliest days of recording in the fragmented European market - records of de Negri, Theodorini, Fabbri, Toresella, Albani, Marconi, Maurel, Signoretti and Signorini to name but a few.


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 Post subject: Re: The "Holy Grail" of....???
PostPosted: Tue Aug 29, 2017 1:58 pm 
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Victor O
Joined: Tue Aug 13, 2013 12:24 pm
Posts: 83
bfinan11 wrote:

Some people would say the same about opera.

But value is a matter not only of content, but of the intersection of supply (or lack thereof) and demand.


I don't dispute that one bit and praise the more practical angle that you have offered.

But, I've never encountered a "here's why I paid $37,500" for one record" or whatever title it was article by an opera collector as that blues collector posted. I mean, really, what does he want, a medal?

Ohh, right, he has tons of dough and most of us don't. Needy and attention-seeking, no matter how well his pockets are lined.


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