At least one Stephens test survived

by Mark Gabrish Conlan

At least one Bob Stephens test pressing of a rejected Bix take survived: the alternate take of the Bix-Tram "My Pet." The label scan in the booklet for "Bix Restored, Volume 4" shows Stephens' initials and credits him with the decision of what take of that song got released originally.

My reference to Decca's "cheap, substandard equipment" was a quote from John Hammond, who was mainly associated with Brunswick and Columbia but also did occasional sessions for Victor and Decca. James Parten's comment that Decca had state-of-the-art equipment and "sometimes the recording quality actually made it to the final pressings" suggests that the problem may have been with the quality of their pressings rather than the equipment used to record the masters.

Posted on Nov 15, 2017, 7:53 AM

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