Primo and Promo!

Mega score by Massimo from Italy is pictured here (and in my behind-the-scenes photos from the previous post). I connected with Massimo and his pal Mack outside of Disk Union in Shinjuku last weekend when I was hanging out with my buddy Michael. Massimo and Mack had just scored a huge haul of premium copies of some great titles, and ALL PROMO copies, i.e. early pressings intended for Radio DJs, Promoters, Record Stores and so, copies meant to promote the album.}

For those who don’t know, a very over-simplified version of the record creation process. Artists record their music on a source like tape. That information on that tape is essentially magnetic signals or sound waves that modulate, go up and down, left and right, round and round, as a representation of the sounds that were recorded. All those modulations can get read as amplitudes pushed down a wire as just raw values, then, through some electronic wizardry, amps and speakers and can get that info and turn it into sound.

Hope I haven’t lost you …So those signals can also be sent to a lathe, which kinda looks like a record player but instead of a spinning record’s grooves being read by the needle on a tonearm, there is a needle that is actually taking those musical signals and cutting grooves into the metal (I’m skipping a couple steps for simplicities sake). Anyway, those metal plates become “stampers” and those go on to press ~5000 vinyl “pucks” each. After 5000, they lose quality, so they make a new stamper and start over. So the FIRST ones stamped by the Stamper are technically the best, the closest to the original, the lasts are the worst, the furthest from the original. To try to impress the earliest listeners, the radio DJs and promoters, who will effectively sell the albums, they get sent the earliest, best-sounding pressing, the “Promo Copy”, which eventually end up in record stores, and are highly collectible. All Massimo and Mack’s records scored on this haul were Promos …Japanese Promos.

What’s more, is that Massimo scored all these for a brother back in Italy. What a Fratello Supremo!

The Who – Tommy
Label: Polydor – MPU 9707/8
Series: 不滅のハード・ロック・オリジナル名盤15選
Format: 2 x Vinyl, LP, Album, Reissue, Stereo, Gatefold
Country: Japan
Released: Jun 1980
Genre: Rock
Style: Pop Rock, Hard Rock

Eagles – The Long Run
Label: Asylum Records – P-10600Y
Format: Vinyl, LP, Album, Promo, Gatefold
Country: Japan
Released: 1979
Genre: Rock
Style: Country Rock, Pop Rock

Foreigner – 4
Label: Atlantic – P-10981A
Format: Vinyl, LP, Album, Promo
Country: Japan
Released: 1981
Genre: Rock
Style: Pop Rock

Billy Joel – 52nd Street
Label: CBS/Sony – 25AP 1152
Format: Vinyl, LP, Album, Promo
Country: Japan
Released: 1978
Genre: Jazz, Rock, Pop
Style: Ballad, Latin Jazz, Pop Rock

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