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|Parent company||Universal Music Group|
|Distributor(s)||Decca Label Group|
|Country of origin||US|
|Official website||Decca Broadway|
Decca Broadway Records was an American record label specializing in musical theater recordings founded in 1999 by Decca Records and is a unit of Universal Music Group. Decca Broadway issued both new original cast albums as well as reissues of classic musical theater performances from the catalogues of record labels Universal Music and predecessor companies acquired over the years including Decca which pioneered the release of original cast albums. Decca Broadway was absorbed into UMG's Verve Records in 2013.
Decca Records is a British record label established in 1929 by Edward Lewis. Its U.S. label was established in late 1934 by Lewis, along with American Decca's first president Jack Kapp and later American Decca president Milton Rackmil. In 1937, anticipating Nazi aggression leading to World War II, Lewis sold American Decca and the link between the UK and U.S. Decca labels was broken for several decades. The British label was renowned for its development of recording methods, while the American company developed the concept of cast albums in the musical genre. Both wings are now part of the Universal Music Group, which is owned by Vivendi, a media conglomerate headquartered in Paris, France. The US Decca label was the foundation company that evolved into UMG.
Universal Music Group is an American global music corporation that is a subsidiary of the French media conglomerate Vivendi. UMG's global corporate headquarters are located in Santa Monica, California. It is considered one of the "Big Three" record labels, along with Sony Music and Warner Music Group. Since 2004, the corporation is no longer related to the film studio Universal Studios.
Verve Records, also known as The Verve Music Group, founded in 1956 by Norman Granz, is home to the world's largest jazz catalogue and includes recordings by artists such as Ella Fitzgerald, Nina Simone, Stan Getz and Billie Holiday, among others. It absorbed the catalogues of Granz's earlier labels, Clef Records, founded in 1946, Norgran Records, founded in 1953, and material previously licensed to Mercury Records.
In 1949, Decca began to re-release the best-selling of these albums on LP and in the late 1950s began offer different versions of electronically enhanced for stereo editions, which sounded thin and hollow.
Some of these versions employed varying combinations of phase shift, comb filters and EQ splits over the two channels - sometimes all at the same time while other more popular versions left the original monaural track alone on the left and put all the fake re-processing on the right. At least with that format, a record buyer could enjoy the original untouched monaural performance simply by switching their balance control all the way to the left.
In the early days of home consoles with 3-channel amplifiers, Decca and other labels responded by releasing still other versions with the untouched monaural program alone in the lateral plane and the processing alone in the vertical plane. This allowed phonograph owners with such a console to raise or lower just the center (mono) channel to their individually desired level.
The label was out of the business of recording new cast albums by the end of the 1950s. Decca was bought by MCA and in the early 1970s many of these titles were re-released on the MCA label, all using the fake stereo masters, a condition which for the most part wasn't even beginning to be rectified until 20 years later until expanded silver, gold and diamond anniversary editions were prepared - some using pristine previously-unheard safety masters of some performances that had become worn out after repeated re-mastering..
MCA Records was an American major record label owned by MCA Inc., which later gave way to the larger MCA Music Entertainment Group, which the label was part of until its dissolution in 2003. The label's country division MCA Nashville is a still active imprint of Universal Music Group Nashville.
MCA released many of their classic shows on CD in the 1990s, going back to original master discs and tapes to generate excellent sounding (and complete) remasters of the originals. When MCA and PolyGram were merged into the new Universal Music Group, a new label, Decca Broadway, was born. The new label's catalogue incorporated other musical theatre albums whose rights were owned by Universal Music.
PolyGram, founded in 1962, acquired by Universal Music Group in 1998 and merged into that group in 1999, was a Dutch entertainment company, which started as a major record label founded by Dutch Philips and German Siemens as a holding company for their music interests in 1972. The name was chosen to reflect the Siemens interest Polydor Records and the Philips interest Phonogram Records. The company traced its origins through Deutsche Grammophon back to the inventor of the flat disk gramophone, Emil Berliner.
Decca Broadway has re-mastered and reissued virtually every cast album in the old Decca catalogue including many rare titles that had not been available in almost 50 years. Decca Broadway has also recorded recent hits including: Wicked , Monty Python's Spamalot , Seussical , and Spring Awakening . Wicked in particular has been a big seller for the label and continues to sell well. Although they are being selective about what they record, Decca Broadway plans to continue making cast albums, including Mel Brooks' Young Frankenstein and Andrew Lippa's The Addams Family: A New Musical . Although some of the slower-selling catalog titles have been deleted, many remain available as downloads.
Wicked is a Broadway musical with music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz and book by Winnie Holzman. It is based on the Gregory Maguire novel Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West, itself a retelling of the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer film The Wizard of Oz (1939) and the classic 1900 novel, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum. The musical is told from the perspective of the witches of the Land of Oz; its plot begins before and continues after Dorothy Gale arrives in Oz from Kansas, and includes several references to the 1939 film and Baum's novel. Wicked tells the story of two unlikely friends, Elphaba and Galinda, who struggle through opposing personalities and viewpoints, rivalry over the same love-interest, reactions to the Wizard's corrupt government, and, ultimately, Elphaba's public fall from grace.
Seussical is a musical by Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty. It is based on the children's stories of Dr. Seuss, with most of its plot being based on Horton Hears a Who! while incorporating many other stories. The musical's name is a portmanteau of "Seuss" and musical. After its Broadway debut in 2000, it has spawned two US national tours and a West End production, and has become a frequent production for schools and regional theatres.
Spring Awakening is a rock musical with music by Duncan Sheik and a book and lyrics by Steven Sater. It is based on the 1891 German play Spring Awakening by Frank Wedekind. Set in late 19th-century Germany, the musical tells the story of teenagers discovering the inner and outer tumult of teenage sexuality. In the musical, alternative rock is employed as part of the folk-infused rock score.
In 2012, UMG acquired EMI, and thus Decca Broadway took over the rights to EMI's musical theatre catalogue. The following year, the imprint was absorbed into Verve Records.
EMI Group Limited was a British Transnational conglomerate founded in March 1931 in London. At the time of its break-up in 2012, it was the fourth largest business group and record label conglomerate in the music industry, and was one of the big four record companies ; its labels included EMI Records, Parlophone, Virgin Records, and Capitol Records, which are now owned by other companies.
Deutsche Grammophon (DGG) is a German classical music record label that was the precursor of the corporation PolyGram. Headquarted in Berlin Friedrichshain, it is now part of Universal Music Group (UMG) since its merger with the UMG family of labels in 1999. It is the oldest surviving established record company.
Mercury Records is an American record label owned by Universal Music Group. In the United States, it operates through Island Records; in the UK, it is distributed by Virgin EMI Records.
MGM Records was a record label started by the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer film studio in 1946 for the purpose of releasing soundtrack albums of their musical films. It soon transitioned to a pop music label which continued into the 1970s. The company also released soundtrack albums of the music for some of their non-musical films as well, and on rare occasions, cast albums of off-Broadway musicals such as The Fantasticks and the 1954 revival of The Threepenny Opera. In one instance, it even released the highly successful soundtrack album of a film made by a rival studio, Columbia Pictures's Born Free (1966).
A cast recording is a recording of a stage musical that is intended to document the songs as they were performed in the show and experienced by the audience. An original cast recording or OCR, as the name implies, features the voices of the show's original cast. A cast recording featuring the first cast to perform a musical in a particular venue is known, for example, as an "original Broadway cast recording" or an "original London cast recording".
Blue Thumb Records was an American record label founded in 1968 by Bob Krasnow and former A&M Records executives Tommy LiPuma and Don Graham. Blue Thumb's last record was released in 1978.
Angel Records was a record label founded by EMI in 1953. It specialised in classical music, but included an occasional operetta or Broadway score. The Angel mark was used by EMI, its predecessors, and affiliated companies since 1898. EMI's classical-music operations were sold to Warner Music Group in 2013. The label is currently inactive since 2006, dissolving and reassigning Angel Records' artists and catalogues into its parent label EMI Classics and musical theatre artists and catalogues into Capitol Records. EMI Classics was sold and absorbed into Warner Classics.
Hip-O Records is a record label that specializes in reissues and compilations. It is part of Universal Music Group. Established in 1996, the label has distributed releases from 'out of style' genres such as disco and early hip-hop music as well as publishing film soundtracks. The label's name is a pun on the name 'hippo'.
Kapp Records was an independent record label started in 1954 by David Kapp, brother of Jack Kapp. David Kapp founded his own label after stints with Decca and RCA Victor. Kapp licensed its records to London Records for release in the UK.
Universal Music Group Nashville is Universal Music Group's country music subsidiary. Some of the labels in this group include MCA Nashville Records, Mercury Nashville Records, Lost Highway Records, Capitol Records Nashville and EMI Records Nashville. UMG Nashville not only handles these imprints, but also manages the country music catalogues of record labels Universal Music and predecessor companies acquired over the years including ABC Records, Decca Records, Dot Records, DreamWorks Records, Kapp Records, MGM Records and Polydor Records.
Black Coffee is the first album by Peggy Lee. It was released in the ten-inch format in 1953 by Decca. In 1956, at the request of the record label, Lee recorded four more songs for a reissue of the album in the twelve-inch LP format.
"They Say It's Wonderful" is a popular song written by Irving Berlin for the musical Annie Get Your Gun (1946), where it was introduced by Ethel Merman and Ray Middleton. A film version in 1950 again featured the song when it was performed by Howard Keel and Betty Hutton.
In the Land of Hi-Fi was a Patti Page album issued by Mercury Records on its EmArcy label. The catalog number of the monaural version, first released in 1956, was MG-36074, and of the stereophonic version, released in 1958, it was SR-80000. It was later reissued as Mercury MG-20516 (mono) and SR-60192 (stereo), titled Patti Page With The Pete Rugolo All Stars.
Decca Gold is a United States-based record label focusing on classical repertoire. It falls under the umbrella of Verve Label Group, owned by Universal Music Group. The label has a new roster of classical artists and partnerships, and was inspired by the historic Decca Gold Label Series established in 1956 that featured artists such as Andrés Segovia, Leonard Bernstein, Claudio Arrau and Dave Brubeck. The label's first album, Emerson String Quartet's Chaconnes and Fantasias: Music of Britten and Purcell, was released on April 21, 2017. Decca Gold partnered with the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition to release recordings of the Gold, Silver and Bronze winners. That album reached #1 on the Billboard Classical Traditional Chart.
Universal Music Enterprises (abbreviated as UME and stylized as UMe) is the catalogue division of Universal Music Group. It includes Hip-O Records, Universal Chronicles and UM3 (which is the international division of the company). Under various divisions, it reissues many classic albums from the UMG back catalogue, and also various compilation albums, including series such as the 20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection and Icon budget lines and the 2-disc Gold compilations. It also released Billy Ray Cyrus's album Wanna Be Your Joe and re-released John Cougar Mellencamp's American Fool and Tom Petty's Greatest Hits. In 2012, UMe took over distribution of Frank Zappa's recorded music catalogue.
Merry Christmas is a compilation album by Bing Crosby that was released in 1945 on Decca Records. It has remained in print through the vinyl, CD, and downloadable file eras, currently as the disc and digital album White Christmas on MCA Records, a part of the Universal Music Group, and currently on vinyl as Merry Christmas on Geffen Records. It includes Crosby's signature song "White Christmas", the best-selling single of all time with estimated sales of over 50 million copies worldwide. The album has sold over 15 million copies and is the second best-selling Christmas album of all-time behind Elvis' Christmas Album, which has sold more than 19 million copies worldwide. The original 1945 release and subsequent re-releases and re-packages spent a total of 36 weeks at no. 1 on the Billboard pop albums chart.
Manhattan Tower was a composition written by Gordon Jenkins in the 1940s and first issued to the public in 1946 as a two-disc 78-rpm set on the Decca label, DA-438. It was considered quite innovative for its time and was quite warmly received by critics and the public alike. Jenkins also performed the suite in its entirety on the very time-conscious Toast of the Town, hosted by Ed Sullivan, on February 26, 1950. An expanded 90-minute live musical dramatization, featuring Peter Marshall and Helen O'Connell, was presented as an NBC Saturday Spectacular on October 27, 1956.
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