Dating Adge Cutler's Early Columbia/EMI Vinyl Record Pressings

Professor Wurzel's Ultimate Guide

SO - you have a copy of one of 'Adge Cutler And The Wurzels' original five LPs ('Adge Cutler & The Wurzels', 'Adge Cutler's Family Album', 'Cutler Of The West', 'Carry On Cutler', and 'Don't Tell I Tell Ee'). 


 With the exception of the last album all these records were released on the Columbia EMI label and were repressed several times - remaining on the EMI catalogue up until 1979. How do you tell how old your copy is? When was it pressed? Is it a standard pressing or a rarity? It's not as difficult as it may seem if you follow Professor Wurzel's simple guide.

1963-1969

The Columbia 'blue-black' label was used by EMI from 1963 until early 1969.  The essential items that appear on all record labels in some form or another are: the album's title, artist and track listing; the record speed (in this case 33 1/3 rpm); the record's catalogue number, (here SX6126 with SX signifying a mono recording - the SCX prefix being used for stereo recordings); the recording matrix number (on this example XAX3312 which also can be found impressed on the vinyl and was the EMI library master recording reference) and, finally, the publishing date.  The rim text reads: ​   

THE GRAMOPHONE CO.LTD. ALL RIGHTS OF THE MANUFACTURER AND OF THE OWNER OF THE RECORDED WORK RESERVED. UNAUTHORISED PUBLIC PERFORMANCE BROADCASTING AND COPYING OF THIS RECORD PROHIBITED     ​ With additional text SOLD IN UK SUBJECT TO RESALE PRICE CONDITIONS, SEE PRICE LISTS

appearing horizontally across the middle of the label with MADE IN GT BRITAIN appearing further down

1969

The 'silver-black single EMI box' label was introduced early in 1969 replacing the 'blue-black' Columbia label. As well as the obvious redesign of the label as a whole the rim text layout has been redesigned and now reads: 
 
THE GRAMOPHONE CO.LTD. ALL RIGHTS OF THE MANUFACTURER AND OF THE OWNER OF THE RECORDED WORK RESERVED. UNAUTHORISED PUBLIC PERFORMANCE BROADCASTING AND COPYING OF THIS RECORD PROHIBITED MADE IN GT BRITAIN. SOLD IN UK SUBJECT TO RESALE PRICE CONDITIONS, SEE PRICE LISTS

This label style ended in June 1969 after being in use for only a few months so is relatively rare. 

1969-1971

This variation of the 'silver-black single EMI box' label was introduced in June 1969      Following a change in the law the wording the text ' SOLD IN UK SUBJECT TO RESALE PRICE CONDITIONS, SEE PRICE LISTS' was removed from the rim text.    ​This wording had been introduced in February 1964 for EMI records that were intended for sale within the UK only but often appeared on exported records. This label variation was discontinued in early 1971.    ​

1971-1973

The 'silver-black double EMI box' label was introduced in the early part of 1971. Essentially the same as the previous label the noticeable change is the addition of an extra EMI logo box at the top of the label emphasising the 'EMI' connection. This was probably done in anticipation of the next design change on the 1st July 1973.

1973-1979

Essentially the same as the previous label this design was introduced on the 1st July 1973 following the official change in the company name from the 'Gramophone Company Ltd' to 'EMI Records Ltd' a significant event in the company history. The rim text now reads:   

EMI RECORDS LTD. ALL RIGHTS OF THE MANUFACTURER AND OF THE OWNER OF THE RECORDED WORK RESERVED. UNAUTHORISED PUBLIC PERFORMANCE BROADCASTING AND COPYING OF THIS RECORD PROHIBITED . MADE IN GT BRITAIN

The label was used for record pressings made until 1979 - EMI then changed the design of the label a few times in the ensuing years but none of the original Adge Cutler albums were repressed after this date.    ​

So there you have it - using the images above you should now able to work out roughly when your Adge LP was pressed. ​

Of course, these examples only show the 'standard' label designs and there are always interesting variations to be found due to inconsistencies in the manufacturing process!

Finally - it was not unknown for the pressing plants to use up old stock of labels when new ones had already been introduced - nothing is straightforward in the record collecting world!