Synthetic Plastics Company

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Synthetics Plastics Company or SPC of Newark, New Jersey was a plastics manufacturing company that made various items made of plastic including children's records and budget music albums.

History[edit]

SPC was formed by Daniel Kasen in the late 1920s as a plastic manufacturer of buttons for the garments industry and game parts for the toy industry. After World War II, Daniel and his brother Louis Kasen founded Peter Pan Records, in 1949, operating the label under SPC from then until 1970. Daniel and Louis Kasen owned several subsidiaries music labels including Ambassador Records, Parade, Prom, Promenade, Pirouette, Guest Star, Power Records and Diplomat Records, whose motto was "Fine records need not be expensive".

In 1950, the American Music Performance Trust Fund challenged Synthetic for not paying royalties. A spokesman said that Peter Pan records were designed purely for home use and therefore there was no reason to pay contributions to the fund.[1]

Diplomat Records had its own children's label, Rocking Horse. In the 1960s SPC ventured into the Southern Gospel music arena when it hired former Oak Ridge Quartet member Ron Page to solicit groups to record for its Scripture label. Most of the Scripture sessions were done in Nashville, Tennessee, with the musicians under the direction of pianist/composer David Reece. Groups recording for Scripture included The Sego Brothers & Naomi, The Rangers Trio (featuring Reece and Page), Wendy Bagwell and the Sunliters, and The Goss Brothers.

One of the most successful records released under the SPC banner was "My Son, The President"—a comedy spotlighting then-president John F. Kennedy, his wife, Jacqueline Kennedy and their daughter, Caroline—that followed in the footsteps of Vaughn Meader's The First Family series of comedy records. "My Son, The President" (the "My Son" part of the title itself borrows from Allan Sherman's series of comedy albums) was released on the Clan subsidiary of SPC in 1963. They were very active in the business of sound-alike recordings. They would find a singer who sounded like a well-known artist of the time, such as Mario Lanza or Perry Como. The sound-alike singer would record an album of songs previously recorded by the better-known artist, which would be released with a facsimile of the "name" artist on the cover. The cover would prominently mention the popular artist (e.g., A Tribute To Mario Lanza), while the actual singer would be mentioned in very small print ("Sung by Enzo Stuarti"). Eventually, if the sound-alike became a name artist, the same record could be re-issued with a new title (Enzo Stuarti Sings). Some of the record pressings were of poor quality, as they were created from inferior grade vinyl, and often sounded very noisy.

Despite record companies lowering their prices, Synthetic Plastics said they remained successful due to their cooperation with the stores that sold them.[citation needed]

In 1964, the company changed its name to Peter Pan Industries because of their success in children's records under the name of Peter Pan Records.[2]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. p. 15. ISSN 0006-2510. Retrieved 2015-08-25. 
  2. ^ Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. p. 26. ISSN 0006-2510. Retrieved 2015-08-25. 

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