Musicor Records

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For the Canadian record label that also used the Musicor name, see Disques Musicor.

Musicor Records was a New York City-based record label, active during the 1960s and 1970s. The label was founded by songwriter Aaron Schroeder and distributed by United Artists Records. In 1965, UA employee and A&R man Art Talmadge (a co-founder of Mercury Records years earlier) started his own Talmadge Productions company and, along with fellow UA employee/A&R man Harold "Pappy" Daily, bought the Musicor label from UA.

The Musicor catalog is today owned by Gusto Records.

Subsidiary and reissue labels[edit]

After Art Talmadge bought the Musicor label, he formed two budget subsidiary labels (MusicVoice and Music Disc/MusicO) as well as two short-lived commercial subsidiaries, Ariel and Dynamo. Reissued singles were released under the Musicor Startime Series label.

Best-selling artists[edit]

Musicor's best-selling artists ran the gamut of genres. The label's most successful artist was pop star Gene Pitney, who gave Musicor its biggest hits with "It Hurts to Be in Love" and "Only Love Can Break a Heart". Bert Berns produced Jimmy Radcliffe's recording of the Burt Bacharach and Hal David song "Long After Tonight Is All Over" in 1964 that proved to be one of Northern Soul music's most enduring anthems. After a few years with no hits, popular R&B vocal group the Platters made a comeback on Musicor with the Northern Soul classics "I Love You 1000 Times" and "With This Ring".

Other artists rounding out the Musicor stable included Kenny Dino, Harmon Bethea, Steve Rossi (of the comic duo Allen & Rossi), Puerto Rican sensation Tito Rodriguez, middle-of-the-road orchestra leader Hugo Winterhalter, disco act the Toys, rock group Street People which featured Rupert Holmes. Country music singer George Jones recorded prolifically for Musicor from 1964 to 1972, including two albums of duets with labelmate Melba Montgomery.

Musicor also produced some of the earliest recordings featuring the Moog synthesizer. The one-hit wonder Hot Butter scored a Top 10 hit for the label in 1972 with the song "Popcorn" (which was also Musicor's last big hit). The Electric Moog Orchestra was also on the Musicor roster, specializing in synthesized versions of John Williams music.

Attempted revival/s[edit]

Based on the discovery of an undistributed inventory, an attempt was made to reactivate Musicor Records in San Francisco, California, as a re-issue and special issue label. The label was to specialize in issuing otherwise unavailable holiday titles for the jukebox market.

The title that was sent to press is Mariah Carey's "All I Want For Christmas Is You" b/w "Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)." Catalog number MUS 1601. These titles have not been released to the North American market in this format. They were pressed in the late 1990s, but distribution was not secured and the product shelved and forgotten. Negotiations are ongoing with Sony to secure new licensing for this initial release, hopefully available by spring 2016, close to 20 years after they were manufactured. There is interest by the owner of the product at reviving the label for further titles pending revenue from sales of the current old stock.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]