Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Transcription Mystery Disc # 76

This is a genuine Wilcox Gay Recordio. These are very fun. Much like Voice-o-graph discs, a Recordio is a home recording from WWII. The Voice-O-Graph discs were usually record by soldiers and sent home. recordios were sent from home to the troops. It's not that cut and dry of course, but it's how they were marketed. I am researching and will post about them in detail another day. More here.This one is a recording from a mother to one of her kids. She's visiting another offspring in Birmingham. I had assumed Birmingham, Alabama, but it could be any of the 11 other Birminghams in the country. Her husband is named Albert and you can hear him in the background of one short passage toward the end. She talks about the neighbors, the local scenery and even tips me off that's she's a Yankee; she's a leaf-peeper. the one thing she never does is say her own last name or the date. thankfully one of those is written on the label: November 14th 1948.

Wilcox-Gay had little Recordio recording Booths just like the Mutoscope Voice-O-Graph booths. Both companies had coin-operated models. More here. Aside from the paper label the Wilcox-Gay transcription discs were the same as most others after the 1930s. The base is aluminum and the coating is nitrocellulose lacquer, which is plasticized with Castor oil. It ages poorly, but it's history. I edited together sides A & B into one MP3. Side B has a bit better signal clarity.