Jack White's Third Man Records is embarking on yet another ambitious vinyl release. This time, Third Man is partnering with John Fahey's Revenant Records for a reissue of Paramount Records' catalog, which will be split into two 800 song volumes. The Rise and Fall of Paramount Records, Volume One (1917-1927) is set for exclusive release via Third Man on October 29th, and will be available worldwide on November 19th.
Paramount Records was founded in Wisconsin in 1917, and in its 18-year lifespan released thousands of 78-RPM records from Jazz and Blues greats such as Louis Armstrong, Blind Lemon Jefferson, Ma Rainey and Jelly Roll Morton, as well as a whole host of lesser-known and even long-forgotten artists. The label's open door policy of allowing anyone with money to record was certainly unique and democratic, but left in its wake a scattered and unorganized back catalog. That's where Jack White comes in.
Revenant Records co-founder Dean Blackwood came to White two years ago with a self-organized timeline of Paramount's history and asked, "Why hasn't this story been told?" White responded by assembling a team of more than 30 artists, writers, historians and record collectors, who proceeded to compile the 1,600 songs that will appear across both editions of The Rise and Fall of Paramount Records
Volume One will be released in a “Handcrafted quarter-sawn oak cabinet with lush sage velvet upholstery and custom-forged metal hardware,” and will include six 180-gram records containing 87 songs, 200 restored original 1920s ads and images, two books, and a USB drive containing the remaining 713 songs. Volume Two will hit shelves in November 2014.
Listen to Ma Rainey's "Run Away Blues," released on Paramount Records in 1928, below.
Via: Rolling Stone