Birka Jazz Home
   On Internet since 1998

The Birka Jazz Archive
Records we have bought and sold over the years - the rare and the beautiful!

Please note!
These albums are not for sale. Click HOME to find our record store.

HOME


Scroll down and use the links to browse our comprehensive Archive of rare jazz album covers

First page  |  Previous  |  Next





AMERICAN LABELS

COLUMBIA RECORDS
The pioneers of album cover design

CLEF, NORGRAN, VERVE (1)
David Stone Martin

CLEF, NORGRAN, VERVE (2)
The photographic covers

BLUE NOTE  10" LPs
Searching for a modern jazz identity

BLUE NOTE  1500 series
Defining the hard bop style

BLUE NOTE  4000 series
Masterpieces of Reid Miles

PRESTIGE RECORDS
Images of East Coast jazz

RIVERSIDE RECORDS
Street cred with Thelonious Monk

PACIFIC JAZZ
Moods of Chet and Claxton

CONTEMPORARY
Cool West Coast, great Sound

SAVOY RECORDS
Masterworks by Charlie Parker

DIAL RECORDS
Small label, big Bird sound

ATLANTIC RECORDS
Bold and striking albums

EMARCY RECORDS
The classic drummer logo label

BETHLEHEM RECORDS
The beautiful design of Burt Goldblatt

DEBUT RECORDS
Artist-operated jazz label with Mingus & Roach

CANDID RECORDS
Legendary, early 1960s LPs

ESP-DISK
Free jazz and silk screened covers

IMPULSE RECORDS
Edgy and experimental

RCA VICTOR
The high spirit of Jim Flora

VARIOUS US labels (1)
ABC-Paramount, Aladdin, Argo, Capitol, Coral, Dawn, Decca,
and more

VARIOUS US labels (2)
Epic, Fantasy, HiFi, Imperial, Jazzland, Jazz West, Jubilee, Mercury, Mode, and more

VARIOUS US labels (3)
Roost, Signal, Storyville, Tampa, Transition, United Artists, Vee Jay, and more



EUROPEAN LABELS

SWEDEN (1)
The EP era and Metronome Records in 1950s

SWEDEN (2)
The LPs in the 1950s, and Swedish jazz abroad

SWEDEN (3)
Changing times in the 1960s

SWEDEN (4)
New energy to Swedish jazz in the 1970s

DENMARK
Montmartre, Debut Records and the heydays in Danish jazz

NORWAY
Krog and Garbarek, greats in Norwegian jazz

FINLAND
Plenty of merged styles in Finnish jazz

FRANCE
Americans in Paris, force in French jazz

ENGLAND
Esquire and Tempo, classic labels in British jazz

GERMANY
Jazz labels with strong identity

ITALY
Rare Italian jazz covers

HOLLAND
From Diamonds to ICP in
Dutch jazz

POLAND
Unique series of Polish jazz on Muza


OTHER COUNTRIES
Jazz labels around the world






Various US labels

Part 3



         

REGENT was an old american 78s record label which was purchased by Savoy Records in the late 1940s. Around 30 jazz LPs were issued in the 1950s.




   

REPRISE was established in 1961 by Frank Sinatra as a vehicle for his own recordings. He sold the company to Warner Brothers in 1963, but continued to record for the label into the end of his career - in all around 30 albums.

The Reprise catalogue included many great jazz artists, such as Duke Ellington who recorded eight album for the label in the 1960s. Also Count Basie, Dizzy Gillespie, Bud Powell and Ben Webster among others came out on Reprise.

The label design above was exclusive for Frank Sinatra. On other releases the portrait was changed to a steamboat drawing.




          

ROYAL ROOST was established in 1950 and was run by Jack Hooke and Teddy Reig into 1958, then the company became a division of Roulette Records. Royal Roost was associated with, and named after the night club Royal Roost in New York.

The label was called both Roost (on covers) and Royal Roost (on labels) and the output was almost entirely jazz. It organized important session with Stan Getz early in the 1950s and other principal artists were Johnny Smith and Sonny Stitt.

Roost issued about 20 LPs in the 10" format and about 60 LPs in the 12" format into mid 1960s.

In the early years almost all cover designs on Roost were made by Burt Goldblatt. He worked for many record companys. See the Bethlehem and Savoy pages among others.




          

ROULETTE was founded in New York in 1957. Roulette purchased the Roost label in 1958. Like Roost, Roulette was associated with a nightclub in New York. The owner was Morris Levi who run several nightclubs, among them the famous Birdland jazz club.

Roulette produced a variety of material, but not surprisingly, the company established the Birdland Series, which was devoted to jazz. The series included new recordings by Count Basie and albums by artists such as Maynard Ferguson and Sarah Vaughan.

The Birdland Series run into mid 1960s and slightly more than 100 jazz LPs were issued.




   

SIGNAL RECORDS was founded in New York in 1955 and run by Don Schlitten and Ira Gitler among others. It developed a reputation for well prepared recordings, perfectly engineered and with quality album designs and liners.

But the label was short-lived and issued only a handful LPs in the mid 50s. The catalogue was then sold to Savoy. Don Schlitten went to Prestige and was in the 1970s the founder of Coblestone and Xanadu labels.




          

STORYVILLE was formed in Boston in 1951 by George Wein. It evolved from the jazz club with the same name that he had opened the previous year.

Billie Holiday at Storyville

The Storyville catalogue contained recordings made both at the club and in studios. It included classic albums by Lee Konitz, Serge Chaloff and Zoot Sims among others.

The label was active in mid 1950s, but thereafter George Wein´s increasing involvement with the Newport Jazz Festival and other arrangements began to demand most of his time. The recordings discontinued and the club closed in 1959.

The label has no connection with the Danish label Storyville.

        George Wein




          

TAMPA RECORDS was founded in Hollywood in 1955 and owned by Bob Scherman and Irving Shorten. The company seems to have operated in about ten years and issued around 25 jazz LPs.

Unfortunately the techincal quality of the albums was not first class. The pressings are bad, and the covers are carelessly done. Titles vary from front cover to back cover, somtimes leaders are named, sometimes not etc.

In general Tampa issues come in two editions with different titles and covers. The first edition has red vinyl and a black label. The second has black vinyl and a pink label.

The founder Bob Scherman also owned other small labels and had produced rhythm & blues for labels such as King. The Tampa material has been reissued by VSOP Records.




   

TIME RECORDS was founded in New York in 1960 by Bob Shad. He was the man behind EmArcy in the 1950s and later, in mid 1960s, he also launched Mainstream Records.

Bob Shad produced a series of excellent albums for Time into 1966 then the label ceased. The catalogue included albums by Kenny Dorham, Max Roach, Booker Little, Sonny Clark among others.




   

TRANSITION was established in 1955 in Cambridge, Massachusetts, by Tom Wilson. Around 10 jazz LPs were issued during the two years the company existed, including albums by Sun Ra, Donald Byrd and Cecil Taylor.

Transition also issued some folk and classical music. The catalogue was aquired by United Artists in the late 1950s, for whom Tom Wilson was by that time working as a producer.




         

UNITED ARTISTS, the record company, was founded in 1958, initially to release soundtracks from the UA films. But it soon diversified into many types of music. Their involvment in jazz was significant and they produced some fine albums in the late 1950s.

         

In the early 1960s the company started a committed series of jazz albums. It was created by Frank Gauna. He drew a nice saxophone logo and designed the albums in a distinguish style, with soft hues or black and white. Unfortunately the series was short-lived, and from 1963 not very much jazz came out from the United Artists.

The designer and photographer Frank Gauna was also the man behind the graphic look of Candid Records. See the separate Candid page.




           

VANGUARD RECORDS was established in New York in 1950 by the brothers Maynard and Seymor Solomon. From beginning devoted mainly to classical music, Vanguard also made important contributions to the jazz repertory. The series Jazz Showcase was sponsered by the magazine Down Beat and produced by John Hammond. About 25 LPs were issued between 1953 and 1959.

Though its jazz activities decreased in the 1960s, the company continued to made recordings of folk music and jazz fusion. They also made a series of important blues recordings in Chicago in mid 1960s. They were produced by Sam Charters.




           

VEE JAY RECORDS started in 1953 by Vivian Carter and James C. Bracken, who used their first initials for the label´s name. The label was soon the most successful black-owned company in the US. But in the mid 1960s the company was bankrupt.

Vee Jay was based in Chicago and mostly recorded blues and r&b. The catalogue contains important bluesmen such as John Lee Hooker and Jimmy Reed.

In the late 1950s Vee Jay started a jazz series, which was headed by Sid McCoy. Among the artists were the sidmen in Miles Davis group - Wayne Shorter, Wynton Kelly and Paul Chambers, and also trumpeter Lee Morgan. Around 40 jazz LPs were issued into the mid 1960s.




      

WARWICK was founded in New York in 1959 by Morty Craft. The label issued around 50 LPs into 1962, mostly pop and just a handful of jazz records. They were brilliant produced by Teddy Charles. He then left the jazz scene in New York for the Caribbean, where he opened a sailing business.




         

VORTEX was a jazz label run by Herbie Mann during his years at Atlantic Records in the 1960s. He also run the EMBRYO label. Both labels were distributed by Atlantic. Mann´s production credits include recordings by Chick Corea, Roy Ayers, Sonny Sharrock among others.




 Singing and Swinging   Label: Regent 6031    12" LP 1956


Various US labels  ( 3 )
Regent Records

 Bernie Privin: Dancing and Dreaming   Label: Regent 6027  12" LP 1956
 
 

 Mildred Bailey: Sings Me and the Blues   Label: Regent 6032  12" LP 1956
 
 

 Dizzy Gillespie: School Days   Label: Regent 6043  12" LP 1957
 
 

 Tommy Flanagan: Jazz...I´s Magic!   Label: Regent 6055  12" LP 1957
 Photo: Berk Costello
 
 



Reprise Records

 Frank Sinatra: Ring-a-Ding-Ding    Label: Reprise 1001  12" LP 1961
Sinatra´s first LP for his own record company
 
 

   LPs from 1962 and 1964: Afro-Bossa by Duke Ellington (Reprise 6069), and
Bud Powell in Paris (Reprise 6098 - painting Donald Leake)
 
 

 Barney Kessel Jazz   Label: Reprise 6073  12" LP 1963
 
 

 Duke Ellington presents the Dollar Brand Trio   Label: Reprise 6111  12" LP 1965
 
 



Roost Records

 Stan Getz: The Sound   Label: Royal Roost 402   10" LP 1951
 Design: Burt Goldblatt

 Stan Getz: Jazz at Storyville   Label: Roost 407   10" LP 1952
 Design: Burt Goldblatt
 
 

 Johnny Smith Quintet: Jazz at n.b.c. series   Label: Roost 410   10" LP 1953
 Design: Burt Goldblatt
 
 

 Stan Getz: Jazz at Storyville, vol. 2   Label: Roost 411   10" LP 1953
 Design: Burt Goldblatt
 
 

 The Bud Powell Trio   Label: Roost 412   10" LP 1953
 Design and illustration: Burt Goldblatt
 

 Sonny Stitt plays from the pen of Johnny Richards   Label: Roost 415   10" LP 1952
 Design: Burt Goldblatt
 
 

 Stan Getz Plays, vol. 1´s Hollywood Party  Label: Roost EP 301   7" EP 1953
 Design: Burt Goldblatt
 
 

 Stan Getz: Jazz at Storyville, vol. 1  Label: Roost EP 312   7" LP 1953
 Design and photo: Burt Goldblatt
 
 

 Johnny Smith: In a Mellow Mood   Label: Roost 421   10" LP 1954
 Design and photo: Burt Goldblatt
 
 

 Stan Getz: Split Kick   Label: Roost 423  10" LP 1954
 
 

 Sonny Stitt at the Hi-Hat   Label: Roost 418   10" LP 1954
 Design: Burt Goldblatt
 
 

 Sonny Stitt   Label: Roost 2208   12" LP 1957   Photo: Herman Leonard
 
 

 Beverly Kenney: Come Swing With Me   Label: Roost 2212   12" LP 1957
 Photo: Herman Leonard
 
 

 Beverly Kenney   Label: Roost 2218   12" LP 1957
 Photo: Charles Stewart
 
 

 Bud Powell Trio   Label: Roost 2224   12" LP 1957   Photo: Charles Stewart



Roulette Records

 Jeri Southern: Coffee, Cigarettes and Memories   Label: Roulette 25039  12" LP 1958
 
 

   Count Basie LPs from late 1950s: E=MC2=Basie (Roulette 52003), and
Not Now, I´ll Tell You When (Roulette 52044)
 
 

 Movin´ In by Specs Powell & Co (Sahib Shihab a.o.)   Label: Roulette 52004  12" LP 1958
 
 

 Monday Night at Birdland   Label: Roulette 52015  12" LP 1958
 
 



Saturn Records

 Sun Ra: Jazz in Silhouette   Label: Saturn LP 5786  12" LP 1958
 
 
 

 Sun Ra: Bad and Beautiful   Label: Saturn ESR 532  12" LP 1972
 Photo: Steve Kent
 
 



Score Records

 Amos Milburn: Let´s Have A Party   Label: Score 4012  12" LP 1957
 
 



Signal Records

 Gigi Gryce  Label: Signal 1201   12" LP 1955
 Design and Photo: Harold Feinstein
 
 

 Duke Jordan Trio and Quintet  Label: Signal 1202   12" LP 1955
 Design and Photo: Harold Feinstein
 
 

 Cecil Payne with Kenny Dorham  Label: Signal 1203   12" LP 1955
 
 

 Cecil Payne: A Night at the Five Spot  Label: Signal 1204   12" LP 1957
 
 

 Red Rodney   Label: Signal 1206  12" LP 1957  Design: Don Schlitten
 
 

   LPs from 1955 in Signal´s Laboratory Series, in which the albums contained music by a
quartet on one side, and the same music with trio (without saxophone) on the other
 
 



Signature Records

 Ray Bryant Plays   Label: Signature 6008   12" LP 1960
 
 



SKI Records

 Katzutoki Kappo Umezu: Seikatsu Kojyo Iinkai   Label: SKI No. 1   12" LP 1975
 Design and Photo: Rainer Gross
 
 



Smash Records

 This is Billy Mitchell   Label: Smash 27027  12" LP 1962
 
 



SRP Records

 Milford Graves - Don Pullen: Nommo   Label: SRP Records 290  12" LP 1967
 Photo: Roy DeCarava
 
 



Storyville Records

 Serge Chaloff: The Fable of Mable  Label: Storyville EP 427   7" EP 1954
 Design: Burt Goldblatt
 
 

 Lee Konitz at Storyville   Label: Storyville 304   10" LP 1954
 Design and photo: Burt Goldblatt
 

   10" LPs from 1955: Serge Chaloff and Boots Mussulli (Storyville 310),
and Lee Konitz in Harvard Square (Storyville 323)
 
 

 Ruby Braff  Label: Storyville EP 433   7" EP 1955
 Design and photo: Burt Goldblatt
 
 

 Jackie and Roy   Label: Storyville 322   10" LP 1955
 Design and photo: Burt Goldblatt
 
 

 Sidney Bechet at Storyville   Label: Storyville 902   12" LP 1955
 Design and photo: Burt Goldblatt
 
 

 Joe Newman: Feel Like a Newman   Label: Storyville 905   10" LP 1956
 
 

 Z. Sims - B. Brookmeyer: Tonite´s Music Today   Label: Storyville 907   12" LP 1956
 Design and photo: Burt Goldblatt
 

 Introducing Milli Vernon´s Music Today   Label: Storyville 910   12" LP 1956
 Photo: Carole Reiff
 

 Toshiko Akiyoshi   Label: Storyville 912   12" LP 1956
 
 

 Zoot Sims - Bob Brookmeyer: Whoo-eee!   Label: Storyville 914   12" LP 1956
 
 



Studio 4 Records

 J.R. Monterose in Action   Label: Studio 4 Records 100  12" LP 1964
 
 



Survival

 Rashied Ali: New Directions in Modern Music   Label: Survival SR 104-B   12" LP 1973
 Photo: Ray Gibson
 



Tampa Records

 Marty Paich - Art Pepper   Label: Tampa TP 28  12" LP 1957
Design: Johnny Miller
 
 

 The Art Pepper Quartet   Label: Tampa RS 1001  12" LP 1957
Painting: John Brooks Miller
 
 

 Marty Paich: Hot Piano   Label: Tampa TP 23  12" LP 1957
 
 

 Marty Paich: Jazz for Relaxation   Label: Tampa TP 23  12" LP 1950s
Second edition of the Hot Piano album above
 
 

 Bob Gordon: Moods in Jazz   Label: Tampa TP 26  12" LP 1957
 
 



Time Records

 Sonny Clark Trio   Label: Time 70010  12" LP 1960
 
 

 Booker Little   Label: Time S-2011  12" LP 1960
 
 



Transition Records

 Donald Byrd: Byrd´s Eye View   Label: Transition 4   12" LP 1956
 
 

 Donald Byrd: Byrd Jazz   Label: Transition 5   12" LP 1956
 
 

 Donald Byrd: Byrd on Beacon Hill   Label: Transition 17   12" LP 1956
 
 

 Cecil Taylor: Jazz Advance   Label: Transition 19   12" LP 1956
 
 

 Doug Watkins: Watkins at Large   Label: Transition 20   12" LP 1956
 
 

 Lucky Thompson: Transition   Label: Transition 21   12" LP 1956
 
 

 Jazz in Transition   Label: Transition 30   12" LP 1956
 
 



Unique Records

 Unique Jazz from The Westchester Workshop   Label: Unique 103   12" LP 1957
 
 



United Artists Records

 Art Farmer: Modern Art   Label: United Artists 4007   12" LP 1958
 Design: Marvin Israel
 
 

 Cecil Taylor: Hard Driving Jazz   Label: United Artist 4014s   12" LP 1959
 Photo: Tom Burnside
 
 

 Bob Brookmeyer: Kansas City Revisited   Label: United Artists 4008   12" LP 1959
 Design: Paul Bacon   Photo: Alex Singer
 
 

 Randy Weston: Little Niles   Label: United Artists 4011   12" LP 1959
 Design: Marvin Israel :  Photo: Joan Martin
 
 

 Benny Carter: Aspects   Label: United Artists 4017   12" LP 1959
 Design: Paul Bacon
 
 

 Milt Jackson: Bag´s Opus   Label: United Artists 4022   12" LP 1959
 Design: Paul Bacon
 
 

 Zoot Sims: Stretching Out   Label: United Artists 4023   12" LP 1959
 Design: Stephen Haaz
 
 

 Thad Jones: Motor City Scene   Label: United Artists 4025   12" LP 1959
 
 

 Charles Mingus: Portraits   Label: United Artists 4036   12" LP 1959
 Design: Paul Bacon   Photo: Lee Kraft
 
 

 Curtis Fuller: Sliding Easy   Label: United Artists 4041   12" LP 1959
 Design: Stephen Haas   Photo: Lester Krauss
 
 

 Herbie Mann: African Suite   Label: United Artists 4042   12" LP 1959
 
 

 Art Farmer: Brass Shout   Label: United Artists 4047   12" LP 1959
 Design: Stephen Haas   Photo: Hugh Bell
 
 

 Ruby Braff - Marshall Brown Sextet   Label: United Artists 4093   12" LP 1959
 
 

 Bill Evans - Jim Hall: Undercurrent   Label: United Artists 14003   12" LP 1962
 Design: Frank Gauna :  Photo: Toni Frissell
 
 

 J. Richardson: Going to the Movies   Label: United Artists 14006   12" LP 1962
 Design and photo: Frank Gauna
 
 

 Kenny Dorham: Matador   Label: United Artists 14007   12" LP 1962
 Design: Frank Gauna
 
 

 Billy Strayhorn: The Peaceful Side   Label: United Artists 14010   12" LP 1962
 Design: Frank Gauna   Photo: Herman Leonard
 
 

 Zoot Sims in Paris   Label: United Artists 14013   12" LP 1962
 Design: Frank Gauna
 
 

 Ken McIntyre: Year of The Iron Sheep   Label: United Artists 14015   12" LP 1962
 Design: Frank Gauna   Photo: Charles Davis
 
 

 Vi Redd: Bird Call   Label: United Artists 14016   12" LP 1962
 Design and photo: Frank Gauna
 
 

 Duke Ellington: Money Jungle   Label: United Artists 14017   12" LP 1962
 Design and photo: Frank Gauna
 
 

 Charles Mingus: Town Hall Concert   Label: United Artists 14024   12" LP 1962
 Design: Frank Gauna
 
 

 Howard McGhee: Nowbody knows...   Label: United Artists 14028   12" LP 1962
 Design and photo: Frank Gauna
 
 

 Bud Freeman: Something Tender   Label: United Artists 14033   12" LP 1962
 Design and photo: Frank Gauna
 
 



Urania Records

 Meet the New Jack Teagarden, vol. 1   Label: Urania UJLP 1001   10" LP 1954
Photo: Hugh Bell 
 

 Coleman Hawkins: Accent on Tenor Sax   Label: Urania UJLP 1205   12" LP 1955
Photo: Jay Maisel 
 

 Lucky Thompson: Accent on Tenor   Label: Urania UJLP 1206   12" LP 1955
 
 

 Jack Teagarden: Accent on Trombone   Label: Urania UJLP 1208   12" LP 1955
 
 



Vanguard Records

 Joe Newman and his Band   Label: Vanguard VRS 8007 
Issue: 10" LP 1954   Drawing: Charles White

 

 Ted Brown Sextet featuring Art Pepper and Warne Marsh: Free Wheeling  
Label: Vanguard VRS 8515   12" LP 1956   Design: Jules Halfant   Photo: Jerry Tiffany

 



Vee Jay Records

 Bennie Green: The Swing´inest   Label: Vee Jay 1095  12" LP 1959
 
 

   LPs from 1959: I´m John Lee Hooker (Vee Jay 1007), and
Rockin´ with Jimmy Reed (Vee Jay 1008)
 
 

 Paul Chambers: Go...   Label: Vee Jay 1014  12" LP 1959
 
 

 Wynton Kelly: Kelly Great   Label: Vee Jay 3004  12" LP 1960
 Photo: Charles Stewart
 
 

 Introducing Wayne Shorter   Label: Vee Jay 3006  12" LP 1960
 
 

 Here´s Lee Morgan   Label: Vee Jay 3007  12" LP 1960
 
 

   LPs from 1960: Fantastic Frank Strozier (Vee Jay 3005),
and Louis Hayes (Vee Jay 3010)
 
 

 Wynton Kelly: Kelly at Midnight   Label: Vee Jay 3011  12" LP 1960
 Photo: Charles Stewart
 
 

 Wynton Kelly: The Young Lions   Label: Vee Jay 3013  12" LP 1960
 
 

 Lee Morgan: Expoobident   Label: Vee Jay 3015  12" LP 1960
 
 

 Wayne Shorter: Wayning Moments   Label: Vee Jay 3029  12" LP 1962
 
 



Vik Records

 Joe Newman: The Midgets   Label: Vik 1060   12" LP 1956
 Photo: David B. Hecht
 
 

 Bob Brookmeyer: Brookmeyer   Label: Vik 1071   12" LP 1957
 
 



Vortex Records

 Byard Lancaster: It´s Not Up To Us   Label: Vortex 2003  12" LP 1968
 
 

 Joe Zawinul: The Rise & Fall of the Third Stream   Label: Vortex 2002  12" LP 1968
Design: Marvin Israel   Photo: Lee Friedlander 
 

 Sonny Sharrock: Black Woman   Label: Vortex 2014   12" LP 1969
 Design: Haig Adishian   Photo: Ray Gibson
 
 



Warner Brothers

 Marty Paich: The Broadway Bit   Label: Warner Brothers 1296   12" LP 1959
 Photo: Hal Adams
 
 

 Marty Paich: I Get A Boot Out Of You   Label: Warner Brothers 1349   12" LP 1959
 
 

   LPs from 1961: The Soul of Jazz Percussion by Booker Little a.o. (Warwick 5003), and
Curtis Fuller - The Boss of Soul-Stream Trombone (Warwick 2038)
 
 



Warwick Records

 Pepper Adams - Donald Byrd: Out of This World   Label: Warwick 2041  12" LP 1961
 
 



Wing Records

 Paul Bley   Label: Wing 6001   12" LP 1956
 Photo: Popsie Randolph
 
 

 
  HOME                                                  FIRST PAGE   |   PREVIOUS   |   NEXT