Monday, 31 May 2021

Nice Price: ELO's Epic Vinyl Reissues

#1,591: As Jet Records faded like The Beatles on Hey Jude in the midst of the 80's as fans and followers of the Electric Light Orchestra started to see ELO albums appearing on record store shelves on the Epic label (a major imprint of the CBS empire who boasted ABBA, George Michael, Meat Loaf and Michael Jackson amongst their artist roster), particularly when "The Night The Light Went On (In Long Beach)" (Epic #EPC32700) was finally given a UK release in 1985 and "Balance Of Power" (Epic #EPC26467) arrived in 1986.

The demise of Don Arden's Jet label at that time meant that ELO's impressive back catalogue soon started to appear on the Epic label - often under the CBS Nice Price series - firstly on vinyl/cassette and then later as CD releases. As far as this writer can ascertain, the first Epic LP reissue was "Face The Music" (Epic #EPC32544) during 1984 with "Eldorado", "A New World Record", "Out Of The Blue" (in single sleeve), "Discovery" (no longer a gatefold), "ELO's Greatest Hits", "Time" and "Secret Messages" following. The first Epic reissue of "A New World Record" retained the JET prefix rather than EPC (see montage below) with initial Epic labels often quoting ℗ Jet Records as the sound recording copyright owner rather than ℗ CBS Inc. and ELO collectors will no doubt be aware of other examples where JET prefixes found their way onto the Epic LP reissues. Yours Truly KJS still recalls not intending to partake of the Epic vinyl pressings back then being as it felt like a kind of betrayal seeing ELO records not sporting the familiar Jet label but that reluctance soon changed when CD's took over!

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