15 Be sure to play this record today

Week 15: april 4-10, 2004
Curator: Hans Koert

The card board durium records, as released in the US and Europe were light, unbreakable and not expensive to make. The producers were advertisement agencies and used these little brown card board cards for promotional purposes. Give it a message - make a thousand of them - give it an address sticker and hand it over to the post office !!! But how do you tell the advertiser that these ephemeral Durium records are the best way to promote your product? Well, let the record "talk". Sound Distributors, a Durium successors, sent a "Personal Touch" in 1935 to new potential advertisers.

1. The Personal Touch (An 1935 English advertisment record to promote the benefits of direct mailing, made by and for Sound Distributors)
The size of the records ranges between CD-format up to the normal 25 cm/10 inch proportions; some are even square. The playing time ranges between less then one minute up to 5 minutes.

 2. College Humor Magazine - Banks of the Wabash (Advertisement record made for the College Humor Magazine in 1931 by DURIUM (USA))

The College Humor Magazine, which still exists, made this little record as an addition in the cover of a regular Hit of the week record, to promote their magazine. It happened several times that collectors found such an ephemeral product after 75 years in a cover of a "new" Hit of the week.

It is said that during the 1930s every family in the US had its own car; In Europe we had to wait to the late XXth century, but there is no different in the process how to obtain a new car. Advertisements enlarge the benefits of the new models.


Chevrolet, one of the US leading companies, used Durium for several advertisement campaigns. They promoted their 1932 model, made courses for car sellers and a record that should be played in the sales room during the first introduction week of a new model.
New customers were approached with direct mailing, just an address sticker on the reverse without an envelop.

3. THE GREAT AMERICAN VALUE FOR 1932 (Advertisement record made by DURIUM (USA) for Chevrolet to promote the new Chevy 1932)
The English Durium Products (G.B.) Ltd. and her successors Dubrico and Sound Distributors made such ephemeral records for the European market..

4. PLENTY OF TIME FOR PLAY (1935 Advertisement record made for the Norwich Corp. Electricity Department) with the SYDNEY BAYNES ORCHESTRA ( Vocal Refrain by HELEN RAYMOND).

The Plenty of Time for Play record was released to promote the benefits of electricity. It gave house wifes plenty of time to do other things, if we may believe this tiny card board record.

 5. Nino già t'aspetta (1934 Advertisement record made for Fiat to promote the new Fiat 508)

At the end a rare Italian advertisement record made in Slough (GB) that wanted you to purchase their new car model.

Download all music files at archive.org

12. Flautobio 2: het Alkwin Kombo

Week : 12 
Curator: Jan Turkenburg 

Van 1980 tot 1984 was ik lid van Het Kombo. Dat was de naam van het ongeveer 20 koppen tellende schoolorkest, van Het Alkwin Kollege in Uithoorn, dat inderdaad ooit als klein combo was begonnen. We speelden onder de enthousiaste leiding van natuurkundedocent en toetsenvirtuoos Frans Pick Jr.,
die ook nagenoeg alle arrangementen zelf maakte (waar wij vervolgens vrolijk onze eigen draai aan gaven) op school(thema)feesten, koffieconcerten, kerkdiensten in de gymzaal, lustrumfeesten, liefdadigheidsdagen en soms zomaar op vrijdagmiddag in de gang. De middelbare school was wegens depressieve klachten voor mij toen niet echt leuk, maar de repetities van Het Kombo vormden samen met de redactievergaderingen van Het Krant (de schoolkrant) kleine oases in de tijd.

From 1980 till 1984 I was a member of "Het Kombo". It was the name of the about twenty head strong schoolband of Het Alkwin Kollege in Uithoorn, a schoolcommunity of several types of secundary schools. We played at several theme parties, coffee concerts, school anniverseries, at church services (at the gym) at musicals and charity days. We were conducted and accompanied by the enthousiastic keyboard virtuoso and science teacher Frans Pick
Jr. who also made most of the arrangements himself (which we allways cheerfully interpreted our own way). Although my time at secundary school was not pleasant due to a depressive syndrom, the rehearsels and performances of Het Kombo as well as the editorial meetings of the school newspaper were oasis' in time to me.

11. De Chinees doet veel meer met vlees

Week : 11
Curator: Marcel van der Wulp
Subject: De Chinees doet veel meer met vlees
(The Chinese does a lot more with meat)

De Chinees doet veel meer met vlees

Adam Curry maakte zichzelf vorig jaar belachelijk toen hij na een langdurig verblijf in de Verenigde Staten in een TV-interview meldde dat hij soms van die typisch hollandse dingen gemist had zoals een broodje shoarma. Shoarma is niet Nederlands, maar iedere stad heeft wel verschillende shoarmatentjes. Chinese restaurants vind je naast in de stad ook in veel dorpen. In de jaren zeventig was "de chinees" een van de eerste uitheemse restaurants die ons land veroverde. Het eten dat wij daar bestelden en nog steeds bestellen, meer om af te halen dan om ter plekke te dineren, was meestal echter Indonesisch en dan nog wel met een behoorlijk hollands tintje: Nasi Goreng, niet zo scherp met veel satehsaus erdoor geprakt, een gebakken eitje en een pilsje. In dat licht moeten we ook deze onbegrijpelijke LP zien, die behalve de tekst van het eerste liedje niets met chinees eten te maken heeft. Dit is een typisch nederlands cultuurproduct. Deze liedjes zijn vast nog weleens op onze lokale etherpiraten te horen.

The Chinese does a lot more with meat.

The american/dutch DJ Adam Curry made a fool out of himself last year. Coming back from a long visit to the States he said in a TV-interview that he had especially missed those "typical dutch things like shoarma bread".
Of course shoarma isn't dutch, but there's no city in Holland without several shoarma snackbars. Chinese restaurants however are the only foreign kind of restaurant that can be found in most villages as well. They were first foreign restaurants to conquer The Netherlands in the late sixties, early seventies. Most dutch people didn't eat chinese food there, no they didn't eat there at all. It became take-aways for mainly Indonesian food. Ehm, with a slight dutch touch: Nasi Goreng, not too spicy, with fried eggs lots of sateh sauce and beer.
This album has more than a slight dutch touch. Apart from the lyrics of the first song (The Chinese does a lot more with meat), there's nothing Chinese about it. In fact this is a typical example of dutch folk culture. Although the sound of this particular record is typically 1970, these are the kind of songs local dutch radio pirates play, because the genre hardly gets any attention on the public radio.


Week 10: feb 29 - mar 6, 2004
Curator: Hans Koert

In Jan. 1998 Peter Tanner, record collector, ordered my “Durium (GB) Discography”. For the first time all European Durium records were listed. I read your book on Saturday morning and again that night, he told me later. Then I found the address of the Durium factory in Slough, and because I had nothing to do I took my car and because there is not much traffic on Sunday I drove to Slough and found the street and the number. And there it was. The roof was new, but the walls were still there. Unfortunally it was dark inside and there was nobody who could show me the building.

April 1932 the production of large amounts of card board records started in Slough, a suburb or London. Like its American parent company they started a weekly series with popular dance music. The American firm broke up in the summer of 1932, but the card board record survived in Europe.


FOX TROT – Recorded London, Apr. 1932 (durium GE-10)
The introduction of the record was well prepared. Not only in England, also on the continent. This Dutch “gratis proefplaat” (= free sample) was made by an English orchestra with an announcement in Dutch, spoken by an Englishman (some sources say it was Lew Stone himself) with an accent, that makes us smile nowadays. Unfortunately no Dutch records were made, only a series of language courses for the Dutch with the NOROPA label.



VALS DAN FOLKE MART FRYBERG – Recorded in London, summer 1933. (SUPER durium SC-133)
The English factory in Slough made records for Italy, France, Germany and Scandinavia. This is a Swedish one, released as a SUPER durium in a weekly magazine-like cover (Veckans Skiva)

 SCOTTO-CHARLYS: Recorded in Paris, c 1934 – 1935 (SEFONO 6051)
In France they didn’t want foreign labels, so Durium (and Hit of the week) were issued by the Société D’Editions Phonographiques as SEFONO. When the English firm stopped in 1934, SEFONO’s continued in France the local market, like this musette.


(BORELLA MASCHERONI) CANZONE ONE STEP ED. CARISCH – Recorded in London, summer 1933. (SUPER durium T-114)
A special find was made some years ago. A series of early unknown Mantovani recordings were discovered. No violins yet, but straight dance tunes being popular in those days.
The factory in Slough stopped producing music records around 1934 but in Milan and Copenhagen small factories survived for the local market. Card board durium records were made up to the late 1930s, although a mysterious post war card board durium record has been found, so new investigation have to be made !!
In Slough they made advertisement records up to 1936, a subject I’ll love to tell you more about later.