Modern Records (Modern Music Records before 1947) was an American record company and label formed in 1945 in Los Angeles by the Bihari brothers. Modern was one of the big R&B labels with artists including Etta James, Joe Houston, Little Richard, Ike & Tina Turner and John Lee Hooker. The label released some of the most influential blues and R&B records of the 1940s and 1950s.
|Parent company||Ace Records (UK)|
|Genre||Jazz, blues, rhythm and blues, rock|
|Country of origin||U.S.|
|Location||Los Angeles, California|
In the beginning, Modern bought master recordings from other small labels. The Biharis also often used pseudonyms to give themselves writing credit on songs.
Having started as an R&B label, Modern was later one of the few R&B labels to routinely cover rhythm and blues hits on other labels, apparently in an attempt to broaden their appeal and reach the popular market.
In 1958, Modern stopped issuing records, and the Bihari brothers formed Kent Records. In 1964, the Modern label was revived, but went bankrupt a few years later and ceased operations. The catalog went with the management into Kent Records. This back catalog was eventually licensed to the UK label Ace Records in the 1980s and later sold outright during the 1990s. Ace Records of the U.K. now owns the tapes.
Management and staffEdit
- Saul, Jules and Joe Bihari were the main people who ran the label. The older brother Lester was only there sporadically.
- Ike Turner was a talent scout and session musician for Modern Records in the early 1950s. Artists Turner discovered for Modern include Bobby "Blue" Bland, Howlin' Wolf, and Rosco Gordon. According to B.B. King and Joe Bihari, Turner introduced King to the Bihari brothers which led to his RPM releases.
- Tony Hilder was an A&R man for Modern Records in the late 1950s. Later he went on to form his own labels, first CT Records and later owner and president of Impact Records.
- Austin McCoy was an artist, session musician and recording session director with Modern Records. He left Modern in late 1950 to take up an A&R post with Mercury Records at their Beverly Hills office.
- Modern Music: The First Year - 1945 (1339 Ace, 2012)
|US||US||Single (A-side, B-side)||Artist|
|624||Oct 1948||1||"Blues After Hours"
b/w "I'm Still In Love With You"
|Pee Wee Crayton|
|627||Nov 1948||1||"Boogie Chillen"
b/w "I'm In The Mood"
|John Lee Hooker|
|704||Oct 1949||5||"Little School Girl"
b/w Suitcase Blues"
|714||Oct 1949||6||"Crawlin' King Snake"
b/w "Drifting from Door to Door"
|John Lee Hooker|
|835||Sep 1951||1||"I'm in the Mood"
b/w "How Can You Do It"
|John Lee Hooker|
|848||Dec 1951||"Crying All Night Long"
b/w "Dry Up Baby"
|857||Feb 1952||7||"The Wind Is Blowin"
b/w "Would My Baby Make A Change"
|860||Mar 1952||"Ramblin' On My Mind"
b/w "Just An Army Boy"
|864||Apr 1952||"Bad Women Bad Whiskey"
b/w "You're My Angel"
|Little Junior Parker and the Blue Flames|
|947||Jan 1955||1||"The Wallflower"
b/w "Hold Me, Squeeze Me"
|Etta James and "The Peaches"|
|962||Aug 1955||6||"Good Rockin' Daddy"
b/w "Crazy Feeling"
|Etta James, Maxwell Davis & Orchestra|
|1005||Oct 1956||7||"Goodnight My Love (Pleasant Dreams)"
b/w "I Want You With Me Xmas"
|1022||Jun 1957||"By The Light Of The Silvery Moon"
b/w "Come What May"
|1005||Feb 1965||36||28||"Peaches 'N' Cream"
b/w "The Biggest Players"
|1007||May 1965||107||32||"Good Bye, So Long"
b/w "Hurt Is All You Gave Me"
|Ike & Tina Turner|
|1011||Jul 1965||74||12||"I'm So Thankful"
b/w "Don't Feel Sorry For Me"
|1012||Aug 1965||134||"I Don't Need"
b/w "Gonna Have Fun"
|Ike & Tina Turner|
|1015||Jan 1966||122||"(Never More) Lonely For You"
b/w "Sally Go Round The Roses"
|1030||1967||"Bring It Back Home To Me"
b/w "Slippin' And Slidin'"
- Encyclopedia of the Blues, Volume 1. Routledge. 2006. p. 700.
- Yardley, William (December 11, 2013). "Joe Bihari, Who Put Early R&B on Record, Dies at 88". The New York Times.
- "Kent Launches R-B Singles" (PDF). Billboard: 3. March 24, 1958.
- Gillett, Charlie (1996). The Rise of Rock and Roll (2nd ed.). New York, N.Y.: Da Capo Press. pp. 85–86. ISBN 0-306-80683-5.
- The B.B. King Reader: 6 Decades of Commentary Edited by Richard Kostelanetz, Assistant editor Jesse Reiswig Page 7 Modern
- Turner, Ike; Cawthorne, Nigel (1999). Takin' Back My Name: The Confessions of Ike Turner. London: Virgin. ISBN 9781852278502. OCLC 43321298.
- Kostelanetz, Richard; Reiswig, Jesse (2005). The B.B. King Reader: 6 Decades of Commentary. Hal Leonard Corporation. pp. 7. ISBN 9780634099274.
ike turner bb king joe bihari.
- All Music Tony Hilder, Artist Biography
- Billboard Music Week May 8, 1961 Page 4 Music As Written, Hollywood
- Surfin' Guitars: Instrumental Surf Bands of the Sixties, Robert J. Dalley Page 259, Page 298, Page 299
- The Billboard December 16, 1950 Page 12 McCoy Joins Modern Staff
- "Best-Selling Retail Race Records" (PDF). Billboard: 31. November 6, 1948.
- "Most Played Juke Box Race Records" (PDF). Billboard: 32. February 19, 1949.
- "Advance Rhythm & Blues Record Releases" (PDF). Billboard: 67. October 22, 1949.
- "Most-Played Juke Box Rhythm & Blues Records" (PDF). Billboard: 33. January 14, 1950.
- "The Ikettes Chart History". Billboard.
- "Top Selling Rhythm & Blues Singles" (PDF). Billboard: 43. June 19, 1965.
- "Bubbling Under The Hot 100" (PDF). Billboard: 20. August 7, 1965.
- "Bubbling Under The Hot 100" (PDF). Billboard: 24. February 5, 1966.