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Parlophone Records Limited (also known as Parlophone Records or just simply Parlophone) is a German-British major record label founded in Germany in 1896 by the Carl Lindström Company as Parlophon. The British branch of the label was founded in 8 August 1923 as The Parlophone Company Limited (The Parlophone Co. Ltd.), which developed a reputation in the 1920s as a jazz record label. On 5 October 1926, the Columbia Graphophone Company acquired Parlophone's business, name, logo, and release library, and merged with the Gramophone Company on 31 March 1931 to become Electric & Musical Industries Limited (EMI). George Martin joined Parlophone in 1950 as assistant label manager, taking over as manager in 1955. Martin produced and released a mix of product, including comedy recordings of The Goons, pianist Mrs Mills, and teen idol Adam Faith.
|Parlophone Records Ltd.|
|Founded||1896Carl Lindström Company until 1926)(as Parlophon Parlograph Company) (subsidiary of the|
(In the UK/Most of Europe)
Warner Bros. Records
(In the US)
(Outside the UK/Europe and the US)
Rhino Entertainment Company (re-issues)
|Country of origin||Germany|
In 1962, Martin signed The Beatles, at the time a struggling band from Liverpool. During the 1960s, when Cilla Black, Billy J. Kramer, The Fourmost, and The Hollies also signed, Parlophone became one of the world's most famous labels. For several years, Parlophone claimed the best-selling UK single, "She Loves You", and the best-selling UK album, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, both by the Beatles. The label placed seven singles at No. 1 during 1964, when it claimed top spot on the UK Albums Chart for 40 weeks. Parlophone continued as a division of EMI until it was merged into the Gramophone Co. on 1 July 1965. On 1 July 1973, the Gramophone Co. was renamed EMI Records Limited.
On 28 September 2012, regulators approved Universal Music Group (UMG)'s planned acquisition of EMI on condition that its EMI Records group would be divested from the combined group. EMI Records Ltd. included Parlophone and other labels to be divested and were for a short time operated in a single entity known as the Parlophone Label Group (PLG), while UMG pended their sale. Warner Music Group (WMG) acquired Parlophone and PLG in 7 February 2013, making Parlophone their third flagship label alongside Warner Bros. and Atlantic. PLG was renamed Parlophone Records Limited in May 2013. Parlophone is the oldest of WMG's "flagship" record labels.
Parlophone was founded "Parlophon" by Carl Lindström Company in 1896. The name Parlophon was used for gramophones before the company began making records of their own. The label's ₤ trademark is a German L that stands for Lindström. (It coincidentally resembles the British pound sign £, which itself is derived from the letter L for the Ancient Roman unit of measurement libra, which means pound in Latin.) On 8 August 1923, the British branch of "Parlophone" (with the "e" added) was established, led by A&R manager Oscar Preuss. In its early years, Parlophone established itself as a leading jazz label in Britain.
EMI years and initial successEdit
In 1927, the Columbia Graphophone Company acquired a controlling interest in the Carl Lindström Company, including Parlophone. Parlophone became a subsidiary of Electric & Musical Industries (EMI), after Columbia Graphophone merged with the Gramophone Company in 1931.
In 1950, Oscar Preuss hired record producer George Martin as his assistant. When Preuss retired in 1955, Martin succeeded him as Parlophone's manager. Parlophone specialized in mainly classical music, cast recordings, and regional British music. Musicians signed to the label included Humphrey Lyttelton and The Vipers Skiffle Group.
One of the label's consistently successful acts was teen idol Adam Faith, who was signed to the label in 1959. The label gained significant popularity in 1962 when Martin signed Liverpool band The Beatles. Parlophone gained more attention after signing The Hollies, Ella Fitzgerald, and Gerry and the Pacemakers in the 1960s. Martin left to form Associated Independent Recording (AIR) Studios in 1965.
Parlophone became dormant in 1973 when most of the heritage labels were phased out in favor of EMI Records. Parlophone was revived in 1980. During the next decades the label signed Pet Shop Boys, Duran Duran, Roxette, Radiohead, Supergrass, Guy Berryman, The Chemical Brothers, Blur, Coldplay, Kylie Minogue, Damon Albarn, Conor Maynard, Gabrielle Aplin, and Gorillaz.
EMI merging with UMG and WMG acquisitionEdit
On 28 September 2012, regulators approved Universal Music Group's planned acquisition of Parlophone's parent group EMI for £1.2 billion, subject to conditions imposed by the European Commission requiring that UMG sell off a number of labels, including Parlophone itself (aside from the Beatles' catalogue, which was kept by UMG and moved to Universal's newly formed Calderstone Productions), Chrysalis, Ensign, Virgin Classics, EMI Classics, and EMI's operations in Portugal, Spain, France, Belgium, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Poland. These labels and catalogues were operated independently from Universal as Parlophone Label Group to prepare for a transaction early in 2013. UMG received several offers for PLG, including those from Island founder Chris Blackwell, Simon Fuller, a Sony/BMG consortium, Warner Music Group, and MacAndrews & Forbes.
On 7 February 2013, it was confirmed that Warner Music Group would acquire Parlophone Label Group for US$765 million. The deal was approved in May 2013 by the European Union, which saw no concerns about the deal because of WMG's smaller reach compared to the merged UMG and Sony. Warner Music closed the deal on July 1. Parlophone Label Group was the old EMI Records label that included both the Parlophone and the eponymous EMI labels. The EMI name was retained by Universal (as Virgin EMI Records) while the old EMI Records was defunct and renamed Parlophone Records.
Soon after acquiring Parlophone, WMG signed an agreement with IMPALA and the Merlin Network (two groups which opposed the EMI/Universal deal) to divest $200 million worth of artists to independent labels in order to help offset the consolidation triggered by the merger. In April 2016, the back catalogue of British rock band Radiohead, who had sued Parlophone and EMI over a dispute in music royalties, was transferred to XL Recordings.
WMG treats Parlophone as its third "frontline" label group with Atlantic and Warner Bros.. In the US, most of Parlophone's artists are now distributed under Warner Bros. Coldplay and Tinie Tempah are distributed under Atlantic, and David Guetta is distributed under Atlantic's electronic music imprint Big Beat.
Parlophone released The Beatles' albums up to Magical Mystery Tour. Subsequent releases – The Beatles (the White Album), Yellow Submarine, Abbey Road and Let It Be – were issued on the Beatles' Apple record label, distributed by EMI, and bearing Parlophone catalogue numbers.
The Beatles deal is one of the cheapest made by Parlophone. Companies used the Beatles' name for a range of products, from T-shirts to hairspray. Their early songs were used in many commercials without permission. The Beatles owned 49% of the company shares, therefore only owning 49% of their songs, which was not enough to buy back the songs from the company.
Despite the separation of Parlophone from EMI as a condition of EMI's acquisition by UMG, Universal was allowed to keep the Beatles' recorded music catalogue, which was assigned to the subsidiary Calderstone Productions.
Parlophone's current roster includes Gabrielle Aplin, Sarah Close, Coldplay, David Guetta, Gorillaz, Blur, Kraftwerk and Conor Maynard. Its contemporary HMV was more of a classical music label and ceased issuing popular music recordings in 1967; later known as EMI Classics, it was absorbed into Warner Classics in 2013; English Columbia was replaced by the EMI pop label. Parlophone also operates Regal, a contemporary revival of the historic Columbia Graphophone budget/reissue label founded in 1914.
Because Parlophone absorbed the catalogues of EMI, Columbia Graphophone Company, His Master's Voice, and other labels the former EMI Records company owned, with new reissues bearing the Parlophone label, only artists whose recordings were originally issued by Parlophone are listed here.
- Damon Albarn
- Pablo Alboran
- Alice in Chains (Parlophone distributed the band's 2009 album "Black Gives Way to Blue" in the UK. As of today, the album is copyrighted under the namesake of Virgin Records.)
- All Saints
- Lily Allen
- Gabrielle Aplin
- Athlete (The band's entire back catalogue is now controlled by Chrysalis Records and Kobalt.)
- John Barry Seven
- Bat for Lashes
- The Beatles (The band's entire back catalogue is now handled by Calderstone Productions and Apple Records. Both labels are distributed via the Universal Music Group. Capitol Music Group, another Universal Music subsidiary, serves at times for the distribution of the Beatles' back catalogue in North-America, much like for the U.S. Albums box-set released in 2014.)
- Cliff Bennett and the Rebel Rousers
- Cilla Black
- The Chemical Brothers (From 2010 to 2012, the duo only released the albums Further and Don't Think under Parlophone/EMI. As of today, the albums are retained by Universal Music and copyrighted under the namesake of Virgin Records Ltd.)
- Chiddy Bang
- Sarah Close
- Joe Cocker
- Graham Coxon
- Bernard Cribbins
- Jim Dale
- Danger Mouse (Parlophone and Warner Music only own two of Brian Burton's past releases : the 2010 collaboration album with Sparklehorse, entitled "Dark Night of The Soul" and the 2011 collaboration album with Daniele Luppi, entitled "Rome". Both of these albums were originally released under Parlophone/EMI.)
- Deep Purple
- Dinosaur Pile-Up
- Dirty Vegas
- Divine Comedy
- Eliza Doolittle
- Duran Duran
- Idris Elba
- Adam Faith
- Shane Fenton
- Sky Ferreira (Parlophone/EMI distributed Ferreira's 2011 single "One". As of today, the single is copyrighted under the namesake of Virgin Records.)
- Shane Filan
- Flanders & Swann
- The Fourmost
- David Fray
- Gesaffelstein (Parlophone and Warner Music France distributed Gesaffelstein's 2013 debut album "Aleph" and his 2015 soundtrack for the movie "Disorder", entitled "Maryland : Original Motion Picture Soundtrack". However, his 2019 sophomore release "Hyperion" was distributed via Columbia Records and Sony Music Entertainment.)
- The Good Natured
- The Good, the Bad and the Queen
- The Goons
- David Guetta (Guetta's first release on Parlophone France and Warner Music was his 2014 album "Listen". Plus, the entire 2002-2012 back catalogue that was originally released under Virgin and EMI Music France -spawning from "Just A Little More Love" to "Nothing But The Beat 2.0"- is now copyrighted under the namesake of Parlophone France and Warner Music. Note that some of the Jack Back releases are also distributed through Parlophone.)
- George Harrison (Harrison's entire back catalogue is now handled by Dark Horse Records and Apple Records. Both labels are distributed via the Universal Music Group.)
- Richard Hawley
- Heroes del Silencio
- Becky Hill
- The Hollies
- Interpol (Parlophone/EMI distributed in the UK & Europe three singles taken from the band's 2007 album "Our Love to Admire" : "Mammoth", "The Heinrich Maneuver" and "No I in Threesome". As of today, the album is currently published and distributed through Capitol Records, an Universal Music Group subsidiary.)
- Iron Maiden (Whereas the band's back catalogue is owned by Parlophone and Warner Music worldwide, Sanctuary Records and BMG are responsible for the handling of the Iron Maiden releases only in North-America.)
- Thomas Jack
- Dick James
- Georgi Kay
- Keith Kelly
- The King Brothers
- Beverley Knight
- Billy J. Kramer and The Dakotas
- Kraftwerk (Kraftwerk's first release under Parlophone and Warner Music was the 2018 live boxset "3-D The Catalogue". Aditionally, all of the albums originally released under EMI Records between 1974 -"Autobahn"- and 2003 -"Tour de France Soundtracks"- are nowadays copyrighted by Palophone UK.)
- Kay Kyser
- Late of the Pier
- John Lennon (Lennon's entire back catalogue is now owned by Calderstone Productions and Apple Records. Both labels are distributed via the Universal Music Group.)
- Bobby Lewis
- Laurie London
- Bonnie Lou
- Love Sculpture
- Humphrey Lyttelton
- Mansun (The band's entire back catalogue is now owned by Kscope and Snapper Music.)
- Matrix & Futurebound
- Conor Maynard
- Paul McCartney (McCartney's entire back catalogue -including both his solo and Wings releases- is currently owned by MPL Communications and Capitol Records. Both labels are distributed via the Universal Music Group.)
- Mickey 3D (The band's first release under Parlophone France and Warner Music was the 2016 album "Sebolavy". Aditionally, the rest of the band's catalogue, originally released under Virgin and EMI Music France between 1999 and 2009, is now copyrighted under the namesake of Parlophone France and Warner Music.)
- Kylie Minogue (Parlophone and Warner Music currently own all of Minogue's catalogue originally released under Parlophone/EMI between 2000 -"Light Years"- and 2012 -"The Abbey Road Sessions"-. From 2014 to 2016, she released three more studio albums under Warner Music : "Kiss Me Once", "Kylie Christmas" and its reissue counterpart "Snow Queen Edition". Her 2018 fourteenth studio album, "Golden", was however distributed via BMG.)
- Matt Monro
- Morrissey (All of Morissey's albums originally released between 1988 -"Viva Hate"- and 1994 -"Vauxall and I"- are currently owned by Parlophone and Warner Music.)
- The Paramounts
- Morning Parade
- Mrs Mills
- Aya Nakamura
- Bob and Alf Pearson
- Pet Shop Boys (Since 2013 and the release of their twelfth studio album, "Electric", the Pet Shop Boys left Parlophone/EMI and currently release new material over the independent vanity label x2, a Kobalt Label Services subsidiary. However, Parlophone and Warner Music still own the duo's back catalogue that was originally released from 1986 -"Please"- until 2012 -"Elysium"- under the EMI moniker.)
- Duffy Power
- Queen (catalogue controlled by Hollywood Records in North America since 1991) (Island Records outside the US and Canada since 2010, formerly distributed by EMI)
- Queen + Paul Rodgers (catalogue controlled by Island) (outside the US and Canada)
- Radiohead (As of 2016, the band's entire back catalogue is now controlled by XL Recordings, a Beggars Group subsidiary.)
- Rainbow Ffolly
- Rat Boy
- Sigur Rós (All of the albums distributed via EMI between 2007 -"Hvarf/Heim"- and 2013 -"Valtari"- are now owned by Parlophone and Warner Music. However, all of the band's other releases are handled by Krúnk -Sigur Rós' vanity label- and distributed worldwide via XL Recordings.)
- Saint Motel
- Mike Sarne
- Scarlet Party
- Peter Sellers (Sellers' releases with Parlophone are nowadays owned by Hallmark Music & Entertainment.)
- Luke Sital-Singh
- Belouis Some
- Soprano (Since 2014 and the release of his fourth album, "Cosmopolitanie", Soprano has remained one of the main Parlophone France/Warner artists. His first three albums, released in 2007 "-Puisqu'il faut vivre"-, 2010 -"La Colombe"- and 2011 -"Le Corbeau-" were originally released under EMI France and Hostile Records, but are nowadays copyrighted by Parlophone France.)
- Spandau Ballet
- Dusty Springfield
- Dorothy Squires
- St. Germain (St Germain's first release under Parlophone and Warner Music was his 2014 self-titled album. Aditionally, the 2000 album "Tourist", originally released under EMI Music France and Blue Note is nowadays copyrighted by Palophone and Warner Music.)
- Supergrass (The band's entire back catalogue is now controlled by BMG and the Echo label.)
- Talk Talk
- Vince Taylor
- Tinie Tempah
- The Temperance Seven
- Bobby Tench
- Teresa Teng
- Gyllene Tider
- Tina Turner
- Two Door Cinema Club
- The Verve (Parlophone/EMI distributed the band's 2008 album "Forth" in the UK. As of today, the album is copyrighted under the namesake of Virgin Records.)
- The Vipers Skiffle Group
- Otis Waygood
- Keith West
- Paul Weller
Artists whose catalogue is nowadays controlled by Parlophone and Warner Music but was originally released through another label are listed down here.
- 2Be3 (The boysband's entire back catalogue, originally released under EMI Music France in the late 1990s and early 2000s, is now copyrighted under the namesake of Parlophone France and Warner Music.)
- Air (The duo's entire back catalogue, released under Virgin France, Source and EMI Music France between 1998 -"Moon Safari"- and 2012 -"Le voyage dans la lune"-, is now copyrighted under the namesake of Parlophone France and Warner Music.)
- Akhenaton (Akhenaton's back catalogue originally released between 1995 -"Love is Here"- and 2002 -"All the Plans"- under Delabel, Hostile Records and EMI Music France is now copyrighted under the namesake of Parlophone France and Warner Music.)
- Charles Aznevour
- Barclay James Harvest
- Syd Barrett
- Jeff Beck (Beck's first two albums, originally distributed under Odeon and EMI Records in Europe in 1968 -"Truth"- and 1969 -"Beck-Ola", released under the pseudonym of the Jeff Beck Group-, are now copyrighted in Europe and Japan by Parlophone and Warner Music. Epic Records and Sony Music Entertainment still handle the albums' reissues in North-America.)
- Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band
- David Bowie (Parlophone and Warner Music currently handle the distribution of Bowie's entire 1969-2000 back catalogue, that was either released in the past through labels such as RCA Victor, EMI Records and Virgin Records America, or remained unpublished until the catalogue transfer over Warner in 2014, and the following subsequent re-issues. The post-2001 releases, starting with 2002 album "Heathen", are currently copyrighted by Bowie's vanity label "ISO Records", Columbia Records and Sony Music Entertainment. Moreover, his 1967 self-titled debut album is now copyrighted under the namesake of Deram and Universal Music. Still, Tin Machine's 1989 self-titled debut album remains copyrighted by Parlophone and Warner, as it was released through the EMI America label and is considered as a part of the 1969-2000 discography.)
- Kate Bush
- Matthieu Chedid
- Joe Cocker
- Daft Punk (All of the duo's material originally released under Virgin and EMI Music France between 1995 -"Da Funk"- and 2007 -"Alive 2007"- is now copyrighted under the namesake of Parlophone France and Warner Music. The duo's 2013 album "Random Access Memories" has been released on Columbia Records and Sony Music Entertainment.)
- Étienne Daho (All of Daho's albums originally released under Virgin and EMI Music France between 1981 -"Mythomane"- and 2010 -his collaboration album with Jeanne Moreau entitled "Le condamné à mort"- are now copyrighted by the namesake of Parlophone France and Warner Music.)
- Kiki Dee
- Diam's (The rapper's entire back catalogue, originally released under EMI Music France and Hostile Records between 2003 -"Brut de Femme"- and 2009 -"S.O.S"-, is now copyrighted under the namesake of Parlophone France and Warner Music.)
- Doc Gynéco (All of the rapper's first albums originally released under Virgin and EMI Music France between 1996 -"Première Consultation"- and 2002 -"Solitaire"- are now copyrighted under the namesake of Parlophone France and Warner Music.)
- Dr. Feelgood
- The Dubliners
- Baxter Dury (2011's "Happy Soup" remains the only Dury's album to be currently copyrighted by Parlophone UK and Warner Music. It was originally released on EMI Records.)
- Gang of Four (All of the band's releases originally distributed in the UK and Europe by EMI and released between 1979 -"Entertainment!"- and 1990 -"A Brief History Of The 20th Century"- are now re-issued under the namesake of Parlophone and Warner Music. In the USA, Warner Bros. Records, which originally acted as the original distributor for the band's catalogue in this territory, still handles the albums' copyrights as of today.)
- David Gilmour
- Geri Halliwell (Halliwell's entire back catalogue, originally released under Virgin UK and EMI Records between 1999 -"Schizophonic"- and 2005 -"Passion"-, is now copyrighted under the namesake of Parlophone and Warner Music.)
- Jacques Higelin
- IAM (All of the band's albums originally released under Delabel, Hostile Records, Virgin and EMI Music France between 1991 -"...De la planète Mars"- and 2003 -"Revoir un printemps"- are now re-issued and copyrighted under the namesake of Parlophone France and Warner Music.)
- Jethro Tull
- Larusso (Larusso's first two albums, originally released under Odeon and EMI Music France in 1998 -"Simplement"- and 2001 -"Larusso"-, are now copyrighted under the namesake of Parlophone France and Warner Music.)
- LCD Soundsystem (All of the band's albums originally released under DFA and EMI between 2005 -"LCD Soundtsystem"- and 2010 -"London Sessions"-, are now copyrighted under the namesake of DFA, Parlophone and Warner Music. During the band's hiatus, a live album has been released in 2014 under DFA, Parlophone and Warner Bros. Records, entitled "The Long Goodbye". Since 2017 and the release of the album, "American Dream", the band has joined the Columbia Records and Sony Music Entertainment roster.)
- Louisiana Red
- Gérard Manset
- Nick Mason
- Milk Inc. (All of the band's 1996-2006 back catalogue, originally released under EMI Music Belgium/Alter Subway, is now copyrighted under the namesake of Parlophone Belgium and Warner Music.)
- The Move
- Róisín Murphy
- Phœnix (All of the band's first albums released between 2000 -"United"- and 2009 -"Wolfgang Amadeus Phœnix"- are now owned by Parlophone France and Warner Music.)
- Pink Floyd (In 2016, the Pink Floyd Records vanity label was created in order to handle and maintain the copyright over the band's entire back catalogue. It is currently distributed via Parlophone and Warner Music in the UK and Europe, whereas Columbia Records and Sony Music Entertainment have the rights for distribution worldwide.)
- Suzi Quatro
- Dick Rivers
- Kate Ryan
- Talking Heads
- Peter Tosh
- Tribal Jam (The band's entire back catalogue, originally released under EMI Music France in the late 1990s, is now copyrighted under the namesake of Parlophone France and Warner Music.)
- The Seekers
- The Shadows
- Nina Simone
- Alain Souchon (Souchon's back catalogue, originally released under Virgin and EMI Music France from 1985 -"C'est comme vous voulez"- to 2011 -"A cause d'elles"-, is now copyrighted under the namesake of Parlophone France and Warner Music.)
- Starsailor (The band's back catalogue originally released between 2001 -"Love is Here"- and 2009 -"All the Plans"- under Virgin UK and EMI Records is now copyrighted under the namesake of Parlophone UK and Warner Music.)
- The Stranglers (All of the band's first albums originally released under the labels United Artists Records and Liberty between 1977 -"Rattus Norvegicus"- and 1981 -"La folie"- are currently owned by Parlophone and Warner Music.)
- Al Stewart
- Dinah Washington
- Kim Wilde
- Roy Wood
Parlophone record labelsEdit
With the Beatles (side 1) – Parlophone yellow and black label
West End Blues, British Parlophone record
The labels shown here include those used for 78s and LPs. The label design for 7" singles had the same standard template as several other EMI labels, with the large "45" insignia to the right. In recent years, design uniformity has relaxed from release to release.
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