Originally posted on February 25, 2017, repeatedly updated in March to include results of further research. Various additions made in January-February 2018 following readers’ comments. Update 2 August 2019 to include recently published high-resolution downloads.
You can skip the introduction and jump directly to the discographies:
– of Omega’s CD reissues (1994-1997)
– of Omega’s SACDs (2000-2002)
– of DCC’s 180g LPs (1994-7)
– of Madacy Records (2006)
– of Classic Records dual DVD-CDs (2008-2010)
– of Classic Records 200g LPs
– of King Records’ SACDs (2014-2016)
– of Countdown Media’s high resolution downloads and on-demand CD-Rs (2014-2016)
Everest started out in the early days of stereo (first releases end of 1958) as an audiophile label established by earlier sound engineer become electronics inventor and businessman Harry Belock (his main company, Belock Instrument Corporation, dealt in missiles, guidance control, instruments and computers), who recorded (with his sound engineer and producer Bert Whyte) on 35mm three-track magnetic film rather than on the customary half-inch tape. The investments were huge and, despite the glowing reviews, the sales were slow, so in 1962 (not 1960 as Wikipedia claims, or mid-1961 as claimed by other sources) it was the end of that short (but later to acquire legendary status) adventure. The company’s assets were sold: in March 1961, the Belock studio in Bayside, Queens, and recording equipment (including the unused 35mm film) to another sound engineer, Robert Fine, who put them to great use for the labels Mercury Living Presence and Command; and, in February 1962, the Everest company, including copyrights and physical supports, to businessman Bernard (“Bernie”) Solomon (1927-2007). Some sources (including Wikipedia) say that Solomon was Belock’s accountant, but although he was a CPA, this is not true. His main experience in music before the acquisition of Everest was being the business manager of singer Gene Autry and Autry’s own publishing/licensing companies, and the founder, in 1959, of the Diners’ Record Club (which closed its operations in 1963). It is Belock Instruments Corporation’s purchase of the Record Club in April 1961 that first got Solomon in contact with Everest – yes, by way of paradox, it is Everest that bought Solomon before Solomon bought Everest. All these historical minutiae are drawn from contemporary reports in The Billboard, and they can be considered the most accurate information about the passing of Everest from Belock to Solomon. For more about the early history of Everest as recounted by contemporary sources, see here (link will open a new tab). Over the years, Solomon added the labels Counterpoint/Esoteric, Concert Disc (originally the label of the Fine Arts Quartet – see my discography of Concert Disc and its predecessors, Webcor and Concertapes), Baroque (of Montreal) and others to the roster of labels under his control.
Solomon’s obituary reveals that he was also a great art collector. Had I known that the business of selling records could lead you to this, I would have done so myself rather than spending a life and a fortune on the buyer’s side! That said, Everest-lovers can brand Bernie Solomon with the seal of infamy: he’s the guy who downgraded the original Everest super hi-fi recordings to cheap, badly pressed, low-sonic quality products for the supermarket – and his misdeeds in that respect continued way into the CD era, as will be evidenced hereafter.
Eventually, in the early 1990s, license to reissue and physical supports came in the hands of another Solomon, one who in turn deserves to be an object of worship from Everest fans: Seymour Solomon, through his company Omega Record Group. Seymour Solomon and his brother Maynard (no family relation to Bernard, although some sources claim otherwise, maybe through confusion between Bernard and Maynard) were the founders of Vanguard Classics in the early LP days and, in the early 1990s, his company Omega also owned Vanguard’s classical catalog (the non-classical part, including the prized recordings of Joan Baez which had assured Vanguard’s cash flow, had been sold out – but Vanguard is another story). Together with a substantial program of Vanguard reissues, Solomon reissued a batch of the original Everest recordings on CD, from 1994 to 1997, apparently transferred directly from the 35mm films (although, again, there are conflicting reports about this; it may have been from back-up three-track tapes), usually in stupendous hi-fi sound (and not just good “for the vintage”) that revealed to an entirely new generation (including myself) the sonic splendor of those original Everest recordings. Solomon also had plans in the early 2000s to issue some of those recordings in SACD form, but those plans were cut short after only two releases by his death in 2002. Omega folded after Solomon’s death and I have no information about what became of the digital masters he had made for his own reissues. Anyway nothing happened on the reissue front for a few years thereafter.
In the very years when Solomon was reissuing the Everest catalog, between 1994 and 1997, sound engineer and restorer Steve Hoffman published six Everest recordings on 180g LPs on the audiophile and now defunct Compact Classics label. In a private correspondence Steve gave me a few details about the sources he worked from, and he’s allowed me to quote him:
“Can’t remember too much but we licensed a bunch of stuff from Bernie S., jazz, pop, etc. including Everest stuff. Bernie had all the originals, some had been delivered to PolyGram in NJ for some reason (we got the Shost. Symp #2 [Steve means #5, Stokowski’s recording] back from them on the original three-track with edits) but most came from Bernie. He had the two track reductions, the 1/2″ stuff and the film. I remember that we had to deal with Omega for the last issue, the Shostakovich but I think by that time they had struck a deal with Bernie and so they had a bunch of stuff, PolyGram had a bunch, it was all over the place.
Thing is, there were 35mm originals, 35mm safeties, intermingled, scattered, in no order, some decomposing in metal cans, some lucky in plastic cans (so no bad chemical interaction). On one, we just used the two track reduction mix that was done in 1962, nothing else would play, can’t remember which album that was.
Regarding Everest titles that DCC did, I think there were only 6. We picked those because the sources were not totally messed up. But on a few of them we had to cut and paste from the 35mm to the two track and so on because segments were damaged. The Shost. #5 was the easiest, all there and I even included some studio chatter from the conductor to the orchestra at the beginning of side two.
Just remember (in ol’ Bernie’s defense) that music licenses back then (and even now) were NON-EXCLUSIVE. In other words, Bernie or Capitol or RCA or whomever, could license the same piece of music to 10 different companies at the same time. Nothing shady about that. But in Bernie’s case he actually sent the friggin’ masters out instead of making dupes! That was crazy.”
All those who heard them praised the sonic quality of those reissues, declaring that they sounded even better than the original Everest LP releases.
By 2006 the Everest copyrights and physical supports found themselves in the ownership of a Canadian firm, Madacy Entertainment, who had acquired them from Bernie Solomon, and were held by its subsidiary Countdown Media, essentially a licensing firm. The Krips Beethoven symphonies were remastered and published under the Madacy Records label in a “tin-can” box, but nothing else from the Everest treasury seems to have been directly exploited at the time by Madacy or Countdown Media. In 2011 Countdown Media and the Everest assets together with it were acquired by BMG, and they are still today in their possession.
In December 2008, on a forum from ARSC, the Association for Recorded Sound Collections, traces of which can be found online, the then President of the Licensing Division, Mark Jenkins, gave alarming news about the condition of the masters:
“The Everest 35mm masters were in VERY poor condition. The storage containers we received them in were decades old, rusty, and the vinegaring process had already started in many of them. They were immediately transferred to new stable containers; however, I have been unable to locate a few of the tapes that evidently (from what I have been told) had already deteriorated beyond retrieval prior to our purchase of them.
As for the other portions of the catalogue, certain areas (such as the Fine Arts Quartet recordings) were actually in fair condition, and many of these have already been transferred, and will eventually appear on digital retail sites such as classical.com. We’re still in the process of getting through all of the material in order to make it available again in disc-on-demand, as well as digital (and in some cases CD) formats.”
Yet, around that time, Madacy / Countdown licensed the rights and 35mm masters of a number of Everest recordings to Classic Records of Los Angeles, a prized audiophile label. Classic Records released a number of those recordings in dual form, DVD-audio with two channel 24/192 on one side & three-channel 24/96 on the other, and regular two-track CD. There were 17 releases by my count – the plans to issue the Beethoven symphonies by Joseph Krips apparently never materialized. About Classic Records (purchased in 2010 by Acoustic Sounds), see this and this. The acoustic results are said to be great, marred only by some amount of wow and flutter on some of the tapes, due to deterioration of the original masters. Classic Records’ main focus was in fact high-quality LPs, and they also released those recordings on 200g vinyl LPs. For the background to this, see here, the presentation of an ultra-rare test pressing of one LP from that series that sold on eBay on March 3, 2017.
Also in 2008, a number of Everest recordings reappeared on CD, now reissued by a British company, Harkit records (and said to be licensed from a Criterion Music Company, but both shared the same managing director), but usually in shorter programs than Seymour Solomon’s Omega CDs, not transferred from the magnetic films but from secondary supports of lesser quality, and sometimes, from personal experience and various reviews and comments online, in botched transfers. In fact, it turns out that Harkit’s reissues were illegitimate, made apparently from authorizations unduly given by Bernie Solomon and based on physical sources handed out by him, probably the same that served for his own, pre-Omega and sonically botched releases on his own Bescol label. See this and this.
Finally, from 2014 to 2016, King Records of Japan also reissued a number of Everest recordings on SACD. In a private correspondence from March 28, 2017, Lutz Rippe, Mastering Technician for classical music at Countdown Media, gave heartening news about the availability of the Everest catalog and the condition of the original masters:
“We have the original master tapes here in Hamburg which we used for the series of reissues which we started around 2010. These reissues include high resolution download versions (96kHz/24bit and 192kHz/24bit) including digital booklets, currently available on HDtracks, as well as Mastered for iTunes versions (including booklets) available on iTunes. CD versions are available from Amazon’s Disc-On-Demand service. The following internet page, which we have set up, gives an overview on the catalog and the availablity on iTunes and Amazon:
The Classic Records releases you mentioned were made by Bernie Grundman Mastering in Hollywood using the original master tapes, which we had provided for this project.
The King Records releases you mentioned in your Everest discography are based on our new digital transfers made here in Hamburg in the recent years from the original master tapes.
The condition of the tapes is somewhat varying but generally good to satisfying. As our 35mm playback machine is equipped with a very sophisticated laser shrinkage detector and a specially developed playback head we were able to get stunning results during our analog to digital transfers. Here is a short impression of this technique:
The program of reissues and high-resolution downloads indicated by Lutz Rippe is especially important, as it brings back, in addition to those recordings already reissued to CD in the mid-1990s by Seymour Solomon and by others in other formats, some of the other original Everest recordings which had NOT yet been reissued in state-of-the-art, high resolution transfers (a few are still missing though). I will give the list of those further down.
Of related interest is that Countdown is also in the process of reissuing parts of the Concert Disc catalog. As mentioned above, Concert Disc was originally the label of the Fine Arts Quartet of Chicago, and it issued a lot of recordings by the New York Woodwind Quintet also (and by both groups united). It first entered Everest’s purview through a distribution agreement still in the Belock era, and progressively got under Everest’s control in the Solomon days, although I haven’t been able to establish for sure if the label was actually sold at one point to Solomon. But some of the Concert Disc recordings found their way as reissues under the Everest moniker. This is why and how the Fine Arts’ complete Beethoven quartets cycle was reissued by Seymour Solomon’s Omega/Everest. For more on Concert Disc and its digital reissues, see my Concert Disc discography.
Excellent and obviously well-informed, though at times slightly inaccurate Wikipedia article on Everest (which I read only after initially posting this page, and which sent me asking Countdown Media for further information, which they very kindly provided). Also here and here (links will open .pdf documents in new tab), a very detailed article in two parts by David Patmore and Lonn Henrichsen on the history of Everest Records, kindly provided by Lutz Rippe and originally published by the magazine Classical Record Collector. I am taking the liberty of making them public here because, sadly, Alan Sanders’ magazine now seems defunct.
My discography then leaves out the infamous CD reissues by Harkit records, which are absolutely to be avoided (they should have been called Hackit, really). I heard the Harkit reissue of Rudolf Schwarz’ Mahler 5th Symphony, and it was a shameful mess (see below, under Omega’s “legitimate” reissue, 9032). So beware before you buy one of those Hakit reissues. Because they might easily be confused with Seymour Solomon’s state-of-the-art Omega reissues, the label logo you should be looking for is this:
I’ve also voluntarily avoided to mention any reissues by Bescol (the CD label of the ever infamous Bernie Solomon) – never heard any but from what I’ve read they were of greatly inferior sonic quality, coming from nth generation dubs.
In some cases however, the Everest recordings reissued in the mid-1990s by Seymour Solomon’s Omega had been previously reissued (in the late 1980s and early 1990s) on other labels, like Philips (in their Legendary Classics collection), EMI, Price-Less, Pantheon or Phoenix. When I’ve been able to compare, the transfers were okay, but not nearly as good as those of Omega. I’ve listed those previous reissues, or at least those I am aware of, as appendixes to my Omega discography. But frankly, they are only a stop-gap or B-plan to Omega’s state-of-the-art reissues or the later ones, whose prices on the primary or secondary market now tend to run pretty high.
For all I provide barcode information when it exists, because – here’s a priceless discographer’s tip –, due to the great vagaries of listing, this is the surest way to find the items on commercial websites.
I now have all those Solomon’s reissues (I took the occasion of working on the publication of this discography to buy the few issues that I was missing – found them at affordable prices too, inluding Stokowski’s Peter & the Wolf). They didn’t provide the recording dates – only the release dates, by month and year. I’ve tried to gather and provide the exact recording dates – still a work in progress. All those for the London Symphony Orchestra (LSO) and the London Philhamonic Orchestra (LPO) come from Philip Stuart’s two masterful discographies and can be considered authoritative. His LSO discography can be downloaded from CHARM, the Research Center for the History and Analysis of Recorded Music (addendum January 2022: and the latest, 2022 edition from the London Symphony Orchestra’s website). His previous LPO discography, from 1997, is a hard-covered, hard-book, published by Greenwood Press, and calls for an investment upon which no serious record collector can possibly flinch (ISBN 0-313-29136-5). (Addendum January 2022:) In 2021, Philip Stuart also published a chronological listing and discography of the Everest Belock 1958-1960 recordings, which, to the datings already provided in his two discographies of the London orchestras, adds datings – some of them, by the discographer’s own admission, tentative – of the American recordings, and a long introduction replete with information on the label’s history. It can be obtained for free here (when at top of the page, search “Everest – The Belock Recordings. A Chronological Discography by Philip Stuart”).
Dating for Stokowski is less precise but (January 2022 emendation) originally came from Enno Rikiena’s authoritative online Stokowski discography, and were the best we could have at the time, until someone came up with comprehensive discographies of the Houston Symphony Orchestra and the so-called “Stadium Symphony Orchestra”. The latter was long considered a contractual alias for the New York Philharmonic, but even James H. North, who did a comprehensive discography of the New York Philharmonic’s official recordings, confirmed in a private correspondence that he didn’t have that information, and so did Kevin Schottmann, the very kind archivist of the New York Philharmonic. Based on that absence of information from the official sources and other considerations, Philip Stuart, in his 2021 discography of the Everest Belock recordings, opined that it was in fact a pick-up orchestra of New York musicians, and came up with very precise datings of some of the sessions, and likewise for Stokowski’s Houston recordings, some of them at odds with those of Rikiena. Henceforth I will use Stuart’s datings.
Dating for William Steinberg’s apparently single session with Everest comes from his entry on Wikipedia (P.S. 29 January 2018: but see Frank’s comment below for precisions on that). The dating for Stravinsky’s Ebony Concerto (EVC 9049) comes from an online listing of Woody Herman and his band’s 1958 recording schedule for Everest. Dates are given in European style, dd/mm/yy.
Omega Everest CDs (1994-97)
Omega’s CD numbering started with the letters EVC. I have them all except 9050, the sampler. I’ve reviewed a few on Amazon.com, and until I find the time to import them here, I provide the links to the Amazon reviews: click on the label numbers in blue.
9000 Falla Three-Cornered Hat: Barbara Howitt, Enrique Jorda LSO (23-24/11/59) / Bartok Dance Suite: Ferencsik LPO (24-25/11/58) barcode 723918900025 (1994)
Bartok also on Price-Less D25335 (045863253323) with Kodaly Psalmus Hungaricus (9008)
9001 Vaughan Williams Symph. No. 9: Boult, LPO (26, 27, 29, 30/8/58) / Malcolm Arnold Symph. No. 3: Arnold, LPO (19/11/58) 723918900124 (1994)
Note, from Philip Stuart: “The composer [Vaughan Williams] had been expected to attend these sessions (as he had attended the Decca recordings of the previous symphonies) but he died in the early hours of 26 Aug 58, as Boult explained in a short spoken introduction to the record”.
Arnold also reissued in 1988 on Phoenix PHCD 102 (094629301020) with Scottish Dances (9006)
9002 Stravinsky Rite of Spring / Rachmaninoff Symphonic Dances: Goossens, LSO (28 & 30/10/59: Stravinsky), (25/8/58: Rachmaninoff) 723918900223 (1994)
Rachmaninoff also on Price-Less D 22654 (045863226525) with Khachaturian Gayaneh (9020)
9003 Copland Appalachian Spring, Gould Spirituals: Susskind, LSO (16 & 17/8/58) / Gershwin American in Paris: Steinberg Pittsburgh (13, 14, 16/2/60), 723918900322 (1994)
Gould also reissued in 1990 on Bay Cities BCD 1016 (094659101621) with Antheil Symph. No. 4 (9039); Gershwin also on Price-Less D 18347 (no barcode) with Rhapsody in Blue (9038) and Concerto in F (Eugene List-Samuel Adler, non-Everest)
9004 Strauss Don Juan, Till Eulenspiegel, Salomé’s Dance (Stadium SO New York 12/10/58), Thomas Canning Fantasy on a Hymn (Houston SO (30-31/3/60): Stokowski 723918900421 (1994)
Strauss also Price-Less D 1323X (no barcode) with Wagner Wotan’s Farewell (9024)
9005 Shostakovich Symph. No. 6: Boult, LPO (26, 27, 29, 30/8/58) / Symph. No. 9: Sargent, LSO (27/10/59) 723918900520 (1994)
9006 Vaughan Williams Job, Wasps-Overture: Boult, LPO (28/11/58: Job, 26, 27, 29, 30/8/58: Wasps) + Arnold Scottish Dances: Arnold, LPO (19/11/58) 723918900629 (1994)
Arnold also reissued in 1988 on Phoenix PHCD 102 (094629301020) with Symph. No. 3 (9001)
9007 Villa Lobos Little Train of the Caipira, Antill Corroboree, Ginastera Panambi ballet-suite op. 1a: Goossens, LSO (24 & 25/8/58), Estancia ballet-suite op. 8a (26/11/58) 723918900728
Villa Lobos & Ginastera also on Price-Less D 24924 (045863249227) with Villa Lobos (9023)
9008 Bartok Concerto for Orchestra: Stokowski Houston SO (30-31/3/60) / Kodaly Psalmus Hungaricus: Ferencsik LPO (24-25/11/58), 723918900827 (1994)
Psalmus also on Price-Less D25335 (045863253323) with Bartok Dance Suite (9000)
9009 Hindemith Violin Concerto: Joseph Fuchs, Goossens LSO (30-31/5/59), Symphony in E flat: Boult LPO (10-13/8/58) 723918900926 (1994)
9010/4 Beethoven Symphonies: Krips LSO (11-13, 16, 18-27/1/60) (Jennifer Vyvyan, Shirley Carter-Verrett, Rudolf Petrak, Donald Bell in Symph. No. 9) 723918901022 (1994)
CDs individually listed released as 9100 barcode 723918910024 (1,5), 9101 723918910123 (2,6), 9102 723918910222 (4,7), 9103 723918910321 (3,8), 9104 723918910420 (9)
9015 Liszt Sonata, Mephisto Waltz (release 3/61), Piano Concerto No. 1, Hungarian Fantasy (rel. 6/60): Jorge Bolet, Robert Irving, Symphony of the Air (“Jan-May? 1960” and “Jan-June? 1960” dating Philip Stuart) 723918901527 (1997)
Note: Funérailles, recorded at the same sessions, was not included in the Everest CD reissue, already filled to 71 minutes, but as a bonus track in 9043-4.
Also on Price-Less D 13221 (no barcode); Sonata and Mephisto Waltz reissued 2007 on Alto ALC 1011 (with Piano Concertos, Rochester Philharmonic, David Zinman), barcode 894640001110
9016 Brahms Symph. No. 3: Stokowski Houston (18/3/59) / Symph. No. 4: Steinberg Pittsburgh (13, 14, 16/2/60) 723918901626 (1995)
9017 Berlioz Symphonie Fantastique: Goossens LS0 (29-30/5/59) 723918901725 (1995)
9018 Respighi Pines, Fountains (Sargent LSO 21, 23, 24/10/59), Feste Romane (Goossens LSO 18/8/58) 723918901824 (1995)
Also on Price-Less D 24770 (045863247728)
9019 Prokofev Chout: Susskind, LSO (15/8/58) / Lt. Kijé: Sargent LSO (27/10/59) 723918901923 (1995)
9020 Khatchaturian Gayne Ballet Suite: Fistoulari LSO (2/11/59) 723918902029 (1995)
Also on Price-Less D 22654 (045863226525) with Rachmaninoff Symphonic Dances (9002)
9021 no issue. About this, Jerry Gennaro, whose request was the factor that set in motion the publication of this discography, provided in a private correspondence a very convincing explanation, noting that on the back of the sampler CD, EVC 9050, Sargent’s Pictures at an Exhibition had been assigned label number 9021. Apparently there was a change of plans and eventually it was published in a twofer, EVC 9043, but 9021 was not filled in by another release and remained orphan.
9022 Mahler Symph. No. 1: Boult LPO (10-13/8/58) 723918902227
9023 Villa Lobos Uirapuru, Bachiana Brasileira No. 1 “Modinha”, Prokofiev Cinderella-suite, Ugly Duckling, Debussy-Stokowski Children’s Corner: Stokowski Stadium SO New York (8/10/58: Villa Lobos, Cinderella, 3/10/58: Ugly Duckling, Debussy) 723918902326 (1995)
Villa Lobos also on Price-Less D 22924 (045863249227) with Villa Lobos & Ginastera (9007). Cinderella also on Price-Less D 22697 (045863226921) with Shostakovich Symph. No. 5 (9030)
9024 Wagner Walküre Wotan’s Farewell & Magic Fire Music, Parsifal Good Friday Spell & Act III Symphonic Synthesis: Stokowski Houston SO (30-31/3/60): Walküre), (25-26/3/59: Parsifal) 723918902425 (1995)
Wotan’s Farewell & MFM also on Price-Less D 1323X (no barcode) with Strauss (9004)
9025 Tchaikovsky Manfred Symphony: Goossens LSO (23, 26/5/59) / Sibelius Tapiola Tauno Hannikainen LSO (7/11/59) 723918902524 (1996)
9026 Mozart Serenade 11 + 12: New York Woodwind Soloists, Newell Jenkins (“Jun-Oct? 1959” dating Philip Stuart) 723918902623 (1996)
9027 The music of Foster, Kern (symphonic arrangements by Robert Russell Bennett), Berlin (symphonic arrangements by Raoul Poliakin): William Steinberg Pittsburgh SO (13, 14, 16/2/60, Foster & Kern), Raoul Poliakin & The Poliakin Orchestra & Chorale (rel. 3/60, Berlin) 723918902722 (1996)
9028 A Chopin Piano Recital (Polonaise op. 53, “Minute”-Waltz op. 64-1, Fantaisie-Impromptu op. posth. 66, Nocturne op. 9-2, Etude op. 10-12 “Revolutionary”, Polonaise op. 40-1 “Military”, Etude op. 10-3, Waltz op. 64-2, Prelude op. 28-15, Etude op. 10-5 “Black Key”): Jorge Bolet (“Apr-Jun? 1960” dating Philip Stuart) 723918902821
9029 Arthur Benjamin: Concerto quasi una fantasia, Concertino: Lamar Crowson, LSO, Benjamin (14/11/58) 723918902920 (1996)
9030 Shostakovich Symph. No. 5: Stokowski Stadium SO New York (1/10/58) 723918903026 (1996)
Also on Priceless D 22697 (045863226921) with Prokofiev Cinderella (9024), Philips Legendary Classics 422 306-2 (028942230620) w. Scriabin Poem of Ecstasy (9037)
9031 Invitation to the Waltz – Favorite Waltz Masterpieces: Weber Invitation to the Dance, Strauss Jr, Tchaikovsky, Berlioz, Richard Strauss Rosenkavalier-Waltz Medley. Raoul Poliakin, Stadium SO New York (“Dec? 1958” dating Philip Stuart) (+ complements by Sargent and Goossens) 723918903125 (1995)
9032 Mahler Symph. No. 5: Rudolf Schwarz, LSO (10 & 11/11/58) 723918903224 (1995)
just for information, here is my review of the dreadful Harkit reissue, just so you know what to avoid and why
9033 Strauss Heldenleben: Leopold Ludwig LSO (1-2/6/59) (+ Strauss Rosenkavalier-Waltzes: Poliakin -see 9031) 723918903323
9034 Lili Boulanger: Du Fond de l’Abîme, Psaume 24, Psaume 129, Vielle Prière Bouddhique, Pie Jesus. Oralia Dominguez, Lamoureux Orchestra, Igor Markevitch (“Aug-Dec 1958?” dating Philip Stuart) 723918903422 (1995)
Also reissued in 1992 by EMI Classics, Collection “L’Esprit français”, CDM 7 64281 2 barcode 077776428123
9035 Sibelius & Tchaikovsky Violin Concertos, Tchaikovsky Melodie op. 42 No. 3: Tossy Spivakovsky, Tauno Hannikainen LSO (5/11/59: Sibelius), Walter Goehr (9/11/59: Tchaikovsky) 723918903521 (1995)
9036 Johann Strauss Jr. A Night in Venice. Adaptation & lyrics by Ruth & Thomas Martin. Original Cast “of the memorable Michael Todd Production”, dir. Thomas Martin (“Dec 1958-Mar 1959?” dating Philip Stuart) 723918903620 (1995)
9037 Scriabin Poem of Ecstasy: Stokowski Houston SO (19/3/59) / Tchaikovksy Francesca da Rimini, Hamlet: Stadium SO New York (7/10/58) 723918903729 (1996)
Scriabin also Philips Legendary Classics 422 306-2 (028942230620) with Shostakovich Symph. No. 5 (9030), Pantheon D 1032X (no barcode); Tchaikovsky also on Price-Less D 25327 (045863253224)
9038 Ferde Grofé Grand Canyon Suite, Piano Concerto (world premiere recording, dedicated to and played by): Jesús María Sanromá, Rochester PO, Ferde Grofé (“Feb? 1960” dating Philip Stuart) / Gershwin Rhapsody in Blue: Jesus Maria Sanromá, Pittsburgh SO, William Steinberg (13, 14, 16/2/60) 723918903828 (1997)
Grofe also on Phlips Legendary Classics 422 304-2 (028942230422), Gershwin on Price-Less D 18347 (no barcode) with American in Paris (9003) and Concerto in F (Eugene List-Samuel Adler, non-Everest)
9039 Antheil Symph. No. 4: Goossens, LSO (12/11/58) / Copland Statements: Copland, LSO (17/11/58) 723918903927 (1996)
Antheil also reissued in 1990 on Bay Cities BCD 1016 (094659101621) with Gould Spirituals (9003)
9040 Copland Symph. No. 3, Billy the Kid: Copland LSO (17 & 18/11/58) 723918904023 (1996)
Also on Philips Legendary Classics 422 307-2 (028942230729)
9041 Chavez Symphonies Nos. 1, 2, 4: Stadium SO of New York, Chavez (“Dec 1958-Mar 1959?” dating Philip Stuart) 723918904122 (1996)
Also on Philips Legendary Classics 422 305-2 (028942230521)
9042 Stravinsky Petrushka, Symphony in 3 movements: Goossens, LSO (15 & 17/5/59, 27/8/58) 723918904221 (1996)
Also reissued in 1989 on Philips Legendary Classics 422 303-2 (028942230323) with Ebony Concerto (9049)
9043-4 (2 CD) Tchaikovsky Symph. No. 5 (20/5 & 3/6/59), Mussorgsky/Ravel Pictures at an Exhibition, Night on Bald Mountain (26/10/59), Prokofiev Symph No. 5 (18-29/5/59): Sargent LSO + bonus track Liszt Funérailles Bolet 0723918904320 (1997)
9045-6 Mozart S40: Ludwig LSO (21/11/59), Violin Concerto No. 3: Joseph Fuchs, Goossens LSO (2/6/59), Schubert S8: Ludwig LSO (17/11/59), Schumann Piano Concerto: Peter Katin Goossens LSO (26-28/5/59), Dvorak Symph. No. 9: Ludwig LSO (16/11/59) 0723918904528 (1997)
9047 Rimsky Sheherazade: Goossens LSO (1/11/59) + Encores: Raymond Paige, Stadium SO of New York (“Dec 1958-Mar 1959?” dating Philip Stuart) 723918904726 (1997)
9048 Prokofiev Peter and the Wolf: version with narrator (Captain Kangaroo-Bob Keeshan) and orchestral version only: Stokowski, Stadium SO New York (3/10/58) / Chopin-Stokowski Mazurka op. 17-4, Prelude op. 28-24, Walz op. 64-2 / Fikret Amirov Aserbaidjan Mugam: Stokowski, Houston SO (18/3/59: Amirov, 30-31/3/60: Chopin) 0723918904825 (1997)
Note: as on the original LP, SDBR 3043 (mono LPBR 6043) Peter and the Wolf comes in two versions: with narrator and orchestra alone
9049 Milhaud Création du Monde, Stravinsky Soldier’s Tale-suite: John Carewe, LSO Chamber Ensemble (13/11/58) / Ebony Concerto: Woody Herman & His Orchestra, John LaPorta (clarinet solo) (12/58) 723918904924 (1997)
Ebony Concerto also reissued in 1989 on Philips Legendary Classics 422 303-2 (028942230323) with Petrushka, Symphony in Three Movements (9042)
9050 The Sound of Everest (sampler) 723918905020 (1994)
9051-2 Beethoven Early Quartets (op. 18): Fine Arts Quartet (No 1 & 3 presumably recorded in 1959 or 1960, others between 1963 an 1966, re: the – not entirely accurate – discography of the Fine Arts Quartet) 723918905129 (1996)
Also on Pantheon D 22743 (045863227423)
Note: the Fine Arts Quartet’s Beethoven cycle was originally published on Concert Disc, the Fine Arts Quartet’s own label and later an affiliate label of Everest. The date 1969 given by the CD sets is that of the reissue of the complete quartets under the Everest moniker, SDBR 3255 but they were recorded between 1960 and 1965
9053-5 Beethoven Middle Quartets: Fine Arts (recorded 1965 or before) 723918905327 (1996)
Also on Pantheon 24835 (045863248329)
9056-8 Beethoven Late Quartets: Fine Arts (recorded summer 1963 except op. 131, presumably 1961, and Op. 127, presumably 1962) 723918905624 (1996).
Re review in High Fidelity July 1964: “The present set grows out of a complete cycle of the Beethoven quartets which the Fine Arts played in Chicago during the 1962-63 season. The recording of Op. 131 here included is that previously issued by the group [Concert Disc CS 211, 1961], and the remaining works were taped during the summer of 1963, prior to the departure of Mr Irving Ilmer as viola of the ensemble”. See also ad for Acoustic Research, Inc. in High Fidelity Feburary 1963, p. 37: “The Fine Arts Quartet has just recorded Beethoven’s Quartet in E flat major, Opus 127”.
Also on Pantheon D 25386 (045863253828)
9059 Mahler Symph. No. 9: Leopold Ludwig LSO (17-20/11/59) 723918905921 (1997)
9060 Khatchaturian Piano Concerto: Peter Katin, Hugo Rignold LSO (10/11/59) / Franck Variations Symphoniques: Peter Katin, Goossens LSO (26-28/5/59) 723918906027 (1997)
Omega Everest SACDs
VSD 504 Copand Appalachian Spring / Gould Spirituals SACD 0723918050461 (2000)
VSD 512 Villa Lobos Antill Gossens Everest SACD 0723918051260 (2002)
DCC 180g LPs (1994-7)
LPZ 1001 Tchaikovsky Francesca da Rimini, Hamlet Stokowski 010963100112 (1994)
LPZ 1002 Strauss Don Juan, Till, Stokowski 010963100211 (1994)
LPZ 1003 Villa Lobos Uirapuru, Prokofiev Cinderella 010963100310 (1994)
LPZ 2016 Shostakovich Symph. No. 5 Stokowski 010963201611 (1996)
LPZ 2034 Copland Appalachian Spring, Spirituals 010963203417 (1997)
LPZ 2035 Copland Billy The Kid, Statements 010963203516 (1997)
Madacy Records (2006)
TC2 52319: Beethoven: Complete Symphonies. LSO, Krips. 5 CDs in “Tin Can” box set, barcode 628261231928 (2006)
Thanks to “Ron” in the comments for calling my attention to this set. I had initially left it out from the discography, thinking it was one of those cheap and sonically abysmal reissues of Bernie Solomon. In a private correspondence, Lutz Rippe from Countdown Media confirmed that he was indeed the author of the remasterings “using the original 35mm tapes”. So by all means the reissue belongs to this discography. He added that he subsequently made further sonic improvements, and it is those improved versions that are used for the on-demand CDs from Countdown Media on sale on Amazon. To the best of his knowledge it’s the only Everest material that Madacy released at the time.
Post-script from 16 March 2023: on the friendly prompting of reader John Bar in the comments, I pulled out of my shelves the Tin Can edition, which I had acquired in the meanwhile, as well as the mystery “Fat Boy” edition also referred to in the comments, and made a comparative assessment of their respective sonics. The verdict is that the sonics of Tin Can are usually very similar, and possibly exactly the same, as those of Seymour Solomon’s 1994 Everest remastering. When there are differences, they are in the disfavor of Tin Can (less transparency), but they are slight and perceptible only in close comparative listening. The one disappointment appears to be the Finale of the 9th Symphony , perceptibly more opaque than its Everst counterpart – and I don’t hear such a sonic blemish in the other three movements. The Fat Boy edition is a cheap and sonically sub-par release that, as I anticipated, doesn’t belong to this discography.
Classic Records DVD + CD “under license from Countdown Media” (2008-2010)
“This HDAD+ package contains two discs, one is a two-sided DVD-10 containing two channel 24 bit/192 kHz data and three-channel 24 bit/96 kHz data on one side, playable on DVD Audio players, and on the other side two channel 24 bit 96 kHz data and three channel Dolby AC-3, playable on DVD video players. The second disc included is a standard two-channel CD containing 16 bit/44.1 kHz data playable on all CD and DVD players. Transferred directly from the original 35mm three-track film by Bernie Grundman from Bernie Grundman Mastering and Len Horowitz from History of Recorded Sound at Bernie Grundman Mastering, Hollywood.”
All label numbers introduced by CHDD. Contents mirror those of original Everest LPs back in the late 1950s/early 1960s. For some reason, most of those issues can be found on commercial website under two different barcodes. I’m not sure if it has to do with Classic Records before and after it was purchased by Acoustic Sounds, or with the dual nature of the releases, DVD and CD. Note that one program is conspicuously absent from the list: Eugene Goossens’ recording of Antill’s Corroboree and Ginastera’s Panambi. Classic Records released it in LP form and as all the rest have their duplicates on LP, I would have expected to find that one on the list of dual DVD-CD reissues; yet I’ve found no trace of it yet.
2014 Hindemith Violin C° Mozart VC 3 Fuchs Goossens, barcode 0601704201498, 0601704020143
2015 Respighi Fountains, Pines of Rome Sargent, 0601704201597, 0601704020150
2016 Khachaturian Gayne Ballet Suite Fistoulari, 0601704201696, 0601704020136 (note: barcode discrepancy unexplained)
2017 Mussorgsky Pictures at an Exhibition, Night on Bald Mountain Sargent, 0601704201795, 0601704020174
2018 Shostakovich S9 Prokofiev Lt Kijé Sargent 0601704201894
note: barcode 0601704020181 appears to be for John Lee Hooker The Healer
2019 Falla Three Cornered Hat Jorda, 0601704201993, 0601704020198
2022 Berlioz Symphonie Fantastique Goossens, 0601704202297, 0601704202266
2023 Stravinsky Rite Goossens, 0601704202396, 0601704202365
2024 Prokofiev Symph. No. 5 Sargent, 0601704202495, 0601704202464
2025 Tchaikovsky Symphony No. 5 Sargent, 0601704202594, 0601704202563
2026 Scriabin Amirov Stokowski, 0601704202693, 0601704202617
2027 Khachaturian Piano Concerto Katin Rignold, 0601704202792, 0601704202716
2028 Bartok Concerto for Orchestra Stokowski, 0601704202891, 0601704202815
2029 Wagner Chopin Canning Stokowski, 0601704202990, 0601704202914
2030 Sibelius Violin Concerto, Tapiola Spivakovsky Hannikainen, 0601704203096, 0601704203065
2031 Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto Spivakovsky Goehr, 0601704203195, 0601704203164
2032 Beethoven Krips 0601704203263
listing on acoustics sounds
listing on Amazon.com
This set has apparently never been released; Acoustic Sounds has confirmed that they never had any copies for sale
2033 Villa Lobos Little Train of the Caipira / Ginastera Estancia Panambi Goosens, 0601704203393, 0601704203362
And here’s the list of their LPs.
Here, not only the contents, but even the label numbering mirror the original LP releases of the late 1950s/early 1960s. My list of Classic Records LPs comes from the website of Acoustic Sounds, the audiophile retailer that purchased all of Classic Records stock in 2010 and that still has copies of most for sale. They come in two forms: “normal” 200g vinyl and, for a few of them, test-pressing 200g vinyl. Because some are now sold out and because some test pressings may never have been released (see below), my list is probably incomplete at this point and I am still researching. I’ve come up with Internet listings of 45 RPM, one-sided pressings (as here, or in the eBay sale mentioned below) that Acoustic Sounds makes no mention of, so I suspect that Classic Records released their Everest LPs in still other formats (they were noted for doing this). Also, I’ve seen mention of 20 releases, and my list has only 19 (counting Krips’ Beethoven set as one). I’ve kept here the prefix used by Acoustic Sounds, but the actual LPs bear the same letter-prefix as the original Everest LPs, SDBR, which makes it even more problematic to try and distinguish between the different formats. Apparently none of their LPs had a barcode.
AEVC 3003Q Antill Corroboree Ginastera Panambi Goosens
AEVC 3032Q Scriabin Poem of Ecstasy, Amirov Stokowski
AEVC 3034Q Prokofiev Symph No. 5 Sargent
AEVC 3037Q Berlioz Symphonie Fantastique Goossens
Sold-out from Acoustic Sounds
AEVC 3039Q Tchaikovsky Symph. No. 5 Sargent
AEVC 3040Q Hindemith Mozart Violin Concerto Fuchs Goossens
AEVC 3041Q Villa Lobos Little Train of the Caipira, Ginastera Estancia, Panambi Goossens
If you wonder why Classic Records released the same recording, Panambi, on two different LPs, this one and 3003 – the question should have been asked decades ago to Harry Belock!
AEVC 3045Q Sibelius Violin Concerto, Tapiola Spivakovsky Hannikainen
AEVC 3047Q Stravinsky The Rite of Spring Goossesns
AEVC 3049Q Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto, Melody Spivakovsky Goehr
AEVC 3051Q Respighi Pines & Fountains of Rome Sargent
AEVC 3052Q Khachaturian Gayne Ballet Suite Fistoulari
AEVC 3053Q Mussorgky Pictures at an Exhibition, Night on Bald Mountain Sargent
AEVC 3054Q Prokofiev Lnt Kije, Shostakovich Symph. No. 9 Sargent
AEVC 3055Q Khachaturian Katin Rignold
AEVC 3057Q Falla Three Cornered Hat Jorda
AEVC 3065QCV (10 LPs, bonus 45rmp disc) Beethoven Krips
Although this one is no longer available from Acoustic Sounds, they confirm that, unlike the dual DVD-CD version, this set HAS actually been released
AEVC 3069Q Bartok Concerto for Orchestra Stokowski
AEVC 3070Q Wagner Chopin Canning Stokowski
200g Vinyl Test Pressing
TEVC 3003Q Antill Corroboree Ginastera Panambi Goossens
TEVC 3034Q Prokofiev Symph. No. 5 Sargent
TEVC 3039Q Tchaikovsky Symph. No. 5 Sargent
TEVC 3040Q Hindemith Mozart Violin Concertos Fuchs Goossens
TEVC 3049Q Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto Spivakovsky Goehr
TEVC 3055Q Khachaturian Piano Concerto Katin Rignold
TEVC 3069Q Bartok Concerto for Orchestra Stokowski
TEVC 3070Q Wagner Chopin Canning Stokowski
Note: on March 3, 2017 – this morning as I write – a copy of an unreleased test pressing of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7 by Krips has gone on eBay for 150 dollars. This is how it was presented:
“This auction is for an UNRELEASED, STILL SEALED, NUMBERED (7 of 20), 45rpm 3LP Test Pressing Box Set. This set consists of 3 single sided discs, for optimal sound performance, of the Classic Records 200gram reissue of Beethoven’s “Symphony No. 7 In A Major, Op. 92” with Josef Krips conducting the London Symphony Orchestra. This title was planned, but never released as a 200g set at 45rpm on clarity vinyl, thereby making this an ultra collectible set.
These highly collectible test pressings are from the first stamper. Test pressings reflect the closest you can get to the lacquers and hence have a special collectible value and store of value.
Only a very small number of these unreleased sets exist and thus this is a special opportunity to hear your favorite title on Classic’s 200g Super Vinyl Profile at 45 rpm – it doesn’t get any better than this! Set packaged in original box with artwork. Each disc is packaged in a white jacket.
ULTRA RARE item… Good luck! “
It’s a bit confusing that the set’s photos seem to be for the complete symphonies. I’ve inquired with the seller for more information, and have also tried getting in touch with Michael Hobson, the founder of Classic Records. Stay tune.
King Records SACDs (2014-6)
KKC 4024 Antill Corroboree Ginastera Panambi Goossens (2014) 4909346008182
KKC 4025 Scriabin Stokowski 4909346008199
KKC 4026 Berlioz Symphonie fantastique Goossens 4909346008205
KKC 4027 Grofé Gran Canyon Suite, Concerto piano Sanromá Rochester Grofé 4909346008212
KKC-4028 Shostakovich S9, Kijé Sargent (2014) 4909346008229
KKC 4032 Stravinsky Rite of Spring Goossens (2015) 4909346009639
KKC 4033 Villa Lobos Little Train, Ginastera: Estancia, Panambi Goossens 4909346009646
KKC 4034 Falla Three-Cornered Hat Jorda 4909346009653
KKC 4035 Respighi Pines, Fountains Sargent 4909346009660
KKC 4036 Bartok Concerto for Orchestra Stokowski (2015) 4909346009677
KKC 4037 Beethoven S1 + 8 Krips (2015) 4909346009929
KKC 4038 Beethoven S 2 + 4 Krips 4909346009936
KKC 4039 Beethoven S3 Krips 4909346009929
KKC 4040 Beethoven S5, Egmont Ov Krips 4909346009950
KKC 4041 Beethoven S6 Krips 4909346009967
KKC 4042 Beethoven S7 Krips 4909346009974
KKC 4043 Beethoven S9 Krips 4909346009981
KKC 4050 Stravinsky Petrouchka Goossens 4909346011021
KKC 4051 Khachaturian Gayne Fistoulari 4909346011038
KKC 4052 Boulanger Markevitch 4909346011045
KKC 4053 Liszt Bolet 4909346011052
KKC 4054 Stokowski Wagner Chopin Canning (2016) 4909346011069
High-Resolution downloads and on-demand CD-Rs from Countdown Media
Like Classic Records, Countdown Media has reissued its Everest catalog with the same programs as the original LPs. It conveniently provides, then, the catalog of the original Everest LPs, at least up to the release of Krips’ Beethoven cycle. That’s when the catalog was sold to Bernie Solomon and licensed recordings began to show up under the Everest moniker.
The barcodes are those of Amazon.com entries for the on-demand CDs, but remember that all these recordings can also be bought for download from iTunes and HDTracks. I’ve put in bold type those that had never been reissued in audiophile releases in the CD era. I’ve put in italics the few that are still missing from Countdown Media’s reissues. Regretably, the Shostakovich 5th Symphony by Stokowski and Antheil’s 4th Symphony by Goossens are among those (but – August 2019 update – Chavez by Chavez, Vaughan Williams’ Job and Arthur Benjamin’s Concertos were released in 2018 – only as downloads, I haven’t found any entry on Amazon for on-demand CDs), as well as 3024, Villa-Lobos’ Sinfonia Concertante for cello orchestra and arrangements of Bach’s Preludes & Fugues from the Well-Tempered Clavier, that one never reissued in audiophile form. About this, in an e-mail from March 13, 2017, Countdown Media’s Lutz Rippe told me that “if the condition of the master tapes is good enough, those will be released as soon as possible”.
Note: I have not found the entry and barcode for the on-demand CD or download on Amazon.com, but the recording is available indeed for high-res. download from iTunes and HDTracks.
Note: I have not found the entry and barcode for the on-demand CD or download on Amazon.com, but the recording is available indeed for high-res. download from iTunes and HDTracks.
Note: version with speaker only, TT 25′ (see Everest-Omega EVC 9048)
Note: entry for on-demand CD not found on Amazon.com, but available as download from Amazon.com, HDTracks and iTunes
Note: I haven’t been able to establish the exact recording date, but Everest signed the Rochester Philharmonic in February 1960, together with the Pittsburgh Symphony, and the recording with Pittsburgh followed immediately after)
See note about dating under 3060. Bloomfield and the Rochester Philharmonic played the 5th Symphony in Concert in January 1960 (from The Democrat and Chronicle From Rochester, New York, January 21, 1960)
51 thoughts on “Everest Records (CD and other audiophile reissues discography)”
This is a most comprehensive and valuable resource and I thank you heartily for pulling it together. Concerning the Steinberg/Pittsburgh Symphony Everest sessions in February 1960, the Wikipedia dates are derived from a feature in the February 14, 1960 Pittsburgh Press. Though the google scan is partly obscured, the article appears to state that “Recording sessions continue today [February 14] and Tuesday [February 16].” It is logical that the first session would have been Saturday February 13, because the Pittsburgh Symphony concerts were given Friday evening and Sunday afternoon. The earlier part of the week would have been devoted to rehearsal for the concert performances.
Pittsburgh experienced a blizzard on Saturday night, and only 300 patrons attended the Sunday concert at Syria Mosque. Evidently the Sunday recording session was held though. A book on pianist Jesus Maria Sanroma confirms that Rhapsody in Blue was recorded on “a very…very difficult winter day.” The book also details that the piano did not arrive, because a miscommunication had scheduled it for a month later! The Pittsburgh Symphony rented its concert venue, Syria Mosque, at the time so had less control over such things than orchestras who had a permanent hall. In any case the decision was made to proceed with recording the orchestral sections of the Rhapsody, which were later married up with Sanroma’s solo part recorded elsewhere. Indeed the released recording exhibits the acoustical anomaly of two different venues upon close listening.
Another article states that Steinberg’s Pittsburgh Symphony was to be the primary source for new Everest recordings of the standard repertoire. Unfortunately that concept ran aground on the company’s financial troubles, though the sale of the 35mm equipment to Robert Fine ultimately benefitted the conductor and orchestra when they signed with Command a year later. That enterprise produced an admirable series of audiophile recordings as well.
Hi Frank (is it “Frank”?). Thank you so much for your comment, and many apologies for my tardiness in approving it and responding. I’ve been away from my own website for a while (reviewing fatigue !) and somehow it is not parametered to send me notifications when comments are made: I need to find the fix for that.
About Command: yes and yes. I posted, years ago, huge essays on Amazon.com about Mercury Living Presence, on the occasion of the publication of the collection box sets of Wilma Cozart Fine’s CD reissues, which I absolutely need to reimport over here. The main question I asked was “what is it that DEFINES a “living presence” recording?” – considering that it wasn’t just to have been published on the “Mercury Living Presence” label, since Mercury also released licensed recordings from Philips and various others.
So the answer to that was: the engineering of C. Robert Fine and his use of one (in the mono era) then three “Telefunken” (in fact Schoeps) microphones.
And by that definition, the Command recordings made by Fine should by all means be included in a comprehensive list of “Living Presence” eg C. Robert Fine recordings.
Sadly, Fine’s Command recordings have NOT been the object of such state-of-the-art CD reissues as those of Mercury. I don’t know what happened with the master tapes but, for all means and intents, they are as good as lost and that’s a tragedy. There was a reissue of Steinberg’s Beethoven cycle, on the label XXI, barcode 722056175029 – awful, dubbed from the LPs, a veritable fraud. In the early days of the CD MCA classics released symphonies 2 & 4 and 7 + Leonore 3 Overture (barcode 076732981023), together with Scherchen’s Westminster 1, 3, 6 & 8. Though far from perfect, the transfers were much better and obviously from some tape, so it must exist somewhere.
The Krips/LSO Beethoven cycle also was issued in 2006 by Madacy packaged in a cheezy “Tin Can” box set. According to comments posted at Amazon.com, Lutz Rippe of Countdown Media mastered the recordings directly from the original 35-mm 3-track master tapes.
Hi Ron, thanks so much for your comment, and many apologies for my tardiness in approving it and responding. I’ve been away from my own website for quite a while now – reviewing fatigue ! – and for some reason it is not parametered for sending me notifications when comments are made. I need to find the fix for that. I need to look further at your reference and I’ll return. Best, Disco
Hi again Ron, I hope you’ll be reading this. Thanks again for pointing this one out to me. From a private correspondence with Lutz Rippe I can confirm that he was indeed the author fot he remasterings, from the original 35mm master tapes. I’ve added a new section to reflect that.
I have lp/tape of 4 Beethoven Overtures (Egmont/Leonore No.3/Fidelio/Coriolan) Krips/LSO which – I assume – must have been recorded at the same time as the complete symphonies. The Egmont was issued with the 5th Symphony (Everest USA and World Record Club UK (EMI).) Also Egmont and Leonore No.3 on Everest SDBR 3119 (USA.) Coriolan & Fidelio only seem to appear on later budget releases (Concerto Classics UK/Melody Master Canada). Do you have any information on these overtures and any CD release of them please? (The Egmont is on the Countdown Media/Amazon CD.)
Thanks for this hard work, a marvellous source of information, came across this when checking for
Stravinsky: Petrouchka, Rite Of Spring / Goossens, London Symphony Orchestra.
Disappointed to discover I’ve bought the Criterion version, although it sounds pretty good to my old ears.
Hi Kenneth, thanks for these kind words. Andyou know, the Criterion edition of that specific CD may sound very good indeed and not just to your old ears. I’ve had (with Mahler’s Fifth Symphony) a bad surprise, and I’ve read unwelcoming comments about other issues, but I’ve also read some favorable comments about certain issues, and Criterion may have NOT botched all its reissues. And also, bear in mind, what Shakespeare’s says of the actors in Midsummer Night’s Dream – “the best in their kind are but shadows, and the worst are no worse if imagination amend them” – applies to record listening as well: the greatest Hi-Fi will always be a mere emulation of the truth of the acoustic instruments, and the worst recording is as good as the best, because we always reconstruct the reality of the music in our mind’s ear. The sound that comes out on headphones or loud-speakers is only the prod on which our imagination reconstructs a universe. Best regards.
Thanks so much fo this really wonderful discography. I have fond memories of the Everest recordings when I was growing up and was looking for a complete listing so I could start to get them again. I have been getting made to order ones from Amazon which I think sound pretty good. Your article had a wealth of useful information Thanks again
thanks for your kind comment Jay. It’s always a great reward of all this hard work (!) when my research meets an enthusiastic public !
I am trying to pin down the Everest Fine Arts Quartet complete Beethoven Quartet cycle as to recording dates. To my ears, from the 1996 Omega/Vanguard 20 bit remastering (I find all of these 20 BIT SBM transfers very convincing) it has the unmistakable sound signature of the 35 mm recording process in the warmth and clarity of the midrange plus the dry precise acoustic of the Belock Recording Studio which are very prominent features of other Everest recordings. These to my knowledge, as an avid Everest vinyl as well as silver disc collector, were never released during the late Belock era on high quality LPs, so I assume the recording date was very late in 1960-61 and the transfer of the label and catalogue to Bernie Solomon in Hollywood to become a budget record and club label precluded their release until the mid 1969s on cheap LPs. I think a complete set was a licensed release by Murray Hill in the 1970s and there were licensed releases in the UK to Saga Records. The reason Solomon never issued these Beethoven quartets in a boxset on acquiring the catalogue isn’t hard to understand if one reads Giveon Cornfeld’s scathing account of working for him in Hollywood as his general manager.
The Classic Records transfers of some of the 35mm Everest masters included the Krips symphony cycle but not the Fine Arts quartet cycle.
The Fine Arts Quartet, as I understand it, had an enterprising and innovative approach to recording on their own label called Concert Discs employing a technique called “natural balance”. At some point Everest acquired this label and signed the Fine Arts Quartet along with another important ensemble to the Belock rosta, the New York Wind Soloists. There’s quite a list of genuine Everest recordings from 1959 to 1961 featuring both these groups of artists laid down in New York at the Belock Studio Bayside.
I don’t believe the Everest Beethoven Quartets issued by Everest were simply the Concert Disc recordings carried over – they sound too good.
However, specific verifiable information is lacking.
Perhaps another call to Countdown Media will clear the mystery up. Especially if there was a log or label on the side of the can when in the 1990s Seymour Solomon of Vanguard dug the Everest horde out of the Hollywood garage in Beverly Hills where they had been stored for several decades.
Apparently, the three track 35 mm masters are still in fairly good condition, because after 1961 in the budget era only two track half inch stereo tapes, sometimes dubbed to quarter inch tapes, were utilized in subsequent reissues thus leaving the film masters in excellent condition.
The trouble is NOW! Hopefully the King Records SACD transfer will create the final state of the art archive digital copy which this important milestone in audio technology and the golden age of stereo sound deserves
Hi David, thanks for your post. All my knowledge of the Fine Arts Quartet’s Beethoven cycle is on my discography of Concert Disc. I have no reason to believe that the Everest versions are NOT those published in the 1960s on Concert Disc. Your only basis to claim otherwise appears to be that the recording sounds too good to be Concert Disc’s, but that is to assume that Concert Disc’s recordings were sub-par, and they weren’t, judging from all their CD reissues. An argument contra your conjecture is that Concert Disc handed out their distribution to Everest as early as 1960. It’s very possible after all that the Fine Arts Quartet then used Belock’s technical equipment and sound engineer Bert Whyte to do their recordings, although this is only a guess, I don’t know that they actually did (I don’t have my Omega CD reissues handy at the moment to check if they offer any information about that). Also, keep in mind that most of the Beethoven cycle was first published on Concert Disc between 1963 and 1967. The publication then, if not the recordings themselves, POST-date and not pre-date Belock’s Everest.
When High Fidelity reviewed Concert Disc SP 502 with the Last Quartets (12-16) in July 1964, they wrote this:
“The present set grows out of a complete cycle of the Beethoven quartets which the Fine Arts played in Chicago during the 1962-63 season. The recording of Op. 131 here included is that previously issued by the group, and the remaining works were taped during the summer of 1963, prior to the departure of Mr Irving Ilmer as viola of the ensemble”.
I don’t think High Fidelity would have invented that so they must have known it from the performers, and that comes as close as I can get to a dating, at least of the last quartets. Note that the recording of op. 131 they refer to was originally published on Concert Disc CS 211 at the end of 1961. There was also an individual release of op. 127 on CS 233 that was listed in the Billboard in August 1963 and reviewed in Audio of October 1963, and both would be compatible with High Fidelity’s claim of a recording made in the summer of 1963, but then an ad for Acoustic Research published in High Fidelity of February 1963 referred to the same work, mentioning that the Fine Arts Quartet had “just finished recording” it. So: February, July, I don’t know…
I have little indication for the early and middle quartets, whether they were also recorded in the summer of 1963 or later. They were released later (Middle Quartets on SP 506/3 at the end of 1965, Early Quartets on SP 507/3 at the end of 1967), but it doesn’t mean, of course, that they were recorded that late; they might have been left in the can for some years. In its review of the Early Quartets, High Fidelity (May 1968) wrote “These versions of the D major and C minor Quartets may well be the same performances that have been available on a single disc since about 1960 (at which time the violist was Irving Ilmer whose place has since been taken by Gerald Stanick)”. That single disc was CS 210, listed in The Billboard of March 2, 1959.
That’s the best I can come up with. Apparently the present members of the FAQ don’t know, I’ve asked them, they are very welcoming, but they don’t have the archives of the early ensemble. As I write in my discography of Concert Disc, “The records and archive of the Fine Arts Quartet are held at the University of Wisconsin, and that is certainly where lies the answers to all these questions, but Wisconsin is just a little too far from where I live for me to go and check…”
BTW it’s the New York Woodwind Quintet, not NY Wind Soloists. You may be confusing with the ensemble called the London Wind Soloists (with Jack Brymer as clarinetist).
We are all in your debt for the compressive research into these recording masterpieces. I purchased most of the Krips/Beethoven symphonies from HD Tracks. The 1, 8, and 9th before HD Tracks updated their website this month (May 2020). They came with PDF liner notes. The rest, with the exception of 2 and 4 that I have yet to purchase do not seem to have liner notes – it looks like 2 and 4 are also missing liner notes. Even 1, 8, and 9 do not seem to have liner notes on the new web site. I pointed this out to them and got the usual reply – we put up what we get. I sent them the PDFs I got from their site before the change and the reply was that they were very busy. A bit disappointing, particularly so since the liner notes I have provide a listing of Everest Recordings.
Can anyone help me with access to the web site the liner notes point to and referenced here:
It requires login credentials but does not allow for the account set up.
Thanks from a Chinese music lover. I have recently been interested in Everest’s records, but due to the lack of record introduction information on the Internet, I wanted to collect this series of records and couldn’t start. It’s very amazing. I found this article today. The earth helped me. thank you very much! !
Thanks ! Great to hear from you, and very pleased that my Everest discography was helpful. Take care!
The rules of Everest collecting are quite simple
Original Vinyl – only First Edition or Second Edition pressings indicated by the blue/silver dowel or purple/cream mountain. The blue/silver dowel LPs had thick cardboard covers with a silver coated backing. Some of the earliest issues from the 1958-59 era have a card insert. Mint or near mint copies are extremely rare but still possible to find from record collections in estates that find their way onto Ebay. Some of my Ebay purchases came from avid collectors at the time, from radio station libraries or record industry professionals personal collections. I have about ten of these in particular which are “as new” being coated by the original purchase in a special oil (which must have been a fad at the time) making them a bit slippery to handle but offering near perfect noiseless playback. This owner also inserted detailed listening comparison notes with rival recordings from Capitol and RCA. I also was lucky to obtain a few LPs from a record shop premises in New York which had a time warp batch of LPs NOS! Realistically, any LPs you acquire now are going to have various levels of surface noise and occasional clicks. Add to that some of the titles suffered from pretty average pressings. Because of these factors the Light or Easy Listening Everest catalogue often gives more enjoyable and impressive playback than the classical releases due to the nature of the music.
Do not touch any of the Wilshire Boulevard Hollywood 1963-1980 reissues which are easy to spot. NEVER purchase an Everest LP without seeing the actual record label to ID and verify the above.
CLASSIC RECORDS VINYL REISSUES – fantastic and pure analogue. Some remastered to 45rpm over two discs. Acoustic Sounds USA distributes and sells these. A while back some of the creme de la creme test pressings became available for silly money out of private collections. However great the sound, the thrill factor is missing though that you get with the vintage real thing!
CDs – I still think the 1990s Vanguard/Omega series of 20 BIT SBM (Sony technical support) remasterings of most if not all the classical catalogue including the half inch tape recordings (which sound just as impressive as the 35mm recordings) is the best to for. Detailed warm sound that preserves sime of the timing and scale of the original records. Because the current Japanese SACD and later Classic Records DVDAUDIO remasterings only dealt with the 35mm releases, the Vanguard/Omega is the ONLY series of digital reissues to do justice to the superb half inch tape Everest recordings.
MY FAVOURITES/Suggested starting points:
Stravinsky – Symphony in Three Movements, Ebony Concerto (all versions! the original album cover artwork by Alex Steinweiss is amazing)
Kachaturian – Gayne Suite (still the best version in the catalogue) awesome
Copland – Appalachian Spring – ttemendius interpretation by Susskind and the LSO alsi offered by Vanguard in a super Hi Fi three channel SACD. After the first tranche of remasterings to DVD, Seymour Solomon of Vanguard as a labour of love planned to reissue the entire classical catalogue to SACD but only got as far as this single SACD release (plus the Antheil Corrobee SACD?) due to financial and health reasons. This is my single most prized Everest recording/reissue. The Bert Whyte sound values plus the quality of the performance embody the spirit of Everest even in 1959 in Ampex three channel half inch tape just prior to the move to 35mm recording in the same year.
Rachmaninov – Symphonic Dances (as above for the Copland, superb performance by too notch LSO and full scale orchestral concert hall sound) This version plus the slightly later 1960s iconic Vanguard Johanos version with the Dallas Symphony also available in CD, SACD and remastered vinyl, are indispensable collector’s items.
I plan to collect the Omega’s CD reissues (1994-1997) series described in this article. I have made a catalogue and currently have 13 albums. Whether in Discogs and musicMagpie, or in Amazon and Ebay, the series of records are hard to find and the prices are high. I hope I will be lucky enough. thank you for your reply.
Good luck! yes they’ve become relatively rare and pricey, at least some of them. Trust my own experience: it takes patience, and you’ve got to believe that you are going to live 200 years! Also, one essential tip: for your online searches and locating the CDs on the various commercial websites, USE THE BARCODES (I provide them in the discography). Amazon especially is such a mess – wrong entries, faulty and misleading information, wrong or non-existent cover photos, DO NOT TRUST THEM – that only the barcodes will lead you for sure to the correct entries. Just copy from the discography and paste directly in the search bar.
Sometimes, on Amazon, searching on a barcode won’t yield, although the CD is listed; that’s usually because it is not being currently offered, and it is one more of those stupid features introduced by Amazon some years ago in their determined and continued effort to make their website worse. There is a workaround but it is a little complicated : using your seller account (but you need to establish one) and search through the “add a new product” searchbar. Another workaround is to go on another Amazon, say .fr or .co.uk or .co.jp (or .com if you are initially on one of these other Aamazons), find the CD there (hoping it yields) and then, directly in the adressbar, changing the local suffix to the one of the Amazon in which you are searching for the CDs entry. Hope all this helps!
Thank you for your suggestion
I can certainly confirm how poor the quality of the later Everest pressings were. I bought the Krips/Beethoven 9th before being aware of this. One source that has not been mentioned yet is that all 9 of the Krips/Beethoven cycle are now available in 192/24 download format. They are just stunning. So if you don’t have to have the LP, these sound spectacular. In terms of the reissues of the Everest Recordings, these are also quite spectacular. I have several.
Thanks for your post JonS. Not that I want to throw laurels at myself, but I DO mention in my discography the “High-Resolution downloads and on-demand CD-Rs from Countdown Media”, including the Beethoven Krips recordings. They are available from HD-tracks, among others. Are these what you refer to when mentioning 192/24 download format, or is it yet something else?
By the way I chanced some months ago on eBay on another CD edition of Krips’ Beethoven Symphonies which I hadn’t been aware of (and didn’t mention in the discography), 5 CD-set Fat Boy FATCD 420 (1994) barcode 5026310442021. I bought it, just to see (I already have, of course, Omega’s classic and prized CD reissue), but it’s still in one of those piling packages of CDs that I haven’t yet opened, so I cannot pronounce on the sonic value of it and decide if it deserves inclusion in the discography. A label name like “Fat Boy” doesn’t augur well, but let’s wait and see/hear…
I think you are right. I had commented before on the downloads, but it was not able to get all 192/24s for a bit. I have found different sites have different resolutions available and sometimes different/no documentation.
What I also wanted to do is highly commend the 35mm reissues on vinyl, not just of Everest but on a variety of labels. They are wonderful. For example the Mercury release from the 35mm original of Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 3 With the LSO and Byron Janis.
I have the Madacy Beethoven 9 Symphony Krips CD set. I long ago played the Bescol issue enough to quickly hear its poorness. Have you listened to the Fat Boy FATCD 420 yet, and where does it place in the budget group for Beethoven Symphonies London Symphony + J. Krips?
Hi John, thanks for your inquiry. I’m afraid I haven’t made much progress with opening and sorting out my boxes full of CDs, althouugh, since my additional commment about the Fat Boy release, I did acquire the Tin Can edition of Krips’ Beethoven – but haven’t yet compared it to Omega’s Everest CD release. But hopefully your friendly “reminder” will prompt me to open up the relevant box (eBay purchases of February 2021!) and come back with a response to your question. Thanks for your patience. Discophage
Hi out there to all Everest lovers and Harry Belock admirers!
Sadly the “Tin Box” Beethoven CD boxset by Bescol is as atrocious as the Dutch Arkiv series of very poor quality digital releases.
(I use the atractive tin box to store pins)
Mysteriously, although these were 35mm recordings, Classic Records never digitised the Beethoven Symphonies in their series of DVD-A Everest releases in the 1990s with Bernie Grundman though they did release a magnificent 180gm Clarity vinyl boxset of 12 LPs plus facsimile booklet in a cloth linen box. This is about as close to audiophile heaven as possible. The box also contains the Egmont Overture mastered at 45rpm as a bonus.
In the digital arena, the Vanguard/Omega complete boxset (available on single CDs also) which is lovingly and impressively remastered by Sony to 20Bit SBM remains the first choice you will have to set aside about 150$ or more to get it.
The recent arrival of King Records Japan SACDs newly remastered I haven’t heard but they seem to be a very over priced way into collecting these recordings. It seems ALL the classic remasterings to SACD are coming from Japan including the Karajan symphony cycles especially the 1960s Beethoven and Sibelius references.
All the above are taken directly from the analog masters and have been immaculately done.
The Classic Records vinyl releases are authentic in the sense the electronics chain is entirely analog tube based and the final product, the LP, is modern state of the art vinyl of a quality unavailable at the time of the original releases. The valuable album liner notes and art work is also preserved – Alex Steinweiss who did a lot of work for Everest was the inventor of the modern LP album cover. Nothing can beat that!
Seymour Solomon President of Vanguard Records who was the inspiration behind the Vanguard series of CD releases did aim to redo the Everest Collection onto SACD in the 2000s but the collapse of Vanguard and health problems stopped this project after one SACD was produced: Copland’s Appalachian Spring etc. This is a fabulous performance and sound recording well worth the 100$ it currently commands – being very rare…. if you can find it!
Happy listening and collecting.
Hi lovers of Everest Records and, incidentally, of Joseph Krips’ complete Beethoven. This is a follow up to John Bar’s request and a response to David Murphy’s post. I was puzzled by David’s claim that the Tin Can edition “by Bescol is as atrocious as the Dutch Arkiv series of very poor quality digital releases.” I held it from Lutz Rippe, responsible for the HD reissuues of Everest material under the auspices of Countdown Media that can be found on dowload from HDTracks, that he was responsible for those remasterings. So not Bescol, but Madacy Entertainment / Countdown Media – which in turn would suggest much better sound than David says he hears.
So then, following John’s friendly prompting and David’s puzzling remark, I went to rummmage through my boxes of CDs and pulled out the Fat Boy release (copyright 1993 for the individual CDs, 1994 for the set, which makes it contemporary with the Seympour Solomon Omega Everest reissue). I had (and still have) the intention of doing a sonic comparison of chosen tracks from each symphony, but I’ve started with the first movement of the first symphony, and I just couldn’t wait to post the verdict.
The Fat Boy release is indeed, sonically, atrociously cavernous and sounds like it could come from Bescol. Avoid. Other than that, it is a cheap reissue anyway, just cardboard casing and five individual CDs, no liner notes, no recording dates or other info, just the obviously deceitful claim that “this recording has been digitally transferred onto Compact Disc to obtain the best possible reproduction from the original master”, and the indication that “the copyright in this sound recording is owned by TKO Records Ltd and licensed to Fat Boy Ltd (UK)”. Does anybody know who or what that TKO Records might be?
Other than its very original casing (not just the tin can, but the boxing inside, a 5-panel opening jewel tray), the Tin Box Madacy edition would also appear like a cheap reissue: for liner notes, a general blurb about Beethoven that could have been generated by ChatGPT if it had existed at the time, no info other than track listings and Krips London Symphony Orchestra, nothing even printed on each individual CD other than Disc number. It looks like an edition they’d sell, maybe not in a supermarket, but at Barnes & Noble’s bookstore, on Christmas.
That said – and that is the important info – based on the first movement on Symphony No. 1, the transfer seems to me exactly the same as on Solomon’s Everest remastering. I don’t know if Lutz Rippe remastered the 35mm sources as he claims he did, but if he did, it produced no sonic improvement that I can ear over Solomon’s remastering.
Maybe more acute ears than mine, on more sophisticated sound systems, would perceive greater sonic differences. But to me the bottom line is that, if I didn’t have Solomon’s set, or it sold significantly more expensive than the Tin Can release, I’d be happy with the latter. I’ll try and come back ASAP to this thread when I’ve been able to sample more of the set for comparison – and will probably develop it to a blog post, where I can add photos and maybe sound samples.
Hi Discophage, I think the crucial listening test comparison is between the 1990s Seymour Solomon Vanguard/Omega digitally remastered by Sony to 20bit SBM CD versus the new King Records Japan SACDs. In my experience SACD isn’t necessarily “better” in terms of listening satisfaction. Some DSD transfers sound distinctly dull and lifeless (I’m thinking of the Esoteric releases) compared to their earlier CD counterparts. It’s all subjective at the end of the day and sometimes comparison can hinder the main point of listening which is enjoyment. As I have no interest in spending another fortune on acquiring the King SACDs I’ll leave that to someone else! Just a quick note on the original production of these recordings…. I’m guessing (educated guessing?) this Krips Beethoven cycle was captured towards the end of the Belock era of Everest in 1960 and never saw the light of day as a quality release before Everest was transferred to Bernie Solomon’s Hollywood budget operation in Wilshire Boulevard (see Giveon Cornfeld’s book). Also these don’t seem to have been recorded by Bert Whyte. The recorded sound quality and stereo soundstage is distinctly different – somewhat flatter with less depth – from the initial orchestral recordings such as Rachmaninov, Stravinsky etc. by the same orchestra in the same venue. It’s a mystery to me why the 1990s Classic Records DVD-Audio set of Everest 35mm albums did not include the Beethoven Symphonies as they did release a Clarity Vinyl 180gm boxset so copyright could not have been an issue. These Bernie Grundman remasterings are superb once you get past the initial “run in” of a few seconds of wow and flutter caused by stretch on the original magnetic film masters on some of them. The Chopin/Prokofiev selections from Stokowski seem to be the worst of these. I am very happy with these DVD-As as a supplement to the Omega Everest CD Collection. But I wouldn’t say that the DVD-A sound quality is enormously better than CD as achieved by the SBM process from Sony. The DVD-As and no doubt the Sacds come with a barrage of technical info and extravagant claims forgetting that we all occupy individual domestic living situations which compromise to a greater or lesser extent our similarly individual expectations as to what pleases us. Cheers! David
PS I look forward to posts comparing the King SACDs with the Omega Cds or Classic DVD-As.
Hi John and all, I’ve now posted a comparative survey of the sonics of all three editions, Everest, Fat Boy and Tin Can.
Hi JonS, from famine to feast! I had to separate two key Beethoven releases under the Bernie Solomon Hollywood Wilshire Boulevard which became confused in my mind as follows:
# the Fine Arts complete Beethoven String Quartets despite their superb sound quality were not 35mm or anything to do with Everest technicians but a commercial tie up with the Fine Arts Quartet and their label Concert Discs which Everest acquired around the time of the transfer of the company’s brand name and catalogue. As a complete boxset of LPs it first appeared under the Everest label but in extremely poor pressings far below anything acceptable even at a budget level. These superb performances have now been fully restored from the original master tapes during the Vanguard/Omega 20 Bit SBM releases supervised by Seymour Solomon and Sony presumably because they form part of the Everest copyright. It is strange that both Classic Records and King Records have ignored not only these but the entire half inch tape recordings in favour of only giving the 35mm items the full SACD/DVDAUDIO treatment. There are some choice standard Ampex items which really showcase the “Everest Sound” which can be either close up, dry and precise or full concert hall in orchestral works. Classic Records did reissue the fabulous Stokowski Richard Strauss Dance of the Seven Veils on 180gm vinyl however.
# as for the Krips complete cycle of Beethoven Symphonies, which like the Quartets only saw the light of day as poor quality budget LPs, we really are spoilt for choice now. Vanguard/Omega of course were first there with very likeable warm transfers employing 20 Bit SBM technology supervised by Sony themselves and refurbished 35mm playback machines. It was reported then that the 35mm masters were in good condition having been seldom used, if only the once or twice, to make the two track dubbed stereo tapes from which all subsequent LPs were pressed, and had been stored safely if at risk in Bernie Solomon’s Los Angeles garage since the 1960s.
Then there is the Classic Records period (now under Acoustic Sounds USA) “which was really into high quality pure analogue vinyl reissues. Unsurprisingly they remastered the complete Beethoven Symphony cycle using restored Westrex 35mm machine supervised by the legendary Hollywood audio engineer Bernie Grundman and reissued on 180gm vinyl in a boxset of 9 LPs plus a bonus 45rpm LP of the Corolian Overture which to my knowledge was never released. The actual box is old school cream linencloth with a facsimile reprinted booklet. So if you are into vinyl LOOK OUT FOR THAT. I managed to purchase one on Ebay from a Californian dealer several years ago.
Now of course we have the full digital transfers to SACD by King Records of Japan utilising the latest in rebuilt 35mm equipment which has been improved over the years in the vast undertaking to digitise cinematic 35mm materials for film archiving purposes. These seem to be very expensive and I haven’t personally listened to any of them but guess they are step forward from the Omega 20 BIT CDs which I have as well as the Classic Records LPs. But here’s the thing. From my personal listening these aren’t the very best recordings that Everest did. The sound quality doesn’t thrill – as for example in many of the other releases, the Stokowski Wagner and Tchaikovsky, the Milhaud, the Goossens Rachmaninov and Stravinsky (apart from the Rite which is dull) the Fistoulari Gayne, Susskind Appalachin Spring, Gershwin Rhapsody in Blue (superb pianism) etc. So I’m quite content missing out on the King discs in Beethoven in order to focus on the Bert Whyte engineered and other earlier recordings. The great shame as I see it is the complete disparu of the easy listening popular side to Everest’s catalogue into cheap CDRs produced under the banner of Essential Media on Amazon based on transfers from actual vintage vinyl with no madtertapes seeming to be involved! This is going back to the Bernie Solomon days of cheap and cheerful – which in perfomance and artistic terms Belock’s Everest NEVER was. Thankfully a good clutch of the Jazz greats and the glorious Gloria Lynne (Miss New York!) have been given the top notch transfers and remastering they deserve in CD reissues. But most if not all of the popular releases are probably deemed and therefore destined to be not commercially viable for such tteatment. That’s a great shame because they complete the full picture of the history of Everest and probably explain why the company failed financially as every Record Label required a few best selling pop stars to support its more serious or classical releases. Apart from Gloria Lynne, Everest failed to breakthrough to healthy sales.
thank you David for these invaluable comments and additions to my discography
Thanks. Just as a footnote Discophage, seek out the memoirs of Giveon Cornfield, record producer, “Note-Perfect” Thirty Years in Classical Music. Working for a few years in Hollywood for Bernie Solomon and his various musical projects and dealings under the “Everest Banner” much of which was less to do with artistic values and more cncerned with sales. Solomon comes across as a rather mean and sharp operator on the Hollywood scene. Cornfeld himself did score a limited number of valuable releases however in the field of chamber music through his prior contacts all recorded and produced under somewhat amateur back room conditions compared with the state of the art high end studios elsewhere. I have a great love of the Gregg Smith Singers and their wide ranging often pioneering and adventurous discography. The three 1966 Everest Gregg Smith Singers releases (including Brahms Part Songs, Schoenberg) of which the “An American Triptych – Barber, Ives and Schuman” album with Henry Miller art work (yes HE, hence your comments on Solomon the art collector, tax angle?) is stunning, are not licensed recordings but actual Cornfield/Everest productions. Needkess to say Cornfeld couldn’t stand Solomon and left under a cloud.
* Note Perfect, Chaminade University Press, Honolulu, Hawaii, 1993
Library of Congress Catalog No 92-75659
Wow… I was not aware of the reissue on 180 gram vinyl. I have not seen that anywhere. I assume you mean this is a reissue of the Krips recordings. If so, I think my next vinyl purchase of the Beethoven symphonies will be the reissue of the 1963 HVK recordings which I find to be a bit ‘fuller’ than the Krips versions.
yes, I concur and am a bit perplexed too. Aren’t those Beethoven LPs in fact the 200g LPs that I list as
“AEVC 3065QCV (10 LPs, bonus 45rmp disc) Beethoven Krips
Although this one is no longer available from Acoustic Sounds, they confirm that, unlike the dual DVD-CD version, this set HAS actually been released”
I hold it from Steve Hoffman that only six 180g LPs were released by Compact Classics, and that didn’t include the Beethoven symphonies. Allow me to quote myself again:
“In the very years when Solomon was reissuing the Everest catalog, between 1994 and 1997, sound engineer and restorer Steve Hoffman published six Everest recordings on 180g LPs on the audiophile and now defunct Compact Classics label. In a private correspondence Steve gave me a few details about the sources he worked from…”
NOT TO BE CONFUSED with Classic Records, who around 2006 issued a number of Everest recordings including the Krips Beethoven set on 200g LPs, and I think that is what you are referring to:
“Classic Records’ main focus was in fact high-quality LPs, and they also released those recordings on 200g vinyl LPs.”
In all honesty, I’m not at all into audiophile LPs, so the importance of a 20g difference eludes me, but Classic Records and their current owner Acoustic Sounds marketed those as 200g LPs. Here is again the link provided in my main article, to more background on Classic Records:
If you are after the 1960s Karajan boxset in either the recent deluxe 180gm reissue or used original first edition boxset then I recommend the seller pureanalogsound on Ebay. Look at item 284013670481 to wet your appetite. I wouldn’t go overboard on the Karajan set however – it’s very much of its time. I think Krips is more laid back but the sound more warm and inviting. It’s a set you can live with. For more driven playing I’d try the later East German equivalent from Kegel on Eterna VEB a DMM mastered digital recording. It is a really strong sound and performances.
When I criticised the Everest Beethoven sound it was just by comparison with the earlier Belock recordings, it is still excellent and I bet the King SACDs sound fabulous.
Thank you for your comments.
I looked at the posting on eBay and that seems different that what I was looking at. The one on eBay you point to has a different cover and claims to be one of 600. There are several I am tracking that claim to be one of 1200. If you look at the DGG site it shows they are available for a silly price so it must be a mistake:
I think I can get a factory sealed version for about $325, but I have just not been able to make myself spend that kind of money for this. It claims to be made from ATP Master files. Does anyone know what these are?
As I mentioned, I have all the Beethoven/Krips Symphonies in 192/24 (and on LP of the later Everest pressing of the 9th). I don’t disagree with how good Krips is, but I found, especially on the 7th which is among my favorites, that Krips was a bit light for me on the horns. I many Karajan performance, I have found him to be more forward which I like.
Totally agree with you on Krips v. Karajan. I actually prefer Nos 1, 2, 4, 6, and 8 and for the dynamic symphonies tend to gravitate away from Krips. You should read what some of the stuffy British music critics said about Karajan at the time as they were brought up on “polite” Beethoven and used to the Krips style especially in No 5.. There was a barely concealed resentment in the British music world about the DGG Karajan/Beethoven project from the start with Decca doubting it could ever be financially viable – in fact it flew off the shelves and pre orders of the complete boxset were sold out in Germany and it has never been out of the catalogue. I have all the Karajan DGG cycles on CD and must say find that the 1977 version suits me in terms of sound quality but still go back to the 1960s for the magnificent sweep of the playing.
I would seriously consider a first edition boxset in mint condition over the 180gm reissue as a long term investment and because in my view you can never beat the original. DG German pressings at that time were very very good. Keep looking at the German record shops such as pureanalog in Englesbrand or Berlin, you may get in touch with pureanalog about a first edition set or the reissues as he is very helpful if a bit full price!
Just got out the Krips Classic Records Beethoven boxset. It’s still completely sealed unopened. I don’t dare break the seal. It is 200gm as Discophage says not 180gm on Clarity SV-P II (super vinyl profile II) which I believe entails a very slight concavity in the surface of the disc to aid tracking in the difficult last part of the playing area. 24 page Original Booklet and 45 single sided Bonus Disc of Egmont Overture included. All tube citting system from 35mm masters.
When I corresponded with the guy in charge of the Everest releases at Countdown Media they were quite sniffy about their earlier licensing to Classic Records citing wow and flutter issues etc but I suppose that’s mainly because they were onto the next big thing which was King Records in Japan. It’s all commercial at the end of the day. I got this boxset from a dealer in California, presumably just down the road from where they were manufactured, along with a few of the other Classic Records Everest vinyl reissues. They all arrived safely to the UK but a subsequent order went missing in the post and I got frightened off. I am trying to remember his exact name on Ebay, it began with a “P” possillipo or something like that. I’ll look it up as if anybody will have a Krips boxset for sale it will be HIM!*
The Classic Records DVD-A discs are generally superb it’s a shame they didn’t do the Beethoven symphonies.
*positotos based in Los Angeles
He has this
and a few nice items available at really good prices.
Thanks for all this info David. You make me regret that I don’t do LPs anymore!
Hi, if you want to delete this or move it, I understand as this is not about Everest. I have been looking for the HVK 1963 Beethoven Symphony Cycle recordings and people on this site seem more knowledgeable than other places I have looked. There was a 2016 release as a boxed set and a 2018 release as well. The 2018 is referenced here on Discogs:
Here is a pointer to a 2016 set for sale on Discogs:
The question/issue is that while I am pretty sure Optimal did the pressing for the 2018 version, I am not sure about the 2016 set. The 2016 set shows a digital download code which implies that the material was converted to digital form for the release. I don’t see this for the 2018 release. Can anyone help me with this. BTW, I am happy to take this off line if Discophage wants us to. I can provide an email address if desired.
Not at all! You are welcome.
Thank you David. I really appreciate the feedback. I started back into vinyl about 3 months ago. Perhaps the worst timing possible. 95% or more of the classical new recordings — including a lot of the 35mm ones from Everest, Mercury, and I think Command Classics, are all out stock awaiting repressing. This is largely due to the virus. Even those that are not from 35mm masters are largely out of stock. I have been trying Discogs and Ebay with very mixed results. One of the things I am learning is the great variability in quality even within a label. My latest frustration is with a factory sealed original box set of concertos (does not include the triple which I say counts) made by DGG for the Beethoven Centennial. The set I have was made in the US and they are crap, even after extensive VPI cleaning. On the other hand I have purchase some other DGG factory sealed items recently that are just wonderful in terms of pressing quality – e.g., the Zuckerman/Barenboim Beethoven Violin Concerto (2530 903).
I put all this in so Discophage does not feel so bad about not doing LPs anymore. That said, when they are good, they are really good 🙂
Yes JonS record collecting involves a LOT of expensive mistakes. It’s probably safe to say that its best to stay in the fifties and sixties, perhaps up to the early 1970s when studios were perfecting the solid state electronics and vinyl quality wasn’t thin. Even so there are a lot of poor quality Westminster and RCA releases just as an example. I always thought original CBS records were rough across the board but some of the remastered repressed albums, such as the Stern/Rose/Istomin Schubert Trios fantastic! The DGG Amadeus Mozart Quartets in stereo single albums, not the boxsets, are superb. Anything pressed in England, DGG had an aweful plant in London which was terribly shoddy, apart from Decca or the early EMI Hayes pressings to be avoided. For Philips – Holland pressings only. How people bought the Vox label originally I don’t know, but the German company FSM – back in the 80s and 90s before any of the current fashion for overpriced reissues with all the jargon – reissued a few Vox recordings from the mastertapes on super high quality vinyl (eg the Gyorgy Sandor Prokofiev Piano Sonatas) and if you see FSM on a record its a guarantee of quality. If you have a half decent audio system and you play a great record involving string or woodwind instruments and then compare its CD or SACD equivalent then yoy are immediately struck with the lack of harmonics and sheer life in the digital version. Some great records have the further trick of convincing timing – just compare the vinyl and digital versions of Sargent’s Karelia Suite! How or why that is I don’t know. Elisabeth Schwarzkopf said if you want to hear my singing go to the long playing records.
David, I agree. I have what I would say is a much better than average system and the difference is clear. It is also true that some of the high resolution releases coming out are quite excellent – we talked about the Everest/Krips/Beethoven for example. I am going to shift from box sets which are hard to find to individual recordings. The only exception is for the 1963/Beethoven/Karajan set. :-).
Wasn’t the 1963 Karajan cycle only first issued as a boxset to subscribers? It was a clever way to finance the project? I would definitely look for ED 1 boxsets which do come up for sale in near mint condition and focus on German sellers on Ebay of which there are a few. I can only recommend pureanalog of Engelsbrand he will be quite helpful on the different versions of these early boxsets to go for. I don’t want to sound facetious about modern trends in classical music which have mostly turned me away from radio and the “critics” – ugly unsubtle singing and so called authentic period performance – but luckily the great orchestras and conductors of the world are unassailable in Beethoven’s music. Every year I just immerse myself for a week or two in the symphonies and perhaps one or two other works – as you mentioned the Triple Concerto for example – listening to Karajan, Kegel, Krips or Haitink plus a few others like Bohm or Scherchen(in the Pastoral!) and there is a dignity about vinyl which does justice to the music… like a Japanese tea making ceremony a sort of ritual. Why not? Listening to music should be like that sometimes. If you was going to a concert with a great artist, say a Michelangeli or a Fischer Dieskau creating great music in front of view you would show a certain amount of respect. Sometimes playing vinyl delivers a bit of that experience though it would be a pain to only have that without the everyday convenience of CDs. Downloads I don’t go there, that’s the pits!
I don’t know about the original HVK boxset. The one that I have been talking about is in a couple versions. Here is a link to the discogs page of the release I am interested in. I believe it came out just a couple years ago:
The other comment is about downloads. Let me be precise about what I am talking about. These are releases in at least 96/24 and up and any DSD versions. I am a special fan of High Definition Tape Transfers (https://www.highdeftapetransfers.com/). I have found these to be much more satisfying than CDs. Also very convenient 🙂
One more update. There was also apparently a release around 2006/7 that should be good. I don’t understand why the labels produce so few, they sell out every time (or at least DGG/HVK releases). They also charge a lot for them 🙂
Not that it’s relevant to this discussion around Everest but for the pleasure of exchanging: in fact, I lied: I still buy and listen to LPs – very occasionally. It happens when I chance upon a recording of stuff that I’m currently listening to, and that has not been reissued to CD. They are NOT usually of Hi-Fi quality, and have been some times very low-fi! In order not to encumber this thread with considerations that do not pertain directly to it, I’ve started sketching a list under a blog post of today.
I don’t want to take us off on a tangent too far either. I would be interested to know about purchases of new pressings of old recordings (which most of the new pressings seem to be). A high percentage of these are available in a variety of formats. I buy them when they are not available, or when I am looking for that something extra I find from time to time on vinyl. We may have to wait a bit until the pressing factories get back in business before there is a critical mass of material available.
The first consideration it seems to me is
# has the vinyl reissue been created from the original master tapes?
# or has it been created from digital transfers, presumably the HD copies in the archive, but nevertheless digital?
There seems to be no industry standard about disclosing this information on the product and even shops and sellers can’t answer that question if you ask. Some companies like Classic Records use this as a selling point and proudly advertise “all analog” etc. I am not sure about Speakers Corner reissues.
Inevitably it seems to me that remastering involves remixing and an alteration of the sound. The Japanese Yoshio Okazaki CD reissues of EMI classics such as Klemperer’s Mozart, Brahms and Beethoven sound significantly fresher, clearer and more involving than their previous UK or European editions. They are a revelation – what the Japanese SACDs sound like I don’t know simply because of the huge price. The Esoteric SACDs I have dug deep into my pocket for, have been underwhelming to say the least, they actually have less life and attack in the sound, a bit pale and thin. Disappointing. Then you take some of the Classic Records DVD-As such as the Spikakovsky Sibelius and Tchaikovsky Violin Concertos and the performance just jumps out of the speakers and you feel you are “there”! Or the Vanguard/Omega SACD of Copland’s Appalachian Spring * which is incredible – and that’s not a 35mm recording but a three track 1/2 inch tape. Seems to me it’s all hit and miss.
* If there was one Everest digital transfer that is essential it’s the Susskind Copland plus the Fistoulari Gayne Suite in DVD-Audio for sheer excitement.
In terms of record collecting now, because so many LPs were manufactured during the golden era and there were many serious collectors at the time because a record cost a fair chunk of money they were scrupulously cared for, original LPs in mint to near mint condition – cover and vinyl – do crop up regularly though you may have to be patient and do some research. Apart from pureanalog and other German dealers there’s a seller in Poland “miroslav” who I have bought from and is very good.
As a purist I just don’t get the same thrill from reissues.
Thank you David. There are so many factors. Through experience I am gaining, I have begun to formulate rules about what to buy and not to buy. I have had bad luck all around with RCA, to the extent I just passed on a factory sealed record of Heifetz playing the Beethoven Violin Concerto. It was released in 1958. I am also now excluding most US pressings when I can determine the LP was pressed in the US. One bright exception is Columbia Masterworks, while not as good as some, they have pretty good quality and some very interesting performances. I just picked up a 3 LP set on Columbia Master Works that was a Demo. It is with George Szell and the Cleveland Orchestra and is called “Completely Mozart”. The Sinfonia Concertante K. 364 is the most interesting I have ever heard. It must have something to do with the specific instruments – a very ‘warm’ sound that I like (Columbia D3M 33261).
In terms of what I will buy, pretty much anything from DGG. I even have a digital recording of Te Deum by Berlioz that is better than the CDs I have. This is the Abbado recording that is well regarded. I also like the Dutch Phillips LPs and had a lot that I got rid of 40 years ago, much to my regret today. I have not found any yet but would buy those in heart beat. For new material, Speakers Corner, and things I can reliably source to one of the four great pressing plants that still exist (e.g, Optimal) I am comfortable with them, but they are pretty pricey.
All that said, I am not a slave to sonic quality alone, I would love to get any stereophonic recordings available of Fritz Kreisler. I like Heifetz, but Kreisler warms the heart 🙂
Record collecting is a very individual thibg and one can swap stories and tips about it endessly. I used to go to one of the last great record shops in London (like Charles Moore nr Carnaby Street) Gramex of Waterloo (Lower Marsh) now sadly closed. The owner there, Roger Hewlett was an ex employee of EMG Soho, the premier gramophone exchange in London and his thing was 78s and obviously vocal music. He once bid against Paul Getty Junior for a 78rpm collection back in the days for about £6k. He still did LPs in the basement and the young colleague in charge said his experience of going out in the van and making offers and picking up, the record collection was often the last thing, and the most heart breaking, to be sold by the kids when a parent died.
I totally concur about Kreisler. (why do you think 78s are so precious?) the Kreisler cadenza in the Brahms Violin Concerto as played by Ferras/Karajan will bring a lump to your throat. As you go for HvK put that LP on your list!!!!!
Brahms, Christian Ferras/Karajan BPO DG absolute magic plus the Sibelius symphonies especially No 5 on DG.
Dutch pressed Philips LPs, the earlier the better, shouldn’t be overlooked. Much of C20 audio technology was invented or refined by them.
Hi, found this
on Ebay. You could ask for a play grade just to be sure. I’ve had a few of the Club Edition records from Germany and the quality is the same as rest of DG.