Jack White’s Third Man Records is working with John Fahey’s Revenant Records to release an archival titled The Rise and Fall of Paramount Records, Volume One (1917-27).
Paramount Records was opened in 1917 by the Wisconsin Chair Company and had an open-door policy. According to Rolling Stone, The label pressed and shipped 78-RPM records from pretty much anyone who would pay them to do so. Artists who worked with Paramount include Louis Armstrong, Ma Rainey, Jelly Roll Morton, Blind Lemon Jefferson, King Oliver, Ethel Waters and Fletcher Henderson. There is no official, complete catalog from the label, due to lack of preservation. This is why Revenant Records and Third Man Records have decided to team up to release an archival catalog, which will drop on October 29 on Third Man Records and worldwide on November 19.
This first volume features 800 songs, 200 restored images and ads, two books and six 180-gram vinyl LPs and will come in an oak case like the ones that carried phonographs in the 1920s. It took 30 to 50 people to put it all together, including artists, writers, historians and record collectors. The collection will be the first release from Revenant Records in a decade.
Third Man Records has been busy in 2013, with the release of The Melvins’ live performance in the Blue Room, a platinum package featuring Willie Nelson’s 80th birthday celebration, live records for three bands in June and more. It’s likely that 2014 will be no different, with The Rise and Fall of Paramount Records, Volume Two set to be released in November of next year.