The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #168926 Message #4080960
Posted By: GUEST,Phil d'Conch
25-Nov-20 - 07:58 PM
Thread Name: Stinson Records Revisted
Subject: RE: Stinson Records Revisted
“Because of the 5 percent return priviledge, that was supposed to enable you to get rid of your rotten tomato records, and send them back to the company. So there were guys, like Charlie Stinson who later put out Stinson Records. Charles Stinson used to warehouse records and go around the country buying up stock from dealers that were quitting the record business. Of course, the record business when radios came in had dipped, and furniture dealers and people like that who had record departments, were tickled to death to sell to him the records for a penny ot two apiece and let him cart them out of the place. So he would warehouse all the standard brand records… Not numerically; he would just have them on the shelves. When it came time, every six months you had this 5 percent priviledge – he would come around and say”How many records do you need?” I'd sayy, “Well, this year I can use 200.” But I would keep the records that I didn't want to send back for credit because I thought someone might buy them later. He would buy them for a penny or two apiece, and sell them to dealers for a nickle.
So I went down to his place and told him, “Charlie, I'll pay you a dime a record, but I don't want you to dump off 200 records.” Now, when it was time for the return priviledge… Let's say it happened in January and in August. He was just collecting records the rest of the time, putting them in inventory. So I'd say, “Rather than go to Salvation Army for used records I'll go to you and let me pick what I want. You'll never miss them. The dealers you schlock your records to wouldn't care.” And I'd say, I'll pay you a dime a record...” And they were clean records.
So I'd cherrypick them for twice as much as he got from others. So he was crazy about me! And I got a lot of great cutout jazz records that way. So because of my relationship with Charlie Stinson, when Columbia dumped… When CBS bought Columbia, and they dumped the old Okeh inventory they had up in the Bridgeport factory, the first guy he called was me. He said, “Milt do you want to go up and cherrypick the stuff in Bridgeport?” I said, “Absolutely!”
[Reading Jazz, 2014, p.222]