Starr

Starr. Name of a record company; later also of a label in the Compo line. The Starr Piano Co of Richmond, Ind, founded in 1872, began issuing vertical-cut recordings in 1915 and established studios in Richmond and in New York.

Starr

Starr. Name of a record company; later also of a label in the Compo line. The Starr Piano Co of Richmond, Ind, founded in 1872, began issuing vertical-cut recordings in 1915 and established studios in Richmond and in New York. Early in 1917 the newly formed Canadian Phonograph Supply Co (Starr Co of Canada, 1918-30) of London, Ont, began importing Starr vertical-cut recordings from the USA. In the spring of 1918 it imported lateral-cut recordings on the Gennett label. In 1919 the Compo Co of Lachine, Que, began pressing the Gennett and Starr-Gennett labels in Canada. Guy Lombardo and His Royal Canadians made their first recordings (in the USA, 1924) for Starr-Gennett, and the label's US jazz and blues issues are legendary. In 1925 Compo began experimenting with electrical recordings and in 1926 made the changeover with the Starr New Process label. In the late 1920s Starr began recording French-Canadian performers, the list growing over the years to include the tenor Rodolphe Plamondon and the baritones Alex J. Bédard, J. Hervey Germain, and Hector Pellerin, as well as many folk performers: the harmonica players Louis Blanchette and Henri Lacroix; the accordionists Tommy Duchesne and Arthur Pigeon; the fiddlers J. O LaMadeleine and Isidore Soucy; La Bolduc and the singers Eugène Daignault, Ovila Légaré, Charles Marchand, and Marcel Martel, among others. In 1925, when the Starr Piano Co discontinued its recording activity, the Starr name was taken over by Compo and continued in use until 1953. The discographers Alex Robertson and George Humble have published the Canadian Gennett and Starr-Gennett 9000 Numerical (Montreal 1972) and Roll Back the Years includes lists of five other numerical series.