Sharrell Music Publishers Ltd.
Sharrell Music Publishers Ltd (Empire Music Publishers Ltd 1948-79). Educational and popular-music publishing firm founded in 1948 in New Westminster, BC, by the teacher-arranger Carle Hodson (b Edmonton 1918; at one time also known as Karle Hodsin). Empire's first best seller (1948) was Elizabeth Clarke's 'Bluebird on Your Windowsill'. Further successes followed in the country music field, including songs by Stu Davis, Keray Regan, and Scotty Stevenson.
Empire began issuing educational material for school or private use in 1955, including methods and easy pieces for accordion, autoharp, electronic organ, guitar, recorders, ukulele, and other instruments, and for classroom ensembles, and also a Canadian History in Song (1966); these occupied about two-thirds of its catalogue by the mid-1970s. In 1991 some of the classroom books continued to be used in school systems, including Fundamentals of Recorder Playing by Frank Gamble and Campbell Trowsdale.
One of the few music publishers in British Columbia, the firm established its own offset printing facility on the premises. Plate numbers are used. Branches were established in the 1960s in London, Ont, Seattle, Wash, and Port Huron, Mich. In 1979 the instrument division, known as the Empire Music Company, was sold and the publishing firm, known as Empire Music Publishers Ltd, changed its name to Sharrell Music Publishers. In 1975 the BCMEA made Hodson a life member in honour of his contribution to music education.