If you're still sending out Christmas/holiday/Solstice/Logic'n'Reason Day/Honk If You Love Darwin/Crank-Creche-mas/Newton's Birthday, etc., etc. cards, here are two Hawthorne House Record Cards--Jingle Bells and Joy to the World. The first is dated 1948, the second (credited to the Pickwick Carol Group)...? The jury's still out on that one. In fact, they've been out for at least three hours. Where's the jury??
So, I give you the front and back art and the sound files--this way, you can send cyber Record Cards to friends and family. Restoring these is no picnic, believe me. They're simply paper cards with a very thin plastic (vinyl?) wafer glued onto the front in four small spots, which makes for really good tracking. Well, to the extent that a tonearm skipping and sliding across the surface can be described as "really good tracking."
So, to even play these things, one must remove the wafer (as you can see, the first scan is post-removal), tape the wafer securely to a solid disc (one you no longer want, preferably), then use crazy tracking force on your new, expensive 78 stylus. I, your fearless blogger, am willing to do this. I never run away from a challenge, unless I figure I can't meet it. Then I run like heck.
Joy to the World has a tiny fold at the start, but I got that part to track, anyway. It took several minutes of "You can do it"-style self-help talk, but I finally convinced my tonearm that, yes, it could stay seated during the starting grooves. Must have been like riding a bull. In case you've ever wondered what "flutter" means, this rip will answer that and then some.
These were de-RIAA curve-ized, with the bass and treble rolloffs adjusted on VinylStudio.
Click here to hear:
Jingle Bells, 1948.
Joy to the World