Oriole Records

Record Label: 1924-1927. Orange and black.

Oriole Records (1924-1938)

Oriole (the US label not the UK label which is separate) was a budget label that was sold exclusively in McCrory’s chain of stores. This store was one of the many “five and dime” style stores. Records sold for $25 cents. McCrory’s started in Pennsylvania but went out of business in 2002. Manufactured by Scranton Button Company.

In 1929 American Record Company would take over Oriole. The first Oriole records were black on orange with 1923 displayed. By mid-1924 the 1923 copyright date disappears. The orange label would be replaced in 1927 by a design in gold on black and white. ARC would keep the label colors but shrink the label size.

In 1935, the colors change to gold on maroon but retaining the original design. Oriole Records would be dropped in 1938. The label contained my anonymous and pseudonyms. Indeed, Fletcher Henderson recorded under the pseudonym Sam Hill.

Music Genres: Pop, Country, “Race” records, Blues.

Pre-1941 Label: Orange, Black, and Maroon

Early Label 1924-1927

Record Label: 1924-1927. Orange and black.
Record Label: 1924-1927. Orange and black.

Mid Label: 1927-1935

Record Label: 1927-1935. Gold, black, white color scheme.
Record Label: 1927-1935. Gold, black, white color scheme.

Late Label: 1935-1938

Record Label: 1935-1938 Gold on maroon
Record Label: 1935-1938 Gold on maroon

1941-1945 Label: None

Post-WW2 Label: None

Numbers from start to 1945: 100-8000

Notes: The 8000 series are the race records.

Alabamy Bound: Fletcher Henderson Orch as “Sam Hill & His Orchestra” (take #3, with Louis Armstrong) / Bookers Dixie Jazz Band on Oriole 347. 

Oriole record label with oriole bird above record script. Orange in color. Alabamy bound in center of disc with Sam Hill and his orchestra as the band.


-Rust, Brian. The American Record Label Book. Arlington House Publishers, NY. 1978.

-Sutton, Nauck. American Record Labels and Companies: An Encyclopedia (1891-1943). Mainspring Press, CO.2000.

Harmony Records

Harmony Red and Gold

Harmony Records (1925-1932)

Columbia introduced Harmony as a budget label in Sept. 1925. It was discontinued in June 1932. Between 1925 and 1932, Harmony focused mainly on pseudonymous performances by Columbia stars. Harmony was priced at 50 cents mainly because the Harmony label did not record in the electrical recording technology. In the summer of 1949, CBS will revive the Harmony label in a puce color but will discontinue it by early 1950 after only about 100 reissues of Columbia material. By mid-1957 CBS will introduce a new redesigned Harmony label in a 45 format and LP format.

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