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Finding Aid for the A&M Records Collection of business papers, sound recordings, music manuscripts, and memorabilia, 1959-1992
269  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Biography/History
  • Scope and Content
  • Organization and Arrangement
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: A&M Records Collection of business papers, sound recordings, music manuscripts, and memorabilia
    Date (inclusive): 1959-1992
    Collection number: 269
    Creator: A&M Records (Firm)
    Extent: 192 boxes.
    Abstract: The collection consists of sound recordings, manuscript musical arrangements, photographs, correspondence, promotional materials, posters, gold albums, awards, books and ephemera from just prior to the company's founding in 1962 through its sale to Polygram in 1989 and a few years thereafter, while Moss and Alpert were still affiliated with the label. The collection is in the midst of being procesed. The finding aid will be updated periodically.
    Language: Finding aid is written in English.
    Language of the Material: Materials are in English.
    Repository: University of California, Los Angeles. Library Special Collections.
    Los Angeles, California 90095-1575
    Physical location: Stored off-site at SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact UCLA Library Special Collections for paging information.

    Administrative Information

    Restrictions on Access

    Open for research. STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact UCLA Library Special Collections for paging information.

    Restrictions on Use and Reproduction

    Property rights to the physical object belong to the UC Regents. Literary rights, including copyright, are retained by the creators and their heirs. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine who holds the copyright and pursue the copyright owner or his or her heir for permission to publish where The UC Regents do not hold the copyright.

    Provenance/Source of Acquisition

    Gift of Jerry Moss; Herb Alpert; March 2005.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], A&M Records Collection of business papers, sound recordings, music manuscripts, and memorabilia (Collection Number 269). UCLA Library Performing Arts Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, UCLA.

    Biography/History

    Founded in 1962 in Los Angeles by Jerry Moss and Herb Alpert, A&M Records became America's largest independent record company. Both men were born in 1935, Alpert in Los Angeles and Moss in New York. The two met in the early 1960s, when Alpert was writing and recording songs and Moss was an independent record promoter. Their social acquaintance quickly became a partnership when in 1962 the two formed Carnival Records, based in Alpert's garage. With contributions of $100 from each man, the company released the single "Tell It to the Birds." After discovering later that year that the Carnival name was already in use, Alpert and Moss created the company's new name from the initials of their last names.
    A&M Records' first release, the single "The Lonely Bull" by Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass, came out in August 1962. It reached number six on the Billboard charts and sold some 700,000 copies, setting the tone for the band's and the company's success. Other best-selling Tijuana Brass albums followed, including "Whipped Cream and Other Delights" and "What Now My Love." Led by the success of the Tijuana Brass, A&M revenue topped $50 million by 1968; by the end of the decade the group had sold some 45 million albums.
    From its founding A&M worked with recording artists other than the Tijuana Brass, and its roster featured many of the top pop and rock acts from the 1960s, '70s, and '80s, including Bryan Adams, Burt Bacharach, Joan Baez, the Baja Marimba Band, the Captain and Tennille, the Carpenters, Cheech and Chong, Joe Cocker, Peter Frampton, Lani Hall, Janet Jackson, Joe Jackson, Sergio Mendes and Brasil '66, the Neville Brothers, Jeffrey Osborne, the Police, Squeeze, Cat Stevens, Sting, Styx, Supertramp, and the Tubes, among many others. Also issued by the label were a number of jazz composers and performers, including Gato Barbieri, Quincy Jones and Paul Winter as well as some late recordings by Chet Baker and Stan Getz.
    In 1989 Alpert and Moss sold A&M records to PolyGram Records.

    Scope and Content

    The collection includes sound recordings, manuscript musical arrangements, photographs, correspondence, promotional materials, posters, gold albums, awards, books and ephemera from just prior to the company's founding in 1962 through its sale to Polygram in 1989 and a few years thereafter, while Moss and Alpert were still affiliated with the label.

    Organization and Arrangement

    Arranged in the following series:
    • Series 1. Awards. 72 items
    • Series 2. Business Papers
    • Series 3. Correspondence
    • Series 4. Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass
    • Series 5. Music
    • Series 6. Miscellaneous
    • Series 7. Photographs
    • Series 8. Production Information
    • Series 10. Sound Recordings
    • Series 11. Video Recordings, 1983-1991

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.

    Subjects

    Alpert, Herb.
    Moss, Jerry.
    A&M Records (Firm) --Archives.
    Sound recording industry --United States --Archival resources.
    Music --Manuscripts.