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A&M Records records
PASC-M.0269  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Immediate Source of Acquisition
  • Arrangement
  • Biographical History
  • UCLA Catalog Record ID
  • Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements
  • Preferred Citation
  • Processing Information
  • Scope and Content
  • Conditions Governing Use

  • Language of Material: English
    Contributing Institution: UCLA Library Special Collections
    Title: A&M Records records
    Creator: A & M Records (Firm)
    Identifier/Call Number: PASC-M.0269
    Physical Description: 98 Linear Feet (196 boxes)
    Date (inclusive): 1959-2001
    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 founding of A & M Records in 1962 to a few years after its sale to Polygram in 1989, while Jerry Moss and Herb Alpert were still affiliated with the label.
    Physical Location: Portions of the collection stored off-site. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. All requests to access special collections materials must be made in advance using the request button located on this page.

    Conditions Governing Access

    Open for research. All requests to access special collections materials must be made in advance using the request button located on this page.
    Portions of collection unprocessed and currently undescribed. Please contact Special Collections reference (spec-coll@library.ucla.edu) for more information.

    Immediate Source of Acquisition

    Gift of Jerry Moss and Herb Alpert, March 2005.

    Arrangement

    The collection has been arranged into the following series:
    • Series 1: Correspondence, 1959-1992
    • Series 2: Production records, 1965-1988
    • Series 3: Business records, 1961-2001
    • Series 4: Photographs, 1960s-1980s
    • Series 5: Music
    • Series 6: Artwork
    • Series 7: Posters
    • Series 8: Clippings
    • Series 9: Awards
    • Series 10: Ephemera and artifacts
    • Series 11: Clothing
    • Series 12: Sound recordings
    • Series 13: Video recordings

    Biographical History

    Founded in 1962 in Los Angeles, California 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. 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 band had sold some 45 million albums.
    A&M's roster featured many of the top pop and rock acts from the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s, 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. A number of jazz composers and performers were also issued by the label, 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.

    UCLA Catalog Record ID

    UCLA Catalog Record ID: 5152179 .

    Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

    CONTAINS UNPROCESSED AUDIOVISUAL MATERIALS: Materials will require assessment and may need further processing for safe access. All requests to access special collections materials must be made in advance using the request button located on this page.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], A&M Records records (Collection Number PASC-M 269). UCLA Library Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, UCLA.

    Processing Information

    This collection was partially reprocessed 2016-2017 by Melissa Haley. Series 1 - 4 are new arrangements of correspondence, business and production records, and photographs.
    Clothing (Series 11) was processed in 2017 by Melissa Haley.

    Scope and Content

    The collection includes commercial and non-commercial sound recordings, commercial and non-commercial video 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 to a few years after its sale to Polygram in 1989, while Moss and Alpert were still affiliated with the label.
    The sound recordings include vinyl records (33 1/3, 45, 78 rpm) audiocassettes, 8-tracks, CDs. The video recordings include VHSs.

    Conditions Governing Use

    Property rights to the physical objects belong to UCLA Library Special Collections. All other 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

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

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