London Records -
a subsidiary of Decca Records (UK), released mainly US hits from many
labels in the UK. Very few of these records achieved any real
success at the time and have became very valuable do
to the fact they sold so poorly and subsequently few
still exist today.
"HL" stood for "Home London" but by August 1955 a third variable letter
was added, known as the "Export Availability Code". Back in the 50's
60's collectors of these records could read an ad for the newest
batch of releases and (if you were that way inclined) work out which US
label had leased it to London. The code was mainly for London's
internal use and
identified the type of contract they had with the US company for
further export purposes.
was all countries except the USA, Canada and South America
was all countries except the USA, Canada and Japan
was Eastern hemisphere, British West Indies and Mexico
some of the code letters ended up being attached to a certain US
was Sun and (Sam) Phillips International, "A" was Cadence, "I"
was Warwick, "D" was Dot, etc. labels that had long term contracts with
"HL" and "HLU" were used for one-off deals with tiny
companies or in the case of Liberty, before a long term contract was
made making Liberty a "G".
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