Angel RecordsAngel Records Parent company EMIFounded 1953 Founder Dorie Jarmel Soria and Dario Soria Distributing label Blue Note Label Group(In the US) Genre Classical musicCountry of origin USOfficial website Official website of Angel Records
Angel Records is a record label belonging to EMI. It was formed in 1953 and specialised in classical music, but included an occasional operetta or Broadway score. Additionally, the Angel mark has been used by EMI, its predecessors, and affiliated companies since 1898.
A recording angel is a traditional figure that watches over people, marking their actions on a tablet for future judgment. Artist Theodore Birnbaum devised a modified version of this image, depicting a cherub marking grooves into a phonograph disc with a quill. Beginning in 1898, the Gramophone Company in the United Kingdom used this angel as its trademark on its record labels and players, as did affiliated companies worldwide.
From 1909, Gramophone and related companies began replacing the angel with the familiar drawing of a dog looking into a horn. The angel was retained in areas where the depiction of a dog was deemed offensive, and where the "His Master's Voice" trademark was not secured.
Angel RecordsThe Recording Angel as it appeared on early Gramophone discs.
In 1953 Gramophone successor EMI lost its U.S. distribution arrangement with Columbia Records, which had elected to make Philips Records distributor of U.S. Columbia recordings outside North America. In response, EMI established Angel Records in New York City under the direction of record producers Dorle Jarmel Soria (December 14, 1900 – July 7, 2002) and her husband Dario Soria (May 21, 1912 – March 28, 1980).¹². The couple concentrated on distributing EMI classical recordings in the U.S. market. They departed the label in 1957, having already accumulated a catalog of about 500 titles, when EMI merged Angel into its recently acquired Capitol Records subsidiary and moved from imported discs to U.S. production. ³
In the 1960s, EMI introduced the Seraphim Records label, primarily in the U.S., to compete with RCA Victrola and Columbia's Odyssey labels. Historic recordings, sometimes taken from 78-rpm originals, were featured. In 1967, as RCA Victrola reissued numerous recordings of Arturo Toscanini and the NBC Symphony Orchestra, Seraphim reissued some of Toscanini's British recordings with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, made in London's Queen's Hall from 1937 to 1939. A number of albums featured Sir Thomas Beecham and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, including Beecham's 1959 stereo recordings. Some historic EMI recordings have appeared in the U.S. on the Seraphim label on CD in recent years.
In 2001, Angel released newly remastered and expanded editions of the soundtracks of three Rodgers and Hammerstein films - Oklahoma!, Carousel and The King and I. The LP versions and original CD versions of these soundtracks had previously been released by Capitol Records.
In 2006, EMI reorganized its adult music operations and put Angel Records as well as EMI's other classical and jazz labels under the Blue Note Label Group.
- "New Records". TIME, November 23, 1953.
- "Angel at Two". TIME, December 19, 1955.
- "Singing Land". TIME, December 23, 1957.