(Originally aired: 02-01-99)

 

  

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              Upcoming Cable Television/Web Show: 

        For details of airing see bottom of page

      Guest For  WEDNESDAY MARCH 16, 2005

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                                    BERNARD STOLLMAN                   

                                      The ESP-Disk Story
 

                         Founder / President & C.E.O.

                                  ESP DISK

                           www.espdisk.com

                      stollman@esp.disk.com                              

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More about BERNARD STOLLMAN & ESP DISK

Home About ESP Disk ESP Catalogue ESP Roster Listen Contact
The ESP-Disk Story


Founded by music lawyer Bernard Stollman, ESP-DISK opened for business in New York City in 1966 on the 12th floor of 156 5th Avenue. During its first 18 months, 45 albums were recorded and released, and featured unknown artists. The only exceptions were Ornette Coleman and Paul Bley. Both had won global recognition during the 1950's. Among the artists who made their debuts as leaders on ESP were Gato Barbieri, Bob James, Marion Brown, Sun Ra, Roswell Rudd, Burton Greene, Patty Waters, Henry Grimes, Charles Tyler, Albert Ayler, Noah Howard, Sunny Murray, Milford Graves and Frank Wright. Several of these artists were quickly sought out and recorded by the Impulse and Columbia labels. ESP had signed no term agreements with its artists, anticipating that this might happen, and that the artists would then enjoy promotional support from these companies.

It was not anticipated that ESP's rock groups, the Fugs and the Pearls Before Swine, would enjoy immediate success through word of mouth, and appear on the pop charts. Overnight, the record industry began bootlegging their lps, and no further orders reached ESP. The new music that was the focus of the label was ignored in the U.S., while it was accepted in Europe and Japan, where licensing agreements were entered into for the catalog. ESP was out of business, for all intents and purposes, in 1968. Stollman struggled to continue in business until 1974. Within months after ESP settled with its creditors and closed its doors, tough new anti bootlegging laws were enacted. The ESP tapes were stored in safe deposit boxes, where they remained for 17 years. After 5 difficult years, Stollman found work as a lawyer with the New York State government, and retired in 1991. A German record company, ZYX, then entered the picture, and licensed the catalog in 1992, reissuing all 115 titles on cd. The relationship continued for 6 years. It was followed by a brief licensing agreement with a Dutch label, CALIBRE, and subsequently with an Italian company that has expired.

ESP has begun to convert its catalog to surround sound dvd, utilizing a proprietary system called SONATURE (www.sonature.com). The first titles to become available on dvd will be Albert Ayler (Spiritual Unity, Bells, Spirits Rejoice, and a previously unissued cd and dvd of the concert at the Maeght Foundation), and Sun Ra's Heliocentric Worlds vols 1 and 2, Nothing Is, and previously unissued material. Patty Waters and the Pearls Before Swine (both One Nation Underground and Balaklava) will also be converted to surround sound.


 
Copyright ESP-Disk 2003

                            

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Wednesday March 16, 2005

 /  10:30 - 11:30 AM  / (NYC Time)

Channel 34 of the Time/Warner &Channel 107 of the RCN 
Cable Television Systems in Manhattan, New York.

The Program can now be viewed on the internet at the time of cable casting at:

www.mnn.org

NOTE: You must adjust viewing to reflect NYC time & click on channel 34 at site

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                                    241 West 36th StreetNew York,N.Y. 10018 Phone: 212-695-6351 E-Mail: HHC@NYC.RR.COM

 

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