Independent label: Regal Zonophone Records enjoyed several leases of life. Regal Zonophone was formed in 1933 by the merger of Regal (one of Columbia's labels, b.1914) and Zonophone (part of the Victor company, b.1899). It served as a budget-priced outlet for Electrical and Musical Industries until 1949, when it was shelved. In 1964 Regal Zonophone was revived; in its new incarnation it featured mainly records by the Salvation Army. Singles and EPs were numbered in the RZ-500s. The first two had pale blue labels, the rest - and re-pressings of the first one - dark blue ones. A second and more successful reactivation came in 1967, when EMI dedicated the label to records produced outside the EMI organisation by Straight Ahead Productions, the company owned by Tony Secunda, Denny Cordell and Tony Visconti. Initially the label remained blue-and-silver but with RZ-3015, in November 1968, a red label in a somewhat plainer design was introduced. This remained basically unchanged until the end of the label's existence; the introduction of a boxed EMI logo at the bottom in November 1971, with RZ-3041, being the only development that springs to the eye. There was an adjustment to the perimeter text in the autumn of 1973, when the reference to 'The Gramophone Co.' at 8 o'clock was replaced by one to 'EMI Records'. This was in line with a change which was applied to most of the EMI group labels at or around that time. Demos were mainly of the 'large red 'A' type but there were exceptions. Straight Ahead had exclusive use of Regal Zonophone for three years; they brought The Move, Procol Harum, Joe Cocker and Tyrannosaurus Rex to the label, and all of them had Singles Chart successes, with the Move in particular proving popular in that area. When that firm took their acts and their productions to David Platz's newly-formed Fly label, in 1970, Regal Zonophone's fortunes dwindled. It continued to act as an outlet for non-EMI-produced records, with companies such as AIR, Red Bus, Purple and Visconti's new Good Earth concern all supplying product, amongst others, but successes were few. Geordie took the label into the charts one last time, in 1972, with 'Don't Do That' (RZ-3067), but the end was near. The birth of the EMI label in 1973 led to the eventual death or hibernation of some of the old labels, Regal Zonophone among them. It rose from the grave briefly to serve as the vehicle for a one-off album and single by Paul McCartney (under the alias of Percy 'Thrills' Thrillington) in 1977; the single, 'Uncle Albert' was given a number from the main EMI series, EMI-2594. The 'Zonophone' marque was resuscitated again in the '80s - as a Punk / New Wave label, Thanks to Robert Lyons For The Info.
Uncle Albert / Admiral