Decca Records

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Decca Records is a British record label established in 1929 by Edward Lewis. Its U.S. label was established in late 1934; due to World War II, the link with the British company was broken for several decades.[1] It was noted for its development of recording methods in the United Kingdom and for the development of original cast albums in the United States. Both wings are now part of the Universal Music Group which is owned by Vivendi, a media conglomerate headquartered in France.



The name "Decca" dates back to a portable gramophone called the "Decca Dulcephone" patented in 1914 by musical instrument makers Barnett Samuel and Sons. That company was eventually renamed The Decca Gramophone Co. Ltd. and then sold to former stockbroker Edward Lewis in 1929. Within years Decca Records Ltd. was the second largest record label in the world, calling itself "The Supreme Record Company". The name "Decca" was coined by Wilfred S. Samuel by merging the word "Mecca" with the initial D of their logo "Dulcet" or their trademark "Dulcephone."[2] Samuel, a linguist, chose "Decca" as a brand name as it was easy to pronounce in most languages. Other theories of the origin of the name "Decca" are: (a) The city of Decca (as it was then named, in then-India and now Dhaka, capital of Bangladesh), was the major export source of shellac, the ingredient from which 78-RPM phonograph records were made. (b) Phonograph records had been 10-inches in diameter, and the Greek root for the number 10 begins with "dek".

Decca bought the UK branch of Brunswick Records and continued to run it under that name.

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