Limited Edition ARTCRAFT Music Rolls

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Congratulations! You found our page for "Limited Edition" music rolls.

(All other ARTCRAFT releases are PERMANENT SELECTIONS — titles which are always available from our large inventory.)

Unlike the ARTCRAFT Interpretive Arrangements featured on our regular Internet pages, these are selections which are in limited supply and subject to prior sale.

Limited Edition releases by ARTCRAFT have become collectors' items in rapid time. Rolls such as AMERICA, THE BEAUTIFUL March (the proposed 1917 National Anthem, from Maine), SO AM I Medley (the original FAKE-Gershwin Duo-Art roll coupled up with a dreadful MIDI version, involving a Disklavier solenoid player) ... and the outstanding RHAPSODY IN BLUE [Aeolian Hall Demonstration Roll] are among the titles that are now out-of-print. These — and other Limited Edition ARTCRAFT Rolls — are being sought by music roll enthusiasts in the second-hand market today.

Below are several ARTCRAFT offerings which — once "sold out" — will not be available again.

AFTERNOON OF A FOX - Fox Trot -Edna Bentz-

"Played by the Composer" for The Duo-Art Pianola - $16.50

ARTCRAFT offers a Re-Issue of what is probably the "ugliest-sounding" roll from the original Aeolian library, the musical equivalent of "fingernails on the blackboard" — a perfect gift for that Duo-Art owner you despise! Imagine, if you can, an instrumental piano solo which blends Ragtime with French Impressionist musical elements, an Irene Castle meets Claude Debussy pastiche inspired by AFTERNOON OF A FAUN from the same period. The roll features jerky rhythm (inherent in the early "direct-cut" Duo-Art rolls), excessive sustaining pedal and an expression score which is frozen in the "loud" zone. We have made no effort to Re-Master this rare number, for its many defects add to the campy nature of the performance. The roll stinks, yet ghastly can be intoxicating! Purchase this selection at your own risk. The chances are that you won't find an original copy since our grandparents had better taste in music!

AMER-I-CAN, THAT MEANS THE KLAN - March Song (1925) -Hugh Roy-

Played by Franco Reltih - $18.50

This is an historic Re-Issue of a rare roll published in the 'Twenties by the Ku Klux Klan. Most Klan rolls — though seldom-seen today — were arranged by the Capitol Music Roll Co., makers of 'Supertone Rolls' for Sears & Roebuck, plus a variety of other labels. The 'Capitol' rolls were then marketed through the Kansas City branch of the the organization. AMER-I-CAN, THAT MEANS THE KLAN was published by the Syracuse, New York branch of the group, and it appears that this roll was the work of another perforating concern. Musically speaking, the march can stand upon its own merits. The lyrics, of course, are a matter of personal taste. Our favourite word in the song is "booze-she-vik", a twisting of the word "bolshevik" — a reference to the then-recent Russian revolution.

Check this page from time to time, to see what other "Limited Edition" rolls are being offered by ARTCRAFT, on a 'first-come first-served' basis!

Gershwin Upate on RHAPSODY IN BLUE [Aeolian Hall Demonstration Roll]: 9/16/2006:

    While only 44 rolls were made, from the torn, unplayable original roll, it was used as a "master" and then hand-edited against the Aeolian copy, in order to preserve the clipped staccato effects, running at Tempo 100. This will be used for a planned 3 roll Set of the complete music, arranged in the ARTCRAFT Studio, using the roll as "soloist" with the 'orchestra' being adapted from the early Jazz Piano score and the Victor acoustic 78 epm disc recording.

   There were 4 copies of this roll on eBay, recently, and our roll - selling for $24.00 in 1989 - brought the following average prices: $600, $400 and 2 x $300.

    Good rolls don't have to be old to appreciate in value ... just spectacular arrangements and in limited supply!

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