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July 12, 2011 2:53 PM   Subscribe

Wanna Buy a Record?

A 1951 promotional film in which Mel Blanc takes Billy May on a tour of the Capitol Records studio on Melrose (followed by the somewhat less glamorous Scranton pressing plant) in an attempt to convince him that 85 cents is not too much to charge for a record. [SLYT]

Features appearances from Yogi Yorgeson, Les Paul & Mary Ford, Dean Martin and Dave Dexter, who would famously go on to alter the Beatles’ US releases for Capitol Records.

Last couple of minutes are missing. Contains some cheesy '50s leering.
posted by mintcake! (13 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
(Noted on the Steve Hoffman forums, for those who enjoy the hot via action.)
posted by mintcake! at 2:58 PM on July 12, 2011

Ha! Yogi Yorgesson! There's one radio station back home that still plays this every Christmas.
posted by evilcolonel at 3:08 PM on July 12, 2011

Mel Blanc sounds like he is dubbed over even when is talking himself.
posted by smackfu at 3:08 PM on July 12, 2011

According to http://www.dollartimes.com/calculators/inflation.htm, 85¢ in 1951 is only equivalent to about $7.45 in 2011.

And the labels wonder why people think they're being overcharged for CDs at double that.
posted by DoctorFedora at 3:15 PM on July 12, 2011 [2 favorites]

Outta dis community!
posted by cmoj at 3:18 PM on July 12, 2011

The dog records are only four cents, though.

That would now be $147 in 2011 dog bucks, if you're wondering why you never see a dog buying a record.
posted by louche mustachio at 3:38 PM on July 12, 2011 [1 favorite]

In 1951 wouldn't these have been singles mostly? 7" 45 RPM vinyl, or the soon to disappear 10" 78 RPM record?
Skimming the video it looks like that's what they're producing in the end.
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 4:13 PM on July 12, 2011 [1 favorite]

That's what I was thinking, so it's really a deal to get two songs for $2-3 now.
posted by smackfu at 4:21 PM on July 12, 2011

Mel Blanc sounds like a cross between Bugs Bunny and Ratzo Rizzo from Midnight Cowboy.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:28 PM on July 12, 2011 [2 favorites]

Whoops. If that's the case — that these were singles — then I stand vastly corrected.
posted by DoctorFedora at 4:32 PM on July 12, 2011

This Decca ad from a 1950 billboard issue has 45 singles priced at $0.95, and LPs at $2.85. (For some reason, they have singles listed under the New Album section. But those really are singles, as far as I can tell, because the "real" albums are sold as 3 or 4 45s.)
posted by smackfu at 5:12 PM on July 12, 2011

I object to the fact that as soon as the customer announced he was unmarried, Mel immediately assumed he was gay.
posted by ShutterBun at 6:14 PM on July 12, 2011

Billy May's here!

MetaFilter: I stand vastly
posted by Eideteker at 10:28 AM on July 13, 2011

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