Mastertouch and Roll Values in Australia
By Darrell Clarke
|Dan, Robbie and all,|
The ratio is currently 12,866 kangaroos to each player piano, not counting wallabies, potaroos, and bettongs (these are smaller marsupial macropods)! It also depends on whether you count non-working players like a couple of mine.
There are enough working players around to keep Mastertouch, in Sydney, going (just) since 1919. Their current catalogue still lists many of their very early rolls. I don't know how Mastertouch is going with computerizing their roll production, but I won't hold my breath for reproducing rolls, although they did talk about it a while back. They used to make a few Recordo-style expression rolls years ago.
As for old roll prices in Australia, Dan's figures would not be far off the mark. 88-note rolls are very common, although it is hard to find the old ones in good condition. Prices in South Australia are usually around AU$5 (US$4), but popular songs, long rolls or reproducing rolls could be up to double that. Reproducing rolls were all imported and are hard to find now. Many sellers don't know them and might sell them for the same as 88-note rolls. We don't have any roll auctions here, as far as I know.