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MMD > Archives > January 2001 > 2001.01.26 > 05Prev  Next

Violano Rollography Project
By John J. Breen

First of all, I want to thank the dozens of collectors from around the
world who have contributed to this project up to this point.  Whether
the information was about a single composer or hundreds of rolls, every
bit of input is leading to a complete data base about the rolls that
were produced for the Mills Violano Virtuoso.

To date, I have posted updates here at MMD, placed ads in both the
MBSI and AMICA publications and sent out direct mailings to about 150
Violano owners.  All of this effort has yielded an amazing amount of
information.  One of the valuable sources of information that came in
was a copy of Roll catalog edition 9, which, in addition to 3 and 10
that I already had, have resulted in the lion's share of the information
in the data base.  At this point, however, the flow of information has
slowed to an occasional e-mail or letter.

If anyone knows of the existence of any other roll catalogs for the
Violano, please let me know.  Also, if you have not sent me a list of
the roll numbers you own (which will not be shared with anyone else),
please consider it, as this is a great source for finding information
about the composers, publishers and copyright dates which are not
included in the catalogs.  In exchange, I will e-mail you a detailed
listing of the rolls in your collection.

Just to give an idea of how important the roll catalogs are to this
project, I would like to share a few statistics.  I currently have
copies of editions 3, 9 and 10.  Edition 3 covers rolls 1 to 966,
edition 9 covers 1787 to 2272 and edition 10 covers 1990 to 2383.

While I am trying to compile all of the information that appears on the
roll labels, the primary goal is to positively identify all of the song
titles and song numbers for the rolls.  Looking at this, rolls 1 to 966
are complete, and in the range of 1818 to 2800 only 6.5% are missing.

On the other hand, nearly 90% of the rolls between 967 and 1818 are
unidentified, which would fill in nicely if a copy of catalog 6 or 7
were to turn up.  Likewise, 34% of the song titles are missing above
2801, which would be covered by a later catalog.

I started this project for two reasons.  First, I am a fanatic about
getting information in one place and I wanted to pull together this
rollography before the information is lost forever.  Second, I have
four unidentified rolls in my personal collection (1092, 1543, 1654
and 2108).  Ironically, these are still unidentified!

In short, I am still actively pursuing this project, but needed to
get out a reminder to those who may have information but haven't gotten
inspired enough to share it.  Likewise, if you have any suggestions for
where else I might look for copies of the catalogs, I am all ears.
Thank you for your time and efforts.

Jack Breen
Southboro, MA

(Message sent Fri 26 Jan 2001, 17:02:50 GMT, from time zone GMT-0500.)

Key Words in Subject:  Project, Rollography, Violano

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