Seek Date of Rachmaninoff Ampico Advert Roll
By Nick Seaver
I'm trying to track down information about the Rachmaninoff roll that
features prominently in Larry Givens' book, "Re-enacting the Artist".
It is (I believe) a version of Rachmaninoff's Ampico recording of his
"Prelude in C sharp minor", but has large advertising text printed on
it. I'm trying to find a year for this version of the roll. When
might it have been seen in shop windows?
The text on the roll is transcribed in Givens' book as follows (for
"I am the AMPICO. I re-enact the playing of the world's greatest
pianists and bring their musical magic into your home. This
recording is Rachmaninoff's own interpretation of his famous Prelude
in C Sharp Minor. It is the actual playing of Rachmaninoff just as
if he were personally at the keyboard. When the Ampico plays, it is
just as if the hands of the artists were actually touching the keys.
The same strings are vibrating identically as they vibrated when
Rachmaninoff himself controlled them. This is not a copy or an
imitation or a reproduction, but the actual playing of Rachmaninoff
himself. With the Ampico you have a piano plus the genius of
Rachmaninoff and over two hundred other pianists to play for you in
your home. You may hear them whenever you desire if your piano
contains the AMPICO. Would you like to have such artists play your
piano for you at command? With the AMPICO all your favorite music
may be heard actually played by such artists. In many of our finest
homes the Ampico is producing beautiful music every day for its
owners. It is music of which one never tires, for it is endowed with
human personality. The AMPICO is obtainable in both grands and
uprights at moderate prices. All types of pianos and player pianos
are taken in exchange for the marvelous AMPICO. An informal recital
is now being given in our studios. Why not come in and hear
Rachmaninoff and the other giants of the musical world? The Ampico
must be heard to be appreciated."
(Message sent Tue 4 May 2010, 14:45:03 GMT, from time zone GMT-0400.)