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Lyrichord

Lyrichord Discs is not just a business, it is a family tradition that is now over 60 years old and still going strong. It started simply enough, when Peter Fritsch started a record company devoted to Classical Music in a brownstone in Greenwich Village in 1950. Not happy with simply rehashing the status quo of the time, Peter quickly became engaged by what later became known as World Music - a sampling of ethnic and other unusual Classical pieces that were very different from what people were used to hearing. As the number of people interested in this "alternative" music grew during the 1960s, Lyrichord grew as well.Lyrichord

Their catalog soon included innovative and award-winning pieces that were recorded directly from the field, including Colin Turnbull's Pygmy songs (recorded in what was then the Belgian Congo), Katsumasa Takasago's "Masterpieces for the Shakuhachi (Japanese Wooden Flute)," John Levy's "Tibetan Buddhist Rites from the Monastaries of Bhutan," and more. These early pieces influenced an entire generation of World Music professionals, and can be cited as critical in the preservation of several rituals and folkways that may otherwise have been lost to scholars.

1978 offered a new project for ethnomusicologists, when All Jihad Racy was commissioned to compose an accompaniment to American tours of treasures from King Tutankhamen's tomb. "Ancient Egypt" has gone on to become one of Lyrichord's most acclaimed recordings, while its 1997 follow-up has likewise been highly praised.

Peter's son Nick took the reins of Lyrichord in 1988, and started the process of re-mixing the catalog for re-release on CD format. He has also encouraged the growth of Lyrichord, continuing the tradition of capturing acoustic traditions while allowing for new collaborations and ideas that keep with the spirit of the label.

Inspired by the work of a small audiophile label his father acquired years earlier, Nick launched The Lyrichord Early Music Series (LEMS) in 1994. He notes, "I got out one of these master tapes and heard the voice of the legendary countertenor, Russell Oberlin. Far from being some obsolete interpretation of a then misunderstood period of music, I was hearing a voice of extraordinary, universal beauty and power. I spent the better part of a year remastering these rare stereo recordings and the Lyrichord Early Music Series was born." These reissues were a hit, and the LEMS catalog expanded to include new recordings of similar performances.

We're proud to able to work closely with Lyrichord Discs, providing disc duplication, as well as order fulfillment services for their entire extensive catalog of titles. Visit them online at Lyrichord.com.

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