Russell Records | A Great Name in the Dance
In the famous Mason-Khan Studio in San Francisco there was an old record player with a little rack of records above it. Many of these were singles used for short routines and practice. In that rack I found some old Russell Records that I used for many of my own practice sessions. This example from my collection brings back so many memories from Mason-Kahn Studio, Stanley Kahn and his wife, Pat Mason, known to everyone as Miss Pat. Please take a moment to visit Tap Wonderland's special Stanley Kahn tribute page dedicated to them.
As collectibles, Russell Records offer lots of detail, the kind the truly obsessed collectors love. This record is in the 33 1/3 RPM EP format with two tracks on each side. Side A is blue, but side B is yellow. In the upper left, the labels indicate the type of dance the recording is intended for, like "Waltz Clog", "Tap" etc. Typically, no musicians are credited and the recordings are often just piano and drum, without much jazzy feeling or swing.
Tap Wonderland's collection of Russell Records dance class music includes 78rpm versions, as well. This company was producing records during that time in the early 50's when people were changing from 78's to LP's.
Russell Records sold a booklet of instruction information to go with each record and illustrate the routines. Tap wonderland has a collection of these booklets which are featured in the Print Gallery — Russell Records Dance Routine Booklets
— Shinichi Matsumoto