VU Masters?

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Haight Trashbury
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VU Masters?

Post by Haight Trashbury » 14 Jun 2019 19:12

Is there anyone here who knows what happened to the tapes for the first two Velvets albums? I remember reading that all of Verve’s masters were lost in a fire a few years ago, but there’s also the possibility that the label wound up giving its Velvets stuff to John Cale, in which case they would’ve been spared. Any ideas?

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simonm
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Re: VU Masters?

Post by simonm » 15 Jun 2019 17:01

You mean the original multi-track tapes? those are long gone.

UMG still have the master tapes of the albums (the finished products) as far as i know. They wouldn't give them away under any circumstances.

here's one (img saved from the Sundazed mini site for their mono box set) -

Image

Haight Trashbury
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Re: VU Masters?

Post by Haight Trashbury » 15 Jun 2019 17:35

simonm wrote:
15 Jun 2019 17:01
You mean the original multi-track tapes? those are long gone.

UMG still have the master tapes of the albums (the finished products) as far as i know. They wouldn't give them away under any circumstances.

here's one (img saved from the Sundazed mini site for their mono box set) -

Image
Interesting... I remember the Velvets did a studio version of “Get It On Time” during the VU & Nico sessions, but I doubt that was ever mixed. I always wondered if it survived. Probably not.

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Mark
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Re: VU Masters?

Post by Mark » 15 Jun 2019 20:20

On the VU&N Super Deluxe we have new stereo mixes of the Scepter Heroin and European Son. Guess I'm Falling in Love is a WL/WH session outtake and has been mixed twice since the '80s. So at least some of the multitracks must survive.

I don't think we've any evidence that Get It on Time was recorded for the first album. It was registered with publishers around that time, but Norman Dolph has no recollection of it, and it doesn't seem to be on any documentation, let alone exist as a recording. Love to be proven wrong though.
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Re: VU Masters?

Post by Wick Pick » 15 Jun 2019 20:59

There are many articles this week about the Universal Vault fire of a decade ago and we are just now learning of all the audio masters that were lost forever in the fire. I read a long list of artists but The Velvet Underground were not mentioned...

Has any work or photographs been done on the master tapes since 2009?

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simonm
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Re: VU Masters?

Post by simonm » 15 Jun 2019 21:42

Mark wrote:
15 Jun 2019 20:20
On the VU&N Super Deluxe we have new stereo mixes of the Scepter Heroin and European Son. Guess I'm Falling in Love is a WL/WH session outtake and has been mixed twice since the '80s. So at least some of the multitracks must survive.
/quote]

Oh yeah [goes to check the sleeve notes], thanks for reminding me....
There's a new instrumental mix of ATP and a few other things on that too - I must have listened to that set once and forgot all about it. I've hardly listened to it all, especially since the acetate came out on vinyl, the WL/WH set is much better!
If they had Get It On Time I'm sure that would have been on there too. It's quite a flimsy song though, isn't it?

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pineappleaftermath
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Re: VU Masters?

Post by pineappleaftermath » 16 Jun 2019 00:33

The recent article about the UMG fire (I really recommend the article if you haven't read it, its fascinating although depressing) does say Verve stuff was lost. There is a big list of bands and artists whose masters were burned but the Velvet Underground (and Lou and Cale) are not explicitly mentioned, even though similar artists like Patti Smith and Iggy Pop are. The Velvets are mentioned elsewhere in the article so the author is obviously aware of them. If you are being optimistic, you could see this as a sign of hope since the author probably would have mentioned the Velvets if he could confirm their stuff was gone... but if it did survive, how?

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Re: VU Masters?

Post by Haight Trashbury » 16 Jun 2019 03:22

The Verve fire occurred separately from the UMG one, and nothing in the vaults survived. It also happened very recently. Unless Cale got a hold of the multitracks (which he very well might have), they were without a doubt destroyed. Part of the tragedy of this loss (if it happened) is that there were two songs recorded during the VU & Nico sessions that were never released (their contract with Verve states that they sold the tapes for twelve Scepter-recorded songs to the label, even though the Banana Album only included ten).

These twelve songs (with their locations, if available) are:

1. Waiting for the Man (Scepter Take located on Norman Dolph Acetate)
2. Femme Fatale (Scepter Take located on Norman Dolph Acetate)
3. Venus in Furs (Scepter Take located on Norman Dolph Acetate)
4. Run Run Run (Scepter take located on Norman Dolph Acetate, and album version likely also recorded at Scepter judging by tape sound)
5. All Tommorrow’s Parties (Scepter Take located on Norman Dolph Acetate)
6. Heroin ((Scepter Take located on Norman Dolph Acetate)
7. There She Goes Again (album version likely recorded at Scepter judging by tape sound)
8. I’ll Be Your Mirror (Scepter Take located on Norman Dolph Acetate)
9. The Black Angel’s Death Song (Scepter Take located on Norman Dolph Acetate)
10. European Son (Scepter Take located on Norman Dolph Acetate)
11. Get It On Time(?)
12. Unknown (Possibly “I’ll Keep it with Mine,” or maybe even the album version of “Run Run Run” (although it’s highly unlikely that they’d give the label multiple recordings of the same song))

Haight Trashbury
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Re: VU Masters?

Post by Haight Trashbury » 16 Jun 2019 03:36

Haight Trashbury wrote:
16 Jun 2019 03:22
The Verve fire occurred separately from the UMG one, and nothing in the vaults survived. It also happened very recently. Unless Cale got a hold of the multitracks (which he very well might have), they were without a doubt destroyed. Part of the tragedy of this loss (if it happened) is that there were two songs recorded during the VU & Nico sessions that were never released (their contract with Verve states that they sold the tapes for twelve Scepter-recorded songs to the label, even though the Banana Album only included ten).

These twelve songs (with their locations, if available) are:

1. Waiting for the Man (Scepter Take located on Norman Dolph Acetate)
2. Femme Fatale (Scepter Take located on Norman Dolph Acetate)
3. Venus in Furs (Scepter Take located on Norman Dolph Acetate)
4. Run Run Run (Scepter take located on Norman Dolph Acetate, and album version likely also recorded at Scepter judging by tape sound)
5. All Tommorrow’s Parties (Scepter Take located on Norman Dolph Acetate)
6. Heroin (Scepter Take located on Norman Dolph Acetate)
7. There She Goes Again (album version likely recorded at Scepter judging by tape sound)
8. I’ll Be Your Mirror (Scepter Take located on Norman Dolph Acetate)
9. The Black Angel’s Death Song (Scepter Take located on Norman Dolph Acetate)
10. European Son (Scepter Take located on Norman Dolph Acetate)
11. Get It On Time(?)
12. Unknown (Possibly “I’ll Keep it with Mine,” or maybe even the album version of “Run Run Run” (although it’s highly unlikely that they’d give the label multiple recordings of the same song))

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iaredatsun
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Re: VU Masters?

Post by iaredatsun » 16 Jun 2019 10:16

Where did I read about the UMG tapes being stored in London at some point in their recent history?
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