The “Firebird” cover is the second time Steinweiss designed a cover for this work. I prefer th 1947 version on Columbia, which truly is one of Steinweiss’ greatest covers. But this one ain’t bad either and was chosen (bt Steinweiss himself?) as the art lithograph included in the art edition of Steven Heller’s “Alex Steinweiss – Inventor Of the Modern Record Cover”.
this is one of the few cases where I prefer the decca to the earlier Columbia. It would be fun to know which one piece of music Steinweiss illustrated the most often. My guess would be scheherazade. I have at least five completely different scheherazades by steinweiss – three on columbia, remington, everest – with variants on many of them.
This post shows two versions of the “Firebird” cover. Is there a difference between them? I have spent a happy hour trying to compare them and cannot see any significant differences.
An hour wasted? I hope I shouldn’t feel guilty about that. These are very slight color variants. Number 1 is slightly darker and richer than Number 2. Look at the left-most verticle pink tailfeather. Number 1 is closer to purple, number 2 is paler and pinker. This is true of the greens, also, and maybe the orange-reds. This kind of thing happened all the time in stamp collecting in the early years. With records, there was never an incentive to fix it so minor color variants abound. On minor labels like Royale or Plymouth these can be quite pronounced. On major labels like Decca they are generally much more subtle.
Oh, no! An hour studying a Steinweiss cover is never wasted. It was very stimulating and demanded considerable concentration. Could the colour variations possibly be caused by aging rather than by printing variations?
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