My Favorite Sources for
Classical Music Recordings

Copyright 2012 by Ronald B. Standler

Table of Contents

  1. Retail Stores for Recorded Music

  2. Manufacturers of Recordings (catalogue of each label)

  3. Catalogue of all labels.
A good selection of recordings of baroque music or classical music is difficult to find in many cities in the USA, and nonexistent in smaller towns in the USA. For that reason, I have posted my collection of links to mail-order stores in the USA and Europe. I have not ordered from every store below, and I am not endorsing any store or manufacturer.

1.   Retail Stores for Recorded Music

Arkiv Music in Pennsylvania, also has more than 10,000 reissues
Berkshire Record Outlet sells discontinued classical recordings in Massachusetts
CD Universe in Connecticut
Classical Records used vinyl in New York City
Classics Online downloads from Naxos and other labels
H & B in Vermont
Parnassus used vinyl and used CDs in New York State; also reissues on CD
Princeton Record Exchange used
Records International obscure classical recordings in Tucson, Arizona

Archambault Montréal
Grigorian in Toronto

United Kingdom:
Europa Disk Nottingham, England
Harold Moores London
Music Discount Centre in London closed in the year 2010
MDT in Derby, England
Presto Classics Leamington Spa, Warwickshire, UK

Compagnie du Disque Paris
FNAC Paris
Jecklin big music store in Zürich
JPC Germany
Rena in Zürich

CD Japan in Tokyo, has reissues released only in Japan
From August 1987 to November 1997, my favorite store in the USA for ordering compact disks was the Serenade Record Shop in Washington, DC. However, in early 1998, Serenade closed and their customer list was purchased by Classical Choice in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. In 2007, I noticed that Classical Choice's website had disappeared. This short lifetime of stores in the USA that specialize in recorded classical music is one reason I maintain bookmarks to stores in Europe. The other reason is that many less popular classical recordings are released for sale only in Europe, because of the tiny market for obscure classical music in the USA.

2.   Manufacturers of Recordings

big manufacturers of music recordings
Decca & Philips classical music
Deutsche Grammophon (DGG)
EMI classics
Sony includes former Columbia Records and RCA
Universal in Holland owns Decca, Philips, and DGG
Warner Classics includes Erato & Teldec (Telefunken-Decca Schallplatten GmbH)

Japanese manufacturers of classical music recordings
EMI Japan
Sony Japan includes former Columbia and RCA
HMV Japan

smaller manufacturers of classical music recordings
Argo, owned by Decca
Berlin Classics
Biddulph violin
Connoisseur Society
Dutton reissues of old recordings
Harmonia Mundi
Le Chant du Monde
Melodiya in Russia
Musikproduktion Dabringhaus und Grimm
Music & Arts reisues
Nimbus new and reissues
Nonesuch, part of Warner
Novalis apprently has no website.
Passionato, formerly Musical Heritage Society, sells direct to public
Polyhymnia in Netherlands
Pristine in France, historic reissues for download
Qualiton imports many European recordings into the USA
Supraphon in Czechoslovakia
There were two large manufacturers of recordings of classical music in the USA from the mid-1920 through the 1980s:
  1. The Columbia Masterworks record label was sold to Sony in the year 1990.
  2. The RCA Victor "Red Seal" record label was sold to Bertelsmann Music Group (BMG) in Germany around the years 1985-1986. BMG sold all of the RCA Victor recordings to Sony in the year 2004.
While it is regrettable to see American companies like Columbia and RCA disappear, the Japanese will take better care of the archival recordings of classical music than the Americans.

3.   Catalogues of Recordings

This document is posted at
first posted 28 Aug 2012, modified 31 Aug 2012

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