Sotheby’s will auction a record produced for Warner Brothers’ sales force to promote the release of The Singing Fool (1928).
The movie was the second ever “talkie”, following on from the company's release of The Jazz Singer the previous year.
The Singing Fool (1928) was one of the first sound synchronised pictures
During those first couple of years (1927-1929), only certain parts of movies featured synchronised dialogue and music.
The Jazz Singer featured only around 15 minutes of sound. The soon to be released Singing Fool had well over an hour.
This record was made to commemorate Warner Brothers’ newly opened sound studio, a first for a production company and a landmark in the history of film.
The content consists of a series of short speeches by company head Jack Warner, the film’s star Al Jolson, sound engineer Nugent Slaughter and musical director Lou Silvers.
Warner states that "The Singing Fool will be 100% better than The Jazz Singer”, while sound engineer Nugent Slaughter promises "the words and music are just as clear as a bell.”
Al Jolson states that he can’t think of anything amusing to say (“I'm as funny as a crutch”) but explains that he is committed to working on talkies at Warner Brothers.
A note from Warner on the central label reads: “Thanks to the boys who made this possible and Frank Murphy who would not talk. This is a sure-fire Record to be proud of — means continued success.”
Next to it is scrawled: "Our first record, June 13-1928."
The lot is valued at $15,000-20,000 ahead of the June 3 auction in New York.
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