Cylinder of the Month

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From 1911, a "good, lively, 'whistling' tune" sung by the powerful voice of Manuel Romain – Down in Sunshine Valley.

Down in Sunshine Valley
Company Edison's National Phonograph Company
Cylinder # 10519
Category March song
Title Down in Sunshine Valley
Performed by Manuel Romain
Circa October 1911
Announcement None

More often remembered for sentimental songs, here Manuel Romain belts out this song of sunny love.

This record was unusual in that it was released nearly simultaneously as both a two and four-minute cylinder (see announcement, below).   During this period Edison was attempting to migrate his customer base from the two-minute "standard" wax cylinder to his four-minute Amberol format.   However, the wax Amberols carried several drawbacks.   In order to accommodate the thinner groove (200 per inch, vs. the standard 100), the wax had to be harder and thus was much more brittle.   In addition, the different groove density required modifications to the phonograph's hardware.   And all this was occurring at a time when disc records were impressing customers with their relative convenience.   Most of Edison's technical problems with cylinder records were overcome by 1912 with his celluloid plastic Blue Amberol cylinders but by that time, the disc format was king.

To hear Down in Sunshine Valley  

For help playing these sounds, click here.

See also the February 2003 Cylinder of the Month to hear another recording by Romain.

10519   Down in Sunshine Valley Manuel Romain
    A two-minute Record of the song by the same artist on Amberol Record Number 780 – equally as good in every respect, except that fewer verses are given and the chorus which there assisted Mr. Romain is omitted here.   The music is in march tempo, and the words are highly entertaining.   A fine offering for those who want a good, lively, "whistling" tune.   Orchestra accompaniment.   Words, Dave Reed; music, George Christie; publishers, M. Witmark & Sons, New York City.
— August 1911 Edison Phonograph Monthly [announcing the October records]


To hear other examples of wax cylinders, see the

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