The Numero Group
The Numero Group Founded 2003 Founder Tom Lunt
Genre Various Country of origin US Official Website The Numero Group web site
The Numero Group is an archival record label that creates reissue compilations of previously released music, reissues original albums, and creates album reconstructions from a variety of musical genres. The label's focus since its 2003 founding has been to research and preserve obscure recorded material and ephemera by artists and entrepreneurs who found little commercial success upon their material's initial release.
The Numero Group record label ("Numero" for short) was founded in 2003, by Tom Lunt, Rob Sevier, and Ken Shipley (a former A&R manager for the equally eclectic Rykodisc label). The label's first release was a reissue of rare soul and R&B music first released by the defunct Capsoul label, which was founded in Columbus, Ohio, by William Roger "Bill" Moss.
Here is the label's stated mission (according to their website at www.numerogroup.com):
The mission was simple: to dig deep into the recesses of our record collections with the goal of finding the dustiest gems begging to be released from their exile on geek street. No longer would $500 singles sit in a temperature-controlled room dying for a chance to be played. No more would the artists, writers, and entrepreneurs who made these records happen go unknown and unappreciated.
Similar to other reissue labels such as Rhino, Bear Family, Ace, Cherry Red, and Hip-O, Numero releases feature extensive liner notes and rare photographs that provide context for the associated recordings. 2009's Local Customs: Downriver Revival was expanded to include a DVD containing a documentary and an additional 200 recordings to "dig" through (which is, in spirit, similar to the "digital dig" section of their website).
Unlike most other reissue labels, Numero largely releases compilations. The reason for this is explained by Shipley in a 2006 Pitchfork interview:
We consider our label to be a "cream of the crop" label. There are plenty of albums that we could do, but that's not what we are about as a company. We clean out all the bad stuff. We were like, ok, let's not be completists. If you're going to own a record of the [Miami soul] Deep City label, own our record. There are no duds.
For Record Store Day 2009, the Numero group produced a vinyl-only sampler named This LP Crashes Hard Drives, which included not only a track from an upcoming Numero release ("Sam" from 029 Pisces: A Lovely Sight), but also tracks from such labels as Light In The Attic, Honest Jon's, Now Again, Sublime Frequencies, Daptone Records, Jazzman, and Vampisoul.
The Numero Group gained recognition in 2010 and early 2011 after the song "You And Me" by Penny & The Quarters (Band) from one of the Eccentric Soul compilations was used in the 2010 film Blue Valentine. Reports indicated that the band members were unknown and The Numero Group was actively seeking contact with band members or their relatives.
Eccentric Soul: obscure soul and funk, generally focusing on a particular, small label
Cult Cargo: foreign interpretations of American music genres
Wayfaring Strangers: folk music, usually from privately-pressed LPs
Good God!: religious soul and funk
Local Customs: a document of an area's music scene, typically centered around one particular studio
Releases (in numerical order):
001: Eccentric Soul: The Capsoul Label (CD and 2LP - 1 bonus cut on LP)
002: Antena: Camino Del Sol (CD and 2LP)
003: Eccentric Soul: The Bandit Label (CD)
004: Yellow Pills: Prefill (2CD)
005: Fern Jones: The Glory Road (CD)
006: Cult Cargo: Belize City Boil Up (CD and 2LP - 2 bonus cuts on LP)
007: Eccentric Soul: The Deep City Label (CD and 2LP - 6 bonus cuts on LP)
008: Wayfaring Strangers: Ladies From The Canyon (CD)
009: Eccentric Soul: The Big Mack Label (CD and 2LP - 1 bonus cut on LP)
010: Good God! A Gospel Funk Hymnal (CD and 2LP)
011: Eccentric Soul: Mighty Mike Lenaburg (CD)
012: Catherine Howe: What A Beautiful Place (CD and LP/limited 7" - 1 bonus cut on CD, 2 bonus cuts on 7")
013: Eccentric Soul: Twinight's Lunar Rotation (2CD and LP - 14 bonus cuts on 4LP)
014: Cult Cargo: Grand Bahama Goombay (CD and 2LP - 1 bonus cut on LP)
015: Eccentric Soul: The Prix Label (CD and 2LP - 2 bonus cuts on LP)
016: Home Schooled: The ABCs of Kid Soul (CD and 2LP - 1 bonus cut on LP)
017: Eccentric Soul: The Outskirts of Deep City (CD and 2LP - 4 bonus cuts on LP)
018: Wayfaring Strangers: Guitar Soli (CD and 2LP - 2 bonus cuts on LP)
019: Don't Stop: Recording Tap (CD and 3LP - 10 bonus cuts on LP)
020: Eccentric Soul: The Tragar & Note Labels (2CD)
021: Good God! Soul Messages from Dimona (CD and 2LP)
022: Brotherman: OST by The Final Solution (CD, LP and cassette - 2 bonus cuts on CD)
023: Eccentric Soul: The Young Disciples (CD and 2LP)
024: Titan: It's All Pop! (2CD)
025: 24-Carat Black: Gone: The Promises Of Yesterday (CD and LP)
026: Local Customs: Downriver Revival (CD/DVD and 2LP/DVD)
027: Eccentric Soul: Smart's Palace (CD and 2LP)
028: Wayfaring Strangers: Lonesome Heroes (CD and 2LP)
029: Pisces: A Lovely Sight (CD and LP/limited 7" - 2 bonus cuts on CD and 7")
030: Good God! Born Again Funk (CD and 2LP)
031: Celestial Navigations: The Short Films of Al Jarnow (DVD)
032: Syl Johnson: Complete Mythology 1959-1972 (4CD/6LP/limited 7")
033: Light: On The South Side (book/2LP/limited 7")
034: Local Customs: Lone Star Lowlands (CD and 2LP)
035: Boddie Recording Company: Cleveland, Ohio (3CD)
035.5: Local Custons: Pressed/Dubbed/Burned at Boddie
036: Cult Cargo: Salsa Boricua De Chicago
037: Father’s Children: Who’s Gonna Save The World (CD and LP+45)
038: Willie Wright: Telling the Truth
039: Eccentric Soul: The Nickel & Penny Labels
042: Lou Ragland: Title TBA
Additional subsidiary labels
The Numero Group operates a pair of subsidiary imprints.
The Asterisk (or *) label has been aimed at reissuing complete original LPs (in CD and LP formats) from artists associated with The Numero Group catalog, as well as others, in a variety of genres including soul, rock, folk, pop, and disco.
AST1: Johnny Lunchbreak: Appetizer/Soup's On (CD)
AST2: The Four Mints: Gently Down Your Stream (CD)
AST3: Propinquity: Propinquity (CD)
AST4: Boscoe: Boscoe (CD/LP)
AST5: Wee: You Can Fly on My Aeroplane (CD/2LP)
AST6: Caroline Peyton: Mock-Up (CD)
AST7: Caroline Peyton: Intuition (CD)
The Numerophon imprint specializes in vinyl-only releases in limited quantities. Its initial title, Niela Miller's Songs of Leaving, claims to feature the first rendering of the song "Hey Joe."
44001: Niela Miller: Songs of Leaving
44002: Bruner: Songs for a Friend
"Numbero" (sic) is a one-off imprint used on Eccentric Breaks and Beats. The name was used on the original bootleg release, and Numero decided to keep it on the official version.
Numero has released a number of 12-inch singles in the "Disco Series," mostly drawn from the regular Numero catalog. In addition, the label has repressed a number of rare 7-inch soul singles, many of which were originally released on Twinight Records.
- ^ "The sweetest music you've never heard". CNN. 2005-01-27. http://www.cnn.com/2005/SHOWBIZ/Music/01/26/numero.group/index.html?iref=newssearch.
- ^ http://www.numerogroup.com/
- ^ http://pitchfork.com/features/interviews/6311-numero-group/
- ^ "Movie song that's catching on has long-forgotten roots right here". Columbus Dispatch. http://www.dispatch.com/live/content/life/stories/2011/01/22/movie-song-thats-catching-on-has-long-forgotten-roots-right-here.html?sid=101. Retrieved 2011-01-22.
- ^ Series title is in Hebrew.
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