Stones on DECCA
Basic information on DECCA LP’s
There are a few basic things you need to know about Decca LP’s before you can get into identifying your own LP’s
Non boxed logo or boxed logo
Decca used two major designs of their logo on the LP labels
Open or non boxed DECCA logo:
The DECCA text on the label of the vinyl is in big silver colour letters without any frame around it. That is why it is generally called non boxed logo.
Boxed DECCA logo
The DECCA text on the label of the vinyl is on a silver colour bottom and framed around the DECCA word, looking like the DECCA would be inside a box. The logo is also sometimes named as “Rectangular logo”
The changeover from non boxed to boxed version took place around the change of the year from 1969 to 1970.
To put it simply, all LP’s manufactured before new year 1970 are always with non boxed labels, both mono and stereo. The very last LP with non boxed logo was Let It Bleed and that was released in December of -69.
The change to boxed labels was actually taking place gradually. At least Let It Bleed was probably out in the shops on the same time with both non boxed and boxed versions. It may also be that Through The Past Darkly, issued a couple of months earlier could be found with both label versions in late -69 and early -70. The very first Rolling Stones LP that had the boxed label is The Promotional Album RSD-1
From the beginning of 1970, all LP’s were manufactured only with boxed labels. This also means that Get Yer Ya Ya’s Out is the first LP that is only made with boxed logo.
So, basically one can say that a non boxed label is from the 60’s and a boxed one is from the 70’s
Mono or Stereo
The first two Rolling Stones LP’s were only made in mono. But by 1965 the sale of stereophonic record players had increased so Decca decided to start to record and produce LP’s in stereo as well. During 1965 and 1969 they made all Stones LP’s in both mono and stereo versions. This was to change in the end of the decade as the stereo LP players had by now become the standard of the day so Decca did not see any reason why they should continue to make mono LP’s. The manufacturing stopped in late 1970 or early 1971. If the LP was out only in Mono version during the 60’s, read the first two ones, then the manufacturing of them was still continued in Mono during the 70’s.
The catalog number of the LP and the color of the label are indicating if it is a mono or stereo recording. Two different series of numbers were used in the 60’s
Mono recordings have either LK or TXL in the beginning of the catalog number. The LK series is on a red color label and the TXL series is using a light blue color on the label
Standard red boxed mono label from the 70’s.
There is naturally an exception to every rule, The Promotional Album was a mono recording but still used a blue boxed label.
Stereo recordings have either SKL or TXS in the beginning of the catalogue number. The SKL serie is using a blue colour on the label and the TXS serie is using a light green colour
Grooved or non grooved label
An other good detail to pay attention to when identifying the age of your Decca LP is the deep ring pressed on the vinyl under the label. This ring can be found on all LP’s manufactured before summer of 1968. The last LP to have the ring is Their Satanic Majesties Request and the first LP that can only be found without the ring is Beggar Banquet. Most of all LP’s earlier than Beggars Banquet can be found in both versions as older LP’s were repressed during 1968 and 1969 with non grooved labels.
The ring is existing on both Mono and Stereo LP’s. LP’s with the ring pressed under the label are usually called “grooved labels” and LP’s missing the pressed ring are called “non grooved labels”
Grooved label made up to summer of 1968
Non grooved label made from summer of 1968 and later