Scope and arrangement
The Composers Recordings, Inc. Records document the history of the record label, mainly through recording project files, but also through business papers, financial papers and photographs. The project files comprise the majority of the collection and contain album, CD and cassette artwork and liner notes, production information, correspondence and reviews. Photographs from the project files, including photos of composers and performers, comprise Series VI.
The business and financial papers trace the history of the company from its inception, through its transition in 1976 to a non-profit venture, to the takeover of its catalog by New World Records and dissolution in 2007. They include meeting minutes, board and composer correspondence, development papers, audits and financial statements, tax returns, bank records and other documentation. Series IV consists of the papers of the composer Nicolas Roussakis, who was a longtime board member of the company. Donated to CRI after his death, his papers contain further CRI business and financial records.
The Composers Recordings, Inc. records are arranged in six series:
- 1956-2006 and undated4 boxes
Most of this series consists of short letters from and to composers interested in having their work recorded by CRI. The bulk dates from the mid to late-1980s. Longer and more significant company correspondence regarding recordings and company business is in other series, either with the projects it pertains to or with business or financial correspondence.
- 1955-2002 and undated20 boxes
This series contains documentation on the production and artwork for CRI’s LP, CD and cassette releases, as well as promotional material and reviews of the recordings. Production files contain correspondence, contracts, copyright papers and recording information. Design files contain proofs of record jacket and CD/cassette insert designs and rough drafts and proofs of liner notes. LP and CD releases are grouped together in the series as many of the LPs were later reissued as CDs. Cassette releases appear at the end of the series. Each album/CD/cassette has a note detailing the composers featured on it. Not all CRI releases are documented in this series. Photographs from these files are in Series VI.
- 1954-2007 and undated4.3 boxes
This series contains general business files and correspondence. It includes licensing agreements, meeting minutes for the Board of Directors and Board of Trustees, fundraising and development papers, editorial and project policies, documentation of the New World Records transition and CRI dissolution, a “white paper” on the state of CRI in the early 1970s, and other papers. See the Nicolas Roussakis Papers in Series IV for additional CRI business papers.
- 1981-20065.5 boxes
This series contains bank statements and correspondence, audits and financial statements, insurance and investment papers, and payroll, royalty and tax records. See the Nicolas Roussakis Papers in Series V for other CRI financial papers.
- 1966-19902 boxes
This series contains the CRI files of the composer Nicolas Roussakis, who was long associated with the company. These files were donated to CRI after Roussakis’s death in 1994. They contain company information not found in Series III or IV, including documentation of the company’s non-profit incorporation in 1976, Executive and Editorial Committee reports, information on the relationship between CRI and the American Composers Alliance, financial papers and other company business.
- 1946-1999 and undated1 box
The photographs in this series are from the recording project files in Series II. They are mostly portraits of the composers and musicians featured on CRI releases and were used in album artwork or for promotional purposes. Artists with photographs include the Dorian Wind Quintet, Harold Shapero, Ramon Zupko, Charles Ives, Martin Buyken, Carson Kierman, Harry Partch, Fred Ho and Jason Kao Hwang, among others.