Retropolis buys jazz/blues label

Melodeon, Center, Regal, Dawn labels among assets

HOLLYWOOD — Retropolis Entertainment, the company formed by former Rhino Entertainment executives Richard Foos and Robert Emmer, has purchased Biograph Records, a noted jazz and blues label with recordings by Son House, the Rev. Gary Davis, Scott Joplin and Eubie Blake.

Biograph, based in Somerville, Mass., has been run by Alan Caplin, son of Arnold Caplin who founded the label 35 years ago. Biograph has the rights to produce albums from the QRS Music Roll Co.’s extensive piano roll catalog, including those of Fats Waller, Jelly Roll Morton and Joplin.

“What Arnold and Alan Caplin have accomplished over the years very much mirrors our philosophy of marketing great music by treating it with reverence and scholarship,” Foos said.

Also part of Biograph’s assets are the labels Melodeon, Center, Regal and Dawn, which produced recordings by Skip James, Blind Willie McTell, Memphis Minnie, Zoot Sims, Stan Getz and Art Farmer.

Retropolis Entertainment, based in Los Angeles, is a partnership with a focus on music catalog acquisition, development and marketing.

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