How To Use Our Site
The use of this site has three main options, but within each of those options are a number of secondary options which will allow the user to customize a search to extract the data in the most useful way.
The first option is called Most recent selling price. This option allows you to find the most recent selling price of a record that you would like to check. You need only enter the label (the manufacturer of the record, such as Columbia, Angel or RCA) and the manufacturer's number (usually the most prominent number on the record next to the name of the label). If there is only one record of that number issued by that manufacturer, the site will pull up only one item. However, if more than one disk was issued under a given number (for instance, RCA issued different records all with the number 3002 under various prefixes such as ARL1, LSC, etc.), then you will see a listing of all records issued by that company under that number. In every case, the most recent copy that was offered by Ars Antiqua in A (or like new) condition will be displayed, along with the selling price. If there was no A copy ever offered, then the program will list the most recent copy in the highest condition. For this feature to work, both a label and a number must be entered.
The second option is called Sales History. This feature is useful for those who want to track the complete sales history of a given item over the 25 year period that Ars Antiqua was computerized. Here, the user may enter a label (required) and at his discretion the prefix and number in any combination (i.e. one may enter four discrete combinations of these fields, namely: 1. Label, prefix, number. 2. Label, number. 3. Label, prefix. 4. Label. Depending on which of these four possibilites the user chooses, there will be different information displayed. Choice no. 1 will yield the sales history of a unique record, since with rare exceptions (mistakes on the part of the record companies), each disk will always have its own unique combination of label, prefix and number). Even for an item thus selected, there may be many listings displayed, since for certain common or sought-after records, Ars Antiqua offered many copies over the years. When choice no. 2 is selected, then the sales history for all records, regardless of prefix, matching the label and number selected, will be displayed. For choice no. 3, all records with a specified label and prefix will be displayed in numberical order and for choice no. 4, all records that Ars Antiqua has ever offered for a given label will be displayed. For the major labels such as London, EMI, Columbia or RCA, the user will see that many pages of information are displayed. Each page may be printed out, at the user's discretion.
Option no. 3 allows you to search for any composers, performers, titles, or for that matter, any character string of letters! If you enter, for instance, the composer Mahler, you will obtain 60 pages of listings. These listings may be ordered by Label, prefix and number OR by contents description, and any or all pages may be printed out. Within this option there are three ways to do a search: 1. Phrase 2. Any Words or 3 All Words. The phrase choice will pull up items only containing the exact letters that you enter. Using the any words choice will pull up all items containing any of the words you enter. For instance, if you enter Bach Mass, you will obtain listings not only for all items containing the phrase Bach, but also all those containing the phrase Mass (either one or both of those phrases), including other words that contain those character strings (e.g. Offenbach and Massenet). Putting those same two words into the All Words choice will result in a smaller number of listings than you would get for the Any Words choice, because ONLY listings with BOTH words will be displayed. So, in brief, Any Words is an either/or kind of search and All Words is a both/and search.
It is also important to realize that most of the performers' and composers' names are followed by a colon. This means that if you enter Beethoven Sym 5, you won't find any matches if you do it under the phrase choice. However, if you enter, Beethoven: Sym 5, under the phrase choice, you'll pull up many listings. Also, composers generally do not have first names attached to them, but when they do, it is in the order: Nielsen, Carl (i.e. Lastname, firstname). Performers, on the other hand, often do have first names appended, so you will obtain many more listings if you enter (under the phrase choice) Furtwangler, Wilhelm: Beethoven than if you enter Furtwangler: Beethoven.
Because of the size of the database, many abbreviations have been utilized. For instance, Sym has almost always been used instead of Symphony, so you will not obtain many matches if you enter the longer form of that word. A list of abbreviations follows:
Academy of St. Martins-in-the-Fields = ASMF // Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra = ACO Bassoon = bsn // Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra = BPO // Boston Symphony Orchestra = BSO // Brass Quintet = BQ // Budapest Philharmonic Orchestra = BuPO // Cello = vcl // Chamber Orchestra = cham orch or co // Chicago Symphony Orchestra = CSO // Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra = CiSO // Clarinet = cl // Cleveland Orchestra = CO // Columbia Symphony Orchestra = CoSO // Concerto = con // Conductor = cond. // Czech Philharmonic Orchestra = CPO // Double bass = cb or db // Eastman-Rochester Symphony Orchestra = ERSO // Eastman Wind Ensemble = EWE // English Chamber Orchestra = ECO // English Horn (Cor Anglais) = engl. hn // Flute = fl // Guitar = gtr // Hague Philharmonic Orchestra = Residentie Orkest // Halle Orchestra = HO // Horn (i.e. French Horn) = hn // Leningrad Philharmonic Orchestra = LePO // London Baroque Ensemble = LBE // London Philharmonic Orchestra = LPO // London Symphony Orchestra = LSO // Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra = LAPO // Louisville Orchestra = LO // Minnesota (Minneapolis) Symphony Orchestra = MSO // National Philharmonic Orchestra = NSO // New Philharmonia Orchestra = NPhO // New York Philharmonic = NYP // Orchestre de la Suisse Romande = OSR // Orchestre de Paris = OdP // Orchestre National de la Radiodifusion Francaise = ONRF (or ORTF) // Overture = Ov // Oboe = ob // Philadelphia Orchestra = PO // Philharmonia Hungarica = PH // Philharmonia Orchestra = PhO // Philharmonic Promenade Orchestra = PPO // Piano = pf // Radio Symphony Orchestra = RSO (so, for instance, if you want to find the recordings of the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra, you should enter Berlin RSO) // Royal Philharmonic Orchestra = RPO // Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra = SLSO // Saxophone = sax // String Quartet = SQ // Symphony = sym // Symphony Orchestra = SO