Music award, TV Week King of Pop, The Mom and Dads, wood / metal / cloth, made by Paramount, used by Festival Records, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, 1972
This award has significance as an illustration of Festival Records' success in generating sales of locally manufactured recordings of overseas artists whose labels it represented in Australia. When Fred Marks took charge of Festival Records in 1960, he realised that the company's future lay not just with local talent but in obtaining the rights to release more overseas recordings. By the mid 1960s Festival had obtained the rights for material from dozens of American independent labels including market leaders Atlantic, A&M, Liberty and United Artists. Festival continued to represent many overseas labels for the next 25 years. These labels contracted and recorded the artists while Festival manufactured the records and handled their distribution, promotion and marketing in Australia. International artists were the backbone of Festival's sales.
The Mom and Dads were an old-timey polka band from Spokane in the state of Washington, USA, who achieved their first success in Canada. They became a 'one-hit wonder' in Australia in 1971 with a novelty tune called 'The Rangers Waltz'. Licensed from the US label Crescendo, it is thought to be Festival Records' highest selling single. It earned the Mom and Dads the award for biggest selling single at the 1972 King of Pop awards.
Festival Records manufactured vinyl discs in Sydney for 40 years. At the height of production in the 1980s Festival's factory was buzzing with 26 record presses pumping out 25,000 records per day. In addition there was a cassette duplicating plant, an art department, a printing department for album covers, plus a huge warehouse for packing and distribution.
Festival Records provided a home to a vast array of musical styles and many independent labels, not readily identified with the Festival brand. For over fifty years its existence as a major independent record company, competing with the multinationals, helped to create a healthy environment for Australian music.
Presented to the Mom and Dads' Australian record company Festival Records in 1972. This award was displayed in the Museum's exhibition 'Spinning Around: 50 Years of Festival Records', from 2001 to 2003.