12" single-sided 78 rpm recording with printed white paper label signed and dated by Joyce, "James Joyce / Paris / 27 November 1924;" label unbrowned, shellac unscratched and apparently unplayed, an extremely fine example. Modern sleeve within custom half morocco gilt slipcase.
However, the date of recording and claim that 30 were pressed differs greatly from the note she wrote on the label of another example, "Only 20 copies were made of this record S.B." (see Horowitz). On that record, as on the present, Joyce has written the "27 November 1924" date with his signature, placing its appearance two years earlier than the date Beach mentions in her catalogue.
Perhaps such discrepancies are unsurprising and attest to the absolute scarcity of the item, with surviving copies being so uncommon that Beach herself was unclear on the details only a decade later. The present is indeed a true Joyce rarity. This copy and the one offered in the Horowitz catalogue are the only examples we have been able to trace being offered in the last 30 years (the latter having first turned up at auction in 1994). Previous, the only real mention of this in the market came from the sale of a signed label only (again, with the 27 November, 1924 date) at Sotheby's London in 1979. Slocum and Cahoon were only aware of 4 copies (including one owned by a private collector and one can not discount the possibility it is the present copy) though they did mention "a few broken or damaged copies... in the libraries of American collectors." Our research indicates there are perhaps no more than two or three unbroken copies of this record extant and even shattered examples are almost unheard of in commerce.
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