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Earth, Wind & Fire – Best of… Japan half speed mastered Mastersound LP with obi

$99.00 $79.20

A rare Japanese limited edition half speed mastered Mastersound pressing of Best of Earth, Wind & Fire, Vol. 1 by Earth, Wind & Fire, including the original obi.

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Description

Offered for sale is a rare Japanese “Mastersound” half speed mastered pressing of Best of Earth, Wind & Fire Vol. 1 by Earth, Wind & Fire, including the original obi.

This title was one of only five titles in the CBS Mastersound series that was half speed mastered.

About this copy: This copy of Best of Earth, Wind & Fire Vol. 1 is an original 1980 pressing on the CBS/Sony label.

This LP has an outer slipcover and an inner gatefold cover.  Both are M- with trace corner wear.  The obi is M-.

The lyric insert is M-.  The generic Mastersound catalog and insert are missing.

The disc is M-, with a few spindle marks on the labels, but no marks on the vinyl.  Clean disc!

This disc has the catalog number from the U.S. Columbia Mastersound release stamped in the dead wax, indicating this LP was pressed from American stampers, though on heavier, better-quality vinyl.

A beautiful copy of a great-sounding LP that’s surprisingly hard to find, as this may be the rarest of the five half speed mastered titles in the Japanese Mastersound series.

Background: Released in 1978, Best of Earth, Wind & Fire Vol. 1 was the second compilation LP by Earth, Wind & Fire.

The album reached #6 on the U.S. charts and has sold more than 5 million copies to date, helped by the singles “Got to Get You Into My Life” and “September,” both of which appeared for the first time on one of the band’s albums.

Allmusic.com gave Best of Earth, Wind & Fire Vol. 1 a 5 star review:

When it was originally released in 1978, The Best of Earth, Wind & Fire, Vol. 1 was a succinct, ten-track collection of the group’s best and biggest singles up to that point. The excellent “September,” a brand-new song, soon became a hit in its own right, and the non-LP Beatles cover “Got to Get You into My Life,” recorded for the Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band film, also makes its first appearance on an EWF album here, as does the track “Love Music.”… this still makes for an excellent listen.

Columbia Records had a short-lived series of audiophile pressings in the early 1980s that they called their Mastersound series.

These were high-quality pressings mastered with extra care and pressed on premium quality vinyl, and sold at a premium price.

Probably 90% of the records issued in that series in the United States were half speed mastered, while the remainder were digitally mastered.   Most of the digitally mastered titles were of classical music.

That wasn’t the case with the Japanese Mastersound series, however.  Nearly all of the titles in the CBS Mastersound series from Japan were digitally remastered, and most of them don’t sound as good as their analog Japanese counterparts.

In fact, there were only five pop/rock titles in the Japanese series that were half speed mastered:

  • Billy Joel – The Stranger (first issue only; second issue was digitally remastered)
  • Earth, Wind & Fire – Greatest Hits
  • Electric Light Orchestra – Discovery
  • Pink Floyd – Wish You Were Here
  • Boz Scaggs – Silk Degrees

All are quite rare, and all sound great.

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Country of origin: Japan
Size: 12″
Record Label: CBS/Sony
Catalog Number:
30 AP 1876
Year of Release: 1980
Format: Stereo
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Additional information

Weight 18 oz
Dimensions 12.4 × 12.4 × 0.3 in