His Master’s Voice

Oh the tales this label could tell! This one record was manufactured in England, sold in Malta & turned up here is Australia. His Master’s Voice was the name of painting that was completed in the late 1800s.

The painting’s name and an adaption of the original is still an iconic brand today. The artist inherited the dog and a cylinder phonograph with recordings from his deceased brother. ‘Nipper’, the dog, is said to have shown a peculiar fascination in the horn of the phonograph machine when recordings of his dead master were played. This inspired the painting that was later offered to various cylinder phonograph manufacturers, without any interest.

It was the makers of a different machine, the gramophone, that saw the potential and asked for the phonograph to be repainted as wind up disc gramophone. Thus, with the stroke of a pen & fresh brush of paint, a brand was in 1899 and continues today in various forms worldwide.

Despite many transformations over the years and more recent financial difficulties, HMV has an imposing presence in Melbourne’s old GPO in the CBD’s retail fashion shopping district at the Bourke Street Mall… an iconic location for an iconic brand in its 120th year.

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