TVD Radar: Making Vinyl: Celebrating the Vinyl Record Industry’s Rebirth and the return
of the Alex Awards,
11/6–11/7

Making Vinyl, the first B2B conference dedicated to the rebirth of the global vinyl manufacturing business is coming to Detroit November 6–7, 2017 at the Cadillac Book Westin.

The entire vinyl production chain—including representatives of the world’s leading pressing manufacturers, equipment suppliers, record labels, packagers, and stereo makers—will compare notes on this astounding industry comeback. Presented by Colonial Purchasing Co-op LLC, Record Store Day, and hometown sponsor Third Man Pressing. The Vinyl District is the official Media Partner for Making Vinyl.

You have less than one month to enter the Alex Awards, a vinyl packaging competition named in honor of Alex Steinweiss, the creator of the first album cover for Columbia Records in 1939.

The art adorning the 12” x 12” canvas of an LP symbolizes everything of value in the format’s stature as an art form in its own right which has often been lost in the digital age. It is now cherished with the record industry’s rebirth.

In 1939, 23-year-old Alex Steinweiss convinced his bosses at Columbia Records to ditch the burlap-covered “tombstone” portfolios that contained the fragile shellac 78s and replace them with an original design. Sales jumped a whopping 892%. Mr. Steinweiss designed more than 1,000 covers. As Columbia’s first art director, he also invented for the label in 1947 a paperboard jacket that is still in use today.

In 2003, the “Alex Awards” was launched to pay tribute to his accomplishments and the best of contemporary entertainment packaging. Then 86, Mr. Steinweiss accepted a lifetime achievement award at the inaugural gala in Los Angeles; he died in 2011. The awards, on hiatus since 2006, return at the Making Vinyl conference in Detroit on November 6, 2017.

Returning to host the Alex Awards ceremony is Grammy Award packaging winner Craig Braun, who was responsible for executing such iconic vinyl packages as the Rolling Stones’ Sticky Fingers, The Velvet Underground & Nico, and Alice Cooper’s School’s Out. Mr. Braun has been a professional actor with numerous credits in film, television, and theater over the past 20 years.

We will be honoring the best LP and 7-inch single record covers, gatefolds, and the art on the vinyl itself in 10 different categories at the ceremony in Detroit. Eligible entries require the record to be released in the past year, and may be submitted by labels, art directors, design houses, packaging firms, brokers, artists, and pressing plants. The new edition of the Alex Awards focuses entirely on vinyl with one exception—Best Cassette Package. (Yeah, they’ve come back too!)

Entry fees start at $35 for a single category, compared with $125 when the competition first ran.International submissions are welcome. Complete rules and regulations are here. Submissions (2 copies of record and payment) must be received by September 30, 2017 to:

Alex Awards
P.O. Box 271
Kings Park, New York 11754

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  • SUPPORTING YOUR LOCAL INDIE SHOPS SINCE 2007


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