I recently added a release that is a BMG Direct distribution, and I have been reading some things that are making me question how this should be entered.
The annotation here raised a question, because I don’t know the release date of this particular release (I don’t assume it’s the same as the non-club releases, and all I have is the copyright year, which isn’t necessarily the release year).
Then I found this thread, which pretty clearly states that BMG Direct should be added as a label.
But Discogs’ description of BMG Direct says clearly “BMG Direct was not a label, so do not credit BMG Direct as one.”
So - was BMG a label? It seems to me it was more of a distributor, or a vendor.
The label on the spine and back cover is Verve. On the back cover, where the barcode is on other releases, is the “Mfg. for BMG Direct” block. It has a barcode in it, but it’s just the encoded BMG item number.
It occurs to me that other BMG discs I have also have the BMG logo, in addition to the primary logo. This one doesn’t have the BMG logo, just that block.
I believe D173058 is a BMG catalog number. But the spine, back cover, and CD all have the Verve cat. no., B0010416-02. The BMG number only appears under the barcode (and that’s what the barcode reveals when scanned).
My inclination is to remove the BMG “label” designation, and leave it mentioned only in the “Mfg. for” relationship.
I think having BMG Direct (but not BMG itself) as a secondary label is good practice; without it, there’s no good place to store their D### catalog number. I like having a disambiguation like “BMG club edition” as well. (Looking back on my own edits, I haven’t always followed that - I see places where I just put the BMG Direct catalog number in an annotation.)
When you decide what to do, could you add it as instructions to the BMG Direct label annotation? Consistency is key, and the next person might ‘tidy’ everything you do otherwise. Based off this thread and no other knowledge/research on my part maybe something like:
BMG’s direct marketing company that was primarily active in the UK but was also credited on US releases (starting circa 1995).
Not a ‘true’ label, but treated as one in MB, for now. When you spot BMG Direct on a release please:
add BMG Direct as a label (along with whatever other label/s are on the release) with the D##### code as the cat. No.
add ‘BMG club edition’ to the disambiguation
add any other relevant relationships to BMD Direct to the release (e.g. release text may say 'Mfd (manufactured) for BMG Direct)
Other info and links bla bla, probably largely copied from Discogs.
I haven’t checked if that’s all correct or what you actually want to suggest people do but it might be a start?
Add BMG Direct as label with the D###### code as the catalogue number
Add main labels with their respective catalogue numbers
Why club? I don’t see it on the release, nor mentioned in the OP.
BMG Direct is buyable by a so called BMG Club’s members?
It could be BMG Direct edition or Mfd. for BMG Direct (like we have those Mastered for iTunes disambiguations.
And also add:
If you see Mfd. for BMG Direct, add the manufactured for release-label relationship
BMG Direct (and competitor Columbia House) were mail-order “clubs”. They frequently had introductory offers (8 CDs for $1!) but you had to commit to buy some number of records/CDs at full price over the next year.
I’ve gone ahead and cobbled together a annotation as a start, using the checklist drafted above + details from Discogs. I still haven’t done a deep dive on this ‘label’, so fixes and changes are more than welcome:
Thanks for your notes @jesus2099, I’ve put in your wording. ‘BMG club edition’ was just following the precedent set by existing releases, and picking the most common use (and see highstrung’s reply). If anyone knows better please do change the instructions.
Edit, just saw this other label. Anyone know more?
Discogs says to:
• For release roles, please use BMG Direct Marketing, Inc. when the release credits BMG Direct Marketing, Inc., and use BMG Direct when the release credits BMG Direct. Some releases credit both BMG Direct & BMG Direct Marketing, Inc.; in these cases, please credit both companies.
I was a member of BMG club back in the 80s & 90s. All my CDs have that. It’s BMG’s Columbia House. I’d still put BMG club or BMG Direct in disambiguation as they are different from other club editions.
Thanks for the info. I have a number of these I got used and added them as promotional, I will need to fix those. I thought I had seen a “not for sale” sticker on the jewel case for some, maybe they gave the club versions out as promotional also, just cannot remember.
Coincidentally, I just came across a Thelonious Monk release on a similar club label called Jazz Heritage Society. Like the BMG Direct releases, this is co-branded with another label (Columbia/Legacy in this case), but this one only has the JHS catalog number, nothing matching the Columbia/Legacy catalog number format. I created a new label and added an annotation based on @aerozol’s.