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Delmark Records

4121 N Rockwell St.

Delmark Records is one of the world’s most significant independent jazz and blues labels that still operates. Robert Koester, who also owned the Jazz Record Mart store, founded the company in St. Louis in 1953 (as Delmar) it became Delmark upon his moving to Chicago five years later. During the next decade, Delmark released a range of groundbreaking records, including Junior Wells’ first album appearance (Hoodoo Man Blues) and some of the earliest recordings of artists from the innovative jazz organization, the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (such as Roscoe Mitchell’s Sound). Throughout the decades, Delmark continued releasing works from a host blues musicians, including Magic Sam and Lurrie Bell, to jazz artists who represented different generations, such as Jeff Parker and Ari Brown. Delmark also maintains its self sufficiency through running its own recording studio. Koester sold the company to musicians Julia Miller and Elbio Barilari in 2018, three years before his death at age 88.

– A.C. 

Caption: Current location of Delmark Records. 

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