Where We Started
Our first lathe was purchased in 2019 and it was a hybrid built out of a 1950’s Fairchild 16″ transcription turntable and a Rek-O-Kut Master Pro Model M-5 16″ overhead lathe with a Audax cutter head. This ultimately was not a winning combination. I spent a lot of money and time, over a year in fact chasing ghosts in this machine. I dubbed her Lulu after an Eddie Clendening song and the saying “Watch that first step, it’s a lulu!”
The first place I set up was in a beautiful venue in the back of a local guitar shop “The Guitar Spot U.S.A” in Red Lion. A great little set up with a live stage in a old old room with one of the best sounds around. Here is where the second iteration of the lathe came about. A custom plinth was built be R.W. Blanks and a Rek-O-Kut LP-743 12″ turntable was installed. A Presto 1-C cutter head was purchased and affixed to the original Rek-O-Kut over head. I eventually moved the lathe set up to my home to focus on getting it set up right.
Wondertone Studios & Wondertone Records
After moving to my home, the last piece of the puzzle came into my life. Jesus Saves; the giant sticker adorning the 1946ish Rek-O-Kut R-8A cutting amp and mixer. That amp came from the hills of Virginia with that sticker on there, and I knew it had stories to tell. Fully refurbished it really seemed to be the key that unlocked the lathe’s potential
Now that the lathe was complete and working like a dream, a few test cuts were made for bands. They were received well and with that I felt ready to go public. Wondertone Records was born. An artist friendly label with a built in distribution and better returns than any streaming platform. Short run lathe cut records are available with mastering and top quality materials included at an affordable price. So let’s make some records!