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Miles Davis – Greatest Hits (Prestige) album art

Contributed by Florian Hardwig on Nov 8th, 2020. Artwork published in .
    Miles Davis – Greatest Hits (Prestige) album art 1
    Source: https://www.ebay.com recordarchives. License: All Rights Reserved.

    The cover for Prestige’s album with greatest hits by Miles Davis appears to use Bailey for the title. Most letterforms match a showing of Bailey Bold Condensed in a Lettergraphics specimen from 1969. Differences include the flatter i dot and the t with a slightly shorter ascender, which would be easy customizations. The specimen presents four alternates: a and s with diagonal and rounded middle parts, t with a tail that ends at the baseline, and a G of capital form as seen here. Bailey didn’t have a proper uppercase. The D, R, and H and the wide v/V could either be additional biform alternates not shown in the specimen, or modifications. Or was there another, virtually identical face with more glyphs by a different manufacturer?

    [Edit: Yes, there was. This isn’t Bailey, but Pacella Graphic Biform, see the comments.]

    The album was produced and designed by Don Schlitten, with photography by Ray Avery. See also another album cover by Schlitten from the same year, for which he used a narrower style from the same typeface.

    [More info on Discogs]

    Miles Davis – Greatest Hits (Prestige) album art 2
    Source: https://www.ebay.com recordarchives. License: All Rights Reserved.
    Pressing by Victor Record Company, Japan (SMJX-10020), with a different order for the tracks.
    Source: https://www.hifido.co.jp Hifido (edited). License: All Rights Reserved.

    Pressing by Victor Record Company, Japan (SMJX-10020), with a different order for the tracks.

    Typefaces

    • Pacella Graphic Biform
    • Alternate Gothic
    • News Gothic
    • Akzidenz-Grotesk

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    2 Comments on “Miles Davis – Greatest Hits (Prestige) album art”

    1. Update: This isn’t Bailey, but Pacella Graphic Biform, designed by Vincent Pacella and shown in Photo-Lettering’s Alphabet Thesaurus Vol. 2 from 1965. Pacella Graphic has more biform alternates, and it also includes the t with shorter roof as well as the flat i dot.

      I had looked into Photo-Lettering’s specimen books, but in the wrong places. In the One Line Manual of Styles, which is a compact index to the Alphabet Thesauruses Vol. 1 (1960), 2 (1965), and 3 (1971), Pacella Graphic isn’t shown under “Thick & Thin Sanserifs: Medium Contrast”, but rather in a special section titled “Sans Serifs with Hairline Counters”.

      I can’t say with certainty if Pacella Graphic (in or before 1965) predates Bailey (in or before 1966). However, other pairs of similar faces suggest that inventive ideas often originated at PLINC, and subsequently were copied by Lettergraphics and others.

    2. Here’s a sample of Pacella Graphic Biform as shown in Photo-Lettering’s Alphabet Thesaurus Vol. 2.

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