Sly Stone Fresh Promo LP


Ok. So I found an original SEALED PROMO copy of Fresh the other day and I just about crapped in my pants when I spotted it as it is my favorite album of all time. I looked on discogs and all over the internet only to find no trace of this records existence in a Promo format. It has a promo sticker affixed to the top right front of the lp. Like I said it is sealed and I guess I could open it but I don’t really want to. Is there such a thing as fake promo records? I am a also skeptical because it is sealed in shrink. Any thoughts regarding this Agoners?
fromunda
It may very well be the real McCoy. Don’t let the fact it is shrink-wrapped worry you; I got many promos that way when I was a buyer at Tower. As for a counterfeit, I sincerely doubt anyone would bootleg that LP. Counterfeiting is not cheap.
I've long been under the impression that true promo records are cutouts. Every one I have ever seen had a notch cut near a corner or sometimes a corner cut off. Anyone can slap a sticker on but if its cut out its legit.
This goes back to the old days of radio giving copies out for stations and wanting them to be played not sold. They sometimes also have promo stamped but on the jacket not the shrink wrap. 

Discogs sellers don't seem to be aware of this at all. More often than not they accurately describe the cutout with no mention of it being a promo copy. All cutouts are promo copies. You got a cutout, you got a promo. Play it. Enjoy it. Nobody but you gonna know, or care. Wouldn't let that dent my appreciation, not in the least.

Not to be argumentative mc, but not all cutouts are promos, and not all promos look like true cutouts. When record companies would delete a title from their LP catalog, they would punch a hole in the cover or cut off one of its’ corners, then sell the "cutout" (that term literally refers to the title being cut out of the record company’s catalog) to retailers who wanted them. In the late-60’s, all the companies were deleting their mono LP’s. Myself and fellow collectors regularly visited the drug stores who were selling mono Kinks, Beach Boys, Yardbirds, etc. LP’s for 59 cents, snapping up every copy we could get our hands on. I still have a bunch of them, all with either a hole punched in the cover or a corner cut off. None of those cutouts was a promo copy.

That practice did not change in the 70’s; cutout stereo LP’s were given the same treatment. Now, an LP that has a "normal" commercial label, but is in a jacket with a hole punched in it or a corner cut off, may or may not be a promo: there’s no way of knowing. And it doesn’t really matter, does it? It is the "white label" promos that are collectable; if its’ cover is intact that only adds to its’ value.

As the Indi Buyer at a SoCal Tower Records, I got first promo LP’s, then CD’s. The LP’s often were a standard LP inside a cover with a hole punched in it, usually after the shrink wrap had been put on. Some were true "white label" promo LP’s, sometimes with a standard cover, sometimes with a large sticker with track listing with timings pasted on it. Others were plain white covers, some with a see-through hole exposing the center label, sometimes not.

The best thing about true promo LP’s is that they are uniformly early pressings, sometimes THE first LP’s of a title pressed. So there is a good chance they are amongst the best sounding pressings of any given title. When CD’s took over, the promos came in all sorts of forms, but that’s a whole ’nother story.

As for fromunda's "promo" LP, if the sticker is on the outside of the shrink wrap, it could have been put there by an unscrupulous seller. If it’s under the shrink wrap, that is less likely but still possible, as there were LP shrink wrap machines in the back room of every Tower Records, where returned LP’s were "cleaned", then resealed and put back in the bin to sell to an unsuspecting buyer. Ever get a sealed LP with fingerprints? Now you know why!

Yes, Sly is funktastic. Play it, and get their touchstone album, “There’s A Riot Goin’ On”, and wear that out as well!