Records is a record label currently headquartered in the
UK, and is a subsidiary of Universal Music Group.
Polydor was originally an independent branch of the Deutsche
Grammophon Gesellschaft. Its name was first used, as an
export label, in 1924, the British and German branches of
the Gramophone Company having severed their ties during
World War I. Deutsche Grammophon claimed the rights to the
His Master's Voice trademark for Germany, where HMV recordings
were released under the Electrola trademark. In turn, DGG
records exported out of Germany were released on the Polydor
label. Deutsche Grammophon lost its rights to the His Master's
Voice trademark to EMI and its Electrola label as part of
Germany's surrender terms at the end of World War II.
became a popular music label in 1946 while the famously yellow
Deutsche Grammophon seal became a classical music label. Polydor
remained Deutsche Grammophon's export label, including classical
music, in France and the Spanish-speaking world for the remainder
of the long-playing era, as a result of language and cultural
the early 1960s orchestra leader Bert KaempfertBert Kaempfert
signed unknowns Tony Sheridan and the Beat Brothers - who would
later become famous as The Beatles - to Polydor. Popular German
entertainers such as James Last, Bert Kaempfert, Kurt Edelhagen,
Caterina Valente and the Kessler Twins appeared on the Polydor
label, as well as many French, Spanish and Latin-American figures.
1972, Polydor merged with giant Philips-owned Phonogram Records
to create PolyGram in the US. The Polydor label continued to run
as a subsidiary label under the new company. Polydor later took
interest in the Sex Pistols in 1976, but lost to EMI. The name
PolyGram is a hybrid of Polydor and PhonoGram.