Xanadu Records was founded by Don Schlitten, as a jazz music record label specializing in bebop throughout the 1970s and 1980s
Schlitten had a long career in jazz record publishing , having founded the label Signal Records in 1955 included work with Duke Jordan, Gigi Gryce, and Red Rodney. Signal was sold to Savoy Records in the late 1950s, and after this Schlitten worked as a freelance producer through the 1960s, including at Prestige Records. He and Joe Fields co-founded Cobblestone Records in 1972 and also worked together at Muse Records and Onyx Records. They went their separate ways in the mid-1970s; Fields continued at Muse, and Schlitten founded Xanadu Records, releasing over 100 LPs between 1975 and 1986.
Xanadu Records are excellent quality recordings and pressings, amidst a sea of indifference and ignorance rife in big corporations that dominated the music business of those decades. By then stereo had become the norm – the staging is excellent, and the dynamic range strong throughout the spectrum, with punchy tuneful bass through to the sibilance of symbols . Whilst I generally avoid 70’s and 80’s pressings, both Xanadu and Muse are a rare exception that is well worth exploration.
Xanadu Silver Series
Xanadu Gold Series released around 40 title from archive material from the 1940s and 1950s, reissuing classic bebop works that included historic performances by Art Pepper, Shorty Rogers, Bud Powell, Coleman Hawkins, Earl Hines, Roy Eldridge, Jimmy Heath, Billie Holliday, Clifford Brown, Jack Teagarden, Art Tatum and many more.