ABKCO Records

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ABKCO is the successor company to a business that was founded in 1961 as Allen Klein & Co. Allen Klein was then a business manager specializing in music clients including Bobby Darin and Sam Cooke and, later managed The Rolling Stones and The Beatles. ABKCO Industries was founded in 1968 as an umbrella company involved in management, music publishing, film, TV and theatrical production.

The acronym stood for “Allen & Betty Klein and COmpany,” although Klein would often joke that it stood for “A Better Kind of COmpany”. Later that year, Cameo-Parkway Records was acquired by ABKCO, bringing the legendary Philadelphia label’s decade-long run of hits into the fold.

The label had been heavily criticized by many fans for keeping the Cameo-Parkway material unavailable until 2005. ABKCO’s licensing policy prevented releasing the original version of songs for compilations. ABKCO sat on the entire catalog of music from artists such as Bobby Rydell and Chubby Checker. Some original artists had to re-record their hits for inclusion on bargain-basement oldies LP’s. Checker was forced to re-record his hits such as “The Twist”.

ABKCO is active in the release of compilations and reissues from its catalogs, film and commercial placement of its master recordings and music publishing properties.

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