The Legends of the Rocking Dutchman - episode 5
Ever since the gramophone record had been standardized to ten-inch, 78 RPM discs made of shellac, the music industry and the musicians had to cope with the fact that only little over three minutes of sound could be pressed on one side of the disc. In this show I will play some of the greatest Rhythm & Blues tunes that have been split up over the two sides of the disc, thus extending the playing length to six minutes. Some of these double-siders became huge hits. Joe Liggins' Honeydripper peaked the R&B charts for 18 weeks in 1945 and 1946, an achievement not surpassed ever since.
I will also point out that when the shellac was replaced by vinyl, that could hold much narrower grooves, the three-minute limit had so much become an convenient standard for radio and jukebox, that the disc size was diminished to a mere seven inch, thus still imposing the same limits to the musician. The practice of splitting up songs continued, with only a few exceptions.