Henry Stone, Morris Levy, and Cutouts in The Records Business

“Tommy Vastola was with Morris Levy. He was a bad dude. A Mafia guy. Where’d you get his name from? Where, what, and why? I don’t know if I gave you the story already, but he was one of Morris Levy’s cronies. A leg breaker. It’s a whole story. See, when you sell a lot of records, there’s always going to be some returns. You could sell a million records, and you’re still going to get around ten percent back, 50, or 60,000 or 100,000 records. So we used to call those cutouts and I used to sell them. I had a huge warehouse full of cutouts next to where our regular warehouse was in Hialeah. I had hundreds of thousands of records stored in there and I used to sell them to this guy in Philadelphia. He would buy them all at once for twenty or thirty thousand bucks. So one day Morris asks me, “Who is this guy in Philadelphia that just paid us the $30,000 dollars?” cause Morris and I were in business together at the time. Well Morris was in the cutout business too, up in Boston, and he wanted to know who this guy was. So I gave him the guy’s name and they got together and made a huge deal with Decca Records….”

  • To Be Continued

From a 2013 interview with Henry Stone. ©Jacob Katel and ©Henry Stone Music USA Inc. All Rights Reserved

 

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