Jukebox compilation CDs

At some point near the end of 1990, I signed up with "Record Source International", a record pool in Mineral Wells, Texas. They'd send me about five 45s per week, and they were much cheaper than trying to find the singles in stores. RSI would send out a "trade publication" every month, which was useless except for the ads. I quickly found ads for "Hot Hits" and "Spotlight On Hits", two jukebox services that mailed you compilation CDs every two months. The guy that employed me as a mobile DJ also had some jukeboxes, so I was set.

The compilations began rolling in at the beginning of 1991. I found that the Hot Hits compilations tended to use the radio edits, and the Spotlight On Hits compilations tended to use the album versions. These weren't hard-and-fast rules, and I only figured all that out many years after the fact.

Later on, I signed up with Top Hits USA, which does basically the same thing as Hot Hits and Spotlight On Hits, but for radio stations. I still use the Top Hits USA discs to this day. From their beginning in 1992 until around 1998, the Top Hits USA discs were mastered using an extra analog step to adjust levels, which really hurt the sound quality. Avoid these if possible. From 1999 onward, the Top Hits USA discs sound much better. Also, the Top Hits USA discs are all mastered with an inaudible 20 KHz cue tone in one channel at the end of each track, which used to be used to trigger automation systems.

Just for the record, Record Source International folded sometime in the mid-1990s (fooey - they were nice people), and I stopped buying 45s around 1994.


Hot Hits Vol. 3 - Back | CD

Hot Hits Vol. 4 - Front | CD

Spotlight On Hits Vol. 1 - Front | Back | CD

Spotlight On Hits Vol. 2 - Front | Back | CD

Spotlight On Hits Vol. 3 - Front | Back | CD

Certain Damage Vol. 1 - Back | CD

I know it's not a jukebox series, but this is the first of the long-running CMJ series for radio, from 1987.