Waldo's Records


"We do our records all in black - and if they're scratched you can bring 'em back!"

The St Albans' indie label was started by Phil and Angie Smee in 1977 and run from the spare room at their house in Liverpool Road. The house became the headquarters and meeting place of the various groups, where new signings and recording sessions were planned, publicity stunts dreamt up and gigs arranged. The basement was the location for many photo shoots, the living room doubled as a recording studio, and the spare bedroom was the design studio and main office.

As Phil was a designer working for the music industry, many of the groups and artists he was working with called in, including The Damned, who after enjoying a photo session, and Angie's superb spaghetti - all went down to the Horn for a warm pint of lager.

The house address was 4 Liverpool Road, so it became known as the 'Fab 4' which amused John Peel. Being a graphic designer - much original thought was put into the design and packaging... often more work than in the actual selling.

Distribution meant hiring a van and racing around London, starting at Rough Trade where they always took a few 100 of everything. Somehow most of the records sold out - and funds were ploughed into the next project. In 1983 - with the design business (Waldo's Design & Dream Emporium) flourishing, Phil decided to change the record company name - and Bam-Caruso Records was born... which issued both new signings throughout the 80s, together with choice 60's rarities licensed from the major labels.

See the Waldos Family Tree of Bands