The first time a record company thought about marking a sales milestone was in 1942 when RCA gave Glenn Miller a gold-plated copy of “Chattanooga Choo Choo.”
But that was just a publicity stunt, as was RCA’s presentation of a gold record to Elvis Presley in 1956 for selling a million copies (by their count) of “Don’t Be Cruel” and then to Harry Belafonte for his Calypso album the following year. That was enough to spur the Recording Industry Association of America to begin awarding “official” gold records to recognize sales numbers. So who was the first person to get one of those? This guy. And it happened 58 years ago today.
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