Listen to the history of gold records
Gold records have been around since the early 1940s, when record companies gave them to their artists to mark memorable sales milestones. Great publicity stunts. Glenn Miller's Chatanooga Choo Choo was the first "gold" record, although the actual disc presented to Miller was just an ordinary record painted gold.
Eventually, independent music industry associations took over the awarding of gold and platinum records for achieving specific sales figures. Elvis has the most US gold records, but The Beatles have the most US gold and platinum records.
Here in Australia, making it big in the US was always a goal for local acts, and getting a US gold record was a good measure of that success. So who was the first Australian to get a US gold record? Sister Janet Mead, who had an unexpected global hit in 1973 with her rocked up version of The Lord's Prayer.
Sister Janet died in January - she was 84.
Richard is a writer, podcaster, radio and TV broadcaster, an editor, and a lover of music. He tells the stories of how great songs are made, and of the people who make them.