Identifying Promos

There are many variations of records, CDs etc. in the form of promos. Sometimes they come in quite unique sleeves or feature unique edits of songs. Other times they are plain sleeved with only slight variations to the regular releases. Different countries mark promo items in different ways. In the UK, sometimes the catalogue number is etched on the centre of the disc e.g. "Touchy!" (DJ Edit) 7" which has the catalogue number "W7749-A-DJ-1" etched on it and has a "Special DJ Edit" sticker on the front. The "I Call Your Name" (DJ Edit) has a sticker on the front with names of people and phone numbers associated with the Warner Brothers promo office. It has "Promo W9462 (DJ)" printed in the centre and has the same track on both sides. Sometimes a record may have a "Promotional Copy Not For Sale"-sticker but still not be a genuine promo. Collectors should be cautious when this sticker is the only feature which distinguishes the release from its regular counterpart. These editions are usually sent to radio stations and newspapers/magazines some weeks ahead of the commercial release of a single or an album when there is no regular promo edition available. We will therefore not include these promos in the discography or other promos which don't vary in sleeve design or track listing. If you are offered such a promo, make sure you don't pay more than you would for the regular edition without the sticker.

Brazil: Text on picture sleeve is usually "Promocional * Venda Proibida" while "Venda Proibida Promocional" is generally printed across the disc. Some promos have been stamped "Especial para promocao invendavel - Amostra Gratis Tributada". More often than not the front and the reverse of the picture sleeve are identical. Many Brazilian promos feature other artists as well, and it is not unusual for one record to promote 4 different artists who often have nothing whatsoever in common musically (e.g. Guns 'n Roses and a-ha). Where more than one artist is promoted the picture sleeve is of the multicoloured WEA-type, with each cover being unique to that specific release. Where a-ha is promoted alone, you find more regular sleeve with group shots etc. Very often the Brazilian promos are unique both in style and in contents and are therefore attractive collectibles.

Canada: Promos have "Promo Only Not For Sale" printed on the label around the centre of the disc. Usually the centre is not punched out so the hole in the centre is small.

Italy: Promos normally have a round red stamp with a green rectangle printed beside it with the words "Campione Gratuito". Other promos are just the regular releases but with "Omaggo Vendita Vietata" punched into the sleeve with a computerised needle. Sleeveless jukebox promos featuring additional artists besides a-ha are also available for many of the 7" releases.

Japan: The sleeves of the Japanese promos tend to be the same as the regular release except for a sticker with the three Japanese symbols printed on it. The promos have white labels with black WB-logos and text rather than the regular cream-coloured labels. The 3" CD-singles have "Sample Not For Sale" printed around the middle.

Mexico: Promos have "Disco Promocional -Prohibida Su Venta" printed on the records.

Spain: Promos have "Promocional Prohibida Su Venta" printed on the record labels.

USA: Promos have "Promotional Copy. Not For Sale" printed on the label in the centre of the record and on the sleeve. The 7"-promos often feature the same track on both sides of the disc. In these cases the sleeves are usually almost identical to the regular releases except for maybe the track listing or they may not come with a picture sleeve. Some of the 12" promos have the same sleeve and disc as the normal release but are gold stamped; "Lent for Promotional Use Only. Any Sale or Unauthorised Transfer is Prohibited and Void. Subject to Return Upon Demand by Owner. Acceptance of This Record Constitutes Agreement to the Above.". Other promo 12" releases may feature unique sleeves and often the same track(s) on both sides of the item.

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