I am writing the stories of the cover artwork on The Beatles’ record albums, and am currently researching the creation of artwork for the band’s sixth album, Rubber Soul. You can see the album cover at: www.thebeatles.com/album/rubber-soul. Not only is the distorted Rubber Soul photo an immediate eye-catcher but, for the first time on a Beatles’ album, the title typography is also a star. The title in the upper left corner was designed by Charles Front in the fall of 1965 and has been described by critics as “bulbous”, “rubbery”, and “psychedelic”. Here’s where I can use your help.
First, is there a proper name for this style of lettering? I’m familiar with the common word-processing fonts – Calibri, Arial and the like - but my research has yet to turn up a name for this unusual typographic design. What’s it called?
Second, did this lettering style have a history of use prior to appearing on the Rubber Soul cover in December 1965? Perhaps it was not common before then but I know it’s difficult to say that something is a first, as some have said the Rubber Soul cover was the first to use this style.
Thanks for your time and consideration of my questions.