Neil Bogart founded Casablanca Records in 1973, signing Kiss, Donna Summer, Parliament-Funkadelic, the Love Unlimited Orchestra (featuring vocalist Barry White), the Hudson Brothers, Fanny, and later, the Village People, Cher, and Lipps, Inc. Casablanca distributed Meco’s disco version of the Star Wars main title, which was one of the most successful albums of 1977, outselling the original soundtrack by John Williams.

Kiss released seven consecutive platinum albums and sold 50 million albums between 1974 - 80; within one year (1978 - 79), Summer had three, consecutive double-albums achieve platinum status and charted 4 consecutive #1 singles; the Village People sold 20 million albums in 1977 - 80.

Casablanca Filmworks had major box office hits with Thank God It’s Friday, The Deep, and Midnight Express before Bogart closed the division down in 1977.

In collaboration with Steve Rubell and Ian Schrager, Casablanca released the double LP A Night at Studio 54 (1979).

Bogart sold Casablanca to Polygram in 1980. He died of cancer in 1982, at the age of 41.

SUNSET STRIP MUSIC BILLBOARDS

In the 1970s, billboards were not created by a photographic transfer process—they were all hand-painted.. The image was painted over a three-day period by a team of artists, on view for one month, then white-washed and painted over.

Photographs by Robert Landau, author of Rock ‘N’ Roll Billboards of the Sunset Strip(2012).