The following quote is from Godfather book

As the weeks went by and he became busier and busier with getting the script ready, casting the movie and working out production details, Johnny Fontane forgot about his voice, his not being able to sing. Yet when the academy award nominations came out and he found himself one of the candidates, he was depressed because he was not asked to sing one of the songs nominated for the Oscar at the ceremony that would be televised nationally. But he shrugged it offand kept working. He had no hope of winning the Academy Award now that his Godfather was no longer able to put pressure on, but getting the nomination had some value.

The record he and Nino had cut, the one of Italian songs, was selling much better that anything he had cut lately, but he knew that it was Nino's success more than his.

I'm a little confused by the last sentence I provided, particualrly by the meaining of cut in here. What is that?

The thing is that I'm used to use that word with vegatables. Like cut vegatables or something similar.


In this context, cut means "recorded and produced." See Macmillan Definition #11:

cut (verb) MUSIC if a musician or band cuts a record, they record it

In the realm of music, cut can be used as a noun as well:

cut (noun) MUSICa piece of music that has been recorded

Given the time period when The Godfather was written, the "record" probably refers to a vinyl record that would be played on a turntable:

enter image description here

  • 4
    And in the days before the advent of tape recorders, recording sound involved literal "cutting": sound caused vibration in a stylus which carved a trace of its vibrations in a continuous groove in a wax (later shellac, and then vinyl) master disc. Apr 8 '15 at 17:00
  • +1 Good picture, showing the cutting process. I got that. Apr 8 '15 at 18:28
  • 2
    @Dmitry - Actually, that's not showing the cutting process. That's just the finished product playing on a record player (a.k.a. a turntable).
    – J.R.
    Apr 8 '15 at 19:40
  • 2
    It's probably also worth nothing that "cut" is often still used today by analogy to describe recording or editing music, even for digital media. Apr 8 '15 at 21:31
  • @J.R. Well, I thought that the recorder's head was actually cutting the disk. At my old vynil disks we could see a little scratches made during recording with such a player. Why don't? Apr 9 '15 at 18:13

"Cut" can have many meanings. From context, it appears one of them is "cut a record," meaning "make a record" (like, of music). I'd guess the etymology of this is that a vinyl record has grooves cut into it; before tape became more common, you literally "cut" the sound into the record.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.