What Gets Preserved?

GHODigitization, Music, Preservation


In 2000, the U.S. Congress passed the National Recording Preservation Act which, according to James Billington, Librarian of Congress, “affirmed the nation’s collective interest in preserving sound recordings for posterity…[and] established the Library of Congress National Recording Preservation Board.” Along with its sister organization, the National Recording Preservation Foundation, each year the NRPB selects 25 recordings that are at least … Read More

Preserving the Big Bang

GHODigitization, Music, Preservation


In 1953 at the age of 18, an unknown Elvis Presley walked into Sun Records in Memphis, TN and recorded two songs to acetate disc for the whopping total of $4. Not long after, he received a Sun Records contract which was, in turn, sold to RCA for $40,000. In today’s market that would be upwards of $300,000. That acetate … Read More

Sound and Vision

GHOAudio, Preservation


In 1860, 17 years before Thomas Edison first recorded himself on tinfoil, Édouard-Léon Scott de Martinville recorded himself singing a snippet of “Au Clair de la Lune” on a device he called a phonautograph, a rudimentary approximation of the anatomy of the human ear. In a May 19, 2014 New Yorker article titled, “A Voice from the Past,” Alec Wilkinson … Read More