Sunday’s New York Times had a piece about a major acquisition by The Library Of Congress: a huge number of master recordings from Universal Music Group which have been sitting idle for as much as 85 years.
These lacquer and glass masters had been stored in a former limestone mine in Pennsylvania, and are in the process of being transferred to an LOC facility near Culpepper, VA. According to the Times, these recordings will be archived and digitized, with streaming access made available to the general public at some point in the future.
These are said to include both masters of finished records, along with alternate takes and session chat from some major artists.
“Besides music by towering figures like Crosby, Louis Armstrong, Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald and Judy Garland, the collection includes songs by stars like the Mills Brothers, Fred Waring, Guy Lombardo and the Andrews Sisters. For connoisseurs of American roots music, there is also country music from Ernest Tubb, bluegrass from Bill Monroe and a wide variety of guitar and piano blues, gospel and jug-band music.”
More details can be found on the NYT web site.