In 1938 the Library of Congress dispatched Alan Lomax—already a seasoned field worker at age 23—to complete a folklife survey of the Great Lakes region. He set off in a 1935 Plymouth Deluxe 4-door sedan, toting a Presto instantaneous disc recorder, a still camera, and a moving image camera. He returned almost three months later, having driven thousands of miles on barely paved roads, with a cache of 250 discs and 8 reels of film. These materials documented the diversity of ethnicity—Irish, Finnish, Serbian, Polish, German, Croatian, Canadian French, Hungarian, and more—in Michigan, as well as cultural expression among loggers and lake sailors.
This innovative e-publication celebrates the 1938 field trip with a compelling narrative written by the Library's Lomax curator, Todd Harvey, and illustrated with original items from the trip, including audio and video clips, field notes, and telegrams. Together, these materials provide fascinating insights into both the region that Lomax called "the most fertile source" of American folklore, and the man who would become the most famous 20th century folklorist in America.
Dust-to-Digital has the 28 track album and book (PDF or iBook formats) available by clicking here. Dust-to-Digital has been frequently covered by Cybergrass for their array of historic recordings on everything from the bass to Mother's Day to early musical styles relevant to bluegrass music today.
Another item from Dust-to-Digital is the Hambidge Art Auction May 31, 2014. Music and entertainment curated by Dust-to-Digital.
Eighty years ago, Mary Hambidge, a professional whistler, costume designer and weaver, moved to the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Georgia to establish a sustainable farm and artist enclave. Since her death in 1973, the Center has stayed true to her legacy by offering a formal and competitive residency program for those interested in the arts, sciences and sustainability. Eight residents at a time come from across the U.S. and the world to the pristine 600-acre property in order to explore, develop, innovate, collaborate and create lasting works of the highest caliber. Residents include visual artists, performance artists, writers, poets, playwrights, scientists, ceramicists, musicians, dancers, choreographers, chefs and architects.
The Hambidge Art Auction + Performance Gala is the Hambidge Center's biggest annual fundraiser, offering for bid the work of over 200 exceptional artists, as well as live music, theatrical performances, and art installations. This year’s event will include a Dust-to-Digital Listening Lounge, as well as live musical performances by the label’s artists and friends. Details and tickets can be found at www.hambidgeauction.org