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The Digital Production Group recently finished digitization of the Musical Acoustics Research Library collection and the content is now online.  This collection consists of independent archives or libraries assembled by distinguished groups or individuals in the field of musical acoustics research.  MARL is comprised of the Catgut Acoustical Society Library, the Arthur H. Benade Archive, the John Backus Archive, and the John W. Coltman Archive.

Some of the acoustical knowledge in this research archive has been used by leading players and manufacturers to modify the production of instruments, and the design of concert halls and recording studios.  The research covers not only wind instruments, but also room acoustics, and the interplay between acoustical physicas and the mechanisms of auditory processing . The collection consists of papers, photograhs, medua, digital materials, wood samples, clarinet mouth pieces, and lab equipment.

Above photo taken from the Catgut Acoustical Society Library, Series1, Box18, Folder8 - Condax, Louis M. - Photos: Curtis, and Condax in Studio (http://purl.stanford.edu/qq458wj3438#flipbook)

Check out the collection online: http://www.oac.cdlib.org/view?docId=kt6h4nf6qc;developer=local;style=oac4;doc.view=items

Edward A. Feigenbaum, circa 1970s

With the University Archives making more and more collections available online, I'd like to take the opportunity to highlight some of the novel ways in which these materials are being used by researchers. What follows is a recent report from Ed Feigenbaum, Kumagai Professor of Computer Science Emeritus, about how his papers in particular are yielding interesting connections: 

Betty Grover Eisner audiotape

The Stanford Media Preservation Lab recently completed reformatting the audio tapes contained in the Betty Grover Eisner papers, held by University Archives. Eisner was at the vanguard of using LSD and other psychedelic drugs in her psychotherapy research during the 1950s and 60s. The majority of the tapes document long, multi-hour therapy sessions, with patients on mind alterting substances. Because of the content, which is often sexually explicit, these tapes are restricted; those interested patrons who want to listen to these tapes should contact the University Archivist for more information. A handful of tapes do have worldwide access however, including this cassette of a talk Eisner gave at a UCLA psychology seminar exactly 42 years ago. 

This month marks the start of Stanford Media Preservation Lab's effort to reformat the audiovisual materials from the Benoit Mandelbrot collection. Over the course of the next month, SMPL will complete the project, making the materials available to researchers and patrons through SUL's Department of Special Collections.

Page from journal created by Arthur H. Benade. Acoustical Theory - Woodwind BOIK (Book of Infinite Knowledge) misc. subjects., 1970-1986. (M1711_S3_B74_F1)

Many of the unpublished materials in the Musical Acoustics Research Library records have been digitized, except for personal correspondence and other miscellaneous documents. This includes materials from the four collections: the Catgut Acoustical Society, the John W. Coltman Collection, the Arthur H. Benade Collection, and the John Backus Collection. Researchers may access the digital copies through links from the description in the online finding aid.

The collection was processed in 2011 by Andrea Castillo. For more information please see Andrea's previous article.

Edison Home Phonograph (detail)

The beginning of 2013 has seen a number of significant developments at Stanford's Archive of Recorded Sound, especially in the area of patron services, both at the Archive itself and online.  

Information relating to these improved services can be found on the Archive's new website. This detailed resource also includes information on the Archive's extensive collections, guidelines for planning a research trip to the Archive, and finally recommendations for notable sound recording research tools, both online and in print.

Continuing Stanford University Library's collaboration with the California Audiovisual Preservation Project (CAVPP), four items from University Archives have recently been added to the Internet Archive:

The Stanford Media Preservation Lab has recently finished reformatting the 440 audiocassettes in the Fred Ross papers, an immense body of audio documenting the training meetings held by labor organizer Fred Ross Sr. Housed in Special Collections, the digitized audio focuses extensively on house meetings in the 1970s and 80s, an organizing technique Ross developed and taught. A small portion of the tapes include Cesar Chavez, who Ross hired and trained in the early 50s. Chavez later went on to form the National Farm Workers Association, but Ross always remained a mentor and strong influence. "As time went on, Fred became sort of my hero," Chavez said. "I saw him organize and I wanted to learn." 

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