Archive of Recorded Sound

About us

We house more than four hundred thousand historic sound recordings, along with published materials and archival collections pertaining to music and sound.

We have a reading room for individual and small-group study along with technology for engaging with the Archive of Recorded Sound’s historic media collections. We work with faculty to offer class sessions for undergraduate and graduate students, including demonstrations of our phonographs and player piano.

Archive staff are happy to field reference queries by phone or email from all students, faculty, and researchers, so please reach out if you have a question.

Learn more about access to Stanford's rare and distinctive materials.

Using the archive

The Archive of Recorded Sound is open to students, faculty, and all researchers.

Students and scholars from outside of Stanford should contact the staff with inquiries before they make their plans. Let us know what you are interested in.

Further resources

Featured collections

  • Ambassador Auditorium Collection

    The Ambassador Auditorium Collection contains the files of the various organizational departments of the Ambassador Auditorium as well as audio and video recordings. The materials cover the period between April 1974 and May 1995, when the Ambassador Auditorium was fully operational as an internationally recognized concert venue.

    View the finding aid
  • Reese Erlich Jazz Programs and Interviews Collection

    The collection contains dozens of features and recorded interviews with transcripts with a focus on jazz artists such as Regina Carter, Jack DeJohnette, Billy Higgins, Ahmad Jamal, Dianne Reeves, Paquito de Rivera, and McCoy Tyner.

    View the finding aid
  • Richard J. Howe Collection of Musical Instrument Literature

    The Richard J. Howe Collection documents the development of the music industry, mainly in the United States, including the manufacture of pianos, organs, and mechanical musical instruments.

    View the finding aid
  • Jim Cullum Riverwalk Jazz Collection

    A full-featured website that showcases a rotating selection of the nearly 400 original Riverwalk Jazz radio programs. The website also includes illustrated essays for nearly every program; photo galleries; additional audio content; and detailed information about the Jim Cullum Jazz Band players, their guests, and the nearly 1300 pieces of music they performed together.

    Read more

Meet the staff


The main entrance is power equipped; an elevator serves the lower level, including the Archive of Recorded Sound entrance.

Last updated May 28, 2024