This is outside the scope of ARSC.  See the bylaws.  Audio Engineering
Society is better suited. Our mission is preservation and restorations in
this regard.  There is no reason to get tangled up in the various recording
technologies and the rules of the different diciplines that make field

Steven Smolian    

-----Original Message-----
From: Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List
[mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Andy Kolovos
Sent: Monday, September 08, 2014 12:27 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Asch vs Lomax

Greetings all--

Have been silent on the list for quite a while but this thread has inspired
me to chime in.  For those of you who don't know me, I'm both an archivist
and a folklorist and have worked professionally in both fields since 2002.

For many years I--in cooperation with my colleagues John Fenn at the
University of Oregon, Doug Boyd at University of Kentucky and others--have
labored to provide basic audio field recording training (as well as digital
file management and preservation) workshops to folklorists and oral
historians under the auspices of the American Folklore Society (AFS) and the
Oral History Association (OHA). I've also conducted a similar workshop for
anthropologists at the American Anthropological Association (AAA).  I am
also aware of similar efforts at the Society for Ethnomusicology (SEM).

At least in the academic context, training ethnographic fieldworkers in
basic audio recording methods is not a real priority. In part this is due to
the emphasis placed on acquiring theoretical knowledge and research skills.
In part I suspect it has something to do with it being viewed as technician
work--something people will just figure out on their own. In part because
people are intimidated by the technology and overwhelmed by choices. In part
because of a persistent  perspective that "good enough to be audible for me
to hear" is good enough.

I have often pondered the possibilities of AFS developing a partnership with
ARSC to present field recording and digital audio preservation and
management workshops in different areas of the US.  Better source recordings
mean better archival records.  Materials that are better managed while still
in the possession of their creators stand a much better chance of surviving
until they find a home in a repository.

I would love to discuss this further with any ARSC members who are



On 9/7/14, 12:00 AM, ARSCLIST wrote:


ARC in Manhattan would love to host such an event/workshop.  Could involve
Columbia University musicology folks.  Lemme know.  b.George
[log in to unmask]


Thanks for the link, John.

The recordings they played were well made. I wish all would-be folklore and
oral history collectors would take 60 minutes to master the basics of field
recording. So much interesting material has been collected in such bad audio
quality. I would suggest this should be a mission of ARSC, teaching amateur
recordists doing field work the basic techniques to capture reasonable

-- Tom Fine


John H. Bondurant
Berea College
Hutchins Library
Special Collections & Archives

Andy Kolovos, Ph.D., MLS
Co-Director and Archivist
Vermont Folklife Center
88 Main Street
Middlebury, VT 05753
(802) 388-4964