Amateur Archivists: Tape Trading, Bootlegs, and the Archive

Written for Dr. Ciaran Trace’s Introduction to Archival Enterprise II course, Amateur Archivists argues that bootlegs, whether compilations of tracks or illicitly recorded live performances, are significant archival documents. Providing an overview of illicit recordings that begins with Harry Smith’s 1952 compilation The Anthology of American Folk Music and ends with the 90s output of DJ Screw, Amateur Archivists attempts to bring clarity to a long-neglected narrative in the history of audio preservation.

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