Editor To Participate in CUNY Graduate Center Keynote Event editor Michael Fremer was recently asked by noted jazz authority and author Gary Giddins to participate in a panel discussion at the City University of New York (CUNY) about (what else?) record collectors generally and 78rpm collectors specifically. I explained that I'm not an authority on 78s but was told that my insight would be welcome on record collectors generally and I was encouraged to say "yes" so I did.

If you going to be in New York City on the evening of October 1st, please consider attending. It's free, but you'll need a reservation. See the information below.

Last Kind Word Blues: On Collecting and the Vanishing History of American Music

Wednesday, October 1 / Elebash Recital Hall / 6:30 p.m.

If music by influential backwoods blues artists only exists on archaic media, what’s to stop it from disappearing? Are 78rpm-record collectors just obsessed eccentrics, or are they cultural conservators, keeping strains of American music alive? How do the desire to find and own antique objects and the need to archive our musical heritage intersect? This event will focus on the difficulty of obtaining and preserving the nation’s rural music traditions, particularly jazz and country blues of the 1920s and '30s. Participants include Michael Fremer, editor of; Amanda Petrusich, author of Do Not Sell at Any Price: The Wild Obsessive Hunt for the World’s Rarest 78rpm Records; Nathan Salsburg, curator at the Alan Lomax Archive; Sam Stephenson, author of numerous books, including The Jazz Loft Project. Moderated by Gary Giddins, director of the Leon Levy Center for Biography at the Graduate Center.


For more information, or assistance with reservations, call GC Public Programs at 

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myheroiscoltrane's picture

...Jerry Weber's son, who runs "Whistling Willie's 78s in pittsburgh...a store connected to Jerry's Records in squirrel hill with over 65,000 78s in stock...

Devil Doc's picture

Judging from the photographs, it looks like they needed someone who was actually alive when 78's were popular. ;>)

Michael Fremer's picture
Very cruel.....but funny!
Jazzfan62's picture

The hot chick and the Metamucil 4.

Otto K's picture

This a wierd panel. Amanda and Nathan are very important figures in the world of collecting and curating prewar music. Cool for our host to be part of, but not sure what he is going to add to that discussion. Collectors of and collecting 78's is/are a very different mind think and emphasis than the audiophille "classic rock" world that Mike and analog planet normally (though admittedly, not exclusively) traffics in. They are not mutually exclusive (Robert Johnson did begat Eric Clapton and Led Zep) but the ven diagram doesn't overlap all that much. And why Gary Giddons is moderating totally escapes. Really important jazz author and critic, but record collecting authority (though I'm sure he has an amazing collection)...

Michael Fremer's picture
Be assured that when I was invited to participate that was precisely my response. I explained that my interests and expertise were related more to the vinyl than shellac world. I was requested with great insistence to participate because of my visibility and because, they said, of my understanding of the collector mentality.