An unvarnished blog that dips into the past and comments
on the present of WBAI-FM, a once significant, intelligent New York
radio station that for years has suffered chronic abuse from within and now
nears extinction. Your comments are welcomed and will not be censored.
Wednesday, September 28, 2016
Those elusive tapes...
Here's a follow-up on the e-bay sale of Pacifica tapes. It does not solve the mystery, but it contains a few details. My source is an informed source who wishes to remain anonymous. This is what I was told:
The storage unit is an old one, located in Rosemead CA, not visited in years, and never inventoried. Pacifica's National office was paying the bill, not PRA, because this was not part of the $1,900 monthly PRA budget for the 4 units it does pay for. This is not PRA's fault, it's the National office having ignored invoices, alerts, warnings, etc. Understandably, the seller wants to make a profit as this is his business.
Let's hope that someone can negotiate with him to donate it to a secure place with trustworthy custodians. It is highly doubtful that Pacifica can afford to buy these tapes back or—if reacquired—what it will do with them. The inventory is "several thousand tapes" and thousands of folios. Most of the latter are digitized and available online for free at archive.org, but there are a number of sets PRA never found, so it would be valuable to review what is there and add any of the missing ones (mostly WBAI 1963-1967). Sounds like a good thing for crowd funding or a rescue emergency grant.
Here's a brief update posted to Pacifica Radio in Exile. It links to this blog, but contains a few more details.
Tracy adds:Here is the sound clip mentioned above in the response that Chris posted.