Monday, September 12, 2011

The closed stacks

It amazes me how in the Internet age you can find so much on the computer. For instance I love being able to paw through the archives of Gramophone magazine. And the New York Philharmonic is putting a lot of its old paperwork up in a searchable archive, too, which I find fascinating. And useful, too, for my book on Leonard Pennario.

What also amazes me though is the amount of stuff that is still kept under lock and key.

Earlier this morning, I am working away at the discography for my book, which is a huge task because Pennario made a million wonderful records, he was not just some schlep. One thing I love to do is track how the records were received -- when they were released, who said what about them. That is where Gramophone comes in handy, and the New York Times, etc.

But would you believe the moldy oldy Saturday Evening Post, oh, they charge you?

A search on Pennario's RCA box set of Debussy Preludes allowed me to view this stingy snippet from the old Saturday Evening Post.

“Whoever’s taste was reflected in the choice of Pennario for this assignment, it is poorly justified by the results," some critic is harumphing. "This record reflects Pennario's previous enterprises in that..."

Then it tells me: "Want to know how to read the rest of this book?" And they want you to pay for it.

Forget it!

As if I am going to pay to slog through this boring, snobby, ignorant, unoriginal, Eastern Eurocentric review.

Take it to your grave, you know?

Same with gray stingy old Harper's magazine.

On the bright side it is exciting to check back on the Internet from one week to the next and see what is appearing. Just because it was not there last week does not mean it will not be there this week.

It is something to look forward to when you wake up in the morning!


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  2. I am so glad to know you are creating a discography for your book on LP. Broadcasters will refer to it. Pennario lovers will cherish it. I'm sure it will become the definitive 'go-to' reference for all things Pennario. Thank you!