Found a possible "lost" Kentucky Derby broadcast. What should I do?

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by slinkyfarm, Nov 10, 2017.

  1. slinkyfarm

    slinkyfarm Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Winchester, KY
    A local who used to own a record shop gave me a few crates of 78s and Edison discs today, along with several homemade records. One of them was a recording of the radio broadcast of the 1944 Kentucky Derby, won by Pensive, and all the sites I found with Derby broadcasts were missing that year.

    If this turns out to be the only copy in existence, it's already stayed lost way too long. I'm a former sportswriter, which I think gives me an even greater obligation to ensure that this winds up in the right hands. It needs to be professionally restored and preserved by someone with the proper equipment, and unless there's serious monetary value attached to it, I think it should wind up at the Hall of Fame or Calumet Farm, where Pensive was bred. In fact, a second recording was of the 1941 race, won by Triple Crown winner Whirlaway (that one's in circulation), and those were the first two Derby winners for Calumet Farm, which isn't far from me.

    Any thoughts or recommendations?
     
  2. jmpatrick

    jmpatrick Forum Resident

    Location:
    Detroit, MI
    Any Indianapolis 500 broadcasts in that crate? There's a bunch from the late 40's, early 50's that are missing.
     
  3. Arnold Grove

    Arnold Grove Forum Resident

    Location:
    NYC
  4. slinkyfarm

    slinkyfarm Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Winchester, KY
    It was just those two Derbys, along with a couple of sides that just say "FDR" (I haven't listened to those yet) and what looks like more typical home recordings - piano recitals, kids opening Christmas presents, etc.

    Indy's a pretty long race for 78 RPM records...
     
    troggy and The Hole Got Fixed like this.
  5. forthlin

    forthlin Forum Resident

    Put 10K on Pensive to win?????:shh:
     
    mx20, rogertheshrubber and Cassius like this.
  6. R. Totale

    R. Totale The Voice of Reason

    Location:
    Bi-Regional
    Contact the Kentucky Derby museum at Churchill Downs. A curator there will be able to tell you whether they have a copy or not.

    Derby Museum
     
    slinkyfarm likes this.
  7. LEONPROFF

    LEONPROFF Forum Resident

    Please keep us updated. I find this very intriguing.
     
  8. slinkyfarm

    slinkyfarm Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Winchester, KY
    Good idea. Message sent.
     
    bleachershane likes this.
  9. The Hole Got Fixed

    The Hole Got Fixed Forum Resident

    Location:
    Toronto
    Yes please keep updating this. :agree:
     
  10. slinkyfarm

    slinkyfarm Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Winchester, KY
    I sent them a .flac of my needledrop, and I was thanked for my kindness for at least a copy for research purposes and told it would be forwarded to their AV team.

    I hope I hear back from the AV people to go over specs. Maybe they can help me pull more fidelity out of it. I used a modern stereo turntable because that's what I have, and I didn't undo the RIAA EQ curve because I don't know what settings to use to readjust it for a homemade record.

    And now that it's officially "out there", I wonder what that does to the value of the record, if there was any. It has crossed my mind that there's a guy sitting on the only known video of the first Super Bowl over money. But I think I've done the right thing.
     
  11. R. Totale

    R. Totale The Voice of Reason

    Location:
    Bi-Regional
    Offer to trade it for two Derby box seats!
     
    fluffskul likes this.
  12. kinksfan

    kinksfan New Member

    Location:
    Lexington, KY
    Hey slinkyfarm, I work at the ESPN affiliate down the road in Lexington. If you'd be willing to share that file with me I'll see what I can do about cleaning it up some.
     
    slinkyfarm and GerryO like this.
  13. Grampire

    Grampire Well-Known Member

    Location:
    29 Palms
    or Juleps for the Forum!
    [​IMG]
     
    LEONPROFF likes this.
  14. McLover

    McLover Forum Resident

    Location:
    East TN
    Also, being that this is Southern, why not offer this audio to the Country Music Hall Of Fame and Museum?. They have the resources and skills to deal with vintage acetates and transcriptions. And deal with all Southern themed audio history. And digitize it for many to listen to. Their web library of audio is thorough, and well done. This is Southern audio history. They know the best means to transfer it and get it available.
     
    Louise Boat likes this.
  15. Dillydipper

    Dillydipper Sultan Of Snark

    Good catch McLover!

    First apartment I rented was when I worked at my first radio station. Landlord says, "Hey, you're in radio, I found some stuff upstairs." Oh hell yeh...
    Somebody who had something to do with my very station, had apparently worked with them in the EARLY 50's. It was one of those round storage canisters, approx a third the size of a trash barrel. Inside, some old tape, a couple of transcriptions of local commercials, and a couple of printed station handouts. Man, THAT was a day when I brought this stuff in! I remember the GM was a very principled guy at the time, so I hope he did something nice for my landlord. I never saw the materials again; I assume they stuck them in a file cabinet somewhere. This station had been one of the town's two original stations, so they must have had some sort of archives of station history in storage somewhere (I won't say their transmitter shack was the nicest, but they brought a lot of stuff in there over the years just to get it out of the office).

    Essentially, not so much "station history", but more like "station stuff from back when history was being made there)...
     
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  16. fluffskul

    fluffskul Forum Resident

    Location:
    albany, ny
    No offense to McLover, but please Anything but this. It would simply be a "novelty piece" there. The history and sport of horse racing is very much revered in a few parts of the country.

    As a huge horse racing fan I'd suggest that if you decide to give it to a museum, that museum should be in Lexington, KY (Home of Churchill Downs) or Saratoga, NY (National Museum of Racing & Hall of Fame). This thread is so intriguing as a collector of music and a horse racing fan! Please keep us posted.
     
    Louise Boat likes this.
  17. Hamhead

    Hamhead Sinatra promo specialist

    You maybe ruined your chances of getting a monetary contribution for your acetate since you gave them a full recording, maybe they'll want it anyway.

    The Paley Center in NY has the Superbowl I video.

    Tape of the First Super Bowl Emerges
     
  18. fluffskul

    fluffskul Forum Resident

    Location:
    albany, ny
    This thought crossed my mind, but based on postings I don't feel like OP is going into this with $ being the number one goal. Its really cool that an otherwise lost recording is now "out there." And really if OP is to get $ for this, it likely wasn't going to be from a museum that sustains itself on a nominal admission fee and donations. The only way to really get money from this piece would be from a private collector. And making a digital copy before selling to private collector is brilliant, since its extremely possible the private collector may wish to keep his treasure private. If this truly is the only known analog recording of this race, I imagine its worth something to a private collector even if he/she could listen on archive.org for free.
     
    LEONPROFF likes this.
  19. Mark Wilson

    Mark Wilson Forum Resident

    Have you listened to these yet? I'd imagine FDR's radio speeches are already archived somewhere, but the other recordings you mentioned are right in the middle of the pre-during WW2 era so there could be something historically important there.

    Mark
     
  20. Wally Swift

    Wally Swift Forum Resident

    Location:
    Brooklyn New York
    With such a recording I would make a digital copy and put the audio equivalent of a video "time code" on it for free public consumption. This would be in the form of a "beep" every 15-30 seconds. I would then upload the coded copy to Youtube, Internet Archive, etc. The public will be able to enjoy the content and at the same time you will be protecting any monetary value the un-coded original recording might have. If it is worth something to someone they will contact you.
     
  21. Wally Swift

    Wally Swift Forum Resident

    Location:
    Brooklyn New York
    Not all WWII radio broadcasts are archived and available. I own 4 acetates with 28 minutes of a NBC broadcast of a Hitler speech that I was told by one historian is the only known recording.
     
    Mark Wilson likes this.
  22. slinkyfarm

    slinkyfarm Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Winchester, KY
    I figured his radio speeches are probably well-documented, but I figured Kentucky Derby broadcasts would have been preserved too, so that's definitely a valid point and I should get to those.
     
    Mark Wilson likes this.
  23. daveidmarx

    daveidmarx Forum Resident

    Location:
    Astoria, NY USA
    That wouldn't do much to watermark it these days. Using spectral waveform editing software, one could easily remove a beep from a recording.
     
    Wally Swift likes this.
  24. slinkyfarm

    slinkyfarm Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Winchester, KY
    Or I could just upload it at a crappy bitrate, which seems to be standard procedure with OTR broadcasts...:D

    That part isn't really on my radar yet anyway. I 'm still focused on making a proper digital transfer. It sounds like the recording turntable wasn't quite up to speed yet when the stylus was dropped, so that needs to be corrected. I think I can fix it somewhat by adjusting my turntable pitch on the fly, but it'll take some trial and error to do a proper job.
     
  25. slinkyfarm

    slinkyfarm Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Winchester, KY
    You're thinking of Louisville. Lexington has Keeneland. Definitely horse country either way. American Pharoah is now an area resident.
     
    fluffskul likes this.

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