Alan Lomax spent his life documenting, researching and advocating for cultural equality. For a Lomax newcomer, the amount of material Lomax collected might seem a bit intimidating and out of reach. Luckily, the Alan Lomax Archive and the Association For Cultural Equity (ACE) have announced the launch of the ACE Online Archive, the culmination of over a decade of restoration, digitization and cataloging of Lomax’s life work.
The ACE Online Archive includes nearly 17,000 full-length streams of audio field recordings collected by Lomax between 1946 and 1991. You can get through the whole thing if you’ve got 800 hours to spare. And once you’re finished going through those, check out the scans of 5,000 photographic prints and negatives, 16 hours of vintage radio transcriptions and 90 hours of interviews, discussions and lectures by Lomax and his colleagues.
Lomax’s work has been used in everything from Martin Scorsese movies to Bruce Springsteen‘s new album. Below, listen to Moby‘s “Natural Blues,” which uses one of Lomax’s field recordings as a sample.