An Interview with an Icon: The Lost Tape Recordings


17th Sep, 2013

For as long as the technology has been available, journalists have preferred documenting their interviews on little tape recorders rather than relying on their note-taking skills. Who can scribble down notes fast enough to catch every precious word anyway? Recordings give us that extra embellishment; something said under the interviewee’s breathe, a laughter that wouldn’t have been noted down or even the atmosphere of the room from the background noise.

But what happened to all those tape recordings of journalist’s meetings with famous icons once the interviews went out to print? Surely no one would just throw out the recording of an interview with oh say, Fidel Castro or Jim Morrison?

Enter Blank on Blank, curator of lost and unheard interviews with famous names. Helping journalists ‘dust off their prized vintage tapes, minidiscs and digital recordings with iconic figures, gathered to write articles, books, radio specials, that few people ever got to hear’, Blank on Blank pretty much gives us the key to a vault of awesomeness. They’ve also collaborated with PBS digital studios to actually animate the vintage interviews and bring them to life visually.

So I’ve picked out a few of my absolute favourite interviews, kick back and enjoy, friend…

Larry King on Getting Seduced

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Janis Joplin on Rejection

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Jim Morrison on Why Fat is Beautiful

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Fidel Castro in 1959 on Guantanamo and Not Being a Communist

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Farrah Fawcett on Stiletto Power

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See a list of all the interviews here from Blank on Blank. Follow their Facebook page for newly found interviews.

And thanks to a reader for the tip who probably wouldn’t mind a little shout out to his Tumblr, Epicurialist




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