Thursday, January 14, 2010


The Marr Sound Archives is located on the ground floor of the Miller Nichols Library on the campus of the University of Missouri--Kansas City. The archives was established in 1987 with a foundation gift from Olga and Gaylord Marr. Since then, the collection has grown to include over 300,000 sound recordings.

The focus of the collection is the American experience as reflected in recorded sound. The archives’ holdings include jazz, blues, country, bluegrass, spoken word, vintage radio programs popular, rock and roll, soul, opera, classical and numerous other genres of music. Researchers internationally benefit from the archives collections and services.

Momentum & Marr from j kerfeld on Vimeo.

The Raymond Scott Collection was donated to the University of Missouri-Kansas City by Mitzi Scott, Raymond's widow, in 1993. It contains music scores, photographs, correspondence, journals, diaries, scrapbooks, notebooks, schematics, news clippings, production notes, and personal and miscellaneous items. The collection, which encompasses much of Scott's career until 1980, has been organized into 11 series that occupy 28 boxes and an oversized drawer. A 12th series of audio material, primarily open-reel tapes and instantaneous-cut discs, is housed in the Marr Sound Archives, the audio division of Special Collections.

The strength of the collection lies in over 400 manuscript scores by Scott. They are in various stages of development including sketches, fragments and completed scores, which provide opportunities to see the progress of a work from a rough copy to a completed, published score. This is especially true with The Lute Song manuscripts.

The collection also gives insight into the other side of Scott's career - that of inventor and electronic music pioneer. There are 20 spirals and 36 disclosures to indexed inventions. Additionally, there are miscellaneous invention and engineering notes, and schematic drawings and diagrams.

Other items of interest include journals, diaries and scrapbooks of Raymond Scott and his second wife, Dorothy Collins; personal and business correspondence; and several hundred photographs, including publicity and candid shots.

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