Me & This Website...
Most sites seem to have one of these pages, so I guess I
should start one...
My name is Trevor Hill, and I live in a quiet suburb of
Melbourne, Australia. I'm 47 years old and have been collecting 78's &
cylinders since my early teens. At first, my collection had little direction
(I'd buy whatever came along!), but eventually I decided that some culling of
what I already had was needed.
I also needed a future plan for what I wanted to collect, and
why. Although it changes from time to time, my collecting now tends to be:
- Cylinder oriented. I don't have unlimited space (or
money!), so to a large degree I've ceased buying 78's (almost).
- I specifically collect spoken-word recordings. These were
less common than brass bands etc, and are often quite fun.
- I also concentrate on what would today be considered
"offensive" or "politically incorrect" (This is about
1/2 of Edison's early output of "coon", "nigger", &
"darkie" songs!). I make no apology for this, and certainly
don't endorse the content of such recordings. But, they have been
made, and constitute a historical perspective on "what was funny
and laughable" at that time.
- I also collect recordings that would have appealed to a
limited market. This includes uncommon instruments (such as bagpipes), and
- As an Aussie, I'm compelled to collect "Billy
Williams" recordings. He was Australia's first recording star (well
before Kylie!!!), yet is largely forgotten in his own country.
- Because of increasing prices, I will never really be a
machine collector. I own an Edison Fireside Model A (bought out of my FIRST
pay-packet), and a Columbia Graphophone Model Q (bought in 2003 off ebay).
- I also have an interest in home-recording, and have an
Edison recorder, blank cylinders, an Edison Amberol shaver (which is a
sure-fire way to crack cylinder blanks!!!), and a home-made shaver (which
doesn't break the blanks!!!) constructed from a decrepit Ediphone (I promise
it was not restorable to original condition).
As an electronic/communications engineer, the
desire to clean up these recordings led me first to making a phono-cartridge
adapter for the Fireside, and then a set of audio filters. This brought out all
the flaws of the Fireside (gear noise etc), and led me to a new project: a
purpose-built cylinder transcription machine (see my DIY
This has been an ongoing project, refined over
about 25 years, and allowed me to produce taped processed copies of my
collection. This was all OK, until computers & sophisticated audio
processing software came along...but that's another story.
TO BE CONTINUED...
last edited Friday, 08 April 2005
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Trevor W. Hill
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