DC Music News: Punk at the Public Library!

Hello readers! First of all, welcome back to another semester of posts from me, your music library blogger. Woop woop. And now, our featured story:

So if you pay any attention to our blog (which you should be doing, duh), you’ll know that we’re pretty interested in D.C.’s punk heritage/scene. We are fortunate to exist in a city so central to the development of the punk genre and movement, and we get excited about the various punk-related happenings that continue to make D.C. so musically interesting. Also if you pay attention to us, you’ll know that we are, indeed, a library. So we’re pretty excited to share today’s piece of news with you!

Which is: the D.C. Public Library has established a “Punk Archive,” a comprehensive collection of media and artifacts related to the original D.C. hardcore scene of the 1980s. Last year, the Library began crowdsourcing both central texts (CDs, LPs, original footage and photos) and more apocryphal curiosities (t-shirts, concert posters, zines). They did this, in part, by holding events in which performers old and young played punk sets, with the request to bring an item of punk history as an admission fee. This was an excellent way to reunite the D.C. punk community of old and bring its feeling into a new millennium.

Now, the archive has been established as a part of the Public Library’s Special Collections and will continue to be built into the future. The Public Library’s website states that they are working on an “online portal for access to collections, and will further engage the public in the project through programming, volunteer training, exhibits and concerts.”

Sounds awesome! As a fellow punk-loving library, we tip our hat to this excellent venture, a new and unorthodox method of preserving some essential musical history, and an effort that seems right in step with the community-building potential of the original D.C. punk scene. A cool BBC video segment on the collection here.

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