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    The Louisville Underground Music Archive, part of Archives & Special Collections on the lower level of U of L’s library, has a goal of documenting the city’s rock scene from the 1970s (beginning with the punk band No Fun) to today. Since 2013, LUMA has gotten the word out and received gig posters, photographs, obsolete AV equipment, ’zines, fan mail, fliers, instruments, master tapes, recording equipment, a scroll Rachel’s used while diagraming the 2003 album Systems/Layers, a drumhead from a band called Cat Butt/Dog Butt. At a donation table at the Flea Off Market in 2014, a man’s hands shook as he handed over a set list written by his best friend the night before he died.

    Until Dec. 20, a lower-level gallery is showing “Live From a Dark Room,” 300 (mostly loaned) images from the scene, from portraits to live shows. (Will Oldham, aka Bonnie “Prince” Billy, shot the cover and outtakes for Slint’s seminal 1991 album Spiderland.) “We were one of the first institutions in the country to do underground music,” says Elizabeth Reilly, photographic curator at the archives. “We want to archive, remember and preserve all different aspects of Louisville. And this music scene is such a huge part of that.”

    This originally appeared in the September 2018 issue of Louisville Magazine on page 105. To subscribe to Louisville Magazineclick here. To find us on newsstands, click here.


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