From: Smithsonian Folkways [FOLKWAYS_at_SI-LISTSERV_dot_SI_dot_EDU] on behalf of Smithsonian Folkways [smithsonianfolkways_at_si_dot_edu]

Sent: 02 December 2011 17:37

Subject: Happy Birthday Moe! We dusted off your microphone...and it still works!


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Smithsonian Folkways


Smithsonian Folkways


Happy Birthday, Moe!

Friday, December 2, 2011, would have been the 106th birthday of Folkways Records founder Moses Asch, who released 2,168 albums on the label during his life (an average of one per week!).

Smithsonian Folkways sound production supervisor Pete Reiniger recently dusted off one of Moe’s studio microphones, a Western Electric "Birdcage" model (available from 1938 to 1949) that was likely used on many of the recordings in the small, one-room Folkways Records studio. We’re pleased to say that not only does it still work, but it sounds great!

Play AudioListen to the poem “Yaku Taki” from Hatun Kotama, an upcoming album of Kichwa music from Ecuador. The Western Electric microphone was used to record the English translation - listen to the end of the track to hear it!

One-Day Subscriber Discount!
Save 20% off retail price on any order from! Enter code Happy106Moe through Friday, December 2, 2011.

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All retail orders of $50 or more will automatically qualify for free standard U.S. Postal Service shipping (U.S. only) until December 16.

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Moe Asch caricature

Moses Asch caricature, 1953

Kevin Gover

Kevin Gover, director of the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian, recording on Smithsonian Folkways’  Western Electric “Birdcage” microphone.

Smithsonian Folkways is a nonprofit endeavor, and CD and digital download purchases sustain both the mission and the music. Liner notes are available as free downloads. Thank you for your support.

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