On the Radar: Soviet X-Ray Records

bonerecords

During the Cold War years, listening to “Western” music–especially those genres of “ill-repute” such as jazz and rock ‘n roll–could get a person sent to the Gulag. So people got creative and made bootleg records of this music on old x-rays, called “bones” or “ribs.” Because the quality was so poor, people called the experience of hearing them to be “listening through sound”–meaning sound with some faint music coming through. Watch a less-than-15-minute documentary on “X-Ray Audio” here:

 

Image source: X-Ray Audio

Check out the great X-Ray Audio Project website here.

Related articles:

On the Radar: Louis Armstrong serenading his wife on the Giza Plateau, 1961

The “Silent Duel” Between Stalin and Doctor Zhivago

On the Radar: Louis Armstrong serenading his wife on the Giza Plateau, 1961

louis-armstrong-playing-for-wife-1961

Want to know more about this iconic photo? Read up on how jazz greats spread American culture to countries across the world as part of a United States’ Cold War ambassadorial mission at:

OpenCulture

Vintage Everyday

Or, read a book about it: Satchmo Blows Up the World: Jazz Ambassadors Play the Cold War by Penny M. Von Eschen