It’s been a busy week over at LOUIE central. I’ve been picking up hard drives, transfering a lot of old interviews from old analog videotape to the digital domain, cursing along the way why certain formats such as Hi8 videotape seem to be a breeding ground for ugly looking drop-outs. It’s especially frustrating, as so many interviews on Hi8 were conducted with people that are no longer of the living. I can’t go back in time, so I’m stuck with what I’ve got.
Perhaps, it’s all a subconscious plot that pushes me to buy more beer as I stew over my frustrations, trying to figure easy solutions… I don’t know…
In other news, I’ve been told there was an enlightening presentation last week on the F.B.I. investigation of LOUIE LOUIE at the annual Association for Recorded Sound Collections conference in Seattle. Hopefully, someone will eventually share what was actually discussed, as I’m always interested in hearing other interpretations of this investigation.
For quite a few years, I’ve been selling copies of the F.B.I. files that I’ve uncovered with the Freedom of Information Act. I always appreciate it whenver someone sends their hard-earned money to purchase a bound edition from me, as I know much of this information is available for no charge at various online sources, including the Smoking Gun.
As I mentioned in a previous blog entry, the F.B.I. now has an official LOUIE LOUIE webpage, which I quote:
Louie, Louie was a song published by Limax Music. There was an obscene version of it brought out, which violated copyright laws. The song was recorded by the Kingsmen. Wand Music Company was responsible for the obscene version of the record. The Assistant United States Attorneys for the districts that had a complaint filed did not seek any prosecution.
Very interesting summary from an official government division. I have no idea how an obscene version would actually violate copyright laws. I was also under the impression that the Kingsmen version was determined to be not necessarily obscene, but merely “undecipherable.”
Do these government folks actually read their own reports? Sometimes I wonder….
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UPDATE: I love the internet! Within 1 hour from the time I posted this entry, I get a response from Roberta Schwartz, who did the presentation in Seattle that I just wrote about! She writes:
Hi Eric! I am she who gave the paper on “Louie Louie” at the Associaton of Recorded Sound Collections conference in Seattle last week. I spoke with Glenn Howard, and he told me that you’d heard about the paper. Unfortunately, I didn’t get the paper completed until the night before, so I had no time to share it with you before the conference, but I’ll send it along in an e-mail. The focus was more on “Louie” and its place in the musical world of the pacific northwest – I made extensive use of Sam Carlson’s fantastic website – but the FBI did get a mention. If I weren’t an impoverished college professor I’d have bought the file from you but alas, I am. You were cited several times and credited in full, and I made sure everyone knows you filed the initial FOIA request. Expect some hits from curious archivists and record collectors!
Thanks, Roberta! Your words are appreciated!