The library is making an effort to help you get to know us better, this is our second combination of a staff member’s collection, along with recommendations for materials in our own collection.
Meet Aiden Faust, the Digital Collections Librarian and member of the Special Collections staff.
Aiden responded to our call for collectors, and even thouigh he specializes in photographic preservation, his collection puts a “spin on wax” and features LP, EP records, and old 45’s. Here are some reponses to a few questions we asked Aiden about his collection, and a few questions to help us better get to know him.
Why did you start collecting? How long have you collected?
“Records had a place in my imagination from around age five on, but I resisted the urge to begin collecting outright until I was in my twenties. My dad had a toy record player and collection of 45s from his own childhood that he passed on to me when I was growing up. In my teenaged years, my mom shared her old records with me, too – Grand Funk Railroad, Jefferson Airplane, the Moody Blues. As an undergrad in the 1990s, I got into electronic music and was exposed to the love of vinyl in DJ culture. But it wasn’t until MP3s began to replace CDs in the music market that I finally made the choice to begin buying music on vinyl as my default. I’m a music lover more than a collector, and my format of choice for the last ten years has been vinyl. I like caring for records as tangible objects and, with the proper care, I think they stand the test of time admirably well.”
The library materials that you have suggested, is there anything you’d like to say about any/all of the books and/or movies?
“I like sourcebooks and compilations by people writing about what they do best—artists writing about art, poets writing about poetry, folklorists writing about folklore, etc. That interest is certainly reflected in my book choices. I think my belief in the political power of cultural work also makes itself apparent in the handful of books selected”
Click on this link to see Aiden’s list of recommended books from our collection
What story does your family always tell about you?
“My family enjoys re-telling the story of me and the terrible teeth. I came home from kindergarten one day with a packet of purple dye tablets that I was eager to test out. In school, we’d been given a presentation about dentistry and proper care of our teeth—brushing, flossing, and the like. Each magical tablet, when chewed, would faintly stain areas of tartar on our teeth and reveal inadequate brushing techniques. Eager to assess my skills in the toothbrush department, I made a beeline to the bathroom mirror and chewed the entire pack of purple pills. To my horror, my mouth overflowed with dye and I became a hysterical frothy purple mess. Through her laughter, my mother tried admirably to console me about the fate of my doomed purple teeth.”
What was your favorite food when you were a child?
“As a kid, everyone was under the impression that I loved raisins, but in reality, I found them completely distasteful. It took a long time for my parents to discover that the exclusive consumer the daily raisin ration that went with me to daycare at Grandma’s was, in fact, her miniature poodle, Suzette”
What is one of your favorite quotes?
“One of my favorite quotes appears in a mural by Tom Miller at the intersection of Harford Road and North Avenue. I’ve got a lot of Baltimore memories that are evoked by that mural, which includes the Yoruba saying: ‘However far the stream flows, it never forgets its source.'”
If you could paint a picture of any scenery you’ve seen before, what would you paint?
“If I could paint, I’d paint the places in East Baltimore that I find beautiful and that are fading parts of the urban landscape. I would paint the places I see everyday and that shape my ideas about this city.”