YouTube has made little musicological quests like this one dangerously easy. Both in the sense that you can easily make mistakes, on the basis of sloppy recording-date info, and in the sense that you can easily lose weeks of your life exploring blind caves. I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but every socially isolated lifelong record collector on the planet has uploaded or is in the process of uploading his or her record collection to the Web. They’re just putting the records on the turntable one at a time and filming them as they play, so the audio isn’t ideal, though it’s often pretty good (it’s vinyl). You sit there at home and watch them spin, like a Norwegian television channel. You get to read the labels. You can’t have the objects—it’s perfect for the collectors; you still get the special feeling of exclusivity and possession; you get to sit there and make the whole world listen to your records—but the benefit for the scholar or passionate listener can’t be overstated, because of course, everything is out there, all of the basements and attics are being streamed, and it’s possible now, when you’re chasing some footnote across the filaments, to find yourself on a routine basis outdoing even the most reliable discographies, the same way you can sit there on the Web and predate OED first usages, if you want to, not through any ability of yours, much less any wisdom, but because the robots have gathered such vast harvests, made them accessible, searchable, unavoidable. What has been gathered at a nonhuman speed we are digesting at a human one.