A multi-year project to catalog and digitally preserve the Monterey Jazz Festival Collection at Stanford's Archive of Recorded Sound is now complete.
During its first twenty-five years, the Monterey Jazz Festival established a rich history and accumulated a sizeable body of important recordings featuring the most significant jazz musicians of their time. In 1984 the festival considered placing the tape recordings in the care of an established archive where they would be preserved in a secure and climate-controlled environment, cataloged, and made available for reference and research. Two years later in 1986, archivist Barbara Sawka accepted the collection for Stanford, and over subsequent years the festival continued to add each year's performances to the Stanford archive. As a whole, the festival's collection documents one of the premiere jazz institutions in the world, comprising over 1,500 sound and moving image recordings of live performances and interviews.
Funding for the project came from the GRAMMY Foundation, the National Historical Publications and Records Commission, and Save America's Treasures. Key Stanford staff responsible for the project's success include Hannah Frost, Media Preservation Librarian; Jerry McBride, Head, Archive of Recorded Sound; Aurora Perez, ARS Operations Manager; Liam Harty, Library Specialist in the Music Library and ARS; and Tom Kirkbride, ARS Assistant.