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AdamClair_300x400This blog is a chronicle of my work on a book about the Elephant 6 Recording Company, an amoeboid collective of musicians responsible for some of the most influential and intensely beloved musicians in the history of American culture.

While working as a music reporter in college, I discovered an inordinate number of bands who listed Elephant 6 artists as primary influences. It didn’t matter that these idols hadn’t been active in years, weren’t hugely successful on a commercial level, and the bands they inspired often sounded nothing like them. Only so many people knew about this music, but it fostered an extraordinary passion in those who did, myself included. But as I dug deeper into the Elephant 6’s history, I discovered more questions than answers, and so I did what any good journalist would do: I kept digging.

Through phone interviews, I began researching a book about the Elephant 6 during the summer before my senior year of college. I gathered a lot of information, but the most salient fact for me was that many people had already embarked on such a project, and every one of them had given up before completion. There seemed to be a reason so little was known about this group of artists. Not long after graduation, I moved down to Athens, Georgia, where many of these musicians still live, and for eight months, I talked to everyone I could find, spending countless hours interviewing people, digging through their archives, listening to unheard recordings and poring over photo collections and obscure, out-of-print music zines. After that, I worked unrelated full-time jobs in Washington, DC, and Philadelphia, working on the book in my spare time, and now I am back in Athens to finish my research and complete a manuscript documenting the history and significance of the Elephant 6.

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