Before the availability of the tape recorder and during the 1950s, when vinyl was scarce, people in the Soviet Union began making records of banned Western music on discarded x-rays. With the help of a special device, banned bootlegged jazz and rock ‘n’ roll records were “pressed” on thick radiographs salvaged from hospital waste bins and then cut into discs of 23-25 centimeters in diameter. “They would cut the X-ray into a crude circle with manicure scissors and use a cigarette to burn a hole,” says author Anya von Bremzen. “You’d have Elvis on the lungs, Duke Ellington on Aunt Masha’s brain scan — forbidden Western music captured on the interiors of Soviet citizens.” [x]
Pictures taken at the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum in Weston, WV. Formerly known as the Weston State Hospital (built in the mid 1800’s). I took these photos on a trip to West Virginia in the summer of 2011. The 4th and 5th pictures in the series are of a small storage unit used to temporarily hold the bodies of patients who passed away at the hospital.
Apparently at its height the hospital was a big source of revenue for the town. Since its closure a couple decades ago, the town has fallen into a horrible state of disrepair and driving through Weston to get to the hospital left us feeling a tad unsettled. An amazing building to visit and tour through, however.
All photos were taken and belong to Sharon Porter. Please do not steal or use anywhere else without permission.
“ Be alone, that is the secret of invention; be alone, that is when ideas are born. ”
The Ladybirds : The world’s first all-girl topless band !