10/06/20 - Unclaimed Abandoned Property (analog tapes) Will Be Discarded Within 60 Days
Dear Hit and Run Recording Client,
I hope this communication finds you and yours well.
Over the decades, a number of artists who have recorded at Hit and Run Recording have left things at the studio. When it was something they valued such as an amp, cymbal or guitar pedal board, they would contact me in a timely manner and we made arrangements for the artist to pick up the item in a reasonable amount of time - which they did. As with any business that doesn’t charge a storage fee, the policy has always been that Hit and Run Recording is not responsible for anything left on its premises after the services have been completed. Even so, Hit and Run Recording has always given the client up to 90 days to retrieve things they left behind (as has been detailed for decades online with the studio’s website in the paragraph covering the studio’s policies).
Decades ago a number of bands left their analog tapes at Hit and Run Recording after the band or artist completed the recording process through mixdown. After a year or so with no contact from such artists, it was apparent that the artist no longer needed or wanted the tapes. But because I knew how much work went into such recordings, and because such storage mediums take up so much space, I had to move the tapes into a storage facility that originally cost about $75/month in the 1980s and for the last few years has been costing $102/month. That works out to an average of $90/month X 12 months X 30 years = $32,000.
Since I bought the house where the studio is, I was going to have the tapes moved to the shed in the backyard, but clearing out the shed and moving the tapes was going to cost at least another $1500 – and the double gate to the back yard is not wide enough for a moving truck to pass through.
The storage facility is an unnecessary expense for things that are not my responsibility. Therefore I am going to clear out the storage facility by discarding any tapes that go unclaimed which will allow me to end the storage facility lease.
Therefore, if you think you left a tape at Hit and Run Recording that you want, you have to email me to set up an appointment for us to meet at Hit and Run Recording within 30 days. You would then follow me to the storage facility which is about four miles from the studio (30 minutes roundtrip). After I let you into the facility, you can then diligently look at each of the labeled tape boxes on the shelves at your own risk (the tapes on the top shelves require standing on a provided ladder) and expense (my hourly rate from the time we leave the studio to the time I get back - $50/hour with a one hour minimum). Thank you for understanding the cost of this. I have a backlog of internet mixing and mastering projects I could be working on in the comfort and safety of my studio.
I estimate the time for you to actually look over the tapes will be about an hour because a band’s tapes can be on different shelves. The picture only shows two of the three racks of tape shelves. Therefore the cost to look for your tapes would be $50 + $25 = $75 minimum - but it may take you longer. Note: There is no guarantee that you will find your tape – sometimes a band member or manager took tapes after a session – but I have never thrown out a 24 track tape. Most of the tapes have the artist name and session date on the outer box label, but some of the tapes only have a date on the outer label while the artist name might be written on the reel of tape inside the box (if you see only a date on a box, and that date is around the time you recorded, you should open that box and check the reel for the artist name you’re looking for). If you do find any tape(s) with your project's name written on the box, you need to stack them by the storage facility door so I can take a picture of the information on the tape box before you put it in your car. If you move tapes to get to your tape, you have to put the other tapes back to where you found them. If it takes you more than an hour, you will need to make another minimum hourly payment before the tapes can be put into your car.
If this is agreeable, please make a payment of $75 on the Booking-Info page by clicking the yellow Add to Cart button and entering “75” in the quantity field. Then contact me via email with "Analog tapes" in the subject line and provide some days and times that you can meet me at the studio (the studio address is also on the Booking-Info page). This needs to be done within 30 days because the tapes will be discarded shortly thereafter. The link to this webpage may be passed around if you know any artist who might have recorded at Hit and Run Recording decades ago.
Note: If you are able to get the analog audio tapes transferred to digital, and are interested, I would credit the amount you paid towards me mixing and mastering your EP or album project (as low as $120 per song for both services). More information about Hit and Run Recording's Mixing and Mastering Service can be found here. I’ve had a number of bands retrieve tapes after 2010 and they were able to digitize 2” 24 track analog tapes that were in the H&R storage facility for about 25 years (after they were “baked” - a process to make analog tapes playable). However, there is no guarantee that the audio will be retrievable even after “baking” the analog tape.
Please let me know if you have any comments or questions.