Profile: James Joyce, archivist of underground music

County music purist Sturgill Simpson will make good on a pair of October cancellations with a two night stand at the Tabernacle, Dec. 7-8.

Photo credit: Crackerfarm

A self-described librarian of rock, 33-year-old Joyce posts long-lost songs, photos, fliers and anecdotes from Atlanta’s underground music scene on his blog, Beyond Failure. He also has played with a bunch of Atlanta bands over the years - most recently with psych-funk collective Noot d’ Noot.

CL: How did you come up with the idea for Beyond Failure?

JJ: I’ve probably been in 20 bands or so. And I’m kind of by nature an archival person. I’m kind of a librarian.

That’s a rare combination for people in bands.

I think it’s because I’m a drummer. I’m just more systematic in the way I think and the way I organize myself. I’m more organized than a lot of my bandmates. Everyone has moved 100 times, and nobody has their old records, their old tapes, old flyers, old pictures. They started contacting me and asked if I had any of the old recordings, because theirs were all gone.

So I started digitizing all these old demo tapes, old records and seven-inches and stuff. And I started posting them up on this blog, rather than just emailing them to everybody.

Then I started posting stuff by bands I was friends with at that time, in the ’90s. I really like their music, and it’s really hard to find a lot of their stuff. Everything local is out of print. It’s good to just collect a lot of that stuff and make it available, for historical purposes. Because otherwise, you won’t be able to find it.

(Lots of links to long-lost recordings, after the jump.)