Above are the cassette covers for an early tape Scott traded for. Scott Carr has been doing his Hot Buttered Elves project since the early 90s and also has been involved in the Tape Germ collective as Hebephrenic.
I discovered that there were places for independent musicians to send out tapes for review around 1993 upon picking up a copy of FactSheet5 from a local bookstore. At the time I was mostly interested in sending out poetry for publication in various zines around The United States. I
had been sharing my music with friends for a number of years, but was intimidated by the whole record label game when it came to wider distribution. Mostly the stuff sent out in the period from 1993-1997 was unidirectional; that is, from me to review zines, often without any indication that they ever even received the tapes.
One of the first artist-to-artist trades I made was with a guy named John Erlinger of Four Plus One Records out of Lawrence Kansas. I never got to correspond much with him and when he moved on to other things we lost touch and I have not since been able to locate him online. I forget
what I sent him exactly, though I gather from a note that it was some Hot Buttered Elves tapes. What he sent in return was a very nice C-60 called Background Blues that contained 15 songs. I was struck by his lo-fi style and attitude, and the music itself was very listenable: a mix of blues, experimental, rock and other strangeness. This trade started me down a path of communication on a one-to-one basis with other poets, artists, and musicians that would help shape the next ten years.
Listen to a John Erlinger song here
Listen to Hebephrenic here.