Braue Notebooks - a question

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Postby Marco Pusterla » 09/27/04 01:16 AM

Hi, everybody!
apologies if this is not the correct place where to post this question - moderators, please feel free to move it to any other area...

How many volumes of the planned 20 have ACTUALLY been published by Jeff Busby? I have some gaps in my collection and would like to know exactly how many I'm missing... :rolleyes:

Many thanks everybody!

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Postby Guest » 09/27/04 04:17 AM

Marco,

As far as I know, there were supposed to be 15 volumes, and the subscription price was $300.00. Of the 15, eight have been published. The first five were published in 1985. Volume 6 appeared in 1992, Volume 7 in 1996, and Volume 8 in 1997.

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Postby Marco Pusterla » 09/27/04 06:21 AM

Cameron,
many thanks. I only miss volume #7, then. At 30 pages each, a cost of $300 for 8 volumes would be $1.25/page, $2.50/sheet...

I'm aware of all the discussions and sour feeling about receiving only half of the promised material, but do you really think Mr. Braue left 480 pages of unpublished notes? These seems a little bit too many (but, heck, I may be wrong!!!). Was perhaps not the case that Mr. Busby wrongly estimated the number of volumes? That half-way through he realized having cocked-up his estimates??? (this still doesn't justifies keeping money for material not published, though!)

Just a thought. All the best, ciao!

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Postby Anthony Brahams » 09/28/04 01:19 AM

Marco

Fred Braue had such a huge volume of writings that I do not doubt for second that he did not have the material, assuming that all the Notebooks advertised exist. He died long before the Notebooks were published so would not have been the person to claim what the number of Notebooks was.

In case you do not know, there is a feast of Braue material in Hugard's Magic Monthly.
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Postby Bob Farmer » 09/28/04 03:50 AM

I have a copy of the complete Braue Notebooks from which Busby was extracting his series. The originals are typed pages -- sometimes only a few items on a page. I haven't counted the pages, but my copy is about two inches thick.

Busby never had the permission of Braue's family (they own the copyright in the Notebooks) to publish the series and he never paid anyone a dime to do so. Busby is a thief: he stole from Braue and his family and he stole from those who subscribed to the series.

The Braue family not only has the Notebooks, they also extensive unpublished material relating to Royal Road and to ECT. I have suggested to them that they publish a trilogy of the RR, ECT and the Notebooks with all of the extra material. I hope they do someday.
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Postby Tabman » 09/28/04 06:41 AM

Bob Farmer says: I have a copy of the complete Braue Notebooks from which Busby was extracting his series. The originals are typed pages --
How did Jeff Busby get a copy of the notebooks in the first place??? And how did you get a copy of the notebooks??? Were these being circulated in the magic underworld?? At the time of their writing I'm pretty sure that a copyright claim would have had have been filed with the Library of Congress unlike now with the law granting copyright to the creator at the time of creation.

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Postby John LeBlanc » 09/28/04 08:00 AM

Originally posted by -=tabman:
How did Jeff Busby get a copy of the notebooks in the first place??? And how did you get a copy of the notebooks??? Were these being circulated in the magic underworld?? At the time of their writing I'm pretty sure that a copyright claim would have had have been filed with the Library of Congress unlike now with the law granting copyright to the creator at the time of creation.

-=tabman
A couple of things to keep in mind here: basic copyright law, and the act of publishing.

When Fred Braue put typewriter to paper, what he typed was his property. Now, in the case of Braue's notes, they were not yet published by him. But he owned them. And, by extension, his estate owns them.

Copyright law goes further in stating that, even conveying the right to reproduce a work does not necessarily convey ownership rights to them.

Of course, if someone claimed to possess the right to print someone else's work, one would have to actually produce a document that conveyed those rights, wouldn't one? After all, according to the Copyright Office, mere possession of a work -- however that possession came to be -- does not convey any rights:

Mere ownership of a book, manuscript, painting, or any other copy or phonorecord does not give the possessor the copyright. The law provides that transfer of ownership of any material object that embodies a protected work does not of itself convey any rights in the copyright.
As for Busby, he formally copyrighted most of the volumes of the Braue Notebooks he printed. This was legal insofar as these were his editions and claimed to contain editorial comments and revisions. As for having the right to print them in the first place, I think that's been covered more than adequately elsewhere.

Really, Busby hasn't bothered filing copyrights on much of anything he's published. That doesn't mean his things aren't copyrighted, just that he hasn't bothered filing much.

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Postby Tabman » 09/28/04 08:37 AM

John W. LeBlanc points out: ... Copyright law goes further in stating that, even conveying the right to reproduce a work does not necessarily convey ownership rights to them ...
Ok, Im with you on that. I worked in copyright and trademark admnistration for a major music publisher some years ago but I sure don't know it all and have probably forgotten most of what I did know by now.

However, what I'm wondering is how did Jeff get his copy in the first place and how did Bob get his copy? This implies that copies were made and this in itself denotes a form of publishing. Who made the copies??? Who distributed them??? Who else besides these two guys have copies??? I know that copies of cool stuff circulate in the underground regularly as I have been sent copies of copyrighted works by so called respected magicians years ago when I was in the thick of things. There are really very few clean hands as far as Im concerned.
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Postby Guest » 09/28/04 08:41 AM

Bob's right - there is a host of Braue material - Busby had only the tip of the iceberg - in fact, the notebooks were being reviewed by Lloyd Jones and one of his associates, at the time of Braue's death. Braue was planning another book, based on his notes. Sadly, this never came to fruition. Perhaps Bob will succeed in convincing the family to do something with the unpublished portion of Fred's work. How part of the notebooks wound up with Jeff, and how copies of the originals circulated amongst others is a long and involved story, with many subplots...

Best, PSC
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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 09/28/04 09:38 AM

I know that copies of cool stuff circulate in the underground regularly as I have been sent copies of copyrighted works by so called respected magicians years ago when I was in the thick of things. There are really very few clean hands as far as Im concerned.
-=el tab
Right, most often given freely, not sold... and furthermore most often when the works become available, they are purchased.

There's always going to be gossip. I'm surprised the stuff has not made it to PDF and been sent around yet.
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Postby Pete Biro » 09/28/04 11:10 AM

Lloyd E. Jones had the material. It was all in a box on the floor of his garage at one time.

Byron Walker, Myself, and Busby all worked for Jones sorting things and helping with his material. I helped published, Byron sorted rare books and the other guy? I don't know as I had left the scene.
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Postby Bob Farmer » 09/28/04 11:24 AM

I'm an entertainment lawyer working in the music business; copyright is something I know about. Contrary to John's comments, Busby never had the right to copyright his versions of the Braue Notebooks. Nor did he have the right to use Braue's name or image in the sale of these books (i.e., no trade mark rights, no merchandising rights, etc.).

I don't want to engage in an extended discussion of the law -- it's a waste of time with Busby -- the guy is a thief and deserves no consideration of any kind. In an ideal world, somebody would have sued the moron by now and finally put a stake through his heart.

In the immortal words of a friend who wishes to remain anonymous, Busby spent much time and trouble finding Erdnase, but he couldn't find Braue's family to ask their permission even though they lived a few miles from him.

My copy of the Braue Notebooks is in my possession with the knowledge and permission of the Braue family -- Busby's copy is not.
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Postby Tabman » 09/28/04 11:36 AM

Originally posted by Bob Farmer: ... In an ideal world, somebody would have sued the moron by now and finally put a stake through his heart. ...
At one point when Jeff and I were still working together in the late 80s (he sold the Tabman Tables and the Erdnase Train Tables for me) he told me that he was at death's door due to some severe health problems and not expected to live much longer. I've wondered for years if he is actually still alive. He accused me once of having "brass balls" when I broke rank with him but this story takes the cake. I have hundreds of pages of fax communications with him stored in a file upstairs. Maybe I should publish the Busby Notebooks!!! :p
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Postby Pete Biro » 09/28/04 11:40 AM

I remember the meeting, Taberooo... it was in my house. ARgh... Jeff told me, before he moved out of Oakland, that he had LOST all the INPUT FILES for printing the Braue Notebooks when his photo typesetter CRASHED (this was pre-PC computers) and that he didn't feel like re-typing all the material.

I will email you with some info on another subjecto.

:cool:
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Postby Tabman » 09/28/04 11:53 AM

Pete Biro remembers: I remember the meeting, Taberooo... it was in my house. ARgh... :cool:
Yes, in Walnut Creek and I know you didn't set me up. I know you're an absolutely honorable man and one for whom I would go to the line for. You know, I quit smoking at your house. You've helped me so much. I was an old road rat and you befriended me. You're one of the great people and humble me with your friendship.

At your house in Walnut Creek was the only time I actually met Jeff and he turned on me like a cobra and was totally wrong about what he was talking about. We had an additional run in a few years later when I wanted to use an illustration of my Drawer Tables that he used in his newsletter. His attack left me in a state of shock. I had a lot of respect for him up to that point as he was a brilliant ad writer and covered the planet with Tabman Tables. I suspect that Jeff has passed away and someone else is stirring things up in his name.

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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 09/28/04 12:26 PM

Originally posted by -=tabman:
... I suspect that Jeff has passed away and someone else is stirring things up in his name.
-=el tab
Pete, "Tabman" taking the above as a premise, this sounds like a scary tale in the making.

H. P. Lovecraft used to write stories about people who became mere shells and whose actions were guided by 'outsiders'. Was this a gradual process or did it happen suddenly with Jeff?

Perhaps something in the metal turning for those cups went horribly wrong and an innocent cup became a dark grail? Maybe his ad copy was more than just inspired, it was guided by something with more sinister intersts.
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Postby John LeBlanc » 09/28/04 12:36 PM

Originally posted by Jonathan Townsend:
Perhaps something in the metal turning for those cups went horribly wrong and an innocent cup became a dark grail? Maybe his ad copy was more than just inspired, it was guided by something with more sinister intersts.
Please stop, Jonathan; you're scaring my goldfish. :)

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Postby Guest » 09/28/04 12:51 PM

Pleeease!

Re-read Bob's assessment - Busby is alive and well - and his character is exactly as described...

Best, PSC
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Postby James Foster » 09/28/04 02:33 PM

Originally posted by pchosse:
Pleeease!

Re-read Bob's assessment - Busby is alive and well - and his character is exactly as described...

Best, PSC
Hi Paul. Busby is alive, but as to his being "well"...that is open to some debate. He is, no doubt, a character.

All the best to you,

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Postby Marco Pusterla » 09/29/04 01:06 AM

Hi, Anthony!
you say:
In case you do not know, there is a feast of Braue material in Hugard's Magic Monthly.
Many thanks, I'm aware of it: I have a full set of HMM, as well as the other booklets Braue published with Hugard. Many thanks.

And many thanks also to Bob Farmer and Pete Biro for the details behind the publication of the notebooks: while most of this was known to me (I think there are other posts on the forum about the isse ;) ), I suspect somebody else may learn new things about "magic history".

Bob: as I was browsing the notebooks as published by Busby, I felt that publishing properly Braue's notes would benefit from them being edited by some competent cardician(s), who could expand on them, give references where the material appears elsewhere, etc. I appreciate it would be a major task, but nobody said it would have been easy, isn't it? ;)

Many thanks, ciao!

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