Jack White’s sensibilities tend to be very old-timey. The way he dresses and the general way he handles his Third Man Records business. He has a refurbished 1947 Voice-O-Graph machine in his store that makes vinyl records. Neil Young used it once. As such, it may be surprising to find out that White just made history in a way that involves outer space.
Now, don’t worry, because there is still an old-timey element to all this. White, and Third Man Records, became the first to play a phonographic record in space. They launched a “space-proof” turntable, called the “Icarus Craft,” attached to a high-altitude balloon. The turntable played a 2010 single released by Third Man of Carl Sagan’s “A Glorious Dawn,” a fitting choice for this endeavor.
They launched the balloon, and the turntable, just outside Marsing, Idaho. The turntable was able to start playing record over whilst it was in flight. It floated for an hour and 20 minutes, reaching a height of over 94,000 feet, at which point the balloon popped, and the Icarus Craft fell back to Earth.
You can watch video of the entire flight, or watch an abridged version. Now, nobody can say that a phonographic record hasn’t been played in space. Thanks, Jack White!