I'm forever intrigued by private press / vanity pressed music. In terms of audio quality it's often poor, rudimentary even but I do find such music (when good IMHO) fascinating. Such music represents forgotten hopes and expressions and as is sometimes the case talent (99% is bad to the point of dismal). Private pressings by nature also represent a challenge. Often Pressed in tiny quantities they are difficult to track down and become a treasure hunt of sorts which can be fun and frustrating in equal measure.
Musicians union books can be a useful tool however, sourcing such records direct from the artist can be a painstaking process. Looking for clues from the label or producer information or from session musicians all takes time frequently for little reward (getting used to being told to fuck off is also essential) Discovering 'curios' in other peoples collections has been fruitful over the years with a few gems that will remain on the record shelves regardless of condition.
The internet opened the world up and sometimes artists will respond to posts or inquiries on forums I guess forgotten talent is not beyond googling their own name. A few years ago I heard a record which got under my skin. It was pressed in the US so very little chance of one turning up over here. A little while passed and the name came out. By this point all copies were likely to have been sourced but I still wanted to speak with the guy, find out what hand life had dealt him. This was probably the simplest effort ever as he turned out to be on Facebook and a rather nice guy he is too - He still plays in a piano bar....sadly he has no spare copies...
This one got away.http://www.popsike.com/PRIVATE-PRESS-LOUNGE-JAZZ-CHUCK-SENRICK-DREAMIN-LP-SIGNED/201740244877.html