Tuesday 30 April 2013

Cutting Chai with Bhawana Somaaya - Day 95

Archive of Indian Music
29.4.13, Mumbai

Ever thought of listening to Gandhi, Subhash Chandra Bose and H. H. Aga Khan III and didn’t know where to find their voices…? Ever craved to relish poetry recitations by Rabindranath Tagore & Kazi Nazrul Islam and didn’t know where to find them…?

It is unfortunate that many of these rare records are on the verge of destruction and without timely action, these would be lost forever. To restore the old treasures is the brain-child of Bangalore based author/historian and Sahitya Akademi award winner Vikram Sampath, Srinivasan and Nagamani. Their primary objective is to preserve the voices of our ancestors and make them easily and electronically available through an online portal for researchers, musicians, students of music and the public at large.

The Archive of Indian Music (AIM) seeks to digitize and preserve old and rare gramophone records of our country. The range of gramophone records IT will restore include Hindustani / Carnatic classical music/ Folk music /Early Cinema /Theatre /Speeches of great leaders of the country and voices of common Indians that were recorded starting 1902. The pilot website of AIM is ready and can be accessed at www.archiveofindianmusic.org.

The archive features about 200 artists and close to 1000 clips. Tracks including Gandhiji’s Spiritual Message that he recorded in 1931 in England, the country’s first recording by Gauhar Jaan in 1902, Tagore reciting his poetry, the first recording of the National Anthem by the Viswa Bharati Chorus, the first recording of M S Subbulakshmi as a child of 9 years are just a few of the rare gems in the website!

Bhawana Somaaya/ www.bhawanasomaaya.com

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