Survey of endangered audio material still available with private collectors in India (EAP1054)

Aims and objectives

This project will conduct a survey to discover what endangered audio material is held by private collectors in several locations in India. A systematic study of holdings and the extent of the collections will be recorded and the possibilities of co-operation for a future major project will be explored. A preliminary study has revealed over 50 collectors in various locations, many of which hold material in the form of phonograph cylinders, gramophone discs, magnetic wire recordings, open reel spool tapes and audio cassettes. These collections have been chosen since traditional formats of audio recordings and replay are becoming obsolete for variety of reasons and are lying shelved with private collectors due to neglect and non-availability of playback devices to them. Significant part of these collections contains sound material related to pre-modern and pre-industrial period in India. The material represents audio culture and history of various regions of India, both in vocal and instrumental music form. It covers many important styles, types and genre in classical, popular and folk music including spoken words and shall form major source of reference for scholars and researchers.


The output for this project was to produce a survey:


Dr Suresh Chandvankar continues to research early audio material and has added a collection of recordings to the Internet Archive.