Happy summer! The researchers are pouring in from academe .... We have someone here researching art songs and settings of poetry from both the musical and literary angles. For the music of black composers, performance recordings are often hard to come by. The Center may have the score, but not a recording of a given work. Many of the works ONLY have a non-commercial recording, which is one more reason we need to support archives!
The great idea is-and please inform me if this already exists-that repositories that hold non-commercial recordings could create a "union catalog" (in oldspeak) of our holdings so that they could be more readily discovered online. These are indeed priceless sound recordings, often unique, as living composers have a notoriously difficult time getting their works commercially recorded. So all of those conservatory, school, church, community center and other performance recordings may be the only way to hear the music. This is also true for less well-known performers in any genre.
Does this kind of catalog exist? If so, how can the CBMR participate? If not, let's do it! Thanks for any and all input and thoughts,
Laurie Lee Moses
Archivist & Digital Librarian
Center for Black Music Research, Columbia College Chicago
600 S. Michigan Avenue
Chicago, IL 60605
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