Thursday, December 13, 2007

Then play on

Another valued tape gone. I have a considerable number from the dark ages when there were only magnetic tapes, and now my player is eating them and I’m faced weekly with a tangled wreck of what once used to be lovely music. It was Amjad Ali Khan’s Bhimpalasi last week, a leisurely evocative double-sided exposition that used to part of my travelling collection. Today it was Mian Tansen torn to shreds, quite beyond patchwork.

I’m struggling to digitise my tapes. I’ve found some excellent lessons online which seem doable if only I could discover why, after making all the connections I’m supposed to make, the output doesn’t pour out of my system’s speakers. The alternative is to take them all to a new-fangled electronics wala, which means some effort, time and money.

Then there is the dilemma. Should I indeed carry over all this – about 500 tapes – into the future? Or resolve to buy only digital music from here on and let these go? All these Mehdi Hassans, these Nusrats, the only version of ‘Nit Khair Mangan’ I have?
Bade Ghulam Ali Khan, Bismillah Khan, Prabhakar Karekar.
Noor Jahan, Farida Khanum, Nayyara Noor.
My grandfather’s collection: MD Ramanathan, TV Sankaranarayanan, Maharajapuram Santhanam. Kadri Gopalnath and U Srinivas.

Even writing this makes up my mind for me. It would be criminal, I think, to not at least try. I find the task daunting: the very idea of lugging these over, deciding how to sort and lump them… still, let us put it down in my list of things to do.

7 comments:

Shweta said...

Ayyo Rama! bah! I tell you it is not the tapes. It is that monster new tape recorder. They are doing this on purpose (making them this way so that we are backed into a digital corner)

footloose said...

haha, here goes the conspiracy theorist -- gotta say though, not altogether far-fetched that they might pull such tricks.

khair, sheetal, the music's *got* to stay. music nahi hai to phir kya hai?

Sheetal said...

Floo: es, it is also same conclusion here. but what a pain though. howsoever, i have been promised gyan on this conversion business, so it is good.

Crimson Feet said...

you may use goldwave for the conversion... its easy to configure...

i have done it many times... have all the chords and jazz to do it... its fun... getting all that original music reincarnated into timleless clean digital stuff!!

try harder... get it right... dont loose all that precious music!!

Sheetal said...

Crimson feet: Goldwave, eh? hokey, heading over to the search engines now - thanks for the tip.

I have Audacity which I haven't been able to use, because as I said, I haven't succeeded with getting the sound output from the system speakers and don't know what I could be doing wrong. Perhaps I just need a new 1/8 cable.

?! said...

Spent some pleasant times going through your archives and reading, mainly about ghazals and music.(Though I disagree with your work on patta patta :) ).

Nice going. The doubts you expressed about a blog in the previous post afflicted my blog too, but I can tell that at least your blog has quite a lot of good content going for it.

Thanks, enjoyed my time here.

Sheetal said...

?!: Welcome and thank you very much.
As for Patta patta, you must tell me your views.