Greek Traditional Music Archive
Sofia E. Tsopani, Dimitrios A. Adamos, Aristeidis Bazmadelis On the e‐dissemination of traditional Greek musical heritage, 65th Congress of the International Association of Music Libraries, Archives and Documentation Centres, 2016, Rome, Italy
Oral tradition uninfluenced by the mass media, radio or television, is gradually fading away. It is certainly no exaggeration to consider ourselves the last who will be fortunate enough to witness live musical events, songs and customs, whose history goes back centuries, and whose roots are lost deep in the past.
Our concern during this period must be both decisively and quickly to collect as many song as possible in authentic performance , and as many samples, as possible from musical instruments which soon will no longer exist. Nonetheless, the field of music folklore in Greece is still not quite past history: there is even now, in this final phase, a living oral tradition.
Therefore, the collection of live oral material is required today, at a time when a comparison can be made between the authentic means by which the song functions, and today's technocratic mode of life, wherein all human expression follows types of expression wherein communal creative participation is lost, and man is becoming more a recipient than a creator of cultural phenomena.
The School of Music Studies of Aristotle University of Thessaloniki has for years been seeing to the collectio of original musical material, through the joint efforts of its students and professors.Thus was created the School's Archive of Recordings. The goal of the Library's Archive is to expand to a large range of activities, including the following: Ancient Greek music, Folk music, Byzantine music, Modern greek music.
The selection of informative material and the simultaneous recording of both image and sound help us to trace, uncover and illuminate the function of both well - and lesser known - customs, ways of life entertainment and communication through music and song. Study of the music of the songs gives us clues which it would have been impossible to acquire just by studying the lyrics.
The transfer of the recording into visual-graphic representation (transcription) affords a complete representation of these songs. The transcription of the songs into notes is one additional aid and means for a more detailed understanding of the Musicol-poetic structure of the greek demotic song. By approaching the music and text in this manner we come to recognize: - The melodic arrangement of the song - The arrangement of the poetic text and its relations to the melody - The metrical-rhythmical arrangement of the song - The melody's accentuate pattern - The structure and function of particular elements of the song (rhythmic-melodic- motifs, syllabic repetitions) - Melodic ornaments - The performance In the area of demotic music, the Library has available a significant number or recorded and videos order songs from various regions of Greece, chiefly from the northern part of the country.