Information Bulletin no. 30, July 1999

Promoting a century of sound archiving

The IASA/AGAVA Conference in Vienna in September is attracting a lot of interest and IASA is this year, for the first time, engaging in professional public relations work in order to ensure that the Centenary of the Phonogrammarchiv attracts as much media attention as we can muster. While the focus of our campaign is on Vienna, it is planned that IASA member archives wherever they may be situated will benefit. A press release will be sent out to national press agencies in the third week of August including the essential messages about the Phonogrammarchiv and IASA. It will also include the contact details for any relevant national audiovisual archives: those with web-sites will be most easily targeted. So, it is highly likely that someone from your local press will be contacting you late in August or just before the conference. If they do, it would be very useful to me to know about it and what the result was since this will help IASA to evaluate its public relations work for the benefit of future conferences.

As a special bonus, and to assist with your response to any media interest, you will also receive a special issue of the Bulletin marking the importance of this Conference for the work of audiovisual archivists and IASA. This will include brief histories of the Phonogrammarchiv and IASA and a time-line of significant dates in the evolution of audiovisual recording as it impacts on sound archives.

Patrick Saul 1913-1999

Patrick Saul, founder of the British Institute of Recorded Sound in London and founder member of IASA, died on May 9th. There will be many senior IASA members who have fond memories of the man and his achievements and I am delighted that Rolf Schuursma was able to write the following personal recollection:

"Remembering Patrick Saul the word 'pioneer' comes to mind. Although the British Institute of Recorded Sound (BIRS) appeared on stage some fifty years after the establishment of the Vienna Phonogrammarchiv, it soon became one of the leading institutions in its field, known world-wide for its broad and varied collections. This happened, of course, through the efforts of Patrick Saul. The pioneers in the then still rather raw field of sound archiving - the same could also be said of film archiving - had their shortcomings. A later generation of managerial-type directors was necessary to solve some of the problems resulting from the ever-growing collections of the new media, but didn't Patrick Saul exemplify the intensity of purpose which sought to preserve our musical past as represented on cylinder, disc or tape? It is no doubt thanks to such pioneers that we can study and enjoy the fruits of history since people began to make recordings in sound and pictures.

In July 1963 I came for the first time to London to visit Patrick Saul at the Institute's first premises in Russell Square. Having just started sound archiving at the Historical Institute of Utrecht University I must have felt rather shy in the company of a man who had been described to me as a formidable leader in the field. We met over lunch with Ms. Marie Slocombe of the BBC. Inevitably the talk directed itself to the conditions under which radio recordings were made available to listeners at the BIRS, a topic which would recur again and again in later talks with the European Broadcasting Union.

Several years after, in 1968, Patrick Saul invited me to take part in the meeting in Paris where, after a lot of rather fierce discussion, it was decided to establish an organisation which, the following year in Amsterdam, became the International Association of Sound Archives (IASA). It was Patrick's strong conviction that such an organisation had to be restricted to a group of leading organisations in the field and to exclude the large number of smaller archives and private collectors, however valuable their contribution, from the decision-making process. However, at its founding meeting the new association was designed along broader lines. Although, I believe, disappointed that his ideas were not taken up, Patrick joined IASA's Executive Board under its first President, Don Leavitt of the Library of Congress.

In 1973 Patrick Saul invited IASA to his Institute during the Association's conference at Bedford College in London. He welcomed us at the new premises, 29 Exhibition Road, with a fine speech about his experience and views, followed by a buffet dinner. I remember the occasion as one of the highlights in IASA's professional and social history, a splendid meeting of what by then had become the leading circle of sound archivists from all over the world.

Going back in history yet again, another occasion comes to mind, a dinner in Patrick's favourite Parisian restaurant which had on display a beautiful musical box. There I enjoyed a sparkling discussion with him and Herbert Rosenberg about the early history of gramophone records. But perhaps most of all I like to remember Patrick as I met him for the first time, sitting in his office between piles of records: a typically reserved British gentleman, until he started to talk intensely about sound archiving, the profession which was so dear to him.

Leaving us now behind, Patrick took with him an essential part of the history of audio archiving. We, however, keep many fond memories of him and we extend our sympathy to Diana Hull who shared such a great part of his life."

Sally Hine memorial

On June 11th the BBC held a special memorial celebration of the life of Sally Hine. I would estimate that more than a thousand family, friends and colleagues were present in the BBC Radio Theatre and the IASA Editor was very honoured to be asked to talk about her work in IASA and for the sound archive community in general. Speeches from several colleagues and Sally's widower were interspersed with performances of favourite pieces of music played by people she had worked with. It was a very touching and dignified occasion. The BBC made a recording of the event and copies can be obtained from Simon Rooks at BBC Broadcasting House, Portland Place, London W1. Also, if you would like to make a donation in memory of Sally, please address it to Gloria French, The Cancerkin Centre, Royal Free Hospital, Pond Street, London NW3 2QG.

ScreenSound Australia Premier

Mary Miliano writes: "One of Australia's most important and unique cultural institutions has a new identity. ScreenSound Australia, The National Collection of Screen and Sound, was launched on 21 June 1999 by the Australian Prime Minister, Mr John Howard, in a gala event in Canberra. It is a significant step in a long-term effort to increase recognition of its work, and more importantly, take it successfully into the 21st century.

Formerly known as the National Film and Sound Archive, ScreenSound Australia is already one of the Australia's most accessed institutions. It collects, restores and shares Australia's dynamic screen and sound heritage, from archival film, television, recorded sound, radio and documentation through to contemporary productions, and is well placed to embrace digitisation and new audiovisual media.

The Canberra office of ScreenSound Australia recently underwent an $18 million redevelopment, including the completion of seven new audio studios, a purpose-build recording studio, film treatment unit, printing and processing laboratory and a video unit. ScreenSound Australia's beautiful art-deco heritage-listed headquarters in Canberra has also had a facelift.

web address:
email address:

Canada audio phase 2

Richard Green reports: "Phase Two of the National Library of Canada's Virtual Gramophone: Canadian Historical Sound Recordings web site is now available to the public The first phase covered the early 7-inch Berliner records in Canada. Phase Two brings an additional 1,226 cataloguing records to the 2,065 already in the database. It adds another 260 complete sound recordings (RealAudio), 700 scans of different labels, four new biographies of Canadian artists, and historical information on the first 10-inch records in Canada. There is also new information on the 7-inch discs added to the database.

The enhanced cataloguing, label images, audio files and historical analysis make an important historical part of the National Library's Recorded Sound Collection available to the public for the first time."

SEAPAVAA's Malaysian Highlights

The theme of SEAPAVAA's 4th Annual Conference was "AV archiving in the new millennium - working together to preserve our heritage". Ray Edmondson sends this report:

"Set in beautiful parkland in outer Kuala Lumpur the spectacular Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra Memorial complex provided the setting for the conference symposium - with the General Assembly later convening in the nearby Tun Abdul Razak Memorial. Again, it was a record occasion with up to 200 participating in the symposium sessions, and over 40 delegates and official observers from 14 countries meeting in the General Assembly and other events. The host institution was the Arkib Negara Malaysia (National Archives of Malaysia), supported by Radio Television Malaysia (RTM), Filem Negara, the National Film Development Corporation (FINAS) and the Ministry of Culture, Arts and Tourism.

The opening ceremony, on the morning of Monday 19 April, was officiated by guest of honour, Y.B. Dato' Sri Sabbaruddin Chik, Minister of Culture, Arts and Tourism, who gave the opening address. Y. Bhg. Dato' Habibah Zon, Director General of the National Archives, welcomed participants and SEAPAVAA President, Ray Edmondson, responded. Later in the week, Dato' Sri Sabbaruddin Chik hosted a memorable dinner for symposium participants.

The three day symposium ranged over technical, curatorial and management topics, with a common theme of "working together" - reviewing successful cooperative projects involving AV archives in two or more countries, drawing lessons from these and projecting into a future in which resources can be shared and skills and facilities built in complementary ways across the region. Projects included film repatriation from Vietnam to Laos; the ASEAN oral history project (co-ordinated in Singapore), the forthcoming SEAPAVAA regional film history publication; the regional impact of UNESCO's "Memory of the World" program; the RTM videotape restoration project; and the Philippines/Australia joint 35mm restoration of the 1939 Philippine film musical GILIW KO, which was screened in full.

Looking to the future, there were presentations on how countries can evolve national focus points for AV archiving, the UNESCO publication "A Philosophy of AV archiving", the management of vinegar syndrome, and demonstrations of the new Singapore-based "Revival" electronic image restoration system. As is customary, there was a detailed survey of AV archiving in the host country, and a presentation on its cinema history. A series of institutional visits complemented the formal presentations.

Three important strategic steps for SEAPAVAA were highlighted. The first, responding to a presentation by guest speaker Sven Allerstrand (President of IASA and Director of Sweden's ALB) was a recognition of the need to more actively embrace the audio, as well as the moving image, heritage. The second, responding to a presentation by Robert Gwamuwe of Papua New Guinea's National Library and Archives, was engagement with the needs of Pacific island countries. The third was a recognition that repatriation of collection material must be seriously addressed: most countries in the region are former colonies and significant quantities of heritage material are held in the former colonising countries.

The incoming Executive Council (which holds office for 3 years) is:


Ray Edmondson (Australia)

Secretary General:

Belina SB Capul (Philippines)


Tuenjai Sinthuvnik (Thailand)


Dato' Habibah Zon (Malaysia)


Julian Millar (New Zealand)


Annella Mendoza (Philippines)


Chantima Choeysanguan (Thailand)

The General Assembly ended with a closing ceremony officiated by guest of honour Y.B. Dato' Drs. Suleiman Mohamad, Deputy Minister of Information.

An important outcome of the conference was a "Statement of conclusions". Symposium papers will be progressively added to the SEAPAVAA website on

The IASA Guide to Acronyms

I was on the verge of giving up this idea in the first week of June since up until then only one person had submitted a handful of acronyms. Then, out of the blue, came this list from the IASA-ländergruppe Deutschland/Deutschschweiz via Frank Rainer Huck, to which I have only had to add a few extra items. IASA is very grateful. If you find anything missing, please let me know. This list could be produced separately for the IASA web pages in future.


Anglo-American Authority File


Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules, 2nd edition


Asian Broadcasting Union


Art, Design, Architecture & Media Information Gateway (Internet)


Australian Committee on Cataloguing




Audio Engineering Society


Association Française des Archives Sonores


American Guild of Authors and Composers


Arbeitsgemeinschaft audiovisueller Archive Österreichs


Arts and Humanities Database System


Association Internationale des Bibliothèques, Archives et Centres de Documentation Musicaux (s.a. IAML)


Archives Internationales de la Musique Populaire


The American Library Association


Arkivet för ljud och bild (Stockholm)


American Mechanical Rights Association


Association of Moving Image Archivists (Nordamerika)


Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences


American National Standards Institute


Association pour les Recherches Scientifiques sur les Arts Graphiques


Association for Recorded Sound Collections


American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers


Arbeitskreis Studium populärer Musik e.V. (Sektion BRD der IASPM)


Australasian Sound Recordings Association




Audiovisual Archiving Philosophy Interest Network (IASA)


American Vintage Record Labelography (s.a. LAC)


British Academy of Film and Television Arts


British Association of Sound Collections


Bureau for European Licensing


Bureau International des Sociétés gérant les Droits d'Enregistrement et de Reproduction Mécanique


Broadcast Music, Inc.


British Standards Institute


British Universities Film and Video Council


Canadian Committee on Cataloguing


Cataloguing and Documentation Committee (IASA)


Computer Enhanced Digital Audio Restoration


CURL Exemplars In Digital Archives


Code Excited Linear Predictor


Association for Film Schools


Common Information Systems


Confédération Internationale des Sociétés d'Auteurs et Compositeurs


Council of National Library and Information Associations


Continuing Professional Education Round Table (of IFLA)


Consortium of University Research Libraries


Deutsches Institut für Normung e.V.


Digital Object Identifier System


European Bureau for Library, Information and Documentation Associations


European Broadcasting Union (s.a. UER)


European Commission for Preservation and Access


European Preservation Information Center (of ECPA)


Fédération Internationale des Archives du Film


Fédération Internationale des Archives de Télévision (s.a. IFTA)


International Federation of Information and Documentation


Gesellschaft für musikalische Aufführungs- und mechanische Vervielfältigungsrechte


Groupement Européen des Sociétés d'Auteurs et Compositeurs (europ. Komitee der CISAC)


General Programme of Information (UNESCO)


Gesellschaft zur Verwertung von Leistungsschutzrechten


International Association for Media and History


International Association of Music Information Centres


International Association of Music Libraries, Archives and Documentation Centres (s.a. AIBM)


International Association of Sound and Audiovisual Archives


International Association for the Study of Popular Music


International Broadcast Tape Number (EBU-Empfehlung)


International Council of Archives (Internationaler Archivrat)


International Council of Multimedia Users


International Council of Museums


International Council for Traditional Music


International DOI Foundation


International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions


International Federation of Phonogram and Videogram Industries


International Federation of Television Archives


International MARC Programme (IFLA)


interoperability of data in e-commerce systems


International Public Television Screening Conference (seit 1977)


International Programme for the Development of Communication


Istituto di Ricerca per il Teatro Musicale


International Standard Archival Authority Record for Corporate Bodies, Persons and Families (ICA)


International Standard Bibliographic Description


International Standard Bibliographic Description - Computer Files


International Standard Bibliographic Description - Monographs


International Standard Bibliographic Description - Nonbook Materials


International Standard Book Number


International Standard Music Number


International Standard Recording Code


International Standard Recording File (IFPI)


International Standard Serial Number


International Standards Organization


Joint Technical Committee


Joint Technical Symposium


Labelography Associates Committee (ARSC Committee dedicated to publishing the AVRL)


Machine Readable Cataloguing (IFLA)


Mechanical Copyright Protection Society Ltd.


Museums Documentation Association


The Museum of the Moving Image (London)


Moving Picture Experts Group


National and Affiliated Organisations Committee (IASA)


Non Government Organization


Nearly Instantaneous Compandable Audio Matrix


National Sound Archive (British Library, London)


Online Public Access Catalogue


General Information Programme (UNESCO)


Phonographic Performance Ltd


Performing Right Society


Research Libraries Group


Royal Television Society


Programme on Audiovisual (ICA)


Radio Sound Archives Committee (IASA)


Société des Auteurs, Compositeurs et Editeurs de Musique


Secure Digital Music Initiative


Société pour l'Administration du Droit de Reproduction Mécanique des Auteurs, Compositeurs et Editeurs


South East Asia - Pacific AudioVisual Archive Association


Societá Italiana degli Autori ed Editori


Société Internationale des Bibliothèques et des Musées des Arts du Spectacle


Society of Professional Audio Recording Studios (SPARS-Code)


Stichting tot Exploitatie van Mechanische-Reproductie Rechten der Auteurs


Technical Committee (IASA)


Technical Coordinating Committee (FIAF, FIAT, IASA, ICA)


Universal Bibliographic Control and International MARC (IFLA)


Union Européenne de Radiodiffusion (s.a. EBU)


United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization


(Nauck's) Vintage Record Auction


World Wide Web Consortium


World Intellectual Property Organization

Pick your own pops

There has been an enormous amount of hype surrounding the recording industry's involvement with digital delivery over the internet and it is difficult for the sound archivist to cut through the fluff and flummery in order to plan for the future. However one particular headline in the British popular music weekly New Musical Express (NME) on June 11th did seem to announce a significant and substantial change in the way recorded music will be produced and bought in future.

Under the title "Sony puts back-catalogue online for shoppers" we read: "SONY, one of the world's biggest entertainment hardware and software corporations, announced yesterday that it plans to offer its back catalogue to record shops via a high speed digital download. Although this has been mooted for some time - a few record stores have experimented with track-by-track compilations, allowing shoppers to compile their own albums - this allows the shops access to online stock rather than having to actually have the CDs in the shop. This is in response to shops losing custom when they find that the records they want are not in stock. Sony... is the first major label to seriously commit to digitizing their back catalogue. Sony is involved in researching the Secure internet Download System (SDMI) that also involves EMI and other major companies in association with a company called Digital On Demand."

International Digital Cooperatives

The National Science Foundation and the UK Joint Information Systems Committee have announced the first six projects which have been recommended for funding (almost $5 million over the three year project term) under the International Digital Libraries Initiative NSF/JISC Joint Program. Of the six four in particular will be of interest to:

1) Cross-Domain Resource Discovery: Integrated Discovery and use of Textual, Numeric and Spatial Data: University of California, Berkeley / University of Liverpool. The aim is to produce a next generation online information retrieval system ("Cheshire") based on international standards that will facilitate searching on the internet across collections of original materials, printed books, records, archives, manuscripts, and museum objects), statistical databases, full-text, geo-spatial, and multi-media data resources.
Contact: Paul Watry, Automated Projects Manager, Special Collections and Archives, University of Liverpool Library, PO Box 123,Liverpool L69 3DA, UK. Phone: +44 151 794 2696 Fax: +44 151 794 2681 Email:

2) HARMONY: Metadata for resource discovery of multimedia digital objects: Cornell University / ILRT / DSTC. A three-way international partnership between Cornell University, the Australian Distributed Systems Technology Centre and the University of Bristol's Institute for Learning and Research Technology, will be devising a framework to deal with the challenge of describing networked collections of highly complex and mixed-media digital objects. The work will draw together work on the RDF, XML, Dublin Core and MPEG-7 standards, and will focus on the problem of allowing multiple communities of expertise (e.g. library, education, rights management) to define overlapping descriptive vocabularies for annotating multimedia content.
Contact: Dan Brickley, Institute for Learning and Research Technology, University of Bristol, 8-10 Berkeley Square, Bristol BS8 1HH, UK. Phone: +44 117 928 7096 Fax: +44 117 928 7112. Email:

3) Online Music Recognition and Searching (OMRAS): University of Massachussetts / King's College, London. OMRAS is a system for efficient and user-friendly content-based searching and retrieval of musical information from online databases stored in a variety of formats ranging from encoded score files to digital audio. The overall goal of this cross-disciplinary research is to fill a gap in the provision of online facilities for musical collections: the inability to search the content for 'music' itself.
Contact: Tim Crawford, Music Department, King's College, Strand, London WC2R 2LS, UK
Phone: +44 171 848 1821 Fax: +44 171 848 2326 Email:

4) Emulation options for digital preservation: technology emulation as a method for long-term access and preservation of digital resources: University of Michigan / CURL. A team of researchers at the University of Michigan and research staff in the UK from the CEDARS project, being run at the Universities of Leeds, Oxford and Cambridge under the aegis of CURL (Consortium of University Research Libraries) will investigate the potential role of emulation in long-term preservation of information in digital form. The project will develop and test a suite of emulation tools, evaluate the costs and benefits of emulation as a preservation strategy for complex multi-media documents and objects, and develop models for collection management decisions about how much effort and resources to invest in exact replication within preservation activity. The project team will assess options for preserving the original functionality and 'look and feel' of digital objects and develop preliminary guidelines for the use of different preservation strategies (conversion, migration and emulation).
Contact Kelly Russell, CEDARS Project Manager, Edward Boyle Library, University of Leeds, Leeds LS2 9JT, UK. Phone: +44 113 233 6386 Fax: +44 113 233 5539 Email:

ARSC winners

At its conference in Madison Wisconsin, May 1999, The Association for Recorded Sound Collections (ARSC) announced the winners of this year's Awards for excellence in Historical Recorded Sound Research. "Begun in 1991, the awards are given to authors of books, articles or recording liner notes to recognize those publishing the very best work today in recorded sound research. In giving these awards, ARSC recognizes the contributions of these individuals and aims to encourage others to emulate their high standards and to promote readership of their work".

The following research was honored this year during the annual conference:

Recorded General Popular Music Lotte Lenya: A Centenary Tribute, by Richard Weize, Rainer E. Lotz, et al., notes to Bear Family CDs (1998)

Recorded Classical Music Budapest String Quartet, discography by Phil Hart in the ARSC Journal: Part 1 1924-1940, in vol. 28/2 (1997), Part 2 1941-1954, in vol.29/1 (1998), Part 3
1955-1966, in vol. 29/2 (1998)

Recorded Rock, Rhythm & Blues, or Soul Elvis Presley: A Life in Music: The Complete Recording Sessions, by Ernst Jorgensen (St. Martin's Press, 1998)

Certificate of Merit The Deadhead's Taping Compendium, Vol. 1: 1959-1974, by Michael M. Getz and John R. Dwork (Henry Holt and Company, 1998)

Recorded Jazz or Blues John Coltrane: His Life and Music, by Lewis Porter (University of Michigan Press, 1998)

Certificate of Merit Dixonia: A Bio-Discography of Bill Dixon, compiled by Ben Young (Greenwood Press, 1998)

Recorded Country Music The Encyclopedia of Country Music, edited by Paul Kingsbury (Oxford University Press, 1998)

Recorded Folk or Ethnic Music Music of Hindu Trinidad, by Helen Myers (University of Chicago Press, 1998)

Record Labels or Manufacturers Making People's Music: Moe Asch and Folkways Records, by Peter D. Goldsmith (Smithsonian Institution Press, 1998)

Lifetime Achievement Award The award for lifetime achievement was awarded to Colin Escott, noted author of Hank Williams: The Biography (Little, Brown, 1994), numerous books on the Sun
label including Good Rockin' Tonight: Sun Records and the Birth of Rock 'n' Roll (St. Martin's Press, 1991). His most recent project is All Roots Lead to Rock: Legends of Early Rock 'n' Roll: A Bear Family Reader (Schirmer Books, 1999), which he edited. Mr. Escott was the recipient of two previous ARSC awards in 1991 and 1992.

Sites, sounds and visions

· The journal Scientific American is a common source of audio experiment and development. The May 1999 issue contains a fascinating article about micro-microphones "New sensors detect sound using light and heat"

· Handshake Productions is publishing a newsletter on copyright and digital media issues. The Copyright & New Media Law Newsletter, in its 3rd year of publication, has contributors from around the world and subscribers from 15 countries. It is a 16-page print newsletter issued 3 times a year. Subscribers also receive two free electronic supplements: - Email Alerts for news, court cases, legislation changes, and forthcoming seminars; - an e-letter, Copyright & New Media Legal News. Take a look at the Tables of Contents from previous issues, some sample full text articles, as well as what subscribers have said by visiting Subscription is online or obtain subscription information at or by sending an email to

· RLG Digital Preservation Report Digital Preservation Needs and Requirements in RLG Member Institutions" is available on the RLG Web site This report contains the results of the 1998 study of RLG members' current practices, needs, and plans for preserving their growing collections of digital holdings.

· Two new reports by Abby Smith titled "The Future of the Past: Preservation in American Research Libraries" and "Why Digitize" are now available from the US Council on Library and Information Resources website pages at:

·A University of Glasgow consortium led by the Performing Arts Data Service (PADS) is one of two pilot sites working on a project to develop the delivery of moving images to academic institutions via networks. The project, IMAGINATION, which has been initiated by the British Film Institute, the British Universities Film and Video Council (BUFVC) and the Joint Information Systems Information Committee (JISC) may be the opening activity in a radical new network service for UK higher education. For more information about this project see http//

Calendar of events

Date Event Location
July 18 - 23 IAML Annual Conference Wellington, New Zealand
August 16 - 19 Collecting and Safeguarding Oral Traditions
(see page 10)
Khon Kaen, Thailand
August 20 - 28 IFLA Council and General Conference Bangkok
August 19 - 25 ICTM World Conference Hiroshima
September 2 - 5 AES 17th Conference "High quality audio coding" Villa Castelleti, Signa, Italy
September 18 - 22 IASA Annual Conference "A century of sound archiving" Vienna
September 24 - 27 AES 107th Convention New York
October 3-5 FIAF/IFTA Conference Santiago, Chile
November FIAF Executive Committee Toulouse
February 19 -22 AES 108th Convention Paris
April FIAF Annual Conference London
July IASA/SEAPAVAA Annual Conference Singapore
August 6 - 11 IAML Annual Conference Edinburgh
August 13 - 18 IFLA Council and General Conference Jerusalem
September 12 - 18 Berlin Phonogrammarchiv Centenary Berlin
September 20 - 22 IAML-Gruppe Bundesrepublik Deutschland/IASA-Ländergruppe
November FIAF Executive Committee New York
July 8 - 14 IAML Annual Conference Périgueux, France
September 22 - 26 IASA Annual Conference London

This Information Bulletin was compiled by:

The Editor of IASA, Chris Clark,
The British Library National Sound Archive, 96 Euston Road, London NW1 2DB, UK,
tel. 44 (0)20 7412 7411, fax 44 (0)20 7412 7413, e-mail