Funds Will Provide Support for Archiving and Preservation Programs and Research Efforts that Examine the Impact of Music on Human Development

SANTA MONICA, Calif. (April 6, 2016) — The GRAMMY Foundation® Grant Program announced today that $300,000 in grants will be awarded to 20 recipients in the United States and Canada to help facilitate a range of research on a variety of subjects, as well as support a number of archiving and preservation programs. Scientific research projects include a study that will investigate the perceptive deficits experienced by persons with cochlear implants, and a study that will be the first systematic investigation of social and nonsocial rhythm perception and entrainment in infants and toddlers with autism spectrum disorder. Preservation and archiving initiatives include the recovery and digitization of sound from some of the earliest cylinder records ever made, as well as the preservation and dissemination of 167 manuscript sound recordings from one of the most historically and culturally significant collections of live bluegrass recordings in existence. The deadline each year for submitting letters of inquiry is Oct. 1. Guidelines and the letter of inquiry form for the 2017 cycle will be available beginning May 1 at

"The Recording Academy® provides sustaining financial support for our GRAMMY Foundation Grant Program, and as we approach the initiative's 30th anniversary next year, we are proud to have awarded close to $7 million to nearly 400 projects in the fields of archiving, preservation and scientific research," said Neil Portnow, President/CEO of The Recording Academy® and the GRAMMY Foundation. "We are proud to be a leading funder in these areas of philanthropy, and lend our resources to such distinguished recipients and exemplary endeavors."

Generously funded by The Recording Academy, the Grant Program provides funding annually to organizations and individuals to support efforts that advance the archiving and preservation of the recorded sound heritage of the Americas for future generations, as well as scientific research projects related to the impact of music on the human condition. In 2008 the Grant Program expanded its categories to include assistance grants for individuals and small- to mid-sized organizations to aid collections held by individuals and organizations that may not have access to the expertise needed to create a preservation plan. The assistance planning process, which may include inventorying and stabilizing a collection, articulates the steps to be taken to ultimately archive recorded sound materials for future generations.


Preservation Assistance

Delta Blues Museum — Clarksdale, Miss.

Awarded: $5,000

This project is an effort to organize, preserve, and digitize the DBM's collection, thereby making it accessible to the public. The collection consists of thousands of 78s, some with unknown contents to be discovered. Notably, this collection contains "Crazy Blues" by Mamie Smith (Okeh 4169), which is widely credited as the first blues recording. 

Folklore Village Farm Inc. — Dodgeville, Wis.

Awarded: $4,240

Jane Farwell, prominent early teacher of international folk dancing, collected American ethnic, folk and square dance recordings, and folk dance teaching recordings from the 1930s through the 1970s. This project endeavors to clean, sleeve, assess, and document the 2,968 recordings in her collection to prepare for use, possible digitization and to make the collection accessible to a larger audience via the Web. The collection includes 78s, 45s and LPs. 

Preservation Implementation

Center for Popular Music at Middle Tennessee State UniversityMurfreesboro, Tenn.

Awarded: $19,537

Comprised of 167 manuscript sound recordings from Brown County, Ind., the Marvin Hedrick Audio Collection is one of the most historically and culturally significant collections of live bluegrass recordings in existence. The project will catalog, preserve, digitize, and disseminate the tapes and their contents via a dedicated website and the center's documentary label, Spring Fed Records.

Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum — Nashville, Tenn.

Awarded: $10,000

The Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum will preserve, digitize, and ensure public access to 650 rare interviews with country music performers, songwriters, and music industry personnel recorded from 1959 to 2003. 

Jim Metzner — Kingston, N.Y.

Awarded: $10,000

This project will digitize a trove of on-location field recordings of soundscapes, music and interviews from around the world, including at-risk DATs, and refine and update an archive of the recordings in a user-friendly database.

Louis Guida — Lexington, Ky.

Awarded: $10,000

The project goal is to digitize, preserve and make accessible a significant historic collection of African-American gospel and blues from Memphis, Tenn., and the Mississippi Delta. The collection features extensive sound recordings and film footage from a six-year field project on the life and times of the Rev. "Gatemouth" Moore that culminated in the international award-winning 1992 film, Saturday Night, Sunday Morning: The Travels Of Gatemouth Moore.

New York Philharmonic — New York

Awarded: $20,000

The New York Philharmonic Archives will digitize and preserve 43 hours of rare radio broadcast recordings from 1933–1950. The live concerts were recorded on extremely fragile and brittle lacquer discs. The philharmonic will provide public access to these recordings through its own research center and through the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, as well as through online listening.

Ravi Shankar Foundation — Encinitas, Calif.

Awarded: $15,000

The Ravi Shankar Foundation, in partnership with East Meets West Music and the City College of New York Archives and Special Collections, will preserve rare and previously unavailable Ravi Shankar audio — currently held on 76 reels in CCNY's Music Library — by digitizing, transcribing and making accessible the lectures and performances the GRAMMY® winner gave as a visiting professor at City College of New York in 1967–1968.

The Santa Fe Opera — Santa Fe, N.M.

Awarded: $20,000

Since 1979, the Santa Fe Opera has recorded archival performance videos of each of its productions. This project will entail digitizing 135 hours of 52 productions dating from 1979–2001, which are at significant risk of loss due to their age and obsolete format, and make them available for public viewing. Included are American, world and company premieres as well as Santa Fe Opera company and role debuts by well-known and beloved opera singers. 

Silent Film Sound and Music Archive — Humble, Texas

Awarded: $3,045

The Silent Film Sound and Music Archive will digitize the Ben Model Collection, an important private collection of silent film music, and make it freely accessible through an online repository of silent film music. The collection contains rare volumes of music from Europe and America, all of which offers insight into the composition and performance of music for silent films. 

Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of American History — Washington, D.C.

Awarded: $20,000

In partnership with the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the Library of Congress, the National Museum of American History will recover and digitize sound from some of the earliest cylinder records ever made. The recordings are associated with Alexander Graham Bell and Thomas Edison. Through this project, a selection of pioneering recordings can be brought back to life and made accessible to both general and specialized audiences.

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Chapel Hill, N.C.

Awarded: $19,980

This undertaking will preserve and provide access to unique archival recordings of live performances from the McCabe's Collection at the Southern Folklife Collection, UNC-Chapel Hill. McCabe's Guitar Shop, opened in 1958, has become one of Los Angeles' most treasured and venerated concert rooms. Its archives consist of more than 2,000 unique audio recordings documenting America's rich music history from 1967 to 2008.

University of Wisconsin-Madison Wisconsin Center for Film and Theater Research — Madison, Wis.

Awarded: $5,102

The Wisconsin Center for Film and Theater Research holds the personal and professional papers of composer/lyricist/ librettist Marc Blitzstein, including tape and disc recordings of performances or excerpts of many of his works, including world premieres and original cast recordings. The WCFTR will digitize these recordings to ensure they are not lost and to increase their availability.


Scientific Research

CRIR Research Centre of the Jewish Rehabilitation Hospital — Laval, Quebec

Awarded: $19,980

Stroke typically leads to upper extremity impairments. Musical training was shown to lead to a coupling of auditory and motor brain areas in musicians and novice players. Researchers seek to test whether such coupling supports the recovery of upper extremity function in stroke participants undergoing music-supported therapy.

Colorado State University — Fort Collins, Colo.

Awarded: $19,697 

Core features of autism spectrum disorder include a lack of social communication skills and restrictive/repetitive patterns that can impede a child's ability to make meaningful connections with peers. Some research has indicated that children with ASD have typical processing of emotion in music and have heightened musical skills. However, peer-assisted learning research in music has been primarily focused on children without disabilities. This study seeks to examine the impact of PAL on musical and social outcomes in children with ASD.

Faranak Farzan — Toronto, Ontario

Awarded: $19,933

Musicians show enhanced inhibitory control, the ability to inhibit interference to attend to a needed task. The neural mechanism of enhanced IC is unclear. This project seeks to identify the mechanism of enhanced IC in youth. This can lead to discovering novel IC enhancing therapies.

Marcus Autism Center Children's Healthcare of Atlanta — Atlanta

Awarded: $20,000

Autism spectrum disorder is a common and lifelong neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by significant difficulties in social communication and interaction, play, and restricted and repetitive behaviors. This project, which combines behavioral and social neuroscience techniques, is the first systematic investigation of social and nonsocial beat and rhythm perception and entrainment in infants and toddlers with ASD. 

The University of Kansas Center for Research — Lawrence, Kan.

Awarded: $18,500 

This project will examine the effect of music participation on school engagement and academic achievement for students in five large Midwestern school districts. Two components set this project apart from previous studies: The number of participants examined will make this the most comprehensive project to date, and the variable of music participation will be measured and analyzed more rigorously compared to similar past studies.

University of Montreal — Outremont, Quebec

Awarded: $20,000

With a cochlear implant, a deaf person can hear and understand speech, but enjoying music or perceiving emotions is dramatically impaired. To characterize the poorly understood brain mechanisms underlying these deficits, researchers, in partnership with McGill University, will use high-density brain imaging in implanted patients and control participants. This will advance the knowledge of brain processing of music and emotion, and can inform interventions to adequately address patients' impairments. 

University of South Florida Tampa, Fla.

Awarded: $19,986 

More than five million Americans (age 60 and above) suffer from Parkinson's disease, an illness associated with impaired motor control and cognitive performance. While research suggests that piano training mitigates cognitive impairment in healthy adults, little is known as to how piano training affects cognition and motor control in PD. This project is the first randomized clinical trial to evaluate the cognitive, motor and psychosocial outcomes in patients with PD. 


The GRAMMY Foundation was established in 1988 to cultivate the understanding, appreciation and advancement of the contribution of recorded music to American culture. The Foundation accomplishes this mission through programs and activities that engage the music industry and cultural community as well as the general public. The Foundation works in partnership year-round with its founder, The Recording Academy, to bring national attention to important issues such as the value and impact of music and arts education and the urgency of preserving our rich cultural heritage. In recognition of the significant role of teachers in shaping their students' musical experiences, The Recording Academy and the GRAMMY Foundation have partnered to present the Music Educator Award™. Open to current U.S. music teachers in kindergarten through college, the fourth annual Music Educator Award will be presented at during GRAMMY Week 2017. For more information on the Music Educator Award, please visit For more information about the Foundation, please visit For breaking news and exclusive content, please "like" GRAMMY in the Schools on Facebook and follow @GRAMMYFdn on Twitter and Instagram.   




Grant Program Contact:

Kelly Darr/GRAMMY Foundation/310.581.8665/

Derek Spencer/GRAMMY Foundation/310.581.1260/


Media Contacts:

Christina Cassidy/GRAMMY Foundation/310.581.8670/

Hannah Berryman/GRAMMY Foundation/310.581.8724/


GRAMMYs Download PDF (348.78 KB)
Wednesday, June 21, 2017 - 08:22