Funds Will Provide Support For Archiving And Preservation Programs And Research Efforts

That Examine The Impact Of Music On Human Development

SANTA MONICA, Calif. (May 8, 2017)—The GRAMMY Museum® Grant Program announced today that more than $200,000 in grants will be awarded to 14 recipients in the United States to help facilitate a range of research on a variety of subjects, as well as support a number of archiving and preservation programs. Research projects include a study that will investigate the effects of group singing therapy on people with Parkinson's disease, a study that examines the effects of household sounds on infants and their development, and more. Preservation and archiving initiatives will evaluate the sound collections of the Fort Sill Chiricahua/Warm Springs Apache tribe, digitize traditional Yiddish folk recordings, preserve carillon music, and more. The deadline each year for submitting letters of inquiry is Oct. 1. Guidelines and the letter of inquiry form for the 2017 cycle are available at

"The Recording Academy® is proud to support our GRAMMY Museum Grant Program and its important work," said Neil Portnow, President/CEO of The Recording Academy and Chair of the GRAMMY Museum Board. "To date, we have awarded more than $7 million to nearly 400 initiatives that explore the intersection of music and science for the benefit of the general public, and safeguard our musical heritage for present and future generations. The compelling and far-reaching endeavors represented by our 2017 grantees reflect a commitment to issues that Recording Academy and GRAMMY Museum members are passionate about: our goal to recognize and sustain the value of music in all of our lives."

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, in addition to 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

Freight & Salvage—Berkeley, Calif.

Awarded: $5,000 

Established in 1968, the Freight & Salvage is one of the country's few full-time roots music presenters, celebrated worldwide for the excellence of its visiting artists. Hundreds of concerts at the Freight & Salvage have been recorded in multiple outdated formats. Thousands of hours of music are deteriorating, and the organization is now seeking support to assess the contents of the archive and prepare a plan for digitizing and preserving this treasure trove of master artists.

Jim O'Neal—Kansas City, Mo.

Awarded: $5,000

Living Blues magazine co-founders Jim O'Neal and Amy van Singel amassed a historic collection of more than 2,000 tapes of interviews and live music. These one-of-a-kind tapes, which date from 1968 to 2012, need to be catalogued and assessed in preparation of having the collection digitized, preserved, and disseminated. The tapes document many major figures in blues, R&B, gospel, and jazz from Chicago, Mississippi, Memphis, and elsewhere.

T. Christopher Alpin—Pasadena, Calif.

Awarded: $5,000

This project evaluates the sound collections of the Fort Sill Chiricahua/Warm Springs Apache tribe. This community is descended from the Apache prisoners of war seized with Geronimo in 1886. Collections contain the musical heritage of the Chihene, or Warm Springs Apache youth impressed into Nednai camps in the Mexican Sierra Madres between 1882 and 1883. Sound recordings include ceremonial, social, and hymn songs dating from the 19th century.

Preservation Implementation

Berklee College of MusicBoston 

Awarded: $13,000

Berklee has an impressive collection of video tapes (1985–2001) capturing music legends imparting their wisdom in memorable commencement speeches and unique performances. Berklee plans to digitize these at-risk analog recordings to preserve the collection and provide more public access to these unique resources. Given the fragility of these tapes, they must be preserved before all integrity is lost.

Bok Tower Gardens, Inc.—Lake Wales, Fla.

Awarded: $20,000

One of the largest yet least-known instruments, a carillon is comprised of at least 23 tuned bells in chromatic series. With only about 600 carillons around the world and fewer than 200 in North America, it is also one of the most rare. Bok Tower Gardens, home to the largest carillon library in the world, will digitize a portion of the 1600-plus reel-to-reel audio recordings of carillon performances, spanning decades of carillon history.

Center For Traditional Music And Dance—New York

Awarded: $10,000

The Center for Traditional Music and Dance will digitize and preserve the final 200 hours from the more than 700-hour collection of the essential field recordings of Yiddish music traditions made between 1982 and 2007 by leading scholar, performer, and National Endowment for the Arts National Heritage Fellow Michael Alpert. Currently, these materials are maintained on a variety of unstable formats.

Soulsville Foundation—Memphis, Tenn.

Awarded: $13,000

The Stax Museum of American Soul Music will digitize, preserve, and share its collection of more than 250 concert and promotional posters, advertisements, and album artwork proofs highlighting the rich history of Stax Records from 1957 to 1975. Due to years of improper storage, these materials are in danger of deteriorating without proper care. Materials will be stabilized, scanned, and shared with the public through the museum's website.

Sundance Institute—Park City, Utah

Awarded: $10,000

The Sundance Institute aims to digitize a wide range of recordings and documents from the Sundance Institute Film Music Program (1985–present), which includes seminal work in independent film music composition, and provides insights into the creative and career trajectories of individual artists supported by the program and the impact of their work on contemporary American culture at large.

Texas Folklife—Austin, Texas

Awarded: $20,000

Since 2012, Texas Folklife has undertaken an initiative to identify, organize, digitize, and disseminate its rich audio recording collection of Texas folk and traditional arts performances, field recordings, and interviews with artists dating from 1984. For this project, they will digitize and catalog a large portion of the audio collection in partnership with the University of Texas at Austin's Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, the UT iSchool, and other partners.

Yale University—New Haven, Conn.

Awarded: $20,000

Yale University Library seeks to preserve approximately 335 hours of unique non-commercial audio, predominantly from 1937–1956, featuring music by Charles Ives. Most recordings are on at-risk formats, notably instantaneous disc. All recordings will be digitized following International Association of Sound and Audiovisual Archives guidelines. Digitized content will be ingested into the library's digital preservation system and made available via one of its mediated streaming tools.

Scientific Research

Case Western Reserve University—Cleveland

Awarded: $19,935

This project aims to document parents' musical practices, beliefs, and perceptions about musical development in order to gain a broader understanding of the interactions and relationships influencing early childhood music development in home and community settings. The researcher will engage in 12 months of fieldwork with eight extended families from diverse socioeconomic, ethnic, and family structure backgrounds in the metropolitan Cleveland area.

Iowa State University Foundation—Ames, Iowa

Awarded: $19,630  

Motor and non-motor symptoms, such as depression, negatively impact quality of life for people with Parkinson's disease. Participants in a recent therapeutic singing study have indicated many benefits of group singing for motor and non-motor symptoms. This project seeks to examine the acute and long-term effects of therapeutic singing on both the motor and non-motor symptoms of Parkinson's, including depression, stress, and inflammation.

Skidmore College—Saratoga Springs, N.Y.

Awarded: $20,000

An individual differences approach will be used to assess the degree to which music and speech share neural resources. Participants will be identified as lyric- or melody-focused, and scanned using functional magnetic resonance imaging while listening to sung melodies. Differences in neural activation between groups will show where and how the speech and music networks are shared, and guide the development of music therapy for language disorders.

University of Oregon—Eugene, Ore.

Awarded: $19,992 

Sounds are a rich source of information available to infants. A current unmet need is to know which kinds of music, language, and other sound patterns in infancy set young learners on a path to social, linguistic, and academic success. Researchers at the University of Oregon will capture the many sounds in infants' everyday lives and characterize their quantity, quality, and stability. This research has potential to guide evidence-based policy about "sound diets"—from rhythms to tunes to words—that best support infants' development.

Established in 2008 as a partnership between The Recording Academy and AEG, the GRAMMY Museum is a non-profit organization dedicated to cultivating a greater understanding of the history and significance of music. Paying tribute to our collective musical heritage, the Museum explores and celebrates all aspects of the art form—from the technology of the recording process to the legends who've made lasting marks on our cultural identity. In 2017, the Museum integrated with its sister organization, the GRAMMY Foundation®, to broaden the reach of its music education and preservation initiatives. As a unified organization, the GRAMMY Museum fulfills its mission of making music a valued and indelible part of our society through exhibits, education, grants, and public programming. 

Grant Program Contact:

Derek Spencer/GRAMMY Museum/310.581.1260/

Media Contacts:

Christina Cassidy/The Recording Academy/310.392.3777/

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Wednesday, June 21, 2017 - 08:22