In celebration of OHAM at 50, we asked various composers, including students, faculty, and friends, to create pieces using OHAM recordings as source material. In some cases, composers created their own video component, and in others pieces were matched with video artists through CCAM (the Center for Colaborative Arts and Media at Yale).
Alone Together: Musicians in the Time of Covid
An ongoing series of Zoom interviews with composers and musicians, focusing on their personal and creative lives while isolating during the current COVID-19 outbreak.
The Struggles and Triumphs of Bessie Jones, Big Mama Thornton, and Ethel Waters
An online exhibit curated and created by OHAM fellow Daniella Posy, Yale PhD candidate in American Studies.
Since its founding in 1969 at Yale University, Oral History of American Music (OHAM) has been dedicated to the collection and preservation of the voices of the major musical figures of our time. The project captures musicians’ narratives and reflections in their own words through in-depth interviews. With an ever-expanding collection, OHAM is a living archive, currently comprising approximately 3,000 audio and video recordings. We regularly conduct, catalogue, and transcribe interviews with emerging talents and established artists, producing a wealth of primary and secondary source material accessible to musicians, students, scholars, arts organizations, and the media.
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OHAM collections can be located through Archives at Yale. Once located, recordings for most interviews can then be streamed online via OHAM’s AV Access System, Aviary.
Access to Aviary from Archives at Yale is provided by clicking on the OHAM logo provided for an interview. See this example.
Yale users can simply log in with their Yale University netID, and play the interview recording in Aviary.
Non-Yale users should follow the steps outlined in this video to gain 30 days free access to interviews.
If you would like transcripts of any of these interviews, click here to fill out a request form and a staff member will provide you with any available PDFs for download.
OHAM provides access to interview recordings and text transcripts for personal research use, teaching, and educational purposes. Free online streaming access to most OHAM original interview recordings is available. Digital copies of most transcripts are also available at no charge. A limited number of acquired materials are also digitized and/or transcribed, and are available for access.
In accordance with Yale's Web Accessibility Policy, accessible versions of OHAM’s materials can be provided upon request. The time required to prepare these accessible versions will vary.
Researchers wishing to publish or broadcast OHAM materials are responsible for obtaining direct authorization from copyright holders. Generally, the interviewees or their estates hold the copyright.