The Scottish Music Centre has an extensive collection of over 38,000 items as part of its remit to document and promote the musical life of the country, past and present.
We have been acquiring material for over forty years: sheet music, sound recordings, books, articles, letters, diaries, photographs, concert programmes. Most of our acquisitions now arrive in digital formats that are easy to store, preserve and make available to the thousands of people who use our services every year but much of the older material is in a precarious condition.
With the help of a grant from AmbiITion Scotland’s Make IT Happen fund we have begun to convert the most vulnerable items in our collection into them into digital formats that will secure their long-term survival and wider circulation. We have digitised over 2500 items in the last year: handwritten manuscripts, old radio broadcasts, demo tapes, field recordings, out-of-print songbooks, and vinyl releases that have never been reissued.
Where we have permission, complete recordings and scores can be purchased in downloadable form. Our next priority is to devise new ways of showcasing the gems in our collection and the stories behind them.