Recording Legacies

On the left hand side of the main stage at the Ramanbaug grounds, where the Sawai Gandharva Bhimsen Mahotsav is on, are various stalls that sell classical music CDs, music merchandise and a whole lot of paraphernalia related to classical music. Sandwiched between other stalls, Meera Music, a stall by Ajay Ginde, stands out. Ajay has been single-handedly sourcing rare recordings of lesser-known classical singers, who did not receive the fame they deserved. With an aim to bring these rare luminaries back into the limelight, Ajay produces CDs of these recordings and markets them. Some of the musicians whose rare recordings have been released by him include Yeshwantbuva Joshi, Sangameshwar Gurav and Balkrishnabuva Wadekar.

Based out of Dadar in Mumbai, Ajay mostly retails these CDs from his own house. "I used to work as an engineer till 2002. After that I began working towards laying the foundation for this endevour of mine. I launched Meera Music in 2008," says Ajay, son of late Pandit Krunshnarav Ginde, who was not only a musician, but also taught the science of music. After retirement, Ajay gathered his father's works in 38 different volumes, which eventually comprised 55 CDs. This initial idea was met with a lot of success and encouraged him to take this seriously. Most rare recordings that he possesses, have all been obtained from his father's personal collection.

In addition, he has travelled across the country, meeting fans and interacting with people, who have recorded the music of various eminent artistes. "I realised that a lot of these older singers from the '40s and the '50s had just faded away. There was no material documenting their music. People had not even heard of these artistes, who otherwise were so talented. I began collecting their music and released them through my music label at music festivals," he says.

All the material which is released by Ajay is copyrighted. "The artistes should get their dues when we release their music. Also, I don't really believe in this concept of giving too much discounts or combine them as offers like 'get one free on purchase of one'. That is degrading the artiste," he adds.

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