Of the Community, By the Community,
For the Community
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Says Margaret Pleasant Douroux, HMF's founder and one of
gospel's leading composers and music educators: "[Gospel] music
has passed through African-American culture without benefit of pen
and pencil. Now it can be documented as the truly American art form
that it is."
Among the project's key activities, says archivist John Vallier
M.A. '00, M.L.I.S. '03, UCLA's principal investigator for the partnership,
is the planning for Gospel House, which will become the physical
core for gospel in Los Angeles and home to the GALA archives.
GALA also will expand upon Los Angeles-based gospel and related
music collections in the UCLA archive and at HMF, Vallier says.
With the help of UCLA students and members of the broader community,
GALA will make both audio and video recordings of gospel and gospel-related
performances in and around the greater Los Angeles region. Preserving
invaluable gospel collections will be another of the project's components.
The archive will assist HMF and others with gospel collections to
preserve and increase access to already existing recordings that
document gospel music in Los Angeles. In addition, the archive will
host a Web server to make digital copies of gospel recordings available
to members of the gospel and broader communities.
"This partnership is a great opportunity," says Jacqueline
Cogdell DjeDje M.A. '72, Ph.D. '78, director of the UCLA Ethnomusicology
Archive. "As Dr. Douroux has often said, 'Western classical
music has Carnegie Hall; country music has the Grand Ole Opry; and
rock music has its Hall of Fame. Gospel has nothing.' "
With GALA, however, gospel music could one day have it all in
— Susan Chapman