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Gauhar Jaan: Bhupali

 

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Gauhar Jaan (or Gauhar Jan) (Hindi: गौहर जान) (1873-1930)

​'At around 9.00 a.m. a young lady entered the studio with all her paraphernalia, including accompanists and relatives. Loaded fully with very expensive ornaments and jewelry, this 30 year old, fair, medium-built lady went onto the stage prepared for the recordings. Sarangi, harmonium, and tabla players began to tune their instruments. Gaisberg personally checked the equipment. A thick wax master record was placed on the turntable rotating at 78 rpm. A huge recording horn was fitted on the wall behind her and close to her face, and she was asked to sing loudly into the horn. At the narrow end of the long horn a diaphragm fitted with a needle was connected to the recording machinery, with a needle placed on rotating disc for cutting the grooves. Gaisberg requested her to sing for three minutes and announce her name at the end of the recording. At the end of the trial recording she announced - "My name is Gauhar Jan". (sound clip - Bhairavi ) This announcement was necessary since the wax masters were sent to Hanover in Germany for pressing the records and the technicians would make proper labels and confirm the name by listening to these announcements at the end of the three minutes performance.'

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