The central objective of the CD ROM 1 was to link
audio and transcription collections undertaken by the founder of
Macedonian ethnomusicology Zivko Firfov. The collections were digitized
in IRAM between 2001 and 2005. They consist of audio, scanned
transcriptions, Sibelius files with the score and lyrics, and two
digital catalogues with secondary data.
In the papers Mitevska Mileva
points to 62 songs which overlap in both collections.
The CD ROM 1 includes 30 of them, based on a search of the first third
of the transcription collection.
Unfortunately, Zivko Firfov did
not leave much secondary data about the recorded and transcribed
material. Still, the similarities confirm that Firfov used at least
some parts of the recordings for the transcriptions. We can assume that
Firfov made some changes based on his experience with the other
variants of the same song. The interviews with some of the singers
confirmed our assumption that the audio and transcription collections
were used to produce scores for the folk ensembles of the Macedonian
Radio. This process may have led to subtle changes in the
transcriptions, in the form of alterations to words, notes and in some
cases transpositions adequate to the performance abilities of the folk
instruments, and particularly folk string instruments. This claim is
further supported by the fact that some of the songs were recorded with
an instrumental accompaniment during the rehearsals of the orchestras
with the singers; six such examples have been included in this CD
In addition to the songs, Firfov wrote the instrumental introduction,
which provides yet more evidence for the argument that the
transcriptions were used for this purpose.
Our main goal in producing this
CD ROM was to open the possibilities for more thorough research of both
collections in the future. We therefore tried to keep as much as
possible of the original material intact: we did not use any noise
reduction, as well as speed and harmonic corrections.
We noticed that there is a pattern of speed change related to
all songs at the second side of the Cassette 36. The constant
acceleration of speed from the beginning to the end of each song
results in change of the pitch and ducking effect. This is enhanced at
the end of the tape which altogether points to a hardware or power
supply problem of the original equipment (Firfov used a Phillips
The CD ROM consists of three
types of files: audio (AIFF 44.1 KHz/16 bit), scanned transcriptions
(PDF) and Sibelius files with the scores and the lyrics (PDF). The
Sibelius files are presented in Irena Mitevska Mileva’s version with
some adjustments, such as additional metric signs, adjustment in the
presentation of the lyrics, repeating and missing lyrics and so on. The
design of the CD ROM with the adequate editing of the audio was
undertaken by Trena Jordanoska. The order of the
songs in this CD ROM corresponds to their appearance in the Transcription collection.
Our next step is to prepare the
second CD ROM with the overlapping materials. Still, having in mind the
number of the songs in both collections, we expect that future research
will uncover additional songs with similarities in melody and lyrics.