With an aim to revive and restore the almost forgotten or vanishing Ao vernacular musicians, particularly among the Ao tribe, the “Call for Musical Revival,” a Video Compact Disc is getting set to be released very soon.
Indeed, in certainty we talk about preserving our culture and identity in the open, however, the ugly truth is that many of those people who defend to preserve culture and identity are being heard saying, “I don’t listen to Ao (read vernacular) songs, I don’t read Ao books,” which is sad.
Aos are considered steadfast in preservation of their identity, literate, and pioneers in many fields. However, if there is no generation of Community Songs and books within a celebrated community, its glory is bound to fade away into nothingness. In no time our literature and talent will become extinct if we contribute to only promoting Nagamese, Hindi and English literature and songs. As the saying goes, although there are many workers, the work will never get done if they don’t work, likewise, language flourishes only when they are spoken and preserved.
While interacting with renowned Ao language musicians, I inquired why they are not releasing music albums in Ao vernacular. To this, their response is apparent, “Even though there are listeners who like to listen to their songs it becomes very discouraging and difficult to produce and release an album because of the poor sales return.”
Going by the popularity of these musicians, I thought that they could have received a hefty return from the sales of their albums, that is, if our people love and value talent as others do. However, I was taken aback by the response and have led me to realize that our own musical talents are on the verge of famine. Many of us like to listen to love songs but we hardly buy them. Let us give a thought to ourselves. How many of the songs that you have in your laptop, pen drives and the compact discs that you own are purchased and how many of them are copied from your friends and elsewhere free of cost? We attempt to get everything for free.
When there is scarcity of food, and when we see people in the streets dying of hunger, then only we think there is famine. However, in the same manner today we are in scarcity of own vernacular songs and music. When our cultural songs and musical riches vanish or fizzle out, we will only be left with tears to shed. To save from such predictable famine every individual and group should find ways and means to revive the dying Ao vernacular music. Each one of us should make it a point to purchase the music CDs and own them, instead of freely copying them from friends and getting from elsewhere free of cost.
In other places we find rich singers and musicians. However, in our place these musicians and singers and those who are successful in producing Music CD albums must have gone through many hurdles to achieve their good position. It is time for us to contribute towards saving ourselves from the approaching famine and to preserve our identity and culture. It is time we need to understand the value of music and start purchasing CDs and subscribing to songs and listen, which can only revive us from the famine.
I am not a singer, nor a musician. I am a lover of music. This is why I am trying to produce and release a Music Video Album, with a sole objective to create a progressive platform for entire Ao community. I would urge everyone to lend a helping hand in this venture. In this Music Video Album, there will be nine original songs, and is being recorded and nearing completion for release from a Studio in Dimapur. For those who would purchase this Music Video Album should be reminded that each one of us played a role in reviving our land from a musical famine.
Further, if anyone would like to contribute towards the production of the Video album, one can send in contributions in favour of Ao Music Revival Account No. 37042046646/ IFSC CODE- SBIN0003598. You can send in a picture of yourself, group, family or children’s photo with your official name and address through this WhatsApp No- 9612130608. Since we have many namesakes, I would like to insert pictures of the contributors in the Music Video Album. If anyone wants to know more on this, feel free to give a call at the given number above.