The first music score library of contemporary Armenian songs

The songs created by Armenian composers between 1920 and 2020 were recorded and digitized.

The most famous Armenian composers of the Soviet and post-Soviet period: Aram Khachatryan, Edgar Hovhannisyan, Arno Babajanyan, Robert Amirkhanyan, Hayko, Artur Grigoryan, Elvina Makaryan, and the best songs of other famous contemporary authors, movie soundtracks, urban romances, and dance tunes will appear on one platform. This initiative is highly relevant because an entire layer of Armenian musical heritage created in the last hundred years has not only been digitized but not even recorded.

“Armenian pop, urban, lyrical songs, and romances created by professional composers, have been preserved only in the form of performances, but there are no music scores. For example, Elvina Makaryan’s songs are completely absent. If any singer wants to perform a song, he or she should listen to the performances. It is impossible to use music scores,” says project leader Araksya Musheghyan.

Armenian pop music anthology

The project of preservation and digitization of popular Armenian modern and pop songs is implemented by the “Renaissance” Foundation. The general producer of the project is Artur Janibekyan, the author of the idea is Mikael Avetisyan, and the music editor is Armen Martirosyan. The project is managed by Araksya Musheghyan and coordinated by Hasmik Chakhmakhchyan.

“I attach great importance to this project led by Artur Janibekyan. The Foundation has already digitized national and folk songs. Now it’s the turn of pop songs,” says Araksya Musheghyan, the head of the project.

The project team first collected and processed the hundred most popular Armenian songs. They created a LEAD SHEET where the song’s lyrics, melody, and harmony are combined. From now on, any musician who wants to perform any famous song will be able to purchase and download the original version, the music scores from the website.

“First, we conducted extensive monitoring on the internet. It turned out that there was nothing. We found some music scores of songs by Armenian composers on certain Russian websites, which had been transcribed from paper,” emphasizes Araksya Musheghyan.

Famous Armenian songs were selected from academic and non-academic circles. The selection has been made after carefully studying and analyzing the ratings of the works.

“You will know the name of the song for sure. We have contacted these authors, composers, or their successors and heirs to take music scores. We found some materials in the family archives or libraries. After listening, we compared it with the first, original performances. Some songs we still haven’t managed to get in touch with the relatives of the authors to get permission,” says Araksya Musheghyan.

Now, the Project team is looking for relatives of Dev, G. Banduryan, S. Kaputikyan, H. Ghukasyan V. Harutyunyan, H. Saghatelyan, Ash. Grashi, J. Duvalyan, M. Minasyan, A. Sahakyan, G. Karapetyan, Yer. Manaryan, L. Durian to obtain permission to use their works as well. One hundred songs were recorded. If the initiative continues, more than a thousand new songs will appear in the music score library. The anthology of Armenian popular songs is created to preserve the musical heritage for generations.