Indiana University Bloomington

The Archives of Traditional Music is an audiovisual archive that documents music and culture from all over the world. With over 100,000 recordings that include more than 2,700 field collections, it is one of the largest university-based ethnographic sound archives in the United States.

Its holdings cover a wide range of cultural and geographical areas, vocal and instrumental music, linguistic materials, folktales, interviews, and oral history, as well as videotapes, photographs, and manuscripts.

See and hear highlights from our collections

Hitch's Happy Harmonists at the Gennett Records studio in the early 1920s

Hoagy Carmichael Collections. 1920s to 1981. Over 3500 recordings, photographs, and personal effects from the life of popular songwriter, singer, jazz musician, and actor Hoagy Carmichael.

More about this collection

Upcoming Event from ATM

Hakka Music from Taiwan


Hakka Music from Taiwan

Please join us on Monday, September 21 at 12:00 noon for a special performance and demonstration of traditional Hakka Music from Taiwan. Hakka people are a distinct ethnic group of about 80 million throughout the world with most living today in China and Taiwan.

As part of its month-long Sensing Taiwan series, the Indiana University East Asian Studies and the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of China (Taiwan) are pleased to present the Miao-Li Chen Family Pei-Kuan Pa-Yin Group (苗栗陳家班北管八音團), directed by Dr. Cheng Rom-Shing (鄭榮興). Dr. Cheng is the fifth generation of directors of this group, which was formed over a century ago by traditional Hakka musicians in north Taiwan.  Prof. Cheng and his group are committed to preserving and promoting the music, folk arts, and cultural heritage of Taiwan’s Hakka community. In 2010, this highly acclaimed troupe of musicians was designated by the Taiwanese government as the primary preserver of Hakka pa-yin music. While in Bloomington, Director Cheng and ten musicians will participate in performances, musical conversations, and educational programs.

They invite you to enjoy three exciting performances of traditional Hakka music, including popular selections of Hakka pa-yin music, opera, and folksongs. Performances will include storytelling and introductions to Hakka music and culture by ethnomusicologist Dr. Hsin-Wen Hsu (許馨文; PhD, IU, 2014).

Sunday, September 20, 3:00 pm Virgil T. DeVault Alumni Center 1000 E 17th St Monday, September 21, 12:00 noon. IU Archives of Traditional Music Performance Series Hoagy Carmichael Room Morrison Hall 006 Monday, September 21, 7:30 pm “Traditional Music in the U.S. and Taiwan: A Cultural-Musical Dialogue” Featuring the Miao-Li Chen Family Pei-Kuan Pa-Yin Group and Brad Leftwich and the Hogwire Band. Folklore & Ethnomusicology Performance and Lecture Hall 800 N Indiana Ave


New at the Archives

ATM receives NEH grant to preserve cylinders

The Archives of Traditional Music has partnered with Indiana University's Media Digitization and Preservation Inititiative (MDPI) to transfer and digitally preserve the nearly 7,000 wax cylinders held in its collections.

Wax Cylinder Box

The ATM holds one of the largest collections of unique ethnographic wax cylinders outside of the Library of Congress. The content of the cylinders is remarkable in both breadth and depth. Comprised of 160 different collections made between 1893 and 1938, these cylinders were recorded in 60 different countries and on every continent except Antarctica. Because wax cylinders were the first viable method of sound recording, many of these recordings were the first ever made in certain parts of the world. The recordings are both irreplaceable artifacts of cultural history as well as documentation of the development of ethnographic science at the turn of the 20th century..




The Archives of Traditional Music

Morrison Hall 117

1165 E. 3rd St.

Bloomington, IN 47405

Map showing this location