Quantity: 147 wax cylinders, 22 acetate discs, 204 magnetic tapes, 34 cassettes
The materials contained in this series were gathered by Norman B Tindale between the years 1930 and c1990 and form a major part of the Speech and Sound collection of the South Australian Museum (SAM). Included are recordings of:
- Australian Aboriginal songs, stories, and vocabulary
- field interviews
- discussions between Tindale and colleagues
- audio correspondence
- radio interviews and television programmes
- music, social events and lectures delivered by Tindale and others
The recordings were made in various media, including: wax cylinders, acetate discs (78s), and magnetic tapes (reel-to-reel and cassette). Subject to cultural restrictions, copies of the recordings in digital form are available for public access. It should be noted that many of the Aboriginal songs and stories collected by Tindale were only recorded in written form. The written-only recordings can be found in Tindale's field journals (series AA 338/1) and Documentation for speech and sound recordings (series AA 338/12).
The wax cylinder recordings were made between the years 1930-c1954. Most relate to expeditions of the University of Adelaide's Board for Anthropological Research (BAR, see AA 346), of which Tindale was a regular member. In the early 1930s in particular, Tindale often collaborated with EH Davies (AA 71), TD Campbell (AA 52), and HK Fry (AA 105) in producing wax cylinder recordings. Note that not all of the wax cylinders recorded during BAR expeditions have survived.
The acetate disc recordings were made between the years 1932-1949 and are relatively few in number.
The magnetic tape recordings were made between the years 1956-c1990, and they include reel-to-reel magnetic tapes and cassettes. Although Tindale retired from the SAM in October 1965, he continued to pursue his research interests in Australia and in the United States until his death in 1993. The bulk of the magnetic tape recordings, however, relate to research in Australia in the 1960s.
Supporting documentation for the speech and sound recordings is located in a number of places. The most useful sources include Tindale's field journals (series AA 338/1) and song notebooks and related papers (series AA 338/12). Tindale often made transcriptions of songs at the time of recording, or soon after, and also noted contextual information such as the location of recording, biographical details of participants, and aspects of the performance, for example. Summaries of contents in Tindale's hand are found on many of the tape boxes, and these annotations have informed the item descriptions provided below. As mentioned, many songs recorded by Tindale exist in the SAM archive in written form only. Further details may also be found in Tindale's published articles, Alice M Moyle's (1966) A Handlist of Field Collections of Recorded Music in Australia and Torres Strait
, and the S. A. Museum Speech and Sound Collections
register (compiled in 1964, see AA 338/12/4 for a PDF download
For archival purposes, it is useful to consider this series as comprising three main sections:
- AA 338/11/1-26
Recordings made between the years 1930 and 1964 and listed in the S. A. Museum Speech and Sound Collections register
- AA 338/11/27-30
Recordings made between 1964 and 1966 that are not listed in the S. A. Museum Speech and Sound Collections register
- AA 338/11/31-39
Recordings considered by Tindale to be his 'personal and study series' of tapes that arrived at the SAM after his death in 1993
Most of the materials contained in AA 338/11/1-26 are listed in the S. A. Museum Speech and Sound Collections
register, a document compiled by Tindale for research purposes in 1964. The register concentrates on recordings made by Tindale and recordings received by him from correspondents in remote locations, such as Jack Doolan and PM Rice (see AA 632 and AA 267 respectively). Note that it does not list the entire SAM Speech and Sound Collection. The register lists song texts that exist in a variety of formats: some are audio records and some exist merely as transcriptions in the papes of Tindale's journals and notebooks. The registers provides the listed texts with an 'AS' identification number. In many cases, these numbers are included in the item descriptions given below. It is possible to consult the S. A. Museum Speech and Sound Collections
register and find a link to relevant pages in Tindale's journals where fuller descriptions are often found (see AA 338/12/4). It is also important to note that while the item level descriptions given below draw upon Moyle (1966) and the S. A. Museum Speech and Sound Collections
register, there are discrepancies between these sources and some revisions have been made for the sake of clarity and accuracy.
The recordings contained in AA 338/11/27-30 do not appear in the S. A. Museum Speech and Sound Collections
register. They apparently entered the Speech and Sound Collection at the SAM in the 1960s and were not taken by Tindale to the United States. Note that additional material relating to the Yalata (1964-1965) and Musgrave Range (1966) fieldtrips are located in AA 338/11/31-39.
Items contained in AA 338/11/31-39 were considered by Tindale to be his personal and study collection of tapes. The tapes arrived at the SAM in labelled shoeboxes after Tindale's death in 1993. Most were made after Tindale's retirement from the SAM, but the shoeboxes also contained copies of recordings made prior to 1965 for study purposes in the United States. Most of the duplicate tapes have been removed by the archive.
The recordings contained in AA 338/11/1-26 and AA 338/11/27-30 are grouped chronologically and according to expedition, field trip, or recording session. Those contained in AA 338/11/31-39 are generally grouped according to topic (usually provided by Tindale on the shoeboxes).
Items AA 338/11/1-26 (wax cylinders, acetate discs and magnetic tapes) relate to the following expeditions, field trips or recording sessions:
- MacDonald Downs (NT) 1930
- Magpie series c1930
- Cockatoo Creek (NT) 1931
- Mt Liebig (NT) 1932
- Clarence Long series (SA) 1932
- Mann & Musgrave Ranges (SA) 1933
- Crow Story, Tangane Tribe, Coorong (SA) 1934
- Story of Waijungari, Jaralde Tribe (SA) 1934
- Ooldea (SA) 1934
- Diamantina (SA) 1934
- Warburton Range (WA) 1935
- Clarence Long series (SA) 1937-38
- Harvard-Adelaide Universities Expedition 1938-39
- Albert Karloan series 1940
- Fanny Cochrane Smith series 1949
- Haast Bluff (NT) 1957
- Mornington Islands series (Qld) 1960
- Bentinck Island series (Qld) 1960
- John Reese Interview 1960
- Excavation of rock shelter at Noola (NSW) 1961
- Palm Island (Qld) 1963
- Gulf of Carpentaria Expedition 1963
- Rawlinson Range Expedition (WA) 1963
- Myths of Kungkarungkara 1964
- Papunya (NT) 1964
- Interview with John Irrgang 1964
Items contained in AA 338/11/27-30, those materials recorded on magnetic tape between 1964 and 1966 that are not listed in the SAM Speech and Sound Collections
register, are listed in this guide under the following headings:
- Gerard (SA) 1964
- Yalata (SA) 1964
- Yalata (SA) 1965
- Musgrave Range (SA) 1966
Items contained in AA 338/11/31-39, Tindale's 'personal and study series', are listed under the following headings:
- Harold Davies series; Simpson Desert 1962; Crabtree pressure flaking; F Bordes Extracts; Songs from Arnhem Land
- 'John Greenway series'
- Yalata (SA) 1964-65; Western Musgrave Ranges (SA) 1966
- 'J Mason series ; Milerum; Jarildekald; Tanganekald'
- 'Tapes: W. Australia 1966, 1968, 1972'
- 'Australian Anthropology'
- 'N B Tindale: Cassette Tape Collection'
- 'Cinefilm descriptions, lectures'
- Additions to Tindale's personal and study series
CD, Transcription Tape Catalogue
and Speech and Sound Collections
register information for recordings has been provided in [ ]. For example: [CD 1. Track 4. Tape No. 9567; TT4; R1; F7; AS27-28]
- CD 1 refers to the number of CDs. If the inventory item comprises only one CD then the CD number is omitted
- Track 4 refers to the track number on the Access CD
- Tape No. 9567 refers to the Tape number in the Transcription Tape Catalogue
- TT4 refers to the Transcription Tape number in the Transcription Tape Catalogue
- R1 & F7 and similar information refers to the record number, cylinder number and/or tape number in the Transcription Tape Catalogue
- AS27-28 refers to the sheet number in the Speech and Sound Collections register
Note that much of the material contained in this series is of a culturally sensitive nature and public access is subject to restrictions.