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FHL launches Himig website

The Filipinas Heritage Library (FHL) recently launched Himig (www.himig.com.ph), the official website of its collection of over 5,000 songs from more than 1,000 phonograph records of original Filipino music.

The website serves not only as an online catalogue of the collection, but also features a gallery of album cover art. The site contains short articles on Philippine music history, as well as biographical notes on important Filipino composers.

Also featured in the website are the “Gems of Philippine Music,” a collection of 250 songs considered most representative of the Filipino character and spirit. Short descriptions, excerpts from music scores, and audio snippets of melodic lines are available for these gems.

During the launch, held at the FHL Reading Room on December 1, the guests were serenaded by the group Harana, with their rendition of Filipino folk and love songs, most of which are part of the Himig Collection. Prof. Felipe de Leon Jr., music scholar and FHL project consultant, also delivered a short lecture on Music and the Filipino Soul. He said that Filipino music reflects the emotional nature of Filipinos as well as the importance of social connections in our culture.

The website was formally presented to the guests by Jaime Zobel de Ayala, chairman emeritus of Ayala Corporation.

A large part of the Himig collection was obtained from the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) which turned over its record collection to FHL in 2006. These vintage phonograph records span the decades from the 1920s to the 1990s. In 2008, FHL began the digitization and online development of the collection, supported with a grant from the Society for the Preservation of Philippine Culture Inc.

Discover more about our Filipino musical heritage by visiting www.himig.com.ph.