July 30, 2017

TR Mahalingam: Album de Nuit [Stil 0312 S 78] An album recorded in France in 1978 and released in France in 1981 - a fresh remaster

There have been four or five requests for a re-upload of this album, originally posted to this blog back in April 2015. I decided to remaster the files because I have never been satisfied with my original transfer, despite assurances from people that they thought it sounded fine. The amount of music on three of the four sides of the album required the LP-cutting engineer to reduce the volume to the point where even the French vinyl (from 1960-90 among the quietest on Earth in my opinion) threatened to overwhelm the music. 

I have remastered my original transfer and I believe it sounds as good as it is going to sound with my current equipment, ears, and experience.

Just a quick note about terms: the transfer is what happens when a vinyl record is spinning on the turntable and the recorder is on. Once those files are made, anything I do to them is mastering. And if I do those steps again on the original recordings, it is re-mastering.

The original post has been deleted because I don't want to cause any confusion and there doesn't seem to be any reason to keep it (except possibly to preserve readers' comments -- sorry about that!).

After the lines, we will have the original notes and scans plus updated information about equipment and software used. 


On view today is an interesting and relatively rare LP from Tiruvidaimarudur Ramaswamy Mahalingam (6 November 1926 – 31 May 1986) who was affectionately known as Mali. He revolutionized the style of flute playing in Carnatic music yet made relatively few recordings. Many of the ones that are available feature remarkably poor sound, although the two CD sets currently available on the Japanese label EM Records are quite nice. 

This 94-minute double LP is one of two by Mali that the french label Stil Records released in the early 1980s. It was recorded live in 1978 in Paris and was released on vinyl in 1981. Stil mostly issued western classical LPs but did issue several LPs of Indian classical music (a pair each from Mali, the great vocalist Lakshmi Shankar [1926-2013], and Ram Narayan, as well as one by Imrat Khan). They have a website but as far as I can tell are no longer in business -- no new releases since the late 1980s and only one CD reissue in 1996.

Side one:
01 Varnam: "Veerboni..." Raga Bhairavi (15:45)
02 Kriti: "Ramaneepi..." Raga Kedara (4:32)

Side two:
03 Kriti: "Sukiyavaro..." Raga Kanada (17:18)

Side three:
04 Ragam, Thanam: Raga Shubapantuvarali (8:32)
05 Pallavi: Ragas Shubapantuvarali, Kamaj, Mayamalagowia (19:30)

Side four:
06 Kriti: "Nadabindu..." Raga Chenchurutte (4:46)
07 Folksong: "Chinnam Chiru Killy..." (11:02)
08 Tillana: Raga Pharas (4:30)
09 Folksong (5:47)
10 Managalm: Raga Sowrastra (2:25)

TR Mahalingam: Bansuri
CM Madhuranath: second Bansuri
SV Raja Rao: Mridangam
BHP Ramachar: kanjeera
KN Krishnmurty: ghatam
Charles Ledoux: tampura

Equipment used in transfer: 
Turntable:  Audio-technica AT-LP-1240
Cartridge: Shure M97x
Pre-amplification: Vintage refurbished Pioneer SX-780.

Recorder: Edirol R-09HR at 24bit/44.1kHz resolution
Software: Audacity, ClickRepair, xAct.

(the highest resolution I am capable of producing; 
suitable for playing on a computer or other player 
capable of playing high resolution files)

(after decoding to WAV, suitable for burning to CD)

(highest possible quality mp3 file; 
suitable for listening on a portable player)


  1. Thanks Rich! You have added a rare to find LP. Ripping quality is very good!

    Do you also posses some Hindi/Bollywood movie songs?



  2. Hello Prasad ji.

    Yes, I do have many Bollywood soundtracks. They are, however, outside the limits of what I am hoping to achieve with this blog, which is dedicated to transferring and preserving currently out of print vinyl LPs and cassettes of Hindustani and Carnatic classical and semi-classical music. I am frequently telling myself that I want to start up a general world music blog with occasional posts of "in-print but extremely difficult to acquire CDs" and also a blog devoted to live recordings of Hindustani and Carnatic concerts, so that I can share more of the great music I listen to. But first I have to properly run this one on a consistent basis.

    For filmi songs I would recommend the "Music From the Third Floor" blog which is on the blog list to the right of the screen. There are other blogs as well out there which do a great job.

    Also look into streaming services such as Spotify, Apple Music, Pandora, Tidal (which streams lossless files) and apps such as Saavan and Gaana. There are more Bollywood soundtracks on Spotify, for example, than I could ever listen to in my life without retiring from my career. See also the answers to this article:


    Thanks for reading my blog!

  3. Thank you so much for these ones! I still remember so well founding these LP's in my library: brand new and mint! It was so hard to find Indian classical music in those days. I was very young then and just on my way exploring Indian music.I am very grateful to you that I can hear them back again.Still broadening my knowledge and you are very helpful with that. Great job!