Moushumi and Sukanta interview Amy Catlin Jairazbhoy

associate professor of ethnomusicology at UCLA and filmmaker, on her work with her husband, the late Professor Nazir Ali Jairazbhoy, who was a direct student of the Dutch ethnomusicologist, Arnold Bake, at SOAS, and their film on Bake’s 1938-39 field trips in South India,Bake Restudy in India, made in 1984.

Amy Catlin Jairazbhoy is Visiting Associate Professor in the Department of Ethnomusicology, UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music. A classical pianist and singer by training, Amy’s main research interest lies in the classical and folk music traditions of India. She has worked on the music of the African-Indian Sidis who live in Gujarat, and has curated their concerts outside India. Recently she releasedMusic for a Goddess, a film on the music and dance of Dalit Devidasis for Goddess Renuka/Yellamma. Together with her ethnomusicologist husband, the late Nazir Ali Jairazbhoy, who was a direct student of the Dutch ethnomusicologist Arnold Adriaan Bake, Amy made several films, includingBake Restudy in India: 1938-1984, which received an award from the Society for Visual Anthropology of the American Anthropological Association. She is now planning a sequel to this film. In 1984 Amy Catlin Jairazbhoy and Nazir Ali Jairazbhoy helped set up the Archives and Research Center for Ethnomusicology of the American Institute of Indian Studies in New Delhi (the office is now in Gurgaon).

Moushumi and Sukanta met Amy Catlin-Jairazbhoy in Mumbai on 9-10 December 2009. Here are extracts from their conversation. The audio clip of Nazir Ali Jairazbhoy’s narration is from An Alphabetical Authobiography of Nazir Ali Jairazbhoy, a DVD created by Amy for Nazir’s Charles Seeger lecture at UCLA in 1995.

Amy Catlin and Nazir Ali Jairazbhoy’s publications can be browsed at

Introducing Bake

Bake and Tagore

Bake’s influence on Jairazbhoy

Nazir Ali Jairazbhoy

Nazir at SOAS

Nazir on Bake

Amy joins Nazir

Rajasthan, Exposure, ‘Authenticity’

World Music

Bake Re-study and ARCE