About the Doukhobor Song Library

The uniqueness of a people is preserved in their culture, expressions of belief and lifestyle. For the Doukhobor people - historically an oral culture - their psalms, hymns and folksongs are woven through every aspect of their lives.

Preserving the songs has become increasingly more challenging. It is our intent to archive all Doukhobor Song material inclusive of any group or individual who has contributed to this aspect of the culture.

Several years ago sources of material were located, including private collections and the Kenneth Peacock collection at the UBC library. The re-recording and cataloguing of this material began. Educational workshops, featuring Eli Popoff and Dr. Shirley Perry delved into the evolution of the Doukhobor Song (hymnody). Two concerts, which included historical material, were held.

The re-recording of material from magnetic media (reel-to-reel tapes, cassettes) and records to digital format continues with over 500 titles completed to date. There is no particular selection process other than to work with the oldest, most fragile material as a priority.

As demonstrated by the Kenneth Peacock collection, the project is inclusive of all geographic regions where large groups of Doukhobors reside. This adds a unique flavour to the material, making it possible to hear the variance from region to region where there is more than one version of a particular song.

One set of this material in original form is available in the Kootenays (Castlegar) and one set in Grand Forks for general use. More material is being added continuously. Together with all available lyrics, musically notated transcriptions and translations, this material will be catalogued in a manner compatible with library cataloguing systems. Although it is not as yet formally catalogued, a table of contents is available. It is hoped that people will take the opportunity to listen and enjoy this material and perhaps learn to sing some of the songs.


©Copyright 2000 - 2009 Doukhobor Song Library, all songs copyright by their respective owners