Rare Indian records survived over a century — now free online

Indian records

Over the crackle of an old record, you can hear a woman singing in Urdu. Though listening to her is as easy as clicking a few buttons on the British Library website, her voice comes to you across vast distances in space and time.

Sometime in the early 20th century, engineers recorded the voice of a woman called Malkajan for the German company Odeon, which pressed shellac discs for Indian record collectors in the 1910s and 30s. Now her work is part of a series of recordings called The Odeon Collection, digitized by Mumbai record collector Suresh Chandvankar with help from a grant from the British Library. There are over 1400 recordings in the collection, and all are free to the listening public…

Click here to access the archive. You will see the first recording up top and more choices on the right. The choices are expandable.

Enjoy the search. Enjoy listening.

It’s time to raise the stakes in the North Carolina boycott — Divest from Duke Energy!


North Carolina and the federal government prepared for a legal showdown on Monday in the ongoing battle over bathrooms and civil rights for LGBT people in the state.

The state filed a lawsuit in the morning, claiming federal intervention was a “baseless and blatant overreach” of its power, and disputed the federal interpretation of civil rights laws.

The suit came hours before a deadline the US justice department has set for North Carolina’s Republican governor, Pat McCrory, to scrap the law, which bans transgender people from using bathrooms that do not match the gender on their birth certificates.

After the suit’s filing, US attorney general Loretta Lynch fired back, saying she planned to announce a “law enforcement action related to North Carolina” on Monday afternoon…

❝ “Our position all along has been that HB2 should be repealed. We’ve heard from our customers and clients on this, and the consensus is that it would be better if it were repealed,” Larry Di Rita, a spokesman for Bank of America, told the Guardian on Monday afternoon. The bank is one of the largest and most powerful companies in North Carolina…

Meanwhile the American Civil Liberties Union of Mississippi has filed suit against that state over a law that will allow workers to cite their own religious objections to same-sex marriage to deny services to people…

The governor has become the public face of the law, called House Bill 2, which has been the subject of fierce criticism by gay rights groups, corporate executives and entertainers demanding that the law be repealed. North Carolina has already paid a price for the law, with some business scaling back investments in the state and associations cancelling conventions…

The time has come and gone when the basics of a boycott by 21st Century business leaders and citizens in general will suffice. It is time to up the game against bigotry. Pat McCrory is known for nothing else more than his stewardship for the region’s energy giant, Duke Energy. He’s served as their flunky in a whole series of environmental disasters. He spent most of his adult economic life on their payroll. When Duke Energy wants to “have a little talk with him” he jumps higher than the average grasshopper to heed their call.

It’s time to inflict a little retribution on his real bosses. McCrory won’t answer to the needs of North Carolina citizens – at least those who don’t wear white hoods in public – maybe he’ll listen to the critical economic power in his life. We need a nationwide call for institutional and individual investors to divest from DUK, Duke Energy. Let them explain to their Board of Directors why they continue to support a political thug who ignores civil rights, chooses sharia over civil law, embraces Confederate states’ rights over Supreme Court standards of justice.

The opioid painkiller and heroin epidemic – in one map/gif

The opioid painkiller and heroin epidemic led to a new record in drug overdose deaths in 2014 — more than 47,000 overdose deaths that year alone, and nearly two-thirds of them were linked to opioids and heroin.

But what does that death toll really look like? These maps, published by Socrata, contextualize how far and wide the opioid epidemic has spread, showing the rate of drug overdose deaths by county in 2004 and 2014…

As the maps show, it’s not just that overdose deaths rose as a result of the opioid crisis; these deaths also spread to all parts of the country. The deaths are, truly, an epidemic.

How did this happen? The short answer is that doctors believed what Pharmaceutical companies told them.

Big Pharma lied. RTFA.