As my dad is getting older, I love hearing him tell stories of his days growing up in Egypt. The stories are fascinating about times he spend at his father's cotton goods store in Khan El-Khalili, family holidays on the Mediterranean in Alexandria, and life during the wars of the 40’s and 50’s. These are important family stories to be treasured and not lost. It is up to my siblings and myself to make sure they are recorded and shared. So, this Father’s Day, my hope is to sit together and make an audio recording capturing his voice, wisdom, advice, wit, and stories. StoryCorps makes this really easy, free, and available for all loved ones to enjoy for many years to come.
I originally heard about StoryCorp on National Public Radio who regularly play snippets on their morning show choosing from the 60,000 interviews archived with the American Folklife Center at the National Library of Congress. It is a non-profit organization that has been around for the past 12 years employing over 100 staff members with an operating budget of $10 million. The collection of recordings is so large that it considered the largest body of voice recording ever.
There are two ways to record your loved one's stories. The easiest way is to download the mobile app on your phone and record conveniently anywhere. The mobile app is a new feature just launched earlier this year after winning a $12 million TED Prize in 2015 with support from the 2014 Knight Prototype Fund.
Once downloaded, the app will allow you to record the interview through your smart phone or iphone providing many sample questions as prompts to get the interview rolling. When you are done, it will ask you to take a selfie from your phone to capture the moment. Also StoryCorps makes a CD of the interview available for you. To get more information or download the mobile app for iPhone or android, visit: https://storycorps.me/
The other way is to interview someone is to go to a StoryCorp recording studio. There are permanent recording booths in San Francisco, Atlanta, and Chicago. Unfortunately due to lack of funding, the NY City booth in Central Grand Station has been closed. Additionally, the mobile recording booth, an Airstream trailer, visits cities across the States for a period of time ranging from a few days to weeks at a time. Later this year, it will be outside of the Southern California Radio Station in Pasadena on Oct 11 - Nov 15, 2015. Because of a limited number of the 40-minute recording slots each day, the sessions get booked quickly. Make sure to book online. https://storycorps.org/reservations/
StoryCorps provides an amazing free service to the public. Through public and private funding sources, it has been able to offer studios and mobile apps to record and archive interviews, launch special programs for veterans, teachers and student, families, and fathers. It is a great way to preserve oral history for many generations to come.
Hear StoryCorps Founder and CEO, Dave Issay at TED Talk from March 2015:
Sue Helmy has plenty of tricks up her sleeve. She is currently providing superb concierge duties at the Building and Safety Division of the City of Beverly Hills. She is active in countless church and civic organizations and spends every minute she can spare dancing to the Zumba beat.
Happy Father’s Day, DAD
Vol 13 Issue 50
Pub: Jun 19, 2015