When, in mid-September 1961, the brothers, Josep and Ignasi Espar, Francesc Cabana and I signed the articles of incorporation of the Edigsa company, we were aware that the road ahead would be long and difficult. Everything was against us: a limited market and a subjugated nation, and therefore with all of the political impediments, castrating censorship and prohibitions against public dissemination and publicizing.
But we were young and we had created a group of two hundred friends participating in an adventure in which no profits could be expected, but only personal and economic sacrifice, because though we adopted the form of a public limited company, this was purely to practical and political effects; in reality we were a non-profit organization.
Moreover, we had a sound background in patriotic and political resistance and well knew the shortcomings existing in record production in the Catalan cultural scenario.
At that time we already had a clear idea of what needed to be put out and how to provide effective support to the dissemination of the language and culture of our nation and allow its muffled voice to be heard. Thus we fought for a freer and more just future.
Hence, we had to foster the world of Catalan chanson in all of its facets, for its great potential and repercussion, with a particular emphasis on folk song. And this included all sorts of songs, with a focus on singer-songwriters, always seeking a high level of quality.
We also kept in mind children's needs, with stories and traditional tales, albums with a high educational value, as, for instance, Història de Catalunya amb cançons (History of Catalonia in Songs), the Abecedari musical (Musical ABCs), the use of the Catalan cobla orchestral instruments, and so on.
And another facet that was a must were the words of our poets in their own voices; as well as plays as significant as Ronda de mort a Sinera and La pell de brau.
Nearly half a century later, I believe we can feel proud of a task well done. In this regard, we must express our gratitude to our advisers on literature (Josep Maria Andreu, Jaume Picas and Jordi Sarsanedas) and music (Enric Gispert, Antoni Ros Marbà, Salvador Gratacòs and Salvador Pueyo), and to our graphic artists and photographers (Jordi Fornas, Oriol Maspons, Colita, etc.). Thanks to all of them, we were able to create works of very high quality, well above the standard for the time.
There was, however, one line we took some time to start on. This was due in part to the great difficulty involved in carrying it out, but above all to its enormous financial cost at no returns, since it required orchestral and instrumental recordings with an extremely high budget: the Antologia Històrica de la Música Catalana (Historical Anthology of Catalan Music).
Nonetheless, there came a time when the Edigsa Board decided that we could wait no longer. If the Gran Enciclopèdia (Great Encyclopedia) was being gestated, Catalonia also needed a Historical Anthology of Catalan Music. And so, with the additional, generous assistance of our partners, under the chairmanship of Pau Casals and directed first by Oriol Martorell and thereafter by Salvador Pueyo, this cultural endeavor was undertaken. The result of all of this is the product in CD format you now have in your hands.
Josep Maria Macip i Gich, summer of 2007
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