Recent FMA Blog Posts
This is a feed of featured blog posts from FMA users. Blog on, bloggers!
cheyenne_h on 05/26/2016 at 03:37PM
Howdy folks! If you aren't already tuned in to the happenings on FMA, you might want to subscribe to our monthly newsletter! We send it near the middle of each month and share news briefs, podcast updates, and share info about contests, new projects, and general site updates -- as well as info about how to get involved, help us out or share your music with us.
You can subscribe by entering your email address into the field below.
netlabelday on 05/21/2016 at 03:07AM
I didn't know exactly how to let you know about this, but yes... We're making a new promo compilation for FMA with music from the participating labels and it will be amazing. As you may know, this isn't the first time that we do something like this, because last year we made a lovely compilation (that you can download right here).
I can't tell you yet when it will be released, but... June. That's all you have to know by now.
Cheers, everyone. Remember that Netlabel Day 2016 is happening once again on July 14, but every day can be Netlabel Day. Support them and show your love to them!
murmurintemporel on 05/09/2016 at 01:29PM
I am Jean-Luc, the curator and owner of the Murmure Intemporel netlabel.
This label was created under the moniker Gronde Murmure by John Cobains (an American living in France) at the end of 2010. In 2011, John creates a new netlabel named Sillage Intemporel, curated by a long time friend Jean Dechartres.
Gronde Murmure was mainly specialised in avant-garde musics (acousmatic, post-concrete, electroacoustic) and Sillage Intemporel was more oriented into electronic musics (ambient, electro, abstract electronic). In 2012, John merges the two netlabels in one entity named Murmure Intemporel (the logo was given by Zreen Toyz, one of the main artists of the netlabel).
Sadly, Jean Dechartres passed away in 2015. John and Jean are my friends for over twenty years, so when John ask me to replace Jean, I say yes immediately. At the end of 2015, John decides to retire in USA for living near his children and grandchildren; so I became the new owner of Murmure Intemporel.
Now, I will upload the catalogue of the netlabel (from 2011 to 2015), and the more recent releases (2016) will be notified on the Murmure Intemporel's blog.
Thanks to Cheyenne Hohman who accepted Murmure Intemporel at the Free Music Archive.
Stevecombsmusic on 05/06/2016 at 02:03PM
Hey FMA'ers. I've had an interesting day.
I'm used to people using my music in their projects. In fact at this point, I expect it. It would be weird if they didn't. Out of the roughly 250k downloads my songs have gotten, I'd bet at least half of them were for use in a video, on a podcast, or for a school project. And I love and am so grateful to everyone who does this because without it, I probably wouldn't be doing this anymore. To be honest, I think the FMA made my career what it is, and I owe it and the whole free culture community so much. That said, there is a limit to the freedom of my culture.
I woke up at around 11am this morning, because I'm a college student, and saw a couple of Twitter notifications (@stevecombsmusic, by the way). A German fan, @ruhpkid, tweeted at me to say that some guy named Big Juan put a copyright claim on a YouTube video of his in which he used my song, More Or Less OK, from my new album Riot, which is available here on the FMA. Ruhpkid gave me credit and was generally wonderful. But Big Juan was claiming that my song was his song, Equalizer. At first I didn't think anything of it, that it was just a misguided attempt at stealing royalties or something. The joke would be on him, of course, since I don't get any kind of royalties. But I did a Google search for "Equalizer by Big Juan" and found the song on YouTube.
That's when I got angry.
I hear the first three seconds, which is the same opening drum fill as my song, and think "Well, maybe he just sampled it and forgot to give credit." But it quickly became clear that that wasn't the case. This wasn't a sample, this was a theft. Big Juan literally downloaded my song, changed the title, and put it on YouTube as his own.
cheyenne_h on 05/05/2016 at 09:00AM
WFMU and the Free Music Archive are proud to bring you a fresh episode of Radio Free Culture, a podcast exploring issues at the intersection of digital culture and the arts.
In this episode, Cheyenne Hohman, RFC host and current Director of the FMA, was joined by Jemma Brown and Michael Guerra from The Moth, a storytelling podcast and event series. They came to discuss the recently unveiled transcription tool, "Together We Listen" developed by NYPL Labs and The Moth using Pop Up Archive technology, with the help of a Knight Foundation prototype grant. This tool turns transcription editing into a game, crowdsourcing edits and making stories more accessible to hearing impaired individuals, one word at a time.
Jemma Rose Brown is a the Digital Media Producer at The Moth where she creates web content, manages social platforms and leads digital strategy initiatives. Michael Guerra is the Media & Archives Manager at The Moth. To participate in their transcription intiative, "StoryScribe," visit http://storyscribe.themoth.org/.
Visager on 04/29/2016 at 02:46PM
How do you make music for a world that doesn't exist? This was the question I began my project with. To answer it, I have just released an album -- Songs From An Unmade World 2 -- which features both standalone and loopable tracks that are available for indie game developers and designers to use in their own projects. These tracks are inspired by old-school adventure/RPG video game music, and they mix classic chiptune sounds with more modern electronic elements. In releasing this album, it is my hope fill a void for game creators by placeing high-quality music in the Creative Commons so that projects on a tight budget come to life!
As a composer and music producer for almost five years, I have worked collaborated with makers in dance, theater, film, and more. But making music for games, to me, feels like an entirely different, exciting category of composition.
The biggest difference comes in the way music is literally woven into the fabric of your players' experiences. In film, theater, and dance, music generally lives a linear existence -- bits of music are tied to specific moments that the performers and audience experience simultaneously. In this framework, music becomes strongly tied to emotional moments.
In video games, however, music often serves a much more textural purpose -- the player lives inside of your music. They encounter your notes, rhythms, and melodies around every corner as they play the game. Figuring out how to make an almost living soundtrack is a much more intriguing puzzle to solve than working on a linear project. Both Songs From An Unmade World 2, and its forerunner, Songs From An Unmade World (released on FMA last fall), were a fantastic exploration for me in this organic side of musical world-building.
I hope you're reading this because there's something useful for you in one of these two albums! If so, I would love for you to drop me a line on Twitter. If you're just here because you are curious about video game music, that is awesome in and of itself -- there is so much great video game music out there to discover. Happy exploring!
You can find more music from Visager by visiting his website: www.visager.us.
cheyenne_h on 04/28/2016 at 12:19PM
We know you've seen them floating around our pages... PUBLIC DOMAIN SONGS! But... then, you lose track, and they're hard to find again. Well, we updated our search filters to include CC0 content in our Public Domain results -- so now you can find all the Public Domain songs on FMA. These are either ones whose copyright has expired, a la Antique Phonograph Program, or songs which have been dedicated into the Public Domain using CC0, such as our Masters Remastered entries and microSongs, as well as some generous artists who want their music to be heard, shared, and used free of limitations!
To find these songs, just click on the "Public Domain" box at the bottom of our search filters. Currently, we have almost 1,500 of these tracks!
Are you interested in sharing your music with us under the Public Domain dedication? Get in touch.
TAGGED AS:public domain
Black_Lantern_Music on 04/15/2016 at 02:52PM
When CHURCH OF WHEN THE SHIT HITS THE FAN were, by some strange twist of fate, selected to play at T In The Park—Scotland's largest outdoor music festival,normally dominated by twee-indie-rock or techno tents—there was an outcry over the name. Not from outraged Christian fundamentalists or anything so exciting like that, but just from your average, 'normal' music fans. Many tweets proclaimed it the worst band name they've ever heard; The Sun newspaper couldn't understand why they we're called something more sensible; people wanted band names to be proper nouns: The Something, The Name, The Bla Bla Blas. People want things to be simple, to be the same as everything else; for things to be boring. Maybe it is a silly name, but so what? In the word's of Heath Ledger's lip-licking Clown Prince of Crime, “why so serious?”
But more importantly, the name fits perfectly
By no means Black Lantern Music's weirdest band, COWTSHTF are certainly the one band that best straddle the weirder, more experimental elements of the label with the hippiest-hoppiest sunshine rap bounce that the label also releases.
With lyrical concerns that touch upon sci-fi, surrealism, tentacles and the all-pervasive imminent threat of total apocalyptic annihilation ('when the shit hits the fan' is used as a byword by preppers for total societal collapse), and classic electro beats that draw upon reggae, boom-bap, funk, and David Lynchian-soundscapes, COWTSHTF are the end of the world as viewed through the lens of 90s-era Saturday morning cartoons. Pow! Zap! Boom! They are their own genre: DOOMCRUNK.
I can think of no other band that will touch upon lounge jazz covers of Slayer and double time rapping in such close proximity. Maybe if Dr Octagon and Mr Bungle had a baby and dropped it on its head....
Formed by two of Black Lantern's founding members—rapper HQ also spits with grotesque glitch death-rap titans Sileni, and Asthmatic Astronaut is the ubiquitous producer with over 80,000 downloads on FMA alone—that together perfectly encapsulated not just what Black Lantern Music, but also a strand of experimental hip-hop that is simultaneously unique and steeped in tradition.
Between 2010 and 2013, they released three EPs and one spectacular music video to much critical acclaim.
Now, all of their songs, both from those EPs and from other collaborations or offcuts, they release REPROGRAMMED, a monstrous remix album that elevates their songs to a new level.
Featuring new interpretations that cross genres and sensibilities—including, but not limited to techno, goth-misery, boom-bap, math rock, and dubstep—REPROGRAMMED is at once a loving tribute to this unique power-duo, but also the perfect place to get acquainted.
Get your voodoo on....
cheyenne_h on 04/13/2016 at 10:30AM
A little while back, we got an email inquiring about using a song from the Free Music Archive for a documentary film. We get requests like this a lot, and sometimes the filmmakers aren't as fluent in CC licenses as we are. Since the song was CC BY-NC-ND, it wasn't licensed for use in film or derivative works. But we put our heads together and tracked down the right people to ask for permission.
Jackie Ruth Murray, the South African filmmaker who contacted us, co-runs a production company called Reel Epics Productions in Cape Town. She found out about the FMA via a web search and was looking for music to score her short documentary film, "The Daily Dose," an autobiographical account of taking antiretroviral medication.
The film has recently been selected to screen at the Encounters International Documentary Festival, a South African documentary film fest that also hosts classes and film industry related events.
CH: How did you search for music, and what did you find?
JRM: I searched for a general genre which i felt was fitting for the narrative of my film. I then narrowed it down to approximately 10 songs which supported the tempo of my film. I found a song titled “Heaven is The Other Way” by Big Sandy and His Fly-Rite Boys. The song is written by the band’s frontman, Robert Williams. The lyrics of the song uncannily match the message of my film.
CH: Do you prefer Creative Commons music to fully copyrighted music?
JRM: I don’t have much experience with fully copyrighted music. However before finding FMA, I did originally attempt to acquire a licence for a song which was fully copyrighted. My search became very laborious as i was directed to a number of different companies. I eventually gave up for lack of clear directive and because of the length of time that it took.
CH: Was the process of contacting the artist/record label intimidating or difficult?
JRM: My experience with FMA was not in the least bit intimidating or difficult. The director of FMA, Cheyenne Hohman was extremely helpful and timely in her responses to my enquiries. She assisted me in contacting Bill Hunt from Cow Island Music, the band’s record label. Bill put me in touch with Robert Williams from Big Sandy and His Fly-Rite Boys. I sent Robert a link to my film to give him an idea of how i wanted to use his song. Robert was very open and willing for his song to be used and even went so far as contacting the record licence companies, Yep Rock and BMG to give his permission for me to use his song. From there, BMG and Yep Rock speedily organised the licence for me. I then received an email from The David Gresham Music Company here in South Africa, who arranged the music licence for me. They took the fact that i made my documentary on a next-to-nothing budget with no commercial gain purposes into account and gave me a discount which i was very grateful for. To sum up, i was blown away with the support i received from all involved.
CH: Did the FMA help you achieve your goal of using this piece of music?
JRM: Yes, as explained above, absolutely. The FMA also helped me understand the Creative Commons legalities.
CH: How did you ultimately end up using the song?
JRM: I used the song in its entirety and split it into three consecutive parts: for the introduction of the film, as a link between act 1 and three of the film and finally for the end of the film.
CH: Will you use the Free Music Archive for projects in the future?
JRM: I have told my colleagues at Reel Epics Productions about the FMA and we will definitely be using the archive for future projects.
You can find out more about the film at https://www.facebook.com/thedailydosedocumentary/
cheyenne_h on 04/06/2016 at 10:30AM
The FMA has such an abundance of music from all genres, and even though I've been swimming through it for years, I'm still impressed by the variety and depth of the FMA. There are things ranging from headbanging metal anthems to field recordings of sheep to things like the contents of this mix.
This playlist is designed to be relaxing, help you focus, and breathe. Perhaps you'd like to use it to accompany a yoga session, part of a meditation, or possibly even to help you focus while you work on an art project or homework.
If you have a favorite relaxing song or album from the FMA, feel free to comment below! A full description of each song is past the 'Read More' link at the bottom of this blog entry, including license and artist information, in case you are curious about how you can use each song in potential projects, videos, or to accompany your latest aerial gymnastic routine.
At any rate, we hope you will kick back, relax, and enjoy this mix!