creative commons music

With the music industry in disarray in the face of illegal downloads, musicians are finding their own ways to distribute their work. We all know about Radiohead giving their album away free, but what’s more exciting to me is growth of the Creative Commons licence. This goes one step further, and not only makes the music available free, but does away with copyright too.  That means you can use it in your own projects, remix it, and legally soundtrack your videos or podcasts with it. It’s a generous new approach to music, and something I’ve found very useful.

I mention it today because I’ve just stumbled across Nine Inch Nails’ 36-track instrumental album Ghosts I-IV, which they’re giving away under CC license. Moby has done something similar, with 76 tracks available on his mobygratis site, a mixture of unreleased tunes, b-sides, and album tracks from 18 and Hotel.

Other sites of note include Freesound for sound effects, Opsound for ambient music, and Kunstderfuge for Creative Commons classical music.

blog idol

And another thing. A mate of mine is in the running to be crowned best kiwi blogger in Stuff’s Blog Idol. Last few days and down to the final three. Head over to Andy’s blog and then vote Andy Feltoe.

reclaiming the airwaves have a new game. Last week I took delivery of a tv-b-gone keyring remote, and I have taken it upon myself to rid my local shopping centre of audio-visual pollution. For three years I’ve been walking to work through a certain shopping centre that shall remain nameless, and day in, day out they have the same adverts, the same ‘info-tainment’ about fashion shows and film premiers. No more. The tv-b-gone is a tiny remote control with just one button – off – and it works on any television. It really is making me very happy.

The remote was invented by Mitch Altman a few years ago, after he spent an evening of stilted conversation in a restaurant with a TV on in the background. I read about it in a Wired article ages ago, but the first run of remotes sold out very quickly indeed, and I’ve been waiting to get my hands on one for some time. You can now get one from iwoot. Adbusters have been on about them too, as part of their TV turnoff week campaigns.

I highly recommend getting hold of one, and reclaiming some public space. Mine has worked so far in the mall, in Sainsbury’s and WHSmith, and I’ve saved both Dixons and Curry’s several pounds in electricity bills.