At first glance seems like a cross between Freesound and CC Mixter.

This 100% free AIFF/WAV collection contains 5.5 GB of sounds — including 2,198 techno, hiphop, trance, and drum ‘n’ bass drum loops / breakbeats, 1,254 drum hits, 77 drum kits, 2,198 sound FX, 1,207 instrument sounds, 1,200 vocal samples, 1,047 melodic parts, fruity loops and more.

Their page on Creative Commons licensing:

The following pre-cleared music has been uploaded by artists at under a variety of Creative Commons licenses. Please be sure to read the licensing information for each track carefully before using any of this music. (Click the license ‘badge’ next to a track for details.) While all of this music can be downloaded, transmitted and shared for personal use, only some of this music can be used for free in films, TV commercials, video games, etc.

When in doubt, contact the artist. And if you do use one of these songs in your project, please tell the artist so that s/he knows the work is getting ‘out there’!

But about the music? Is it any good? Well, here’s a hip hop number from there that’s right in the pocket from this forum post. (Here’s more good stuff by this guy, who’s a Quebecois). goose hacks

The German version of Yahoo Media Player aka goose is live in a news story titled Molterer: ORF ist keine private Einrichtung, er kassiert Gebühren.

There’s a striking degree of customization, which was done by a guy named Eric Eggert.

You can read their Javascript at This is all concerned with translating the player into their users’ language, which of course is a necessity for a big league commercial site like this.

You can read their CSS at Search for #ymp to find the customizations.

The most interesting CSS issue is that they override the sprite master for the graphics, but *only* for the buttons. The master sprite includes a bunch of other graphics that they apparently didn’t want to disturb.

Here’s the standard master sprite:

Yahoo Media Player sprite master

Here’s their button-only sprite: sprite master for Yahoo Media Player

Here’s* the part of their CSS which inserts the button sprite:

(*At least, I think so. This is from quickly eyeballing the CSS.)

They also changed the default album art, which they did by putting an img element in each of their audio links. For example:

<a href="/multimedia/molterer081121orf.mp3">
<img border="0" align="right" alt="Bild von Kopfhörer" src=""/>
Zitat anhören (1.744 KB / mp3)

The broad lesson is about how making widgets with Javascript rather than Flash is good for your project.

Big league commercial shops like this web site must be able to customize their widgets. It’s not the same kind of personalization that drives Myspace users to change their background image, but it’s make-or-break. And big league sites like this are the ones who get your widget into big numbers.

These guys were able to do this degree of customization specifically because the player is made of open standards. By definition, open standards are APIs and hooks for user code.

So using open standards for your widget or tool is to your own advantage. Don’t invent an API, adopt internet standards and let them be your API.

was mattering a crazy dream? and now we’re awake?

Conversation on the question of music mattering went to the issue of the baby boom’s sef-awareness. Specifically, does music really matter less now, or was the importance of boomer music inflated then?

Was the press coverage of the Lennon/Ono “Bed Peace” event about music any more than the press coverage of Britney’s adventures with paparazzi?

Bed Peace
Britney freakout

Just framing the issue in terms of that question is misleading, though, because John Lennon was a real musician, and a very fine one, while Britney is purely an entertainer.

mixmatchusic and mix2r joined in holy aquimony


Stems of guitar, bass, drums, keys and other instruments are the building blocks of songs. Both sites encourage mash ups and remixes of stems to create new songs, ring tones and music.

“MixMatchMusic’s combination with Mix2r adds a lot of dynamic new music to our library and brings us closer to the critical mass of stems and community needed to fuel our next stage of growth,” said Charles Feinn, MixMatchMusic co-founder and CEO. “This combination also brings us Mix2r founders Duane Nickull and Matt MacKenzie, two exceptional serial entrepreneurs and technologists who join our Board of Directors.”

hypem designer on hypem redesign

Taylor of Hype Machine responds to Greg’s comment:

Greg: “In fact, when Hype Machine relaunched with their current vc-funded site lo these many moons ago (fall ‘07)”

Taylor: We’ve never taken any funding, VC, angel or otherwise. It began out of Anthony’s dorm room and I joined him once the site was making enough to pay the bills.

Greg: “they had greatly de-emphasized the ability to listen to the music on their own site to the point of making it quite difficult”

Taylor: As the designer of the new layout I can tell you that this is not true (or at the very least if you think so, then I’ve failed miserably). We redesigned the layout to be more usable and understandable by new visitors. Our challenge (that still continues today) is to get new visitors who end up on our site via Google etc to understand what Hype Machine is about, why it’s unique and not just some MP3 search engine.

Greg: “and were focusing solely on the ability to read snippets of blog posts”

Taylor: I added the blog snippets to further promote our “music with context” goal. The beauty of The Hype Machine is that every song that ends up within our system is there because somebody LOVED it so much they posted it and wrote about it on their blog. We didn’t feel that the original version showcased that there was a blog entry (and music lover) behind each and every song, so we added the snippets.

Greg: “with listening left to clicking through to the original page. There was such an incredible outcry from their users that, to their credit, they rapidly retreated, restoring much of the listen-on-site functionality that had been the core of the previous Hype Machine”

Taylor: This is simply not true. We’ve never taken out the ability to listen to the music from within The Hype Machine. We removed the pop-up player (that used ) because we really didn’t think it was needed after we added in-page playing (we strive for simplicity). The community outcries were because we underestimated how many people wanted to pop-up the player (instead of just listening to it in-page like we usually do). So we ended up designing a version that fit better with our new layout and launched it (which you can see near the top of the left column on the home page ).

Lucas: Greg, man, I hope you don’t feel like you’re being called out for a flamewar. This wouldn’t be a fascinating conversation if we weren’t down in the details. The issue of a pop-up player vs an in-page player created a lot of emotion in the goose/YMP project too. For some reason it gets people on either side stirred up. For myself I’m a believer in in-page, because I don’t want the audio without the page to create context.


Ty White tweets:

playTweets is now fully automated. follow @playTweets, tweet it “play” and an mp3 url, and install http://go
to stream!

Got any ideas for fun or productive things to do with this hack? Feel free to modify the source code and either send it back to me for inclusion or just put your mods at a new URL — my stuff there is in the public domain. And if you want to establish a new web page for the project, like on a wiki, I’d be happy to redirect to it.

sustainability vs Dead Man’s Gulch

Where we’re trying to get to with the internet music business is projects with long-term futures.

  • The labels are still making a living selling CDs, but that business is dwindling fast.
  • The internet businesses that are licensing streaming rights are spending out the clock and hoping to cheat death.
  • The pay-per-download stores can hang in there for a long time because they have low fixed costs, but eventually their owners will move their capital into businesses with competitive return on investment.
  • The filesharing companies are waiting for a legal death blow.
  • MP3 bloggers who get big enough to make a living take on real legal risk and enter Dead Man’s Gulch. Those who stay small work for free and eventually quit of exhaustion.
  • Services and metadata businesses like Gracenote can keep going indefinitely, but can’t get that big.
  • And musicians… The music scene’s crazy. Bands start up each and every day. There’s one born every minute. But you CAN make music in a sustainable way if you get the balance right.

The goal is sustainability. Are you doing something that will last?