Jamendo CC music picks for 2008

Mike Linksvayer, January 7th, 2009

The critical and commercial success of Ghosts I-IV from Nine Inch Nails continues to amaze … also see Read Write Web, Ars Technica and Digg for additional comments on the album’s breakthrough.

This is a good opportunity to celebrate that the world of CC music is amazing for its depth and growth, not only for singular successes. One of many indicators is that Jamendo is on the cusp of reaching 15,000 openly licensed albums. They’ve put out a call for best of 2008 lists. It turns out fans have been building such lists all year, which is great, as discovery is the challenge.

My discovered on Jamendo in 2008 list follows. Except for the last track, you probably won’t enjoy this much, but that’s not the point — there are lots of other people discovering CC licensed music (at Jamendo and elsewhere) — follow them and you could be too. Or, if you share my taste in noise music…

KORIZA (Komitet Operativnoy Razrabotki Industrialnyh Zennostey Avangarda) from Saint Petersburg, Russia. They've released one experimental mathcore single, New Orlean Sunset Club that is deeply satisfying but a little too mellow. They are supposedly working on "new material, that will be much more experimental, vanguard & violent." CAN'T WAIT.

Dr Pombo: Trastorno de la personalidad Rock electrónico psicodélico from Ermua, Spain. Recommed the track La mano de Dios.

Desarraigo of Ningúnlado (Nowhere), Mexico does very short, violent tracks with a drum machine, screaming, and GNU/Linux. On Polvo recommend Criadero De Polvo, which adds night sounds, a 46 second epic.

En Busca Del Pasto, an improvisational project from Madrid, Spain, has released 24 albums on Jamendo. Improvisación para dúo, Nº 4 («Pan y vino») is heavier on electronics and sampling than typical for EBDP. Parte segunda from that album is excellent.

Daniele Torelli of Reggio Emilia, Italy works with the electronic band Yue and put out We Don't Care (single), a snappy little song.

Merci-Merci does lo-fi slow dance punk from La Rochelle, France. Souvenirs d'un océan disparu's Océan Pacifique is a very pleasant listen.

Tom Fahy led a prolific group of musicians in St. John's, Canada. Fahy died June of this year, a huge loss for music. The group's output of 70 albums on Jamedo ranges stylistically from instrumental rock to jazz to classical, with many variations. Some recommendations include Endgame: A Tribute to Bobby Fischer, instrumental rock, hear Defence; Hotel, raga influenced jazz, Epilogue; Little Fatty: Studies in Atonality, classical, Little Fatty No. 1; and 1986, instrumental rock, Miss Rose Tells The Future. [Edited March 2013; see note below]

Telemetrics Callsign 65:41 Noise and samples from Whitehouse, Ohio, USA. 25 minutes of easy on the ears listening.

Jamison Young, a musician and activist from Australia but based in Prague, Czech Republic, had a surprise this year from Shifting Sands Of A Blue Car when its Memories Child was featured in the X-Files: I Want to Believe movie. Not my usual type of music, but it grows on you. No reason for it to not be in heavy rotation on a supermarket PA near you.

Individual tracks listed above are assembled at All are available under CC BY or CC BY-SA.

Update (March 28, 2013): Tom Fahy‘s music is no longer available on Jamendo, but it is now hosted on Internet Archive. We’ve updated the links to the Internet Archive listings.

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The Craft Economony Release “Is On Your Side” EP

Cameron Parkins, December 22nd, 2008

The Craft Economy, a Toronto-based, CC-loving, CD-stapling, copyright reforming group of musicians, recently released their latest EP, Is On Your Side, for wide release under a CC BY-NC-SA license. The disc is available on on iTunes, eMusic, as a torrent file, and as a physical CD for $5.

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team9 Release CC-Licensed New Album “We Don’t Disco”, Remix Packs

Cameron Parkins, December 22nd, 2008

team9, an Australian based electro act fronted by producer Neil Mason, just released their latest album We Don’t Disco for free download under a CC BY-SA license. From team9:

I’ve spent the last few months neck deep on an original album – the first since 2003. ‘We Dont Disco’ is an electronic soundtrack to the days of my life. A little bit ambient, a little bit pop, a little bit dance……its a little bit kind of thing. If you like it then great, its free to download and completely copyright free – yep, a first on this web site – and is licensed under a Creative Commons ‘Attribution License’. Please feel free to use any song in any which way you choose.

An avid remix artist, team9 has chosen to release song stems for four of their tracks (Lines, We Don’t Disco Like We Used To, Five Times, and As We Travel), allowing potential remixers a simple way to re-imagine team9’s original tracks.

team9 also recently finished work on MySplice III, a collaboration between team9 and music blog Stereogum that mashes together some of this year’s most popular tracks.

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The National September 11th Memorial Museum Implements CC

Fred Benenson, December 15th, 2008

On Friday December 5th, the National September 11 Memorial & Museum launched its Artists Registry. The registry provides a virtual gallery of art created in response to the attacks of September 11, and includes contributions made by a diverse artistic community using varied media – visual, tactile and auditory. Most excitingly from CC’s perspective is that the registry offers full support of our 6 licenses. When uploading a work artists have the option to select a license and the work’s resulting metadata and RDFa will be displayed when the it is shown in the online galleries.

Not only has National September 11th Memorial Museum encouraged user submissions into its collection, but by using our licenses, it has done so in a progressive and socially responsible fashion. We look forward to seeing more institutions like the Memorial Museum integrating CC into their mission and offerings, so it is great to see such an innovative implementation leading the pack.

Click here to read the museum’s full press release (PDF warning) about the launch, or just head over to the registry to check it out now.

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Rank Your Free Music on

Fred Benenson, December 15th, 2008

What would happen if you combined digg‘s voting structure with Jamendo‘s CC business model and a healthy dose of free culture? You would end up with encourages musicians to upload their music so that it can be voted upon. Besides operating at no cost to musicians, and using our copyleft Attribution-ShareAlike license, is free software as its codebase is released under the Free Software Foundation’s AGPL license.

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Blue Orange Records releases “Come Tomorrow”, CC-licensed Electro/Indie-Pop Compilation

Cameron Parkins, December 10th, 2008

Blue Orange Records, a net-label that aims to “provide a portal for quality Indie Pop bands to connect with a global community of Indie Pop fans”, recently released Come Tomorrow, a compilation of songs by some very talented electro/indie-pop acts. The disc is released under a CC BY-NC-ND license to encourage sharing and is available for free online. From BOR:

A bit of background on the project–we spent 2008 listening to music from all over the world to find the best new electro indie-pop sounds. Included you will hear from Kiesgroup (DE) featuring Stereolab’s Laetitia Sadier performing in the song Punishment, Lucy and the Popsonics (BR) with their Brazilian electropop Garota Rock Ingles, not to mention our local favorite, Potion (US) with their Film Noir titles collage in Band of Outsiders as well as many other new artists ready to make you dance and smile. So let the sunshine in over these looming dark clouds of recession and download this compilation for free thanks to these wonderful artists and the Creative Commons License.

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Nine Inch Nails’ CC-licensed album nominated for a Grammy Award

Eric Steuer, December 5th, 2008

This week, the Grammy Awards nominations were announced – and, for the first time, a Creative Commons-licensed track and album are on the list. Nine Inch Nails’ “34 Ghosts IV” is nominated for Best Rock Instrumental Performance, while the album that track appears on, Ghosts I-IV, is up for Best Boxed Or Special Limited Edition Package.

This year, NIN released both Ghosts I-IV and a second album, The Slip, under a CC BY-NC-SA license. Both albums were downloaded for free and shared legally millions of times by fans under the terms of this license. At the same time, NIN found great financial success in selling cool, well-crafted, limited edition physical editions of both sets. Back in March, Wired said the band made $1.6 million on Ghosts I-IV in its first week of release alone.

Additionally, Radiohead’s song “House of Cards” is up for several Grammys, including Best Short Form Music Video. The video’s animation data was released under a CC BY-NC-SA license earlier this year (see previous post).

Congratulations to Nine Inch Nails and Radiohead for the nominations. Also, congratulations to all of the other artists whose work was nominated for Grammys this year, including Brian Eno, Diplo, Danger Mouse and Cee-Lo (AKA Gnarls Barkley), My Morning Jacket, Gilberto Gil, Peter Gabriel, Thievery Corporation, and Cornelius – all of whom have used Creative Commons licenses and/or have supported CC over the years.


New Jay Bennett album released under a CC license

Eric Steuer, December 5th, 2008

Former Wilco member Jay Bennett is an incredibly talented singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and producer who has just put out his fifth solo album, Whatever Happened I Apologize, as a free download under a Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial license. For the release, Bennett is working with Rock Proper, an online distributor of CC-licensed music. The company has a great mission statement:

Rock Proper seeks to enhance the lives of these artists by embracing the technologies of today. While not exactly a record label, Rock Proper is constantly vigilant; researching all possible channels of revenue that may allow these musicians to continue creating.

In the past, the ways we discovered music felt immediate and personal. Mix-tapes, fan-zines, underground radio, and uncle John’s LP collection all celebrated music well beyond the boundaries of commerce. Like these old models, Rock Proper seeks to deliver music of integrity with immediacy and care.

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Restiform Bodies remix contest – winning submissions to be released on vinyl

Eric Steuer, November 24th, 2008

My friends in the hip-hop/electronic trio Restiform Bodies recently announced a remix contest to celebrate the release of their new album, TV Loves You Back, on anticon records. All of the acapella tracks from the album are offered under a Creative Commons BY-NC license, so you can sample them, remix them, and mash them up. The contest is open until January 1, 2009, and the group will choose two submissions from the contest to include on an upcoming RB vinyl remix album.

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Tribe Of Noise Launches One Billion Fans Project

Cameron Parkins, November 24th, 2008

Tribe Of Noise, a community driven music site that uses a CC BY-SA license for all uploads, recently launched a new project, One Billion Fans, to help promote their growing pool of artists. Musicians, fans, and companies can all log in to support their favorite artist over the coming months with the winner being featured on the digital billboard at Times Square. Voting ends on February 28 – be sure to head to the One Billion Fans website to sign up and help promote!


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