Musings from the Manhut

Where the ebb and flow of life creates a cascade of words down the paper's face

Tag: music

Bix Beiderbecke

I had never heard of jazz coronet player Bix Beiderbecke until I bumped into a collection of his music on a few months ago. According to the wikipedia article on him at he was one of the most influential jazz musicians in the late 20s until his death at 28 in 1931. I downloaded all the works by Beiderbecke I could find to the Bibliotecha and have had a good time listening to them.

These works are mostly jazz tunes with a heavy dose of ragtime thrown in for good measure. This music is a feast for the ears, especially when compared to the garbage that has been produced in the last forty years or so. It is light, lively, and just plain fun to listen to.

Here is a list of his music available on the Internet Archive:

Annette Hanshaw- Public Domain Betty Boop

Probably six months or more before I ever heard of Sita Sings the Blues I bumped into the musical stylings of the Flapper jazz singer Annette Hanshaw. Hanshaw was one of the first and one of the more popular musicians in the Jazz Age.

Her music is lively, happy and fun. I can’t really say that it is “good” in the sense that most of us in 2011 would expect. The collection I heard is recordings of old 78 records and is very scratchy in places.

Ms Hanshaw’s voice is on the squeaky side and reminds me a lot of Betty Boop singing on those old cartoons. No, this is not really great music in my mind but it is fun to listen to and it hearkens us back to a simpler time.

Nina Paley did an excellent job of incorporating Hanshaw’s music into the movie Sita Sings the Blues. The movie is not public domain but does have a liberal license. Give it a look at the link above.

Here is a collection of Hanshaw’s music. Please note that not every song listed on this page is in the public domain but most of them are.

Edith Piaf- Public Domain music

NOTE: As I understand the laws, musical recordings could not be copyrighted in the United States until after the 1978 changes to the copyright laws.Until that time ownership of recordings was under the common or contract law. This makes it a little difficult for an amateur archivist to determine the status of a recording.I am trusting the fine folks at on this one.


I had heard the name Edith Piaf but didn’t know who she was until her music played on the movie Saving Private Ryan. She was a national hero in France. Her biography on wikipedia is like reading a spy novel. She worked with the French Resistance during the war. The Germans allowed pictures of her to be taken with prisoners of war. The PoWs would then use those pictures to forge passports so they could escape from prisoner. She was the queen of music in France from just before World War 2 until her death in 1963.
The collections of her works listed as public domain on is an amazing collection of music. Granted a lot of her songs sound the same but her voice has that enchanting quality that Stevie Nicks, Jewel, Norah Jones, and even Willie Nelson have. I was swept away by her musical stylings and enjoyed it immensely.

The collection is broken up into several parts and are available in several different formats.

1-10, 11-20, 21-30, 41-45, are the locations. Give them a listen.

Bosques de mi Mente

I was told about a music site where the music is all public domain or licensed under an open Creative Commons license. The site is

Now I admit that I am not the most musically oriented person in the world. I think the reason for this is that most of the music that is commercially available is B O R I N G and it all sounds the same. Very few “famous” artists impress me. They all sound the same to me.

But jamendo has some cool stuff on it and I encourage you get some free music that is good!

NOTE: For some reason the player that I tried to embed will not work. so here is the link so you can listen/download Bosques de mi Mente:

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