Open Music Archive initiated by artists Eileen Simpson and Ben White, is a collaborative project to source, digitise, and distribute out of copyright music recordings.
Open Music Archive Projects is a forum for related projects.
- 1 Song Division - Camden Arts Centre
- 2 The Brilliant and the Dark - Elgar Rooms, Royal Albert Hall
- 3 Beyond Struggle in Jerash, Makan
- 4 Vera List Center for Art and Politics at The New School, New York
- 5 Shadowboxing, Royal College of Art, London
- 6 Tempo Documentary Festival, Stockholm
- 7 Artists Film Club - ICA London
- 8 LuckyPDF TV Autoitalia Live
- 9 Catalogue screening at SLG
- 10 The Brilliant and The Dark Live
- 11 Parallel Anthology - Whitechapel Late
- 12 Superdeluxe@Artspace Film Programme - 17th Biennale of Sydney
- 13 Outlet - Beaconsfield
- 14 Struggle in Jerash - Alexandria Contemporary Arts Forum (ACAF)
- 15 Berlin Documentary Forum
- 16 PARADE: public modes of assembly and forms of address
- 17 LOOP Barcelona
- 18 Parallel Anthology - 17th Biennale of Sydney
- 19 The Brilliant and The Dark - The Women's Library
- 20 Struggle In Jerash - Gasworks London
- 21 Ambulante Documentary Film Festival, Mexico
- 22 Free/Slow University of Warsaw
- 23 Ghost Trace Stellar
- 24 Felix's Machines
- 25 Open Music Archive Outlet, London
- 26 This is not a gateway
- 27 Free-to-air CD
- 28 Nought To Sixty, ICA
- 29 Loose Booty, Zurich
- 30 Disclosures II: The Middle Ages, Laxton
- 31 Freebooter, The London Festival of Architecture
- 32 Photosocial, The Photographers' Gallery
- 33 Electronic Music Festival, Amman
- 34 Disclosures, London
- 35 Clips, Blips and Loops #2, Geneva
- 36 Loose Booty, London
- 37 Screen Tests - The Bigger Picture, Manchester
- 38 Who Makes And Owns Your Work, Stockholm
- 39 Free-to-air (Cornerhouse, Manchester)
- 40 Previous Projects
- 41 Future Projects
Song Division - Camden Arts Centre
Open Music Archive presents a series of events exploring the sonic potentials of materials gleaned from the edges of the public domain.
Thu 6 Oct / Wed 2 Nov / Wed 16 Nov 2011
Camden Arts Centre
The Brilliant and the Dark - Elgar Rooms, Royal Albert Hall
Wednesday 28 September 2011 - 8:00 PM
Elgar Rooms, Royal Albert Hall, Kensington Gore, London SW7 2AP.
Gaggle perform The Brilliant and the Dark live
"COMMENTARY TO SLIDES" archive slideshow performance by Eileen Simpson and Ben White
Beyond Struggle in Jerash, Makan
Wednesday 21 September 2011
Vera List Center for Art and Politics at The New School, New York
Struggle in Jerash will be screened as part of:
Film screenings and Conversations
Saturday, September 10, 2011, 11:00 am – 6:00 pm
Shadowboxing, Royal College of Art, London
Open Music Archive
Recorded: Thursday 17th March 2011 (18:30 – 20:30)
Broadcast: scheduled for 2021
We were invited by Sean Dockray to contribute to his Public Monument. We produced a future public domain radio programme – projecting forward a selection of out-of-copyright archive music and recordings currently controlled under copyrights due to expire by the time of broadcast in the year 2021.
In 2011 in the UK, the term of copyright in a musical composition is limited to the life of the author plus 70 years, while the term of copyright in a sound recording is limited to 50 years from the date of recording. Once this bundle of proprietary rights expires, a music recording enters the public domain and is held in common. The legal frameworks, which define the limits of the public domain, are by no means fixed. The future of the public domain is precarious – the field of culture is increasingly colonised for private interests as proprietors of intellectual property continually lobby for the extension of their control.
Pre-release optimistically opens up a future channel for public domain material beyond individual proprietary and commercial interests – a truly free broadcast for an imminent public domain.
The Pre-release radio programme was presented by Dan Scott
Part of SHADOWBOXING
Tempo Documentary Festival, Stockholm
Struggle In Jerash will be screened at:
Tempo Documentary Festival
Friday 11 March 18:00 – 19:20 Victoria 7
We are also contributing to the event Reality is Fiction:
Read more about Struggle In Jerash at Catalogue Magazine
Artists Film Club - ICA London
Artists Film Club - The Brilliant and The Dark
Institute of Contemporary Arts
2 December 2010
Screening and Discussion 7:30 pm
Eileen Simpson and Ben White present their new short video work The Brilliant and the Dark, a restaging of a 1969 cantata for women’s voices of the same name. Following a discussion with the artists and choir leader Deborah Coughlin (chaired by curator Anna Colin), the radically remixed cantata will be performed live by the extraordinary 22-piece women’s choir Gaggle.
Free, Book for the Screening, Discussion and Live Performance (limited capacity) or only for the Live Performance
The Brilliant and the Dark live performance supported by the National Lottery through Arts Council England
Live cc licensed recording coming soon
LuckyPDF TV Autoitalia Live
Running from the 9th October 2010 and broadcasting for 5 consecutive Saturdays at 5pm, Auto-Italia was transformed into a fully functioning independent TV studio.
We contributed to the last episode broadcast live Saturday 12th November:
Through re-enactment and lip-synching, Open Music Archive present a series of musical vignettes structured around public domain recordings from 1920s blues and jazz to 1960s soul via 1930s dance band crooners.
Al Bowlly’s 1936 newsreel appearance is scrambled (You’ve Got What Gets Me reversed and flipped as Me Gets What Got You’ve) and Vaughn De Leath’s 1927 crooning of Are You Lonesome Tonight? is melodically de-saturated and retroactively mutated by a 1960s monotone female Elvis.
Auto-Italia South East, 1 Glengall Road, Peckham, London SE15 6NJ
Catalogue screening at SLG
The Brilliant and The Dark video screening as part of:
Catalogue presents Film screening and Tatiana Trouvé in conversation
6 October 2010, 7pm, Free
South London Gallery
To celebrate its first anniversary, Franco-British online contemporary art magazine Catalogue presents a special evening comprising a screening of films by artists featured in the magazine during its first year of publication, as well as a rare opportunity for a limited audience to hear Tatiana Trouvé in conversation with an invited speaker.
The Brilliant and The Dark Live
Thursday 23 September
Eileen Simpson and Ben White have invited the extraordinary 22 piece women's choir Gaggle to reinterpret The Brilliant and the Dark, a 1969 cantata for women's voices and to perform it live at The Women's Library.
In addition they have asked vocalist Ellen Southern to create a new copyleft remix score, which will be performed with live band and singers on the same night.
All will be accompanied by an exclusive DJ set created by Eileen Simpson that celebrates music produced by women, gleaned from The Women's Library
The Women's Library
£6 / £4 concessions
This event is part of Out of the Archives curated by Anna Colin
Out of the Archives runs until 2 October 2010 at The Women's Library.
25 Old Castle Street, London E1 7NT
For the exhibition we negotiated with copyright owners music publishers Josef Weinberger for permission to use elements from the work and invited the all-women choir Gaggle to remix the music and lyrics of the original composition for a new music video. Filmed on location in The Women's Library exhibition hall, the video re-animates the 1969 performance through restaging situations – from the backstage preparations, to choreographed moments in the live event – which are documented in photographs held in the Library’s collection. The performers are seen in new costumes referencing the originals and amidst remade props.
Parallel Anthology - Whitechapel Late
Friday 30 July, 8pm
An evening of music inspired by musicologist, record collector and artist Harry Smith’s Anthology of American Folk Music. Simpson and White have collected parallel public domain versions of the anthology recordings not closed down by copyright - from non-attributed folk versions, to commercial recordings whose proprietary interests have expired. For this event musicians and producers have been invited to perform covers and remixes of Parallel Anthology for a night of plugged and unplugged performances.
Live Parallel Anthology sets by:
Plus Open Music Archive out-of-copyright/copyleft DJ set
Free Parallel Anthology source CD gift will be presented on entry.
Superdeluxe@Artspace Film Programme - 17th Biennale of Sydney
Struggle in Jerash screening:
Sunday, 25 July
Outlet - Beaconsfield
Distributing direct to the public, the temporary outlet makes available the out-of-copyright and copyleft material from Open Music Archive.
Listen, browse, burn and take away . . .
Sunday 18 July 2-8 pm
Part of the SpaceShip Earth freecycling party.
Struggle in Jerash - Alexandria Contemporary Arts Forum (ACAF)
Screening of Struggle in Jerash - a film by Eileen Simpson and Ben White
June 30, 2010
Alexandria Contemporary Arts Forum (ACAF)
Berlin Documentary Forum
We're contributing to:
Berlin Documentary Forum # 1
02.06.2010 - 06.06.2010
Haus der Kulturen der Welt
The BERLIN DOCUMENTARY FORUM is a new programmatic initiative at the Haus der Kulturen der Welt. It is an interdisciplinary festival showcasing visual, audiovisual and performative works from all over the world. It is also the first festival to stage a forum that debates the contemporary documentary as a politically committed form of representation.
Curator Eduardo Thomas presents a selection of contemporary experimental documentaries – all shown as German premieres. The program brings together films recently made in South America, the Middle East and Asia. The discussions with the filmmakers depart from previously dominant notions such as ‘authorship’, ‘authority’ and ‘authenticity’.
"Struggle In Jerash" with Eduardo Thomas, Eileen Simpson, and Ben White
PARADE: public modes of assembly and forms of address
We are contributing to PARADE: public modes of assembly and forms of address
Friday 21 may
Saturday 22 May
Sunday 23 may
Parade is at:
HOTEL CATALONIA RABMLAS
Saturday the 22nd of May
London Seen will be launched at this year’s edition of LOOP and functions as an exploration into moving-image practices on London’s contemporary art scene; prolific in exhibition formats, interactions and challenges to conventional circuits. The project brings to Barcelona platforms and exhibition spaces which reflect innovative engagement with and display of video and film. Gathering different types of sites for display, production, distribution and/or archiving of moving-image works, London Seen project aims to generate a reflection around the specific treatment of video and film, by bringing together the participant’s practices and trajectories.
Parallel Anthology - 17th Biennale of Sydney
Saturday, 15 May
Join Eileen Simpson and Ben White for an evening of free music launching their Parallel Anthology project inspired by musicologist and artist Harry Smith’s Anthology of American Folk Music. Simpson and White have collected parallel public domain versions of the anthology recordings not closed down by copyright; from non-attributed folk versions, to commercial recordings whose proprietary interests have expired. The evening will feature a free CD giveaway and a DJ set featuring Parallel Anthology tracks, recordings from their Open Music Archive and new copyleft remixes, covers and versions made with a range of collaborators.
We're also contributing to the Opening Week Forum:
Saturday 15 May
Session II : 1 pm
Dr Gerald McMaster, Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Megan Tamati-Quennell
Domain Theatre, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney
The Brilliant and The Dark - The Women's Library
We are contributing to Out of the Archives exhibition at:
The Women's Library
12 May - 2 October 2010
The Women's Library exhibitions are open Monday to Friday, 9.30am to 5.30pm, with a late evening opening on Thursday until 8.00pm.
curated by Anna Colin
Struggle In Jerash - Gasworks London
I Want to See / Struggle in Jerash
16th April 2010 - 30th May 2010
As the first Jordanian audio-visual works begin to fall into the public domain, a constellation of interests are translating, drafting and revising copyrights laws, trade agreements and licences to control the flow of culture and build new markets.
Against the backdrop of these emerging intellectual property markets, in 2008 artists Eileen Simpson and Ben White embarked on a period of research in Amman, Jordan – speaking to lawyers, copyright activists, software developers, artists, musicians, journalists, curators, film makers and critics – in an attempt to seek out the common cultural resources of Jordan’s public domain.
The result is Struggle In Jerash – a project convened around a lost 1957 Jordanian feature film of the same name, which fell out-of-copyright the year of the artists’ residency, and is used as a catalyst to explore value and meaning in archival material.
Ambulante Documentary Film Festival, Mexico
The festival tours to Mexico City, Metepec - Toluca, Cuernavaca, Leon, Puebla, Morelia, San Cristobal, Oaxaca, Monterrey, Tijuana, Xalapa and Guadalajara between Feb 12 - May 6
Panel discussion: "Copyright, intellectual property and public goods"
Screening with Q&A session
Open Music Archive DJ set
Injerto programme curated by Eduardo Thomas
Read more about Struggle In Jerash at Catalogue Magazine
Free/Slow University of Warsaw
11th December 2009
Eileen and Ben will talk about Open Music Archive as part of OUR WAY, BY THE WAY NEW STRATEGIES FOR CULTURE
followed by an out-of-copyright/copyleft DJ set at Wspaniały Nowy Świat (former Nowy Świat cafe), ul. Nowy Świat 63 Warsaw
Conference "Our Way, by the Way. New Strategies for Culture" took place in the Warsaw University Library between the 11th and the 13th of December 2009. Lectures and discussions were dedicated to the issues of alternative strategies for independent culture and its possible transformations
Ghost Trace Stellar
Friday 17th July 2009
Ghost Trace Stellar
Organised by Polytechnic & Kate Sweeney. Part of the Polytechnic ecologies programme
We're working with Polytechnic to develop an evening of free music at Star and Shadow, an open volunteer-run social space and Cinema in Newcastle. We're inviting bands, musicians, producers and DJs to perform covers, versions, remixes or interpretations of the 1920s and 30s out-of-copyright folk, blues, and jazz from the Open Music Archive. A series of live plugged and unplugged performances will be recorded and licensed under Creative Commons ShareAlike, generating a new resource - free for use and reuse in the future.
The event opens up a temporary channel for music, exchange and discussion that operates beyond individual proprietary and commercial interests.
Friday 19 December 2008
Eileen Simpson and Ben White (Open Music Archive) play a DJ set featuring out-of-copyright clips, blips and loops sampled from 19th Century music boxes, player pianos and other automated music machines. This is followed by a performance of new compositions made in collaboration with Felix Thorn for Felix's Machines, and assembled from out-of-copyright material for the player piano.
FREE GIFT: a copyleft licensed CD featuring the new compositions and source files will be given away on the night.
Map: download a PDF
Open Music Archive Outlet, London
22nd November - 14th December 2008
Artists Eileen Simpson and Ben White set up the first temporary outlet for their Open Music Archive. Distributing direct to the public, the outlet makes available the out-of-copyright and copyleft material from the archive on CDs, CDRs, and vinyl. Featuring new live recordings from Serafina Steer, Hest, Magic Arm, Sisters of Transistors, Per Ahlund and Mathias Josefson (Fylkingen), MC Strategy (Broke 'n' English); studio recordings by Homelife Duo, Liz Green, Sundowner; clips, blips and loops sampled mechanical music boxes; and 1920s and 30s archive source recordings by Leroy Carr, Virginia Liston, Cleo Brown and Honey Hill and more. . .
Visitors to the outlet can browse, listen and take away the music. The CDs and records are available in exchange for a suggested donation and all material is out-of-copyright or copyleft - free for use and reuse in the future.
The outlet is set up in collaboration with designer Ismini Adami.
This is not a gateway
Open Music Archive DJ set at:
This is not a gateway festival launch
Free-to-Air CD containing 14 copyleft covers, versions and remixes of the out-of-copyright archive jazz / blues / music hall & folk from the Open Music Archive. Featuring Magic Arm, Homelife, Sisters of Transistors and more....
Send a donation of £5 and we'll post you a copy of the CD
Nought To Sixty, ICA
Monday 29 September 2008 8 - 10 pm
out-of-copyright archive jazz / blues / music hall & folk
part of Nought to Sixty curated by Mark Sladen and Richard Birkett
Loose Booty, Zurich
Loose Booty at K3 - Project Space
opening 27th September with Open Music Archive DJ set 7pm till late
Disclosures II: The Middle Ages, Laxton
Saturday 6 September 2008
Declose is a copyleft licensed 12" vinyl scratch tool containing a range of samples, beats and extracts made from out of copyright blues, jazz and folk housed in the Open Music Archive
Declose was made in collaboration with music producers from the burntprogress community.
Download the Declose record or request your free copy of the vinyl from: email@example.com
Freebooter, The London Festival of Architecture
FREEBOOTER: an evening of free music
exploring public territory in a peninsula haunted by pirates and bootleggers.
Saturday 28th June
at: The Pilot Inn, 68 River Way, Greenwich Peninsula, London, SE10
presenting reclaimed lost treasures:
Funktion-One sound system
The Declose vinyl will be available on the night in exchange for a donation.
Project Manager: Heidi Pedersen
See new photography with music, debate and diversion.
The next in an ongoing series of bar nights will include a debate on The Amateur vs the Professional as well as a projection of Screen Tests by Neil Cummings, Marysia Lewandowska, Eileen Simpson and Ben White.
Free, spaces limited, so come along early!
Electronic Music Festival, Amman
Outdoor screening of Screen Tests, and Dragline with live musical accompaniment by Ben White. The music, which has been sourced from out-of-copyright early 20th Century 78rpm records will be manipulated in real-time.
100LIVE Electronic Music Festival 2008
Saturday, 17th May 08 at 4:00pm
For Disclosures Eileen Simpson & Ben White create Declose, a project to create a copyleft licensed 12" vinyl scratch tool containing a range of samples, beats and extracts made from the out-of-copyright blues, jazz and folk housed in the Open Music Archive.
The artists promote collaboration and seek to explore its significance and value for creative production. For Declose they invite producers and members of the burntprogress community to create new remix tracks, short vocal snippets, percussive noises, samples, breaks and beats - made entirely from the out-of-copyright music in the Open Music Archive - to make up the battle vinyl.
Declose Launch Event:
Featuring scratch routines, live experiments and improvisation using the Declose vinyl by:
The Declose vinyl will be available on the night in exchange for a donation.
Clips, Blips and Loops #2, Geneva
For Clips, Blips and Loops #2, we are inviting producers, musicians and DJs to contribute to the collection of free source tools available here. This is an extension of a project developed in Stockholm, November 2007. In February 2008 all of the tools will be gathered together to produce a CD that will be freely distributed at a public performance at an event in Geneva on 13th March.
Loose Booty, London
Alexandre Bianchini, Jeff McMillan, Sylvie Rodriguez, Pascal Rousson, Guy Sherwin, Eileen Simpson and Ben White
For Loose Booty, a new exhibition by Pearl Projects, Eileen Simpson & Ben White have brought together a number of different cover versions of Pinetop's Boogie Woogie, originally written by Clarence "Pinetop" Smith of Chicago (d. 1929). The various out-of-copyright versions, including those by Bing Crosby and Honey Hill, and a new track made entirely from the out-of-copyright elements, are to be burned on CDs and given away for free at the exhibition as a way of disseminating materials that are in the public domain.
After Party - featuring Open Music Archive out-of-copyright/copyleft laptop and DJ set
Screen Tests - The Bigger Picture, Manchester
See Screen Tests and Broadcast Times on The Big Screen Manchester from 12th Jan - 1st Feb 2008.
Screen Tests - Neil Cummings, Marysia Lewandowska, Eileen Simpson, Ben White
Broadcast Times - Neil Cummings, Marysia Lewandowska, Eileen Simpson, Ben White
Who Makes And Owns Your Work, Stockholm
Time: 17 November 2007 12.00 - 01.00
In an attempt to cross the boundaries of idea and practice, Iaspis and Konstfack initiated a project on production, distribution and ownership of cultural matter and artistic knowledge starting in December 2006. On 17th November 2007 the project will open itself up by letting the gathered knowledge be combined with that of invited guests, in an event aiming at an in-depth look on the making and owning of contemporary culture.
Free-to-air (Cornerhouse, Manchester)
From 15-25th July 2007 Open Music Archive will be resident at Cornerhouse, Manchester's international centre for contemporary arts.
For two weeks Eileen Simpson & Ben White will be producing a series of live events and programmes for a temporary FM radio station broadcasting across Manchester. (106.5FM)
We're inviting bands and musicians to respond to the rare out-of-copyright folk, blues, and jazz from the Open Music Archive; to work with forgotten lyrics, chords, melodies and beats, and to make new cover versions of forgotten tracks.
For two weeks the gallery will host live plugged and unplugged performances and one-off broadcasts by Manchester's finest upcoming and established bands and musicians.