10,000 Wax Cylinders Digitized and Free to Download!

wax-recordingsThe University of California at Santa Barbara library has undertaken an heroic digitization effort for its world-class archive of 19th and early 20th century wax cylinder recordings, and has placed over 10,000 songs online for anyone to download, stream and re-use.

There are 2,000 more cylinders to come.  UCSB’s own trove has grown threefold over the past decade.

The new online database now boasts recordings from the late 1800s to the early 1900s, and they range from hit singles to operatic arrangements to vaudeville songs. There’s also spoken word — including speeches and readings — and everything is searchable by title, genre, instruments, region, and even subject.

Of particular interest to the bluegrass community may be the Early Hillbilly & Old Time Music.

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