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Music: Audio Archives

New Sounds

From National Public Radio and WQXR, New Sounds offers an eclectic sonic experience for those interested in new and unusual music.  Live stream and podcasts are available.  Hosted by John Schaefer.

British Library Sounds

An archive of selected sound recordings from around the world, ranging across music, drama and literature, oral history, and wildlife and environmental sounds. 

To the Best of Our Knowledge - Arts & Culture

From Wisconsin Public Radio, a wide-ranging audio archive of interviews on the arts and culture.

BBC Radio 3 World Music

Explore Radio 3 on-location recordings from 2000 to the present in our World Music archive, recording the life and musical traditions of countries ranging from Brazil to North Korea and Cuba to Turkmenistan.

On Point Music Programs

Selection of archived music shows from NPR's On Point.

NPR Music

Music programs from a variety of NPR affiliates.

BBC Sounds

Broad array of music programming from BBC.

WNYC Public Radio

Radio programs on music, art, literature, and popular culture from WNYC's Studio 360 and American Icons.

Studs Terkel Radio Archive

Jointly managed by the Chicago History Museum and the WFMT Radio Network along with technical assistance from the Library of Congress, the archive offers streaming audio of programs produced by Studs Terkel between 1952 and 1997.  Topics include art, religion, music, philosophy, and literature. 

WBUR Music News

Wide-ranging collection of music-related news programs and stories.

BBC Radio 4 - Desert Island Discs

Desert Island Discs was created by Roy Plomley in 1942, and the format is simple: a guest is invited by Kirsty Young to choose the eight records they would take with them to a desert island.

Free Music Archive

The Free Music Archive is an interactive library of high-quality, legal audio downloads directed by WFMU, the most renowned freeform radio station in America. Radio has always offered the public free access to new music. The Free Music Archive is a continuation of that purpose, designed for the age of the internet. It was launched in 2009.

BBC Radio 4 - Noise: A Human History

A 30-part series commissioned and broadcast by BBC Radio that explores how our interactions with sound have shaped us over 100,000 years. In collaboration with the British Library Sound Archive.

BBC Music Extra

Various programs which examine the interactions between music, identity, technology, and social change.  Includes the series A History of Music and Technology, hosted by Nick Mason.

Library of Congress National Jukebox 1901 - 1925

Consists of thousands of historical recordings produced by Columbia Records, OKeh, and Victor Talking Machine Co., among others, featuring popular music, dance music, opera, early jazz, famous speeches, poetry, and humor.  Works by Fletcher Henderson, Al Jolson, George M. Cohan, Eddie Cantor, Will Rogers, Alberta Hunter, Sergei Rachmaninoff, Leopold Stokowski, Arturo Toscanini, and opera stars Enrico Caruso, Nellie Melba and Geraldine Farrar are all covered, as are such original recordings as the Paul Whiteman Concert Orchestra's "Rhapsody in Blue" with George Gershwin on piano, and Nora Bayes' "Over There."

The National Jukebox also includes thousands of label images, record-catalog illustrations, and artist and performer bios. In addition, users can further explore the catalog by accessing special interactive features, listening to playlists curated by Library staff, and creating and sharing their own playlists.

The Global Jukebox

The Global Jukebox explores connections between families of expressive style. One can travel the world of song, dance and language through the Wheel Chart and the Map. Thousands of examples of the world’s music, dance and other expressive behavior are freely available for non-commercial use at the Global Jukebox.  The site includes 6,000 songs from 1,000 cultures. The Global Jukebox is an initiative of Alan Lomax's Association for Cultural Equity.

Alan Lomax Sound Archive Online

The Sound Recordings catalog comprises over 17,400 digital audio files, beginning with Lomax’s first recordings onto (newly invented) tape in 1946 and tracing his career into the 1990s. In addition to a wide spectrum of musical performances from around the world, it includes stories, jokes, sermons, personal narratives, interviews conducted by Lomax and his associates, and unique ambient artifacts captured in transit from radio broadcasts, sometimes inadvertently, when Alan left the tape machine running. Not a single piece of recorded sound in Lomax’s audio archive has been omitted: meaning that microphone checks, partial performances, and false starts are also included.

The Association for Cultural Equity (ACE), custodian of the Alan Lomax Archive, was founded by Alan Lomax to explore and preserve the world's expressive traditions with humanistic commitment and scientific engagement. ACE was registered as a charitable organization in the State of New York in 1983, and is housed at New York City's Hunter College.

Macaulay Library of Biodiversity Recordings

The Macaulay Library is the world's largest and oldest scientific archive of biodiversity audio and video recordings. Our mission is to collect and preserve recordings of each species' behavior and natural history, to facilitate the ability of others to collect and preserve such recordings, and to actively promote the use of these recordings for diverse purposes spanning scientific research, education, conservation, and the arts.

Edison Sound Recordings

First Sounds

First Sounds is a collaborative of audio historians, recording engineers, curators, technicians, scientists, and other experts who strive to make humanity's earliest sound recordings available to all people for all time. First Sounds freely offers the services of its experts to identify, preserve, play, interpret, and share the earliest sound recordings held in public and private collections.

Selected Library of Congress Sound Archives

BBC Radio 4 - In Our Time Culture

The roles of popular culture, poetry, music, and visual arts in society.

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