Jig Dolls as a percussion instrument, here played by Jean Ritchie [previously] and The Beers Family. There are modern exponents though - Limberjacking is NOT just for folkies.
Brenda Kenneally documents the effects of illegal drugs in her Brooklyn, New York neighborhood. Money Power Respect and Big Trigg. NSFW [previous comment]
French musical comedies 1918-1940 [French]. Non-French can still appreciate the programmes, photographs, music and videos.
The Digital Library of Slovenia has (among other things) music [like this] [previously], posters [like this] and photographs [like this].
Soviet Music "You are browsing a resource which is devoted first of all to the history and culture of the Soviet Union, the country which the West for a long time usually named as "The Empire of Evil", the country to which some people in the West perceive as "something big and snowy". I offer you to try to look outside the frames of usual stereotypes, to try to understand life of a unique country, with its interesting history, beautiful culture and miraculous relations between people. The music submitted on this site - is an evident sample of a totally new culture, which completely differs from all that, with what Hollywood and MTV supply us so much. This culture, being free from the cult of money, platitude, violence and sex, was urged to not indulge low bents of a human soul but to help the person to become culturally enriched and to grow above himself." [more inside]
The "Crash at Crush" was the intentional head-on crash of two Katy locomotives on Sept. 15, 1896. The results were not quite what Agent Crush had planned. Scott Joplin wrote The Great Crush Collision March [more pictures] to commemorate the event and it was also an inspiration for 'Head-On' Joe Connelly. [more inside]
Prvi svetski rat - Gritty and poignant Serbian postcards from the First World War. Just one of the seriously interesting (e.g. check out the collection of 78s) holdings at the Digital National Library of Serbia.
Slovenian compositions, mainly performed by solo singers (with piano or orchestra accompaniment) and by different orchestras and smaller vocal groups. The tracks are listed here. Might I suggest you start with Vinko Vodopivec and see if this the sort of thing you like?
Apa Tani bleeding tubes filmed by Christoph von Fürer-Haimendorf and Paro, Bhutan in 1936 from Frederick Williamson, are just two of the extraordinary offerings from the Digital Himalaya Project.
Master of the 'didge' - after veins burst in his throat some years ago while he was playing the didgeridoo, doctors warned that continued playing would threaten his life. Admitted to hospital last week with bleeding on the brain, he died on Sunday from a brain haemorrhage. He was 40. [more inside]
Before testosterone coursed through their bodies and caused corruption they were The Sopranos. Frankie, Bobby 'MoFoChild' Breen, Frankienoinfo, Graham 'Freeda' Payn, Donnie 'Alleluja, Jackie [sans kilt], Master Joe Peterson and Joselito was a cutie too.
Brad Laidman critiques the findings from the Centre For Public Health at Liverpool John Moore University report [pdf] 'Elvis to Eminem: quantifying the price of fame through early mortality of European and North American rock and pop stars.' [more inside]
David Juritz a leading violinist left his house with a backpack, fiddle and completely empty wallet at the start of a 60,000-mile, twenty-five-country, round-the-world busk. He is raising money for Musequality (read about some of their support efforts, like the M-Lisada Brass Band). His comment about Berlin being a terrible city for busking put me in mind of this post about Joshua Bell. You can donate here if you feel so inclined.
"In 1964, a computer - the IBM 1401 Data Processing System - arrived in Iceland, one of the very first computers to be imported into the country… The chief maintenance engineer for this machine was Jóhann Gunnarsson, my father. A keen musician, he learned of an obscure method of making music on this computer - a purpose for which this business machine was not at all designed… When the IBM 1401 was taken out of service in 1971, it wasn't simply thrown away like an old refrigerator, but was given a little farewell ceremony, almost a funeral, when its melodies were played for one last time. This "performance" was documented on tape along with recordings of the sound of the machine in operation." The whole story with samples, pictures and video at Jóhann Jóhannsson's site. [via]
Fantastic dancing and singing.
The Orchestra: A User's Manual is one element of 'The Sound Exchange' by the Philharmonia Orchestra. It was conceived and written by Andrew Hugill who has also developed this online Random Round [flash] based on the work of Percy Grainger.
The Nickel Under The Foot is one of the most important songs in the history of the American theatre. The back story.
Sound Team didn't think much of the review that Pitchfork gave them and replied via YouTube. [via] (which also reports on the winner of the Moo & Oink contest).
Scott Walker has, after an 11 year break, released a new album (Statesiders will have to wait until the 23rd). If it's anything like his previous release, Tilt, I'll be more than pleased. He is also to be the subject of an upcoming documentary. [related]
Whitney Music Box [flash] from KrazyDad. You can read about and see examples of John Whitney's work on this extremely ugly website.
Moon River from Breakfast at Tiffany's was one of those songs that I grew up with. It had few words and was especially written for Audrey Hepburn's limited range, making it easy to sing along to. Unfortunately the version I'd most like to hear, by Morrisey, doesn't seem to be working at the moment. Highlights of those I've listened to so far are Kid Koala and Nan Vernon (Japanese).
FARNE North East English folk archives. Interviews, performances, manuscripts, photos and videos. You can browse the archives a few different ways to get the feel of the place.
Mohammed El-Bakkar. [flash with sound] The Man... The Myth... The Legend? Some great music, and the cover art isn't bad either.