A particular type of free content, or a particular subclass of data sets, for making music.
Many research datasets are also amazing artistic sample libraries, and they sometimes have favourable licensing and zero cost. For example, Nsynth.
Freesound, the incredible collaborative sample/field recording community.
See also freesound4s, the tagged and compressed 4-second subset
FSI language courses are US-government-developed English↔︎[insert politically-sensitive language here] courses in the public domain.
Free from any hint of modern pedagogical best-practice.
Small but potent, Yellowstone Park Field Recordings, blogged here.
legowelt sample kits are a cult phenomenon from weird dutch guys who played a gig at my local cafe that one time.
Alex Mcleans Dirt Samples are well-curated and come with a supercollider binding
BBCSFX from the BBC
Mihai Sorohan’s Trumpet packs
- Royalty Free Music by Bensound
- Free Music Archive; I think we must now use the archive.org backup of the audio.
See also some weird bonus options from the audio datasets.
- Beatstars is a commercial peer-to-peer beatmakers’ market which has lots of tracks without vocals. I’m not sure what analysis can be done upon them without paying the per-track licensing fee, but possibly quite a lot.
- Free music samples from SampleRadar
Who knows which of these are legal, but there is an endless churn of drum sample over on Reddit.
Instrumentals / acappellas / dub plates
Hard to google for because “instrumentals” has too many synonyms, and no one can agree how to spell “a capella” as a plural noun.
Here is a reddit on instrumentals, linking to more resources in this area.
acapellas.eu is a site for this kind of thing.
You should of course be careful about the copyright on these kinds of forum. I am not qualified to advise you on the legalities of up- or downloading in your jurisdiction, and I don’t mean to imply by linking to them that I have checked them out at all. They all claim to be abiding by relevant laws.
A particular type of (faintly retro) sampled-based synthesis standard. Made famous by Fluidsynth, but there are other VST players and a big community.
You can also extract the samples form these and use them and normal one-shots.
- Synthfont maints lists of GM and orchestral SoundFonts and quirky soundfonts
- Musecore maintains a list of middle-brow soundfonts.
- Cymatics’ free soundffont list
- Trisamples Trap/EDM soundfonts
You can edited them with Viena, Swami or Polyphone.
Impulse Response libraries
Libraries of reverbs, that may be convolved with a signal to make it sound like it was recorded somewhere else — e.g. record a sound in a church then play back other sounds as if they were played in the church. Aside: there is an interesting deconvolution problem in making these things, and possibly an even more interesting one in synthesising them.
Sources, via, e.g. sidebrain:
- Teufelsberg radome impulse responses by Balance mastering.
- The Echo Thief — A professor at UCSD who travels the world and records real places
- EMES Virtual Rooms — Offer Free IRs on the bottom left of the screen
- Adventure Kid — Spring IRs
- Rekkerd Impulse Response Blog — Articles and posts about convolution sound design
- Fokke Van Saane — A lot of unique IRs. Make sure you download the Wav version of the packs.
- Lexicon 480L — IRs from the eponymous hardware reverb unit.
- Boss GT-8 — IR from another hardware unit
- SIR ships with some examples
- CKSDE — Separated IR Downloads
- dubbhism Stonerverbs
- Diego Stocco’s majestic mutant wierdverbs
- OpenAIR (UK-based sampled IRs)
- freeverb lists some more
- Noisevault Studio and Convolution Forums
- Voxengo Pristine Space
- Voxengo Free reverb
- echochamber’s impulse responses
- Interruptor’s music — Club Simulation
- Prosoniq Impulse Reponse Download
- K7 Sounds
- signaltonoize.com Impulse Sets
- Auditorium Measurement
- Open Impulse Response Library
- Freesound IR
And ultimately anything can be treated as an impulse response; although you might have to do some fancy footwork to make it sound ok — see above re: deconvolution.
Managing and indexing
See sample management.
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