Wednesday, February 07, 2007
Serial downloaders click here
My research for yesterday's Mendelssohn article uncovered a website that is going to delight the many serial downloaders among my readers. Carolina Classical has been created by Charles Moss for the music students he teaches at two universities in South Carolina. There are lovingly constructed articles on a range of composers from Palestrina to Zemlinsky, and many of these are liberally illustrated with music downloads: try one by clicking the image above - and it's not the Eminem Show!
But serial downloading at Carolina Classical doesn't end with audio files. There is also a host of downloadable scores, including many Bach cantatas and Mendelssohn's Songs Without Words, the latter in what are identified as public domain scores in Adobe Acrobat format.
So, serial downloaders are in clover - but, a health warning is needed. We all know that there are very few free lunches in the world of downloads, so I fired off a quick email asking for reassurance from Professor Moss as to the provenance of his downloads. Here is his reply, so I must qualify this feature with the audio download equivalent of caveat emptor.
Dear Sir - The Mendelssohn scores are 100% in the Public Domain, being late 19th Century editions (mostly European) that have long been out of print, and their 75-year copyright now long expired and not renewed since the publishers no longer exist either. The scores and sound files on my Web site are either recorded by me, my friends, or used in RealAudio format with permisson of the copyright owners. No one objects to the use of RealAudio content since it has a far lesser sound quality than MP3. To be blunt, RealAudio offers a small file size with "passable" quality that does not compete with CD-quality audio at all. It merely offers listeners a "sound image" to use when selecting material that they may wish to purchase on CDs.
I teach for two colleges: The University of South Carolina at Sumter and Saint Leo University at Shaw Air Force Base. My Web articles were really written for the use of my college students in my music classes. So now you will understand the motivation of my Web site. I do not make a profit of any kind from this site.
Sincerely, Charles K. Moss
While elsewhere in the US, the indefatigable Walt Santner has uncovered a veritable vault of downloads of complete operas recorded in Bulgaria that don't appear to need any health warnings. Full length Russian works to download are Borodin Prince Igor, Dargomizhsky Rusalka, Mussorgsky Boris Godunov and Khovanshchina, Andrey Petrov Peter I, Prokofiev Betrothal in a Monastery, Rachmaninoff Aleko, Rimsky-Korsakov Boyarinya Vera Sheloga, The Golden Cockerel and The Snow Maiden, Shostakovich Katerina Ismailova, and Stravinsky Mavra and Renard.
There are also downloads of complete operas by little known Bulagarian composers including Atanasov, Goleminov, Goleminov, Hadjiev, Iliev, Pipkov, Stoyanov, Vladigerov. While back in the mainstream the complete Bulgarian National Radio performances include Bizet Les pêcheurs de perles, Verdi Don Carlo, and Wagner: Der fliegende Holländer. The Bulgarian downloads come from a University of Pittsburgh site, and include cast lists and singer biographies.
For obvious reasons I haven't listened to many of these recordings. So reader reviews and experiences while on today's download path are very welcome.
Caveat emptor, and serial downloaders enjoy!
Now, for more Walt Santner discoveries click over to another treasure trove of historic MP3 downloads.
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