Classical music downloads to die for

Every recording of Bach's Orchestral Suites, Brandenburg Concertos and Keyboard Concertos made before 1957 are among the delights available free online from the British Library website seen above. That means Bach from Boult, Busch, Casals, Furtwängler (his Brandenburg No. 3 with the Berlin Philharmonic plays as I write as a reminder of how every great musician has their blind spots), Horenstein, Klemperer, Koussevitsky, Reiner and Weingartner, to name just a few. There are also delights from Beethoven, Brahms (including Karajan's Brahms 1 with, I quote, 'Amsterdam Orchestra' and 1 and 4 with the Philharmonia), Haydn and Mozart, including Bruno Walter's Prague with the Vienna Philharmonic. Plus world music from the archives.

It is an extraordinary treasure trove, except for one thing. The British Library site says, for obvious copypyright reasons - Available only in the UK. But a recommendation does come from download super-sleuth Walt Santner who lives in the States. Can IP address recognition really protect music copyright? Reports on access from readers outside the UK unable to resist these temptations are welcome. More Walt Santner discoveries here.

Any copyrighted material on these pages is included as "fair use", for the purpose of study, review or critical analysis only, and will be removed at the request of copyright owner(s). Report errors to - overgrownpath at hotmail dot co dot uk


G-# said…
A quick search on Google for 'anonymizer' returns links to several commercial or free software packages to hide your identity on the web.

Back in January this year I received an invitation from a friend to access Spotify (, a music streaming site which has a subscription service (9.99 €/month) and a free service paid by advertising. The free service is available only in Scandinavia, the UK, France and Spain (where I live) in the list. A few weeks after, I read a thread in a classical music forum talking about this site. Readers from countries not in that list were frustrated (and jealous). But one of them reported being able to get access using Tor anonymizer free software, which can be downloaded from

I have no idea of how tricky can be configuring such piece of software to pretend you are wherever you need to, but it seems that domain name recognition can be overcome. Luckily, I have access to Spotify free service with no need to hide where I am. And listening to one advertisement every hour or so does not bother me enough to look for alternatives.
Pliable said…
Which kind of makes a nonsense of geographic differentials in copyright protection ....

Is copyright really workable in a digital age?
G-# said…
Prof. Lawrence Lessig from Stanford Law School has some interesting ideas on copyright and the digital age. You may have a look at his writings in his web page
A must-see presentation on Copyright and the net ("Getting the Network the World Needs") by Prof Lessing:
Compelling and convincing.
Michael Richards

Recent popular posts

All aboard the Martinu bandwagon

Will this attract young audiences? - discuss

Whatever happened to the long tail of composers?

Who are the real classical role models?

Mahler that dares to be different

Great music has no independent existence

The Berlin Philharmonic's darkest hour

Master musician who experienced the pain of genius

A year of stories that had to be told

Hitler's court composer was Harvard alumnus