Online archive for silent film music

Everything related to researching, scoring and performing music with silent film.
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kpleonard

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Online archive for silent film music

PostThu Feb 13, 2014 1:22 pm

I'm a long-time read of Nitrateville and have found it really helpful and useful for my work as a musicologist. I've established an online site called the Silent Film Sound and Music Archive for documenting silent film music and related materials--photoplay magazines, etc. I'm in the process of getting it to non-profit status and am uploading new music frequently. The url is www.SFSMA.org.

I'd love feedback from all of you here on what you'd like to see there, and if you have scans or photos of silent music or other documents you'd like to share through the archive, please let me know! I want this to be an open-access, always-available site for scholars, enthusiasts, everyone interested.

Thanks!
Kendra Leonard
kendra.leonard@outlook.com
kendraprestonleonard@gmail.com
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BenModel

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Re: Online archive for silent film music

PostThu Feb 13, 2014 5:54 pm

What a great idea! Will you be posting/accepting orchestra parts? Will you be listing/sorting music by mood as well?

I just knew that if Schirmers/MusicSales dragged their heels long enough on the mood music book they hired me to work on in 2008 and were supposed to publish and never have, at some point the notion of it would become obsolete because of the availability of online PDFs.

Ben
Sign up for my emails at silentfilmmusic.com and get an exclusive link to watch a rare comedy short
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boblipton

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Re: Online archive for silent film music

PostThu Feb 13, 2014 6:07 pm

It's an interesting idea and potentially a very valuable resource, particularly if any of the published cue-books are out of copyright and can be uploaded without running afoul of the law. I believe that the New York Public Library branch at Lincoln Center has a lot of sheet music.

Bob
Last edited by boblipton on Thu Feb 13, 2014 6:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
His plagiarism was limited only by his faulty technique.

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BenModel

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Re: Online archive for silent film music

PostThu Feb 13, 2014 6:19 pm

The LPA has a collection of 800+ pieces, mainly piano and small orch, but you can't copy anything if it's under © without getting permission first.

Ben
Sign up for my emails at silentfilmmusic.com and get an exclusive link to watch a rare comedy short
Undercrank Productions - rare silents on DVD/Blu available on Amazon
follow @silentfilmmusic on Twitter and on Instagram
Silent Film Music Podcast available on iTunes
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kpleonard

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Re: Online archive for silent film music

PostFri Feb 14, 2014 1:12 pm

I'll be posting whatever I can get my hands on, and everything is searchable by mood, instrument, composer, etc. I'm also working on a bibliography of silent film music resources, and have found a number of archives with archivists who are willing to help as SFSMA grows and can afford to photograph or scan more documents.

Primary sources published before 1923 are out of copyright and are in the public domain and can be freely posted. Works first published between 1923 and 1963 are in the public domain if their copyrights have not been renewed; this is the case with a lot of other silent film music. SFSMA's purpose as an educational/scholarly repository also means that posting many works falls under fair use. But I am being very careful about later editions and copyright there.

So if you have scans or photos and would like them posted, please email me!
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Rick Lanham

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Re: Online archive for silent film music

PostSat Feb 15, 2014 3:29 pm

What I wish existed is possibly outside what you are creating, and would possibly involve a different web-hosting technology.

That would be a "Silent Film Music Database." There are lots of videos which don't mention on the packaging (or even in the credits!) who did the music, let alone what themes/pieces were used, who wrote them, compiled/composed, orchestra/organ/piano/midi/band, etc.

We have IMDB, IDBD, the excellent SilentEra site, and some musicians have their own sites, but as far as I know we are then left to search engines or asking on forums to find such information.

Rick
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gentlemanfarmer

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Re: Online archive for silent film music

PostThu Feb 20, 2014 3:52 pm

I think this is a wonderful idea, and it is something I'd be willing to help with by sharing scanned scores from my collection. Having a decent bibliography and a searchable database of scores in one place, properly cataloged would be an outstanding tool for research and performance.
Eric W. Cook
Director, Ivy Leaf Orchestra
Silent Film, Salon and Ragtime Orchestra
Please visit us at ivyleaforchestra.com
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kpleonard

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Re: Online archive for silent film music

PostMon Feb 24, 2014 3:26 pm

Rick, my hope is that as titles go up on SFSMA.org, people in the know will let us at the database know if specific pieces were performed with specific films, what music is used on DVDs of silent films, and other information, so that we can tie it all in together.

Eric, I'm sending you an email--thanks for offering to help out!
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craig2010

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Re: Online archive for silent film music


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