I am a big user of the Internet Archive and public domain works, in general. There is so much amazing writing, art, and music from our past just waiting to be discovered and re-mixed into new creations. – Douglas
Every January we feature works that are entering the public domain. And this year the big story is in recorded music.
Recorded Music from 1922 and earlier
Approximately 400,000 sound recordings made before 1923 will join the public domain in the U.S. for the first time due to the Music Modernization Act (read more at copyright.gov). You can peruse about 38,000 of them in our collection of digitized 78rpm records.
By 1922 we were solidly in the Jazz Age – F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Tales of the Jazz Age was published in 1922, and the term was already in popular usage. Jazz migrated from Black American communities in New Orleans into the rest of the United States, having evolved from its roots in rag time, blues and Creole music. In fact, 1922 was the year Louis Armstrong left New Orleans to join King Oliver’s Creole Jazz Band in Chicago.