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That indeed appears to be the case for post-1922 recordings, due to  
the various recent term-extensions and amendments to Federal  
Copyright Law under pressure from the music industry's well-funded  
lobbyists.

However, this does NOT apply to those US 1923-1950 "works" (i.e.  
actual songs and compositions, as distinct from recordings thereof)  
whose copyright failed to be renewed for a second 28-year term. These  
works would be by definition in the public domain, and a catalog of  
them would be an immense asset to any recording archivist. Yet I'm  
unaware of any published attempt to catalog such PD works.

Anthony Baldwin


On 18 Mar 2009, at 1:45, Steven Smolian wrote:

>
> Er- Officially, just about everything is under U.S. copyright  
> untill 2065 or so...
>
>
> Steve Smolian
>
> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Anthony Baldwin"  
> <[log in to unmask]>
> To: <[log in to unmask]>
> Sent: Tuesday, March 17, 2009 12:44 PM
> Subject: [ARSCLIST] Public Domain Recodings?
>
>
>> In a closely related area, has anybody ever attempted to make a  
>> list  of those post-1922 American compositions (as distinct from   
>> phonorecordings) whose copyright was never renewed after their   
>> initial 28-year protection term?
>>
>> Any list that I have ever seen confines itself to pre-1923 works,   
>> with ominous warnings about how later material requires the  
>> expertise  of a copyright lawyer to determine its status. In  
>> practice, I would  have thought that simple arithmetic would  
>> suffice, given that any  post-1922 work whose initial 28-year term  
>> ended before January 1st,  1978 without being renewed for a second  
>> period would have passed  irrevocably into the Public Domain.
>>
>> I'm not aware of any systematic attempt to identify and catalog  
>> such works. Ideas, anyone?
>>
>> Anthony Baldwin
>>
>>
>> On 17 Mar 2009, at 3:06, Randal Baier wrote:
>>
>>
>>>
>>> Wow! If ARSC isn't arcane, then I don't know what qualifies --  
>>> and that's precisely why I like being on this list!
>>>
>>> A pomegranate tapenade in a world full of onion dip. Bring it on!
>>>
>>> Randal Baier
>>>
>>>> Dear ARSC folk-
>>>>
>>>> I am curious if anyone out there has compiled an exhaustive,  
>>>> semi- exhaustive (or just plain exhausting) list of PD  
>>>> recordings. As a  Latin music collector I have found certain  
>>>> tracks that have popped  up with differing names on "budget"  
>>>> labels like Varsity. I seem to  recall a thread from sometime  
>>>> ago that dealt with this question  but I do not remember anyone  
>>>> having a single database of all the  music that fell into this  
>>>> category.
>>>>
>>>> Does such a thing exist or am I searching for Chimeras?
>>>>
>>>> Please ping me off list so as not to bother the mainstream with   
>>>> what I believe might be fairly described as arcana...
>>>>
>>>> AA
>>>>
>>>
>>>
>