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Cylinder Radio

Don't know what to look for? Tired of searching and clicking on links? Let our expert curators guide your way through the repertoire on early cylinder recordings with cylinder radio. Streams are added on an irregular basis, featuring a preselected grouping of recordings unified around a theme. All programs are available as podcasts and programs from 2005-2010 are available as m3u audio streams.

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Squeezebox: The Accordion on Cylinders (New!)

  • The first installment of a two part series exploring the accordion and other free reed instruments recorded on early cylinders. (February 2010)

Recorded Incunabula, Part 2 (New!)

  • The second installment of the incunabula series, featuring more rare recordings from the collection of John Levin. (December 2010)

Operatic Cylinders from the Getty Collection

  • Rare operatic cylinders from the collection of Gordon Getty. (September 2010)

Recorded Incunabula 1891-1898

  • A program featuring some of the rarest, earliest, and most fascinating recordings you are ever likely to encounter, curated by collector John Levin. (January 2009)

Popular Songs of World War I

  • In commemoration of the 90th anniversary of the United States entry into World War I, listen to a selection of songs from the Great War. (April 2007)

Advance List for December, 1908

  • Listen to the new releases from Edison's "Advance List" of December, 1908 new releases. Curated by Patrick Feaster, Indiana University. (January 2007)

Cakewalks and Rags

  • The syncopated rhythms of cakewalks and rags presented here have had a lasting impact on American popular music. Curated by David Seubert, UC Santa Barbara (January 2006)

Deutsche komische Zylinder (German Comic Cylinders)

  • German comic skits on Edison cylinders from between 1904-1909. Curated by Ursula Clarke and Noah Pollaczek, UC Santa Barbara (December 2005)

American Vaudeville

  • Transport yourself back to the turn of the 20th century with a program featuring the top stars of vaudeville and the ones that should have been. Curated by Samuel Brylawski, UC Santa Barbara, Editor, Encyclopedic Discography of Victor Recordings. (December 2005)

Early Black Artists and Composers

Operatic Cylinders from the William R. Moran collection

  • Listen to operatic arias recorded on some of the rarest cylinders made, including Edison B series and French and German operatic cylinders. Curated by David Seubert, UC Santa Barbara. (November 2005)

Pioneers of Audio Theater

  • Some of the most creative early recordings had a narrative element and are now known as "audio theater." This program presents twenty of the most interesting examples from the collection. Curated by Patrick Feaster, Indiana University. (November 2005)

Historical Speeches on Edison Cylinders

  • Early historical speeches and recordings by Theodore Roosevelt, William Jennings Bryan, Ernest Shackleton, Sarah Bernhardt, William Howard Taft and others. Curated by David Seubert, UC Santa Barbara. (November 2005)


An initiative of the UC Santa Barbara Library • (805) 893-5444 • Santa Barbara, CA 93106-9010. [Envelope] Direct questions or comments about the project or this page to the project staff or visit the help pages.

Featured Cylinder

My country 'tis of thee - Edison Male Quartette. (Edison Gold Moulded Record: 8410), [1903].


Cylinder Radio

Listen to a podcast or live stream of early black artists and composers on Cylinder Radio

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Did You Know?
Most cylinders play at 160 rpm, though 19th century Brown Wax cylinders play at 120 or 144 rpm.

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