In case you happen to think that SSO is the only free and open orchestral sample library on the market, think again. This year has seen the release of no less than three (!) free orchestral libraries, which must be some kind of a record.
VSCO 2 Community Edition is a cut down CC-licensed version of Versilian Studios’ professional VSCO 2 lib. But don’t let that “cut down” thing fool you: it has everything you might need for a basic orchestral setup and sounds absolutely marvellous.
No Budget Orchestra by Jeff Glatt is akin to SSO insofar that it was created from open sources. It may not have the same detail as the other libs mentioned here, but it’s a very lean and for its size surprisingly convincing-sounding library.
Virtual Playing Orchestra created by Paul Battersby is kind of like the handsome bastard child of all of the above; it features bits from both SSO, VSCO 2 CE and NBO and brings these together in a very comprehensive, easy to use SFZ library.
Seeing this gives me a warm feeling. I created SSO out of pure frustration with the state of the free/open scene around 2009-2010 or so, with good virtual orchestration libraries being exclusive to people who were willing and able to part with large amounts of money. It took a few years, but now we see the democratization process beginning to happen for real. Hopefully these releases will lead to a free library arms race!
Awesome work all you guys!
First of all, I’d like to apologize for not responding promptly (or ever) to comments here on this site. But the thing is, 98% of the comments I get here are of the drive-by variety, i.e. someone just says thanks for this or asks a quick question, and when I respond I very rarely get any acknowledgement that the original poster even saw what I wrote. Which is perfectly fine — I do that myself from time to time and no one can realistically keep track of every site visited and comment posted, just for the sake of keeping the discussion going or being polite or whatever.
So, I’ve grown kind of lax when it comes to replying to comments here. I try, but often they fly under my radar (as gmail sometimes sends the notification emails to my spam folder, for some reason) and when I log in on the site and discover them weeks later, it usually feels like a waste of time replying.
Anyway. I’m not saying don’t comment. Please do. It’s encouraging to see that my site actually gets a fair number of visitors. But, if you have something that you really want me to respond to it’s probably a safer bet dropping me an email through the contact form (these DO get through) or posting on the forum. Facebook is a third option, though I don’t hang out there as much as I used to.
Just letting you know so you don’t think I’m a stuck-up bastard for not replying.
I’m busy making some edits to the site theme, so expect things to look a little wonky until done. Thanks for your patience.
Update: done, for now.
Did I say last album release for this week? Well, scratch that.
Some of you might remember my Chronicles albums, which were available from Jamendo years ago (until I took them down in 2012 following a payment dispute). Well, now they’re back online again:
While this music may not be overly relevant and useful in this day and age (due to the limited skill and technology involved in creating it), I look upon these two phases of orchestral(ish) writing as important milestones for me as a composer and musician.
Please note though that I haven’t uploaded Chronicles III; this would be kind of reduntant as those tracks are now parts of The Wesnoth Years and Miscellaneum.
Third and final album release this week — Miscellaneum:
This one is a compilation of various tracks composed between 2006 and 2016, all CC BY-licensed. Enjoy!
I’ve uploaded a second album to bandcamp, this time featuring all my compositions from Battle for Wesnoth. CC BY license, pay what you want.
I have moved all Summoning Wars WIP tracks to CC BY (as it is very unlikely that I will ever continue working on them), and I’ve compiled them into a 20-track, 40-minute album over on bandcamp.com:
Just like the game the music was never properly finished, so some tracks are a bit rough around the edges. Nontheless I think it might still be useful to other developers and game music enthusiasts. CC BY license — pay what you want.
PS: In case you’re thinking “I’ve already heard all that”, there’s a actually few previously unreleased tunes in there!
Stay tuned for more details.
Edit 2016-09-12: Rough version of the final chapter is now up, and the storyline has been updated.
Ever since I started using my netbook for casual composing I’ve kind of felt that the tracks I’ve written on it have sort of a unified feel, a certain atmosphere, like bits of a soundtrack to a storyline that doesn’t exist. So I said to myself: let’s come up with a storyline! Below is what I have so far, a playlist with all tracks can be found here. Please keep in mind that these tracks are all works in progress.
Sooner or later it happens to all of us. But here’s 10 tips for getting out of a creative rut.
Hopefully something in there will be of use!