Thursday, March 27, 2008


Unknown French person, Au Clair de la Lune.

We'll be wrapping up 1960 next week, but as a prologue, here's the greatest hit of the year one century before--the first song ever recorded in human history, as it turns out.

"Researchers say they have unearthed a recording of the human voice, made by a little-known Frenchman, that predates Edison’s invention of the phonograph by nearly two decades. The 10-second recording of a singer crooning the folk song “Au Clair de la Lune” was discovered earlier this month in an archive in Paris by a group of American audio historians."

Jody Rosen's excellent article is in today's Times.

Recorded 9 April 1860 (the same day the song "Dixie" was first performed in public, in New Orleans) by Édouard-Léon Scott de Martinville.

Top: Victoria and Albert.

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