Jane Smithsonian Institution Remix Competition

The Smithsonian Institution has begun posting collections of sounds from their archives, and they are unlike anything else you’ll hear on the web, like recordings of frogs and insects from the Encyclopedia of Life to astrophysical observatory sounds.

Now the Smithsonian is calling on you to sample, chop and remix selected recordings from their entire collection of sounds, including recordings of frogs and insects from Encyclopedia of Life, Astrophysical Observatory sounds, Smithsonian Jazz masterworks, and Smithsonian Folkways.

The rules are simple. Submissions may be any length, but must incorporate at least two Smithsonian tracks.

The winners will be selected by Smithsonian’s panel of judges: John Edward Hasse, Curator of American Music at the National Museum of American History, DJ Molly Ruland from OneLoveMassive, and sound effects expert, Shaun Farley.

Instructions and prizes are detailed below. Deadline for submission is November 8. Find official info here.

Happy creating!

Instructions:
1. Browse through the Smithsonian Remix collections
2. Download the tracks that capture your imagination
3. Remix those sounds with your own original sounds*
4. Upload your finished creation to SoundCloud
5. In the description of your sound, please clearly attribute any source material that you used**
6. Join the Smithsonian Remix group
7. Click the “Add to group” button on your sound and submit it to the Smithsonian Remix group
8. Listen, like, comment on and share your fellow contestants’ sounds

*Please make sure you have all the proper copyright permissions for any source material you use and comply with SoundCloud Terms of Use.
**All Smithsonian Remix sounds have been made available under an “Attribution – NonCommercial” Creative Commons license. You can find more details about this license here.

Prizes:
First Place (1):
A 5-year SoundCloud Pro Unlimited subscription
Two VIP tickets to Smithsonian Remix Live November 15
Voices of the Satellites CD from Smithsonian Folkways
One year membership to Smithsonian Associates

Runners Up (3):
Two VIP tickets to Smithsonian Remix Live November 15
A 1-year SoundCloud Pro Unlimited subscription

In addition, the first prize winning submission may be featured on SMITHSONIANAT8.com, and samples of approved submissions may be spun live at the SMITHSONIAN at 8 event November 15, 2013.

If a prize becomes unavailable for any reason, the Smithsonian reserves the right to substitute a prize of like or equal value. Winners may not request prize substitution. One prize per person.

71 thoughts on “Smithsonian Institution Remix Competition

  1. Jordan

    Somehwat upset that it’s a competition only for US residents. There are some cool sounds in here, might just nick a few for other purposes.

  2. Guney

    I was excited when I first read this last night but now I see it is for US residents only. Please put that note into the rules above. I’m upset, don’t make others too!

  3. W00T

    If i didn’t read the comments, you would have stolen my precious time. Thx for the sounds anyway, gonna put them to good use :D Good luck to all participants (US residents only is kinda …)

  4. janeshin

    Hey there,

    We encourage anyone to participate, especially since your remix will be part of the official group. If the winner chosen is not from the US, the Smithsonian Institution has agreed to figure out an alternate prize then. I hope you still participate, W00T!

  5. janeshin

    Hi Anthony, the competition is open for anyone to submit to. If the winner chosen is not from the US, alternate prizes will be figured out so we encourage you to still create and submit your remix. Good luck.

  6. janeshin

    Please participate anyway. Alternate prizes will be figured out if the winner chosen is not from the US. Good luck.

  7. janeshin

    Hey Guney, sorry for the confusion. Everyone is welcome and encouraged to participate. If a winner chosen is not from the US, alternate prizes will be figured out. Have fun and good luck.

  8. ▓▒░ TORLEY ░▒▓

    Jane, thanks for being so responsive in the comments. Question for clarification: does the First Place prize also include airfare/plane tickets if they’re far from the Smithsonian, or is that travel cost the winner’s responsibility?

  9. Tobija Wilson

    Nice. See if I could do this.
    How old do you have to be to participate into this competition???

  10. HamBa

    That’s great news!

    I saw the competition promo and didn’t realise until I had worked on my piece and posted it that it was US only. So I am delighted that that has changed.

    Thank you!

  11. Craig Stevens

    This is HOT! Thank you for the opportunity to “BURN” down the Smithsonian. It is an HONOR and a PRIVILEGE to have ME be displayed along side the Elephant man. LOLlol HAHAHA AH HAAHAHA No suh. But really this will be fun to let of some of my “STEAM:. You guys are awesome. Thank you once again. Im humbled to even have such a chance to make you dance. ONE Stay HOT! Tsss

  12. Fantishow

    Two questions.

    >I’m under 21, so would another prize be figured if I won?

    >Can I put these sounds to use after the competition?

  13. HamBa

    Really enjoying listening to the other entries, hearing such different takes and discovering new artists.

  14. cydparr

    Some awesome remixes already going up! Don’t forget to credit the original recording artists or link to their sounds (where there is attribution).

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  16. W00T

    Thats’s great news! I most definately will post my remix endavour. Thank you for this opportunity! :D

  17. trackmenace show me the money

    …wow, TrackMenace: If your talent is even half as big as your ego, I have no doubt you’ll ‘win this one’. But why not let your music speak for itself?

  18. robert

    Thank-you, janeshin, for all your prompt and patient replies thus far – It really ‘humanizes’ the Smithsonsian.

    Greetings from Toronto!

  19. Ivana

    Awesome! I used to live in Europe, and hated when I couldn’t participate in something because it was limited to the US only. Glad more people are being open minded about such things.

  20. Dylan C

    Jane, what is the Due Date for submissions to the contest? Couldn’t find that anywhere. Thanks!

  21. Simon Reich

    Since beginning this musical project, my ears have been opened to the sounds of nature around me. Each time I leave my studio in the garage, or walk my dog at night, I am now hyper aware of all the birds & nature sounds around me. If nothing else, thanks for letting me realise that it’s really us inhabiting their world & not the reverse. The indigenous fauna are the best musicians in the world

  22. Simon Reich

    Oops, forgot to mention, I love the inclusion of the Australian Kookaburra. Being from down under myself, they laugh like this around my house & I just had to include it in my set of samples.
    I talked to an English producer this week who thought the sound was from some sort of monkey, but when I told him it was actually a bird from Australia, he googled pictures of them & loved how cute they looked. You may not have intended it, but your remix comp. is turning out to be an education lesson as well!

  23. cydparr

    They should all be licensed to allow derivatives, which means you can modify them. Speaking for EOL sounds, that’s definitely the case.

  24. janeshin

    You can submit as many as you like. Each submission needs to include at least two tracks from the Smithsonian Institution’s sets (specified above).

  25. Oba Frank Lords

    HI I DONT QUITE UNDERSTAND WAT IT IS IM SUPPOSE TO USE FOR THE REMIX THERE ARE TRAKS THAT SAY XRAY WHICH ARE BLEEPS PLAYING A MELODY AND THERE ARE TRAKS THAT ARE COMPLETE JAZZY RENDITIONS OF WAT SEEMS TO BE THESE MELODIES AM I LOOKING IN THE WRONG PLACE WAT AM I TO USE FOR A REMIX AND ARE THE REMIXES SUPPOSE TO BE IN A JAZZ FORMAT OR IS THE GENRE UP TO THE REMIXER MY EMAIL IS obafranklords@yahoo.com IF SOMEONE CAN ANSWER THESE QUESTIONS IT WOULD HELP THANK YOU

  26. Awesomer

    I have created a megamix/remix/mashup work which contains samples from Smithsonian Folkways. It is the only work I’ve ever had taken down from Soundcloud via an automated cease and desist notice; specifically, for the use of Leadbelly songs. It is a little bit ironic to see this contest in light of this experience, Leadbelly’s embrace of public domain songs, and the cultural mandate of both the historical Folkways and modern Smithsonian Folkways.

    @janeshin:disqus : do you have any advice as to what I should do? I’d love the reviewers to hear what I’ve done with this Smithsonian material, even if it does not conform to contest rules and is therefore not eligible…

    !!! AWESOMER !!!

  27. Iris M. Gross

    People ask the same question over and over because they’re too lazy to read. Frustrating. Oh well, I say the Smithsonian is an American institution so I hope the prize goes to an American.

  28. janeshin

    Hey Awesomer, I understand your information in regards to Leadbelly’s embrace of the public domain, but since this is a competition created and run by Smithsonian, as part of their rules, they kindly request: “*Please make sure you have all the proper copyright permissions for any source material you use and comply with SoundCloud Terms of Use.” More information at Point No. 3 here: http://smithsonianassociates.org/smithsonianat8/Sound-Cloud-Contest-Rules.pdf Thank you.