Which Songs is it Legal to Cover on YouTube?: Friday Links

It used to be that you could only legally post covers of public domain songs to YouTube. But last year YouTube struck up a deal with music publisher. That meant publishers who opted would get money from cover versions and nobody would get in trouble. Which would be great except when Andy Baio at Wired tried to find out what was on the list no one could tell him. Which leaves us back in the situation of uploading stuff and hoping for the best. Ho hum.

I got frustrated with reading books and immediately forgetting everything about them. So I’ve taken to writing up a self inflicted book report when I finish one. Sometimes they’re ukulele related (Ralph Shaw’s The Ukulele Entertainer), sometimes music related Cultural Appropriation and the Arts and sometimes neither (Zimbabwe: Years of Hope and Disapir).

The Slack Key Show always has great performances – and I’ve featured quite a few here. Now you can buy a ‘Best of…’ DVD.

PBS documentary on Kamaka.

Pictures: Scenes from my living room, No job, Mr Jack, I disagree with this t-shirt.

New release: The Future Laureates’ Fortress Sessions.

Giving a ukulele a swirly paintjob.

View Comments


  1. LNA May 26th, 2012 11:09 am

    hey, i know it’s offtopic, but i would like to ask you if you maybe could do the song ‘permafrost’.
    you can find it easily on youtube, i think the artist is laurena.
    let’s make it a uke anthem. :D

  2. Herman Vandecauter May 26th, 2012 11:27 am

    Very interesting stuff..Cultural Appropriation and the Arts. Thanks!

  3. Theo May 26th, 2012 12:17 pm

    Hmmm, thanks for the info. I got a monetization email from youtube a few months ago, but I need to have artist permission to be eligible. Any idea how to go about getting that?

  4. Daniel May 26th, 2012 4:26 pm

    The swirling looks amazing. How does that affect the sound? Which leads me to wonder about how various treatments of wood affect sound (i.e. high gloss varnish vs. open grain etc.) Any thoughts anyone?

  5. Ron Hale May 27th, 2012 2:07 am

    Wait until you forget whether you’ve read them, Al.

    Just saw the book “Django Reinhardt and the Illustrated History of Gyspy Jazz” lying around the casa. Did I read it? Was I planning to read it? Nice pictures. I think…

    In the back of the current issue of ‘Guitar Player’ in the ‘Produt spotlight’ advertising section is something from D’Addario.

    Quoting: “Developed in cooperation with Aquila,
    D’Addario Nyltech strings deliver the best combination of warm, yet punchy tone, comfortable playability, precise intonation and tuning stability not found in other ukulele strings.”

    Just in case these nyltechs are new to people.

  6. Woodshed May 27th, 2012 9:29 am

    Herman: Thanks. That book really made me think.

    Theo: Sorry, no idea.

    Daniel: I would expect it doesn’t do the sound any favours.

    Ron: That’s the beauty of the Kindle. It tells you what you’ve read already.

    I’m not sure how they can sound warm and punchy at the same time. They hit you and it feels like a kiss?

  7. Chris Q May 27th, 2012 11:58 am

    “quite possibly the most popular creative act that’s against the law.”

    I really want to make a swirly uke now… Although I’m having flashbacks to the time I killed a guitar by to John Squire it when I was about 14…

  8. Chris Q May 27th, 2012 11:59 am

    *trying to* John Squire it.

    Sunday morning head, sorry…

  9. Woodshed May 28th, 2012 6:51 am

    Chris Q: Amateur!

  10. Chris Q May 29th, 2012 12:49 pm

    I think I’m gonnae do it, I’ve got an old Mahalo flying ‘v’ sitting gathering dust (and let’s face it, the sound quality can’t get much worse on that…).

  11. Woodshed May 30th, 2012 1:19 pm

    Chris Q: Yeah, if it’s Flying V go to town on it!

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