Create Sound Mashups with the Freesound API

Romin Irani
Nov. 25 2010, 12:00AM EST

If you are looking for sound samples on the web and want to add them programmatically to your apps, the Freesound API may be just what you need. Freesound is a collaborative database of Creative Commons Licensed sounds. Users can join Freesound and upload their sound files and share it with others. Recently it also announced that it has crossed 100,000 songs in its database.

The web interface is simple and you can put in your query for the kind of sound that you are looking for. An example could be “applause” and you are presented with a list of sound files uploaded by various users. You can click on anyone and play it out via a nice visualization, like this:

The API is currently read-only, so it lets you search for various sound files. The API is REST based and the response data is provided in a number of formats. They suggest using JSON, since that is the only one currently being tested against.

To get started with the API, you will need to sign up and apply for an API Key. The API is easy to use. The example below retrieves all sound files that contain the keyword “applause” across various sound file attributes like ID, description, etc.:

http://tabasco.upf.edu/api/sounds/search?q=applause&api_key=YOUR_KEY

Developers should surely be able to combine the Freesound API into interesting applications, both web mashups and mobile applications. Check out our Freesound API profile to get started.

Romin Irani Romin loves learning about new technologies and teaching it to others. Follow me on Google+

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