CcMixter Press Releases

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This is the current in-progress press release for the project.

Creative Commons and Magnatune Announce Winners of the Lisa DeBenedictis Remix Contest – Winners Receive Magnatune Recording Contract

San Francisco, USA - October 18, 2005 - Today the non-profit organization Creative Commons, which offers free licenses and tools to enable creators to publish their works on more flexible terms, and Magnatune, an innovative online record label, announced the winners of the Lisa DeBenedictis Remix Contest hosted on ccMixter ( from June 15, 2005 to July 31, 2005. Due to the high-quality remixes received, Magnatune increased the number of winning entries from 10, as originally planned, to 15. There were thirteen winners.

All winners are signed to a Magnatune standard "non-evil" recording contract and will be included on a forthcoming Lisa DeBenedictis remix album to be sold commercially. The artists' share (50% from the first sale) will be split between the winners and (of course) the artists they sample.

The 15 winning entries, and winning artists, are (in no particular order):

1. Sergio Gomez (Love Bird)
2. Rudiger Lippert (Cuckoo Remix)
3. Thomas Walter (Below Acappella)
4. Richard Ashcroft (BELLOW)
5. Tim Holt (Cuckoo passive-aggressive)
6. Marc Kowalski (below-DU-first-mix)
7. Richard Ashcroft (BELOW Linda Barker Mix)
8. James Margetts (Structured Emotions)
9. Brian Trifon (Stranger from Below)
10. Gabor Valasek (The Cuckoo, bittersweet)
11. Marc Kowalski (below-DU-mix)
12. David Sims (Below and Beyond)
13. Eric Ohara (Below Lambourgino)
14. Thom O'Connor (Unaffected)
15. Sharp Hall (Cuckoo- Liquid Ambient)

“Remixed music is an exciting new kind of musical art form emerging in the open environment of internet file sharing,” said Magnatune founder and CEO, John Buckman. “With flexible licensing, anyone with a creative urge can take existing music tracks and change them into something completely new and different. This kind of event helps artists to stretch their limits and gain access to a wider variety of great music” explained Magnatune founder and CEO, John Buckman.

Contest winners used Magnatune music, including DeBenedictis' music, to create their own remix compositions and posted their winning tracks up on ccMixter. ccMixter is a site made avaialble by Creative Commons to encourage legal media collaboration and remixing. The site shows the genealogy of creativity by displaying both the tracks that a particular remix has sampled and the subsequent tracks that remix that remix. The software that runs the site has been released to the public to enable anyone to create a similar site for music or any other format.

Lisa DeBenedictis is one of Magnatune’s more than 175 artists who enjoys 50-50 profit splitting and full rights to her music. A "one-woman operation," she plays a variety of instruments including piano, guitar, keyboard, violin, oboe and mandolin. DeBenedictis is the sole writer, performer and producer of all her music. Her songs have been described as ethereal, fresh and original, earning her the comparisons of other well-known female soloists including Tori Amos and Sarah McLachlan. Prior to going solo, DeBenedictis performed in a rock duo called “Ring of Nine” and California Avant Rock duo “DirtyDirtyRockStar.” In addition to writing songs, Lisa composes instrumental music for film.

The concept of "open source" file-sharing originated in the computer software world, and has moved into music. Individual tracks, a drum or bass line within a recording, can be taken and remixed with other tracks to create a completely new composition. Other musicians can then modify, improve or add to the “source” without worrying about obtaining permission from the original artists. Unlike other illegal music remix contests where an artist’s work has been taken and sold without the artist’s permission, Magnatune and Creative Commons partnered with Lisa DeBenedictis for this effort. Contest participants were invited to freely copy selected Magnatune music to produce their winning works.

Fellow Magnatune recording artist and ccMixter contest manager Victor Stone, of the group “Four Stones,” has been remixing music for several years. “It is incredibly fun and inspiring to be able to use the best music and make it your own,” said Stone. "It makes remixing a natural extension of what composers have been doing for thousands of years.”

Producers often work for months to build their multi-layered remix compositions. Remix tracks can be highly sophisticated with limitless musical sound samples and layers.

Magnatune music is available for download and streaming under Creative Commons licensing. The Creative Commons license gives artists the ability to signal that others may freely share and build upon their existing works, be it musical, written, or images. “We have been using the Creative Commons copyright licensing very successfully,” reports Magnatune’s founder and CEO,said John Buckman. “Through open-source licensing we are able to offer a fair deal to our customers and musicians.” Unusual in the music industry, Magnatune splits profits from album sales with the artists and allows them to keep ownership of the rights to their music.

For More Information

CC Mixter,
Contest Web page,

About Creative Commons

A nonprofit founded in early 2002, Creative Commons promotes the creative re-use of intellectual and artistic works—whether owned or in the public domain—by empowering authors and audiences. It is sustained by the generous support of the Center for the Public Domain, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the Omidyar Network, and the Hewlett Foundation. For more information, visit Creative Commons' website or contact Mia Garlick at

About Magnatune

Founded in 2003, Magnatune is an independent, online record label that hand selects its own artists, sells its catalog of music through online downloads and print-on-demand CDs and licenses music for commercial and non-commercial use. Based on the principle that “we are not evil,” the company offers fair-trade music to consumers by equally sharing all revenue from the sale of albums with artists and allowing artists to retain full rights to their music. All music can be previewed free of charge with a “try before you buy” philosophy. Customers can also choose how much they want to pay for the music with pricing ranging from $5-18 for a downloadable album or print-on-demand CD. Magnatune is a music business where everybody wins. For further information, please visit the Magnatune website or contact Teresa Malango at or 510.289.3781.