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Folk Songs for the Five Points

"Folk Songs for the Five Points" is a digital arts project supported by New York's Lower East Side Tenement Museum.

The project explores the idea of identity formation in the Lower East Side, the traditional gateway to America. Using field recordings and musical samples taken from a variety of cultures in the area (buskers, market shouts, ambient noise), visitors use an interactive map to remix these sounds and create their own "folk songs".

The project is open and collaborative - visitors are encouraged to save their own favorite mixes to share with others and to submit their own local recordings to be featured on the SoundMap. We will also be allowing open access to all the sonic material used on the site, to encourage offline remixes - which will then also be made available on the site.

Folk Songs for the Five Points is the first stage of the Folk Songs Project, a transnational project combining interactive digital art, social history, ethno-musicology and collaborative performance to explore the nature of individual and collective identities in cities around the world.