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The Dutch Song Database

software version 2.2 (June 2014) / last update: Jun 16, 2022

The Dutch Song Database (Nederlandse Liederenbank in Dutch) contains more than 180,000 songs in the Dutch and Flemish language, from the Middle Ages through the twentieth century.
It contains love songs, satirical songs, Beggar songs, psalms and other religious songs, folksongs, children's songs, St Nicholas and Christmas songs, and so on and so forth.
The main sources for all these songs are songbooks, songsheets (broadsides), song manuscripts and fieldwork recordings.
For every song the source is indicated where the text and/or the melody can be found. In some cases one can click directly to the complete text, or to the music, or to a recording.
The Dutch Song Database was compiled at the Meertens Institute in Amsterdam and is maintained and developed further by its Centre for Documentation and Research of Dutch Songs, in cooperation with several partners.

news items

Complete Recordings Camerata Trajectina made available via Dutch Song Database

November 30, 2014
The Dutch Song Database is closely linked with the Utrecht early music ensemble Camerata Trajectina (1974), specialized in early Dutch song repertoire. In 2014 Camerata Trajectina celebrated its 40th anniversary with a sparkling jubilee concert on 30 November in the Geertekerk, Utrecht. During the concert, the jubileebook Van Peeckelharing tot Pierlala (From Pickelherring to Pierlala) was presented by author Jolande van der Klis to the founders of the group. During the concert Martine de Bruin launched the ensemble's Complete Recordings made available via the Dutch Song Database, linked with the original sources of the lyrics and the music. This is the result of the NWO-KIEM project "Camerata Trajectina in the Dutch Song Database". One can also listen to music of Camerata's sold-out albums, and in many cases even buy or download them.
In total about 1,000 songs and pieces have become available from 50 audio-CD's, LP's, radio-recordings, etc. See also www.camerata-trajectina.nl.

Dutch Data Prize Humanities & Social Sciences 2014 for Dutch Song Database

November 24, 2014
On 24 November 2014 the Dutch Data Prize of the Humanities & Social Sciences was granted to the Dutch Song Database. The biennial Prize (EUR 7,500 to make the dataset (more) accessible) is an initiative of Research Data Netherlands. The jury was unanimous in its praise for the Dutch Song Database. Chairman professor Kees Aarts especially commended the versatile use of this database. "The database is already being used by many scholars in the digital humanities for literary, musical, religious, historical and ethnological research. Journalists, musicians and high school students also use the database a lot. This well-structured database is therefore a great asset for Dutch academic and cultural heritage."

Presentation Dutch Songs On Line (19 July 2014)

July 19, 2014
On 19 July 2014 the results of the project Dutch Songs On Line became available: 53,351 full song texts were made accessible online via the DBNL (Digital Library of Dutch Literature) and the Dutch Song Database. On the latter site the symbol dbnl-logo represents a link to the DBNL that yields a transcription of the song text, or its source. On the song pages of the DBNL site, a link to the Database of Dutch Songs ("Nederlandse Liederenbank") appears in the right upper corner. On top of that, 900 song books have become available in scanned format.
The festive presentation took place in the Lutherse Kerk in Utrecht, with a speech by Prof. dr Frits van Oostrom and a short performance by Camerata Trajectina, featuring the Literary Canon of Dutch Songs.

The project was made possible by a grant of NWO Medium Investments.

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