The Music of Video Games - A YouTube Archive

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Garudoh

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Back in 2007, I started a YouTube channel that was dedicated to video game music. It was under the same name that I use on this site (and just about any other platform or online game), and was born out of a blog that I started on GameSpot, when Jeff and crew were still around.

Pretty much every other channel that featured game music back then (and still now, evidently) basically would rip the entire soundtrack of a game and upload each individual track. These videos would have a still image of the game's logo, or a screenshot, as the background and that would be it. If you've ever looked up any game music on YouTube before, you probably found something similar to what I'm describing.

I wanted to do something a little different, so instead of going that route, I started a video series called 'From Bleeps to Beats: The Music of Video Games' (the name seemed less corny to me back then) and would post about one entry per day for well over a year. The intent was not to distribute full soundtracks, but rather to celebrate game music and showcase awesome songs, be it from classic gems or even shitty, poor games. I thought it was kind of lame to have still images in the background, so instead I would find interesting video footage for each game (frequently it was speed runs) and make a medley of my favorite tracks, with little fade ins and outs in between. In essence, it was meant to be a nice nostalgia trip, or even discovery, of cool game soundtracks of the past.

This was back when YouTube had a 10-minute limit on videos, so I had to be pretty judicious with what I chose to include. But it was a ton of fun, and I went nuts with it. Like, really bonkers. After over a year of making these videos, I 'retired' from the channel with 500 entries in the series. When I announced that I was calling it quits, several people reached out to me to continue the legacy of the channel, of which I found a suitable replacement and gave the reigns to him. To his credit, he did make another 50 videos or so and they were in the same vein as mine, and I was proud and happy to see the channel live on. Sadly, a few months after this happened, YouTube shut down the channel due to copyright claims. That's understandable I guess, I'm not really salty about it, but I thought it was a shame because my intent was always just to share cool gaming tunes with like-minded people.

At the time that this happened, the channel was relatively successful (keep in mind that by then it was only still 2008) and had over 25000 subscribers. I absolutely loved the 'community' that formed around it - some regular users would comment on nearly every video, and that would often spark a discussion about the game, its music and all kinds of other stuff. It was a real treat when the actual composers that I featured would find the channel and leave a comment. I had the pleasure of chatting with the likes of Tommy Tallarico, Alexander Brandon and even Michiru Yamane. The latter had very basic English (maybe even Google translate), but man, was it ever cool to hear from these people and see that they were 'honored' to be featured. I was humbled, flattered and realized that the series was really something special for me and some other folks.

After the shutdown, I just went on with my life as normal, but every now and then someone would find me and ask if I still had copies of these videos and would regale me with stories of how they used my playlists to get through work, studies and even hard times. I never really replied to any of these because that series was behind me, from an earlier part in my life, and I was fine with walking away from it. But just recently, a pair of Brazilian brothers managed to track me down after years of searching, and after finally finding me, were the nicest, kindest dudes you could ever hope to find online. As with the others, they asked me if I still had the videos, and after thinking about it, I let them know that I indeed did and would upload the entire archive so they could enjoy that music all over again.

And so, here we are. I followed up on my promise and have posted the first 450 videos of the series (I unfortunately lost the last 50 videos, but I may still be able to get them soon) to Box.com, a cloud storage service. I am a lurker around here, I really don't comment or post much (the last time I did, it was about getting Jonathan Frakes to sign dumb shit on a photograph), but I do consider Giant Bomb my gaming home. I've been around since GerstmannGate and the launch of the site, and know a lot of the users just by name, even though I don't really participate much. So, I figured that if I was going to post about this anywhere online, it would be here. If only a single person remembers the channel, or decides to download these and enjoy them, then it'll have been worth it.

Anyway, with all that spiel out of the way, here are the links to access all of these videos :

The Music of Video Games - Entries 001-100

The Music of Video Games - Entries 101-200

The Music of Video Games - Entries 201-300

The Music of Video Games - Entries 301-400

The Music of Video Games - Entries 401-450

Before I sign off here, there are a few random points I wanted to put out there :

  • These videos are crude. Like, real basic. The first few were made with freakin' Window Movie Maker, if that gives you an idea. Don't expect high-level production values. Moreover, all of these are in low-res SD format, as YouTube didn't even support HD back then.
  • As I mentioned above, all of these videos are under 10 minutes, so a lot of tracks are missing. It's probable that your favorite of any given game wasn't included. I tried my best to include a good selection of my faves, but hey, music taste is subjective. It's probably good enough for your nostalgia though.
  • The videos are numbered, but the series is not a ranking. The very first video is for Mega Man 2, which seemed like the right place to start, but after that, I just went with what I was in the mood for at the time. Oh, and I'm sure I missed some amazing soundtracks, despite the high number of videos I made.
  • In some cases, you'll see doubles for certain games. That isn't a mistake, but rather I featured some games on multiple platforms. So you'll find a video for Super Street Fighter 2 on SNES, but then another for the arcade version for example. I did so when it felt appropriate.
  • Entry 400 is a dumb one, it was kind of 'special' where I featured game commercials that prominently had music. In honesty, it was just a way for me to feature the awesomeness that is Segata Sanshiro, which isn't a well-known thing these days, but dammit, he should be. He really should.
  • Back when the channel was active, I created a Freewebs site (I know) to offer a better visual offering of what was on the channel. This included videos separated by console and with box art, and a complete alphabetical list, which is useful for finding a specific game quickly. You can find it here. Obviously, none of the links work anymore, but you can still use the site to easily see if your personal favorites were featured.

And there you have it. This was a really long post, but I felt like context mattered, and honestly I just hope that a few duders will either remember seeing that channel and those videos back in the day, or will take a chance, download a few and enjoy them. If you do, let me know so I can pump some blood into my cold, 35 year-old heart.

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Rifampicine

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@garudoh: OMG you cannot imagine how much I want to thank you for your amazing work. We are in 2020 and I still listen all the mp3 I downloaded from your YouTube video. This was such a incredible gift you make for all VGM fans. And now I even create my own podcast talking about video game music and you're works was one of my inspiration.

I am, not the only one, still sad about the closure of your YouTube channel.

But with all those video still downloadable, thanks to you, and with how much they mean for a lot of people, would you accept if I upload them, for people to easily recover or discover all those magic medley you shared to us ?