Frank Lambert, Experimental Talking Clock, 1878 (MP3), billed as the world earliest playable sound recordingThe recording has four basic sections:
0:00-0:21 Indistinct speech
0:22-0:33 Lambert clearly heard calling out hours
0:34-1:10 'Silent' period
1:11-1:40 Indistinct speech, possibly reversed
Portions of the fourth section (1:11-1:40) sound as if they may have been recorded in reverse, that is, with the phonograph cranked counter-clockwise.
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Rudyard Kipling's poem The Absent-Minded Beggar as read by Harry Spencer (1900).
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The Medium Is the Message: Part One, Part Two