British computer science pioneer Alan Turing made the recording in 1951.

The Guardian reports that New Zealand researchers have uncovered and restored what is probably the first recorded computer-generated music. It was made on a machine built by Enigma code-cracker and theoretical computer science legend Alan Turing.

The recording, which was done for the BBC at the Computing Machine Laboratory in Manchester, England, was made by in collaboration with then-school teacher Christopher Strachey. Turing developed and programmed the musical notes, while Strachey – who later became a pioneer of programming language design – strung the actual music together. Turing’s reported response to hearing music played on his machine was just, “Good show.” Little did he now, he was innovating an entire movement of music.

Hear snippets of the original recordings, which include ‘God Save the King’ and ‘Baa, Baa Black Sheep’, below and read more about the restoration process done by University of Canterbury professor Jack Copeland and composer Jason Long at the British Library’s blog.



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