Metal Free Software Song 2: This Time It’s Personal

Many moons ago, when computers were made out of oak and beige slacks, I recorded a heavy metal version of the Free Software Song that Richard Stallman cobbled together. When I recorded this song I didnt really have the right equipment to record a song, and consequently it sounded a bit rubbish.

Richard and I catch-up over email every so often and while he acknowledged the existence of the song, he didn’t really express whether he liked it. Maybe it wasn’t his style.

“No no, I only enjoy Death Metal and Brutal Death Metal”.

For a while now I have wanted to record a new version of the song, so one night this week I knocked together a new version and arrangement. First, some caveats:

  • I only spent about 20 minutes writing this; this is no Bohemian Rhapsody.
  • I played all instruments and recorded all the vocals myself.
  • It was recorded in an evening. This was no huge production, no huge recording, and no week-long mix.
  • This is just a bit of fun to throw a new spin on the song.

Alright, enough excuses, download it below:

Also, for the fun of it (and for you Kareoke and podcast YouTube video fans), here is the song without the vocals:

I would love to see some comedy Kareoke videos and mixes on YouTube from the instrumental cut. Could be fun. :-)

This song is licensed as Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike so feel free to share it, remix it, even sell it, just provide attribution to me and this blog entry first.

Flame away!

  • sadig

    Rocking :) 

  • Josh Benham

    That is pretty sweet!

  • Bilal Akhtar

    Much better than RMS’ version of the song. Jono, you ROCK! :)

  • Stéphane Maniaci

    Awesome arrangement, good job! What did you use to mix it by the way ?

  • Amaya Rodrigo

    /me headbangs

  • foo

    Will you upload the source code of the song too? What software did you mix it with? CC (and GPL) licenses aren’t particularly useful without equal access to the work.

  • Morphix

    OMG that’s an amazing song.


    This. Is. AWESOME.

  • Andreas Schmidt

    Open Source ROCKZ!!!

    Let´s close all “Windows”.

  • Sam

    AWESOME !!!!!!!!! 😀

  • Anonymous

    Nice article.Thanks for sharing. strategic planning software

  • AdiRat

    Nice song 😀

  • Jakub Steiner

    That is actually really well done. I thought it’s impossible, bravo!

  • Jesse

    Seriously, so awesome.

  • Aintruda

    best version ever

  • Lyle McKarns

    Is this going to be the hidden track on Nightmares Redesigned?

  • Heiner Valverde González


    Loving the whole song, great metal music here!!

    BTW, how did you record it in Ubuntu? What software do you use?

  • dylan-m

    That is the single best (err, the cynic in me reports it’s “the only good”) performance of the Free Software Song I have ever heard. I demand you perform this live at, err, everything. I’m going to start an internet petition!

  • Neil Oosthuizen

    I haven’t even heard it yet but I vote “YES please!” m/

  • Neil Oosthuizen

    +1 for the picture and caption 😀

  • Www Go4download

     Wonderful & Wobbly, Thanks for revealing this super valuable resource!Sara free software

  • Randall

    Thanks for recording this Jono. We will be rocking to this at our “U-Party: A Celebration of Ubuntu and Unity” event in Vancouver BC this Friday :)

  • antistress

    Nice, thank You. But i liked also you first song. Could you clarify its license too ? Is it also Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike ?

  • feuergeist

    Great song! congrats!!!!

  • kim asd

    Really nice song! I really like the death metal version as well.

  • Anonymous

    Source code? Really? It is music, there is no source code. It is a song. :-)

  • Anonymous


  • Marcelo Martinovic

    Thank’s It’s awesome

  • Skilltik

    m/    (- _ -)     m/

    look at this:

  • Nece228

    I think you should work on vocals. A very clean vocals dont go that well with heavy music. Perhaps you should have half agressive vocals, similair to slayer’s reign in blood or metallica’s …and justice for all. Not a complain really, just saying personal opinion :) BTW if you will fail becoming popular with metal, perhaps you should create something more commercial like usher or backstreet boys 😉

  • Neil Oosthuizen

    I like the call for a music video… think there can be some awesome ones made…

  • Marco Giannini

    Wonderful 😀

  • Douglas Whitfield

    I think s/he means the “stems”.

    From Wikipedia “Stems are the individual components of a mix, separately saved (usually to disc) for the purposes of use in a remix.”

  • Guest

    Where is the old version??? I WANT IT!

  • Anonymous

    Nice track. Nice sounds.

    Jim DeRosa

  • naturel

    really very beautiful music reviews;)Free Download

  • sample insurance

    Really Awesome tracks…Thanks for sharing! Sample Insurance

  • Bernd

    Oh no – there’s lots of clipping…

  • Aaron Flores

    yeahhh !!!

  • Martin

    I must agree. For death metal you need vocals like this:

  • srinivas yadav

    Free software song is very good… FrostWire

  • Michael Tunnell

    Awesome, this version is easily the best and sounds fairly similar to Volbeat. Any chance that was intentional?

  • rickmcfarley

    So cool!!

  • TimePower