The following are miscellaneous telephone recordings that are either representative of various recordings found throughout the United States, or are strange and unique and are preserved here for others to listen and enjoy.
Busy Verification By Operator Not Allowed (August 1999)
This recording was found when I was testing out a CLEC exchange that had not been activated. Instead of getting a “not activated” recording from the incumbent LEC, I got this one instead.
Deposit 5 cents for 4 minutes (January 1999)
This was supposed to have been the test number announcement for new Area Code 732 in New Jersey. Instead you got a recording from an ACTS (automated coin toll service) machine informing you to put more money in a pay phone (they later fixed it).
911 on backup system (January 1999)
Informing callers to 911 that they are on a backup system and the call cannot be traced.
AT&T ACTS Disconnection Notice (2002)
This recording played for callers who made automated coin calls via AT&T’s ACTS (Automated Coin Toll System) just before AT&T discontinued the service in the fall of 2002.
Call Cannot Be Completed – Choice One (November 2003)
Choice One is a CLEC in various places around the US. This recording was from attempting to dial a toll-free call to a number that is not in service. Recorded from a cell phone in Portland, ME.
Number dialed is now a local call (July 2004)
A number of local telephone companies in the US are expanding their calling area for their customers. Here is a recording from Las Vegas, NV informing customers that they no longer need to call Laughlin, NV as a toll call. After the recording played, I got an “all circuits busy” recording from my own local central office.
Elvis lives in the telephone building (June 2005)
A test number from Brooklyn, NY. Normally a test number like this announces the location of the telephone switch, type of switch, and the prefixes it serves. This one has a bit of a twist – the technician used an “Elvis” type of voice. Thankyouverymuch.
Number Not Available For Extended Period (September 2005)
After Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, a vast majority of telephone switches were out of service. Bell South installed this recording on their LATA tandem switch in the New Orleans area and played for callers who attempted calls to switches that were out of service.
Verizon 411 w/James Earl Jones branding (November 2005)
The intro to Verizon’s 411 directory assistance. James Earl Jones was a long-time voice for Verizon & Verizon Wireless (dating back to Bell Atlantic times), but his contract was not renewed in 2006 and a female voice is used instead.
Number Announcement of seven zeros (November 2005)
From Fishers Island, NY – When you dial (631) 788-0000, instead of getting a centralized or automated intercept, you just get seven zeros. I assume this is some sort of local Automated Number Identification system, but for an outside caller all they get are seven zeros. Note the inflection on the last zero in each set.
Middle Tennessee 211 (March 2006)
An example call to the Middle Tennessee 211, a service that provides 24/7 access to Information about the Crisis Center, First Call for Help, The Family Center and United Way for 22 counties in Middle Tennessee. This call was placed from a Cingular cell phone in Chattanooga. (Note the TTY tones after the first announcement.)
Call Waiting on #1AESS switch (November 2006)
The Western Electric #1AESS switch is a computer controlled analog switch. It was the first switch to support Call Waiting. Since it is an analog switch, you get to hear all the wonderful clicks of reed relays when you hear a Call Waiting call comes in. The first noises are the relay clicks, the Call Waiting tone (440 Hz) and the Customer Premises Equipment Alert Signal (2130 & 2750 Hz) that if there were a Call Waiting Caller ID box, it would send back a Touch Tone “A” or “D” digit and then the switch would send Caller ID tones. The second tone is the second Call Waiting tone, which comes on the fourth ring. Then you hear the calling party hanging up with even more clicks. Source: Cynthia in AL
Call Progress on #1AESS switch (November 2006)
Here’s a call progress example on a #1AESS switch. This is an intra-switch call since the click immediately after the last digit and goes into a ring. If this were an inter-switch call, the click would occur after the switch was able to send the call to the destination, either by MF tones (several seconds) or SS7 signalling (usually about a second) Source: Cynthia in AL
Birmingham, AL 311 (November 2006)
An example of a call to the Birmingham, AL 311 (centralized non emergency number) after hours. Notice this was an inter-switch call from the above #1AESS switch.Source: Cynthia in AL
Privacy Director (November 2006)
An example of the recording you get when you call someone with Privacy Director, which is used to help prevent telemarketing calls. Source: Cynthia in AL
Milwaukee 211 Service (December 2006)
An example recording when you dial the 211 service in Milwaukee, WI. Source: Joe Molter
Milwaukee 711 Service (December 2006)
An example recording when you dial the 711 service in Milwaukee, WI. It assumes that it is a TTY caller unless you speak, hence it is all TTY tones. Source: Joe Molter
Other Modern Telephone Sounds Pages
Automated Intercept Local Telephone Company Recordings
Centralized Intercept Local Telephone Company Recordings
Long Distance Telephone Company Verifications
AT&T – General Error Recordings
AT&T – Operator Services Platform System Recordings
Other Long Distance Company – General Error Recordings
Other Long Distance Company – Operator Services Platforms Recordings
Area Code Test & Change Recordings
Canadian Telephone Sounds
North Pittsburgh Telephone Company Recordings
Cellular Phone Company Recordings
Time/Temperature/Weather Forecast Recordings
Various Virginia Telephone Recordings
Miscellaneous Modern Telephone Recordings