Welcome to The Banknote Den


One of the many fascinating aspects of exploring world paper money is the ability to learn so much about other cultures. For me, it is not enough to simply look at the pretty pictures on a banknote and ‘ooh and ahh’; I like to delve into them, and not only learn, but experience the culture when I can. A pleasurable aspect of this is exploring the banknotes commemorating musicians and composers. I have found many wonderful pieces of music that I’m sure I never would have come across other than to have looked into who it was on the note, or explored what type of instruments were shown. Here on this web page, are a few of my favorites with links to the music.





50 Dram


Aram Khachaturian, Composer

Links to Music:


Aram Khachaturian 1


Aram Khachaturian 2


Aram Khachaturian 3






1 Manat


Azerbaijan / Middle Eastern Intruments: the Daf drum, the stringed Tar, and the stringed Kamancha played with a bow.

Links to Music:


Tar 1


Tar 2


Tar 3


Daf 1


Daf 2


Daf 3


Kamancha 1


Kamancha 2


Kamancha 3


Kamancha, Tar and Daf





1 Dollar


Police Band




Links to Music:


Police Band 1


Police Band 2




20 Franks


Phillipus (Phillipe) de Monte and Orlande de Lassus





Links to Music:


Phillipus de Monte 1


Phillipus de Monte 2


Phillipus de Monte 3


Orlande de Lassus 1


Orlande de Lassus 2


Orlande de Lassus 3



200 Franks


Adolphe Sax




Links to Music:


Adolphe Sax's original Saxophone


Unheard of Saxophones


Jimmy Dorsey


Cannonball Adderley Work Song


John Coltrane and Stan Getz



500 Cruzados


Hector Villa Lobos





Links to Music:


Villa Lobos 1


Villa Lobos 2


Villa Lobos 3




5000 Cruzeiros


Carlos Gomes





Links to Music:


Carlos Gomes 1


Carlos Gomes 2


Carlos Gomes 3




500 Leva


Dobri Hristov




Links to Music:


Dobri Hristov 1 - Tebe Poem


Dobri Hristov 2 - Herouvim Pessen - Song of the Cherubim


Dobri Hristov 3 - Rcenica




50 Francs







Links to Music:


Burundi Drums 1


Burundi Drums 2



Cabo Verde

1000 Escudos


Code di Dona



Links to Music:


Code di Dona 1


Code di Dona 2



Cabo Verde

2000 Escudos


Cesaria Evora





Links to Music:


Cesaria Evora 1


Cesaria Evora 2


Cesaria Evora 3


Democratic Republic of the Congo

5 Centimes


Harpe Zande





Links to Music:


Zande Harp 1


Zande harp 2




100 Kroner


Carl Nielsen





Links to Music:


Carl Nielsen 1


Carl Nielsen 2




50 Krooni


Rudolph Tobias





Links to Music:


Rudolph Tobias - Prelude and Fughetta in C Minor: Fughetta


Rudolph Tobias - Jeruusalemma tütred


Rudolph Tobias - Otsekui hirv kisendab




20 Francs


Claude Debussy





Links to Music:


Debussy 1 - Arabesque


Debussy 2 - Clair de Lune


Debussy 3 - The Girl with the Flaxen Hair






10 Francs


Hector Berlioz





Links to Music:


Berlioz 1 - Symphonie Fantastique - March To The Scaffold


Berlioz 2 - Symphonie Fantastique 5th Movement - Dreams of a Witches' Sabbabth


Berlioz 3 - Roman Carnival Overture




2 Lari


Zakaria Paliashvili





Links to Music:


Zakaria Paliashvili 1


Zakaria Paliashvili 2


Zakaria Paliashvili 3







20 Marks


Violin and Clarinet - on back





Links to Music:


W. A. Mozart: Quintet for Clarinet, two Violins, Viola and Violoncello in A major


Beethoven "Violin Concerto arr. for Clarinet"




Notgeld - Braunschweig (Brunswick)

50 Pfennig


Franz Abt





Links to Music:


Franz Abt "Waldandnacht" - (the score on the back)


Franz Abt "Wo die Alpenrosen blühn"


Franz Abt "Advent"





Notgeld - Braunschweig (Brunswick)

25 Pfennig


Louis Spohr





Links to Music:


Louis Spohr - "Violin Concerto No.8 in Form einer Gesangsszene" - (the score on the back)


Louis Spohr -Clarinet Concerto No. 1 in C minor


Louis Spohr - Romanza




200 Quetzales


Sebastian Hurtado - Created the first Chromatic Marimba in 1897

Mariano Valverde - "Noche de Luna Entre Ruinas"

German Alcántara – "La flor del Café"






Links to Music:


Mariano Valverde - Noche de Luna Entre Ruinas


German Alcántara - La flor del Café


Sebastian Hurtado - Chromatic Marimba




5000 Rupiah



The main part of the sasando is a bamboo tube frame instrument. Around the bamboo tube are palmyra leaves which act as a type of resonator. There are either 28 or 56 strings running the length of the tube.





Links to Music:


Sasano - 1


Sasando - Sempurna - 2


Sasando - fix you - 3





5 Pounds


Irish Harp





Links to Music:


Ireland 1


Ireland 2


Ireland 3


Ireland 4




1000 Lire


Giuseppe Verdi




Links to Music:


Verdi - 10 Facts


Verdi - Aida - Ballet Music


Verdi - "Drinking Song" from Giuseppe Verdi's "La Traviata"


Verdi - Aida - Grand March


5000 Lire


Vincenzo Bellini





Links to Music:


Bellini 1 Guerra, guerra! Le galliche selve


Bellini 2 Norma


Bellini 3 I Capuleti e i Montecchi






5 Tenge


Adai Kurmangazy playing the Dombra





Links to Music:


Dombra 1


Dombra 2


Kurmangazy Sagyrbayuly the Famous Kazakh Bard From WNYZ Radio





20 Tenge


Abai Qunanbaiuly

Aday Kunanbayev 





Links to Music:


Kozimnin karasi Version 1


Kozimnin karasi Version 2


Zhelsiz tunde zharyk ay


Aittym salem, Kalamkas





10000 Francs



Adai Kurmangazy playing the Dombra





Links to Music:


Madagascar Traditional Instruments 1


Madagascar Valiha 1


Madagascar Valiha 2



10 Rupiyaa


Bodu Beru Drum





Links to Music:


Bodu Beru Drum 1


Bodu Beru Drum 2


Bodu Beru Drum 3




10 Dirhams


Musical Instrument: Oud





Links to Music:


Oud 1


Oud 2




50 Ouguiya


Musical Instruments




Links to Music:


Neifara Flute 1


Neifara Flute 2


Ardin Harp 1


Ardin Harp 2


Tehardent 1


Tehardent 2




5000 Meticais


Musicians and dancers





Links to Music:


Drummers 1



Myanmar (Burma)

50 Pyas


Saung – Arched harp




Links to Music:


Saung 1


Saung 2




New Caledonia (Noumea)

20 Francs


Aulos – Greco Roman double flute (aka Tibia)




Links to Music:


Auloi 1


Auloi 2


Auloi 3



5 Naira







Links to Music:


Drummers 1


Drummers 2


Drummers 3




100 Kroner


Kirstin Flagstad





Links to Music:


Kirstin Flagstad/Bob Hope 1


Kirstin Flagstad 2


Kitstin Flagstad 3


Papua New Guinea

10 Kina


Kundu Drum





Links to Music:


Kundu 1




50000 Guaranies


Augustin Pio Barrios





Links to Music:


Augustin Pio Barrios 1


Augustin Pio Barrios 2


Augustin Pio Barrios 3





5000 Zlotych


Fryderyk Chopin





Links to Music:


Chopin 1


Chopin 2


Chopin 3 The score on the back of this banknote played by Arthur Rubenstein.





100000 Zlotych


Stanislaw Moniuszko





Links to Music:


Moniuszko 1


Moniuszko 2


Moniuszko 3




5 Lei


George Enescu





Links to Music:


George Enescu 1


George Enescu 2


George Enescu 3




500 Amafranga







Links to Music:


Drums 1


Drums 2




200 Tolars


Jacobus Gallus





Links to Music:


Jacobus Gallus 1


Jacobus Gallus 2




Solomon Islands

20 Dollars


Pan Pipes





Links to Music:


Solomon Pan Pipes 1


Solomon Pan Pipes 2


Solomon Pan Pipes, etc. 3



100 Pesetas


Manuel de Falla



Links to Music:


Manuel de Falla 1


Manuel de Falla 2 - guitar solo of the piece above


Manuel de Falla 3




25 Pesetas


Isaac Albeniz



Links to Music:


Isaac Albeniz 1


Isaac Albeniz 2


Isaac Albeniz 3


Isaac Albeniz 4


Isaac Albeniz 5


Sri Lanka

50 Rupees


Yak Bera Drum





Links to Music:


Yak Bera Drum 1




2 Pounds


Musical Instruments





Links to Music:






Rongo Xylophone


Waza 1


Waza 2



50 Kronor


Jenny Lind - The Swedish Nightengale - First International Musical Superstar

Instrument: Nyckelharpa or key harp





Links to Music:


Jenny Lind 1


Jenny Lind 2


Jenny Lind 3


Nyckelharpa 4


Nyckelharpa 5



50 Kronor (2015)


Evert Taube - The great Swedish Troubadour

Reverse: Bronze age rock art in Bohuslän, Sweden, where Evert Taube drew much inspiration from.





Links to Music:


Evert Taube 1


Evert Taube 2


Evert Taube 3




10 Francs


Time - emphasis on music, railways and watches





Links to Music:


Ernest Bloch - Prayer


Jean Daetwyler: Konzert für Alphorn und Orchester


Nachklang - Othmar Schoeck - Äneas Humm, Judit Polgar


Quartets by the Swiss-born composer and conductor Volkmar Andreae



20 Francs


Arthur Honegger





Links to Music:


Arthur Honneger 231


Arthur Honegger Intrada


Arthur Honneger Cello Concerto




500 Pounds


Oldest known music and musicians





Links to Music:


Syrian Music 1


Syrian Music 2




Trinidad and Tobago

20 Dollars


Steel Drums / Pan drums





Links to Music:


Trinidad & Tobago Music 1


Trinidad & Tobago Music 2


Trinidad & Tobago: How The Pan Is Made




100 Lirasi


Buhurizade Mustafa Efindi





Links to Music:


Salat-ı Ümmiye


Neva Kâr


Ney Taksim



10 Hryven







Links to Music:


Kobza 1


Kobza 2


Kobza 3




100 Hryven


Gregory Skovoroda (Григорій Сковорода , also Hryhorii Skovoroda)





Links to Music:


Херувимська пісня (Cherubim Song)


Всякому городу нрав і права (Every City Has Morals and Rights)


Голова всяка має свій смисл (Everyone's Head Has It's Meaning)




100 Pesos


Eduardo Fabini





Links to Music:


Fabini Triste No. 1


Fabini Intermezzo Para Piano


Fabini Estudio Arpegiado


Fabini Triste No. 2




500 Vatu


Slit Drum/Gong or Tamtam





Links to Music:


Tamtam 1


Tamtam 2


Tamtam 3



Yugoslavia / now Serbia

50 Dinars


Stevan Mokranjac





Links to Music:


Stevan Mokranjac 1


Stevan Mokranjac 2


Stevan Mokranjac 3