Library in the News: April 2014 Edition

The Library made several major announcements in April, including new additions to the National Recording Registry.

The addition of the 25 new recordings to the National Recording Registry brings the list to a total of 400 sound recordings. Among the new selections were Jeff Buckley’s haunting single “Hallelujah” from his one and only studio album; Lyndon B. Johnson’s massive collection of presidential conversations; Isaac Hayes’ landmark soundtrack album “Shaft”; and “The Laughing Song” performed by the nation’s first black recording artist

Linda Ronstadt’s album, “Heart Like a Wheel,” was also added. The singer spoke with the Los Angeles Times following the announcement.

“Ronstadt, upon learning that her album is now among 400 titles from more than a century of recorded music history elected to the Registry, told The Times with a laugh, ‘If I’d known that, I would have sung it better. But I’m delighted.’”

CBS This Morning got a sneak peak at the recordings from Gene DeAnna, head of the recorded sound section in the Library’s Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division.

Other national outlets running features included USA TodayCBS Evening News, Variety, Washington Post and Rolling Stone, among others.

Affiliates of FOX, NBC, ABC and CBS news ran stories nationwide in addition to a variety of local print outlets.

On the literary front, the Library awarded the Library of Congress Prize for American Fiction to author E.L. Doctorow.

Doctorow told the New York Times that “the prize was particularly important to him because the nominees were chosen by past winners and other esteemed authors and critics.”

Also running a story was The Washington Post.

Continuing to make the news was Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey, who soon ends her second term as the national poet.  She spoke with The Washington Post on all things poetry.

“My friends will sometimes tease me by calling me PLOTUS,” she said.

In addition, her poetry series with PBS NewsHour, “Where Poetry Lives,” launched a new installment in April highlighting the struggles of the civil rights movement.

A new exhibition that opened in April, “A Thousand Years of the Persian Book,” offers a glimpse into the rich literary tradition of the Persian language.

Radio Free Europe featured a pictorial tour of the exhibition.

Lastly, the Library’s rich musical collections were showcased in an article by the Huffington Post. Tony Woodcock, president of the New England Conservatory of Music, wrote about a recent trip to the Library’s Music Division and the musical treasures he had the opportunity to see first-hand.

“It was more like seeing and touching the still beating heart of a masterpiece,” he wrote of viewing the original manuscript of Brahms’ violin concerto.

“It’s all there for everyone. You can look at original scores online and you can go and visit and have the same experience we had. The Library of Congress is there for us all, and it’s one of the most compelling reasons to keep going back to D.C.”

One Comment

  1. Martin
    May 8, 2014 at 5:36 pm

    Linda Ronstadt has got to be the most modest, almost self depreciating, superstar on the planet. For every teenager that wailed into their hairbrush during the 1970s trying to express our own feelings of strength and heartbreak it was often Ronstadt’s voice that gave us a road map to emotions beyond simple kid stuff – I am delighted to see “Heart Like A Wheel” so recognized. In this era of autotune it is even more significant.

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