Memorial Day

"Over There," by George M. Cohan. New York: Leo Feist, Inc., 1917.

"Over There," by George M. Cohan. New York: Leo Feist, Inc., 1917.

In the United States, Memorial Day is observed on the last Monday in May. The day was first set aside in 1868  “for the purpose of strewing with flowers or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village, and hamlet churchyard in the land.” Today we honor soldiers who died in all American wars. Remember our fallen soldiers with songs from Patriotic Melodies in the Performing Arts Encyclopedia, including “The Army Goes Rolling Along,” “The Marines’ Hymn,” and “The U.S. Air Force Song” (aka “Off we go into the wild blue yonder”). Read more about the history of Memorial Day in Today in History: May 30.

Bach and the Bohemian Gypsies

Tomorrow evening, the Montreal group Ensemble Caprice will bring Bach and the Bohemian Gypsies to the Coolidge Auditorium, in a featured concert at the 39th Annual Meeting of the American Musical Instrument Society. This program will illustrate the influence of anonymous gypsy virtuosi on the works of two great Baroque composers.   The Caprice musicians and […]

Of Crooners and Princes: May Birthdays

Last week we celebrated birthdays of a diverse array of musical luminaries. Pianist Wladziu Valentino was briefly known as  Walter Busterkeys before using the name by which we all know him: Liberace was born May 16, 1919. Read about him in the Nevada section of the Local Legacies project in The American Folklife Center. Alexander Warrack’s Scots Dictionary […]

Hank Jones (1918-2010)

The jazz world has lost one of its great pianists, Hank Jones, who died yesterday in New York. He was 91. During his long and storied career Jones appeared on countless sessions with legends from all walks of jazz: Coleman Hawkins, Lester Young, Billie Holiday, John Coltrane, and Rahsaan Roland Kirk. Jazz writer Howard Mandel […]

Tickets still available: The Uri Caine Trio at the Atlas Performing Arts Center

Pianist-composer  Uri Caine has played with a veritable who’s-who of jazz, from hard bop legend Hank Mobley to soul-jazz leader Grover Washington to avant-garde icon John Zorn,  from scat singer Annie Ross to the man who has been described as “James Brown trapped in Don Knotts’ body,” Arto Lindsay.  He  has performed Duke Ellington numbers […]

Shanghai Jazz

Thanks to Senior Music Specialist Larry Appelbaum for this post. Chinese jazz singers Le Zhang and Coco Zhao recently visited the Music Division, where they were given an overview of the Library’s jazz collections by Senior Music Specialist Larry Appelbaum. They were especially taken by the scores of Charles Mingus and Gerry Mulligan, the Ella […]

Songs for Mother

Sunday, May 9, is Mother’s Day. My colleague on Inside Adams, the Science, Technology, and Business Blog, writes about the floral industry’s popularization of Mother’s Day here.  What better way to remember mothers living and passed away than with songs from the Music Division.  The Performing Arts Encyclopedia has over two hundred  pieces of sheet […]