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Newest BARD Additions

Since we are on a roll talking about BARD, I thought it would be good to highlight some of the new (or newly digitized) titles that we’ve uploaded to BARD over the past few weeks.

Talking Books

Uncle Dave Macon (DBM03766)
This is a look at “Uncle Dave” Macon (also known as “The Dixie Dewdrop) and musical output and life. Many readers may recognize him as one of the first stars on the Grand Ole Opry. Contained in this book are songs “I’ve Got the Mourning Blues,” “Hold That Woodpile Down,” and “Johnny Gray.”

Ray Reed Sings Frontier and Cowboy Songs (DBM03764)
Unlike Uncle Dave, Ray Reed was not a star on the Grand Ole Opry. Rather, he was a real-life living, breathing cowboy from New Mexico. Contained in this recording are classic cowboy songs and lyrics, such as “California Joe,” “O Bury Me Not,” and “The Zebra Dun.” Fans of old-time cowboys songs may want to check out another title we’ve made – Texas Folk Songs (DBM03691).

The Instruments of the Orchestra (DBM03618)
This nearly 9-hour journey takes the listener through all the instruments of the orchestra and then some. Orchestral excerpts that highlight each instrument are included, and the narrator, Jeremy Siepmann, adds a touch of humor to the recording. Besides discussion of the instruments themselves, there is a discussion about chamber music, and instrument combinations outside of the symphony orchestra.

Opera Explained: Gilbert and Sullivan (DBM03617)
This book takes a look at the operettas of Arthur Sullivan and his librettist W.S. Gilbert, including Pirates of Penzance, The Mikado, H.M.S. Pinafore, and numerous other English-language operas. Besides a discussion of the music, this book includes an in-depth look at the lives and relationships of the men behind the music.


Chorale: Christ lay in death’s dark prison for Organ (BRM36257)
Johann Sebastian Bach

This organ chorale is taken from the Easter cantata of the same name (German: Christ lag in Todes Baden, BWV 4).

In a Persian garden: A song-cycle for four solo voices [soprano, alto, tenor, and bass] (BRM36242)
Liza Lehmann

This work is by British female composer Liza Lehmann. After a successful singer career in Europe as a soprano in the late nineteenth century, she retired from performing at age 32. Thereafter she focused on composition, and this piece was written a mere two years after her retirement. It is based on the Rubiyat of Omar Khayyam, a selection of about 1000 poems attributed to Omar Khayyam, a Persian poet from the 11th and 12th centuries.

Souvenir de Porto Rico: Marche des Gibaros, pour piano, op. 31 (BRM36256)
Louis Moreau Gottschalk

This piece by American composer and New Orleans native Louis Gottschalk was written during an extended stay in Puerto Rico. The Gibaros who are marching in the subtitle refer to mountain-dwelling peasants. Even though it was written in 1857, it is clearly influenced by Latin rhythms and syncopations, something that would not really make its way into popular American music until many years later.

Progressive steps to syncopation for the modern drummer (BRM36253)
Ted Reed

Speaking of syncopation, this is a percussion method book that provides techniques to specifically address syncopation.

Technic is fun: selected studies, book III (BRM22941)
David Hirschberg

This is a piano method book designed to teach technique and musicianship. Book I and Book II can be found at BRM22835 and BRM22887.

The easiest way to check out what’s new from the music section on BARD from the BARD main page is to click on the link “Music Collection” and then click on “Recently Added Music Books, Scores, and Magazines.” This will list everything that’s been added to BARD over the past month. So go and find what’s new on BARD!

A Trip Around the World with the NLS Music Section

Do you want to learn how to play piano? We have a book for you! Do you want the libretto for your favorite opera? We have that as well! Do you want to learn about folk music from around the world? Well, we also have books about that. Many patrons get to know us through […]

New Year, New BARD Titles

I hope everyone out there had a relaxing and peace-filled holiday season. Now that the year is almost through, it’s time to look ahead to 2016 and the new beginnings that await us there. In keeping with that spirit, this blog will highlight some of the newest braille and digital talking books that have been […]

Happy Birthday Nino Rota

Although motion pictures are, for all intents and purposes, a visual art form, one can still appreciate the music from those films on their own without the movie-going experience. For this I am grateful, as, being more drawn to music than film (and having limited spare time to catch all the movies that I’d like […]

A King and a (Fairy) Queen: Music by Henry Purcell in the NLS Collection

Today (September 10th) we celebrate Henry Purcell’s 356th birthday [Note: this date is actually disputed as no official baptismal record has been found. However, we will use this commonly accepted date, as it gives us a chance to talk about his music!]. Purcell’s contribution to Western classical music is indispensable, as it has influenced numerous other […]

Behind the Scenes: An Interview with NLS Narrator Laura Giannarelli (part II)

A few weeks ago, I published an interview with NLS narrator Laura Giannarelli. In it, she talks about how she became a Talking Book narrator, and some of her favorite parts of the program. Ms. Giannarelli is one of the many narrators who narrate the liner notes of our newly acquired Smithsonian Folkways books. She […]

Mahalia Jackson, Lead Belly, Paul Robeson, and Jazz: Our Newest Acquisitions

The NLS Music Section recently acquired audio materials produced by Smithsonian Folkways. I would like to introduce and expand upon four new audio titles that are now available to our patrons. We are excited about these titles because we have added a new braille element to some of our audio. Read more about our new Smithsonian Folkways acquisitions — and our process […]

Authors of Audio Courses in the NLS Music Collection — Where Do They Come From?

Don Hoffer was a dentist. Bill Irwin was a salesman. He peddled organs.  The kind you play. Barbara Kolb is an internationally renowned composer These are just some of the people who are behind the instructional audio recordings in the NLS Music collection.  They didn’t merely create and write the narrative, their voices are the […]