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Earth…There’s Only One

Tomorrow, April 22, 2022, will be Earth Day. Initiated in 1970, marking this event has become a matter of personal choice. But recent weather episodes, more intense hurricanes, EF-4 and 5 tornadoes, long droughts, are indicative of climate change and its harsh reality.


Black and white photo of Planet Earth as seen from lunar surface.

The Whole Earth Is Watching

it’s the only one we have.  And while there are great ambitions (and I personally support them) for space travel, we must take care of this planet. Artists and composers have chosen its beauty and power as a subject matter in many of their works.  And this was before the threat of climate change.

Check out the history of Earth Day with this link from the Library of Congress, and review some of the titles we have in the NLS Music Collection celebrating different sources of motivation.  In our own way, one of many positives of going/born digital is saving paper.  Braille scores are voluminous, and if we can reduce paper use, we are contributing. In a similar manner, having adopted the duplication-on-demand program developed at NLS,  we’re able to increase the number of titles we can send to our patrons on one single cartridge, rather than multiple cartridges. This program provided information and less chance of losing or misplacing multiple cartridges.


Beethoven, “Pastoral” Symphony by Jeremy Siepmann. (DBM03419)

Copland, “Appalachian Spring” Martha Graham Dance Company, discussion with Pontus Lidberg & Janet Eilber (DBM04269)


Childs, David N. “The Moon is Distant from the Sea.” Poem by Emily Dickinson. For chorus (SATB) and piano. (BRM36616)

Great Songs of the 70’s (BRM27690) including “Rocky Mountain High,” “It Never Rains in Southern California,” “Rainy Days and Mondays,” “Seasons in the Sun,” “Shelter from the Storm,” “Summer Breeze,” and “Sunshine on my Shoulder.”

Grofé, Ferde. Grand Canyon Suite. (BRM24334)

Haydn, “The Seasons” edited by Robert Shaw, Soprano chorus part only, English. (BRM30334)

Holst, Gustav. The Planets. Arranged for two pianos by the composer. (BRM29994)

Ives, Charles. “When Stars are in the Quiet Skies.” For medium voice and piano in line by line and bar over bar formats. (BRM25948)

MacDowell, Edward. Woodland Sketches. For piano. (BRM32185) (Also LPM00089)

Menkin, Alan. Colors of the Wind (from Walt Disney’s “Pocahontas”). Lyrics by Stephen Schwartz ; music by Alan Menken ; arranged by Dan Coates. For piano in bar over bar format. (BRT37024)

Miller, Sy. Let there be Peace on Earth. For voice and piano in line by line and bar over bar formats. (BRM35212)

Schumann, Robert. Forest Scenes, op. 82. For piano in bar over bar format. (BRM07744)

Tchaikovsky   “The Seasons” op. 37, for piano, bar by bar format (BRM01698)

Waltz from “Swan Lake” for piano solo, bar by bar format (BRM06407)

Forest Glen, entr’acte from Swan Lake, accordion solo (BRM16964)

Vivaldi, “The Four Seasons, ” transcription for piano solo. (BRM35873)

If you can, take a walk outside and celebrate the wonderful miracle of our planet, Earth.

All of our materials on BARD are also available on digital cartridge or in hard copy as braille music. If you prefer to borrow the materials listed below through the mail, please contact the Music Section. You can call us at 1-800-424-8567, or e-mail us at [email protected]

If you are new to BARD, you may find the following links helpful: Braille and Audio Reading Download (BARD) and BARD Access.

It’s National Library Week!

This week we are celebrating National Library Week! This year’s Honorary Chair, Molly Shannon, honors the work of her favorite librarian–her mother. Read on to learn more about the history and importance of National Library Week.

American Music from A to Z in the NLS Music Collection: I—Charles Ives and the Concord Sonata

As we continue our A to Z journey through the NLS Music Collection, we take a closer examination of the Piano Sonata no. 2 “Concord, Mass., 1840-1860” by Charles Ives, otherwise known as the “Concord Sonata.”

New BARD Additions: October 2021

Today’s blog post rounds up all the new digital acquisitions and digitized items added to BARD in October 2021 by he NLS Music Section.

American Music from A to Z in the NLS Music Collection: E—Eastman School of Music

In our alphabetical journey through the NLS Music Collection, we have arrived this month at the letter E. 2021 is the centennial of the founding of one of the world’s leading music schools, the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York. Composers, educators, performers, and other music pioneers from this prestigious institution are represented far and wide throughout our holdings.

Song Stories: Samuel Barber’s “Knoxville: Summer of 1915”

For this installment of “Song Stories”, we are going to explore how James Agee’s prose and Samuel Barber’s music came together for “Knoxville: Summer of 1915.”

Hidden Gems of the NLS Collection: “Some South-Paw Pitching” by Charles Ives

Now that baseball season is well underway, the NLS Music Section invites you to learn more about “Some South-Paw Pitching” by Charles Ives.

Remembering “Pershing’s Own” on Independence Day: Military Band Music in the NLS Collection

Independence Day has many associations: fireworks, barbecues, parades, and iconic military bands. In this week’s NLS Music Notes blog post, Carter Rawson explores the history behind one of our greatest national treasures, the United States Army Band.

Song Stories: Time Out for “Take Five”

As with many songs, “Take Five” has a story that is more encompassing than just the notes on the page or the sounds from a recording. It talks about overcoming obstacles, articulating a creative vision, and seizing upon spontaneity. In this week’s NLS Music Notes Blog, our series “Song Stories” explores the “Cool Jazz” standard, “Take Five.”