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Call for Participation: NLS Digital Braille Music Repository

Are you a braille music reader or know someone who is? Wouldn’t you like to find more braille music scores online, in one place? We have some great news for you: The Music Section at the Library of Congress’ National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (NLS) is developing a Digital Braille Music Repository.

Why are we doing this? Downloading braille music is becoming increasingly popular. Just to give you some numbers: Currently, NLS makes available about 2600 digital braille music scores on BARD. In the past year, about 112 patrons have downloaded more than 11,000 braille music. We envision these numbers to continuously grow with the participation of institutions and additional patrons. And that is why we are working on a digital repository for braille sheet music.

We envision this repository to be the hub of digital braille music scores, the go-to place for downloading braille sheet music. We plan to create the most comprehensive digital braille music repository in the world by continuously adding new materials from NLS and from contributing institutions. We want to compile, preserve and make these materials available to patrons with disabilities. And for that, we are looking for institutions to actively participate in this project.

Do you know of a digital braille music source (music school, university, library for the blind, rehab service, etc.) in your state or area who might be interested? Please let us know!

If you represent an institution that provides braille music scores and/or braille music transcription services, we would appreciate your input. Please complete our survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/RZHDV28.

We Just Keep Adding…to BARD!

One of the fun and interesting parts of working at the NLS Music Section is being able to upload files to BARD (Braille and Audio Reading Download). Our patrons are always checking to see what is new in the “Recently Added” link, and we frequently remind them that not all the NLS Music Section collection is […]

There’s No Song Like an Old Song

I’m always reminding myself how fortunate I am to live in an area that offers not only great classical music, theater and dance performances, but many popular music performers make a stop, especially during the summer. Being a child of the sixties, rock and roll concerts usually meant performances in smoky nightclubs (missed out on […]

Start a New Family Tradition

Recently, I read Willie Nelson’s autobiography “It’s a Long Story.” Willie and his sister Bobbie were raised by their paternal grandparents who were avid amateur musicians. From when they were very young, the Nelson children spent much of their time making music together and singing gospel songs at their church. Willie still cherishes those times […]

Working and Music

We are approaching a holiday that signifies many things to people on the calendar: Labor Day.  For children and teachers, it’s back to school. For the sports fan, anticipation for Friday night high school football (and half-time shows; a shout-out to the band kids) and Sunday afternoon professional leagues. But I would like to remind […]

Finding Jimi and Django

In a recent NLS Music Notes blog post, “The Festival That Changed American Music,” I read about rock stars such as Jimi Hendrix who performed at the first Monterey festival in 1967.  Because of the recordings listed there, and my own experience of the NLS collections, I assumed that anything we have on Hendrix would be in audio format. So […]

The Festival That Changed American Music

Nearly 50 years ago today marked the beginning of the Monterey International Pop Festival, one of the first rock festivals in the United States. Nowadays, rock festivals are a common occurrence, happening in various locations year-round. Back in 1967, though, the rock festival was not common. Monterey helped change all that, as the rock festival […]

Golden Days of Yesteryear

My attention recently was called to a very historic event; on June 2, 1896, Guglielmo Marconi applied to patent the radio. When we think of Marconi as the inventor of the radio, it is easily overshadowed by contemporary inventors of computers, 3-D printing, and copy machines. Don’t get me wrong, I am thrilled to have […]

Paris in the Springtime

Spring has sprung around these parts in Washington, DC, but for this blog post I am going to continue with our international theme and wax poetic about springtime in France. I’m bringing up this geographic location because two well-known French composers, Gabriel Fauré and Jules Massenet, share a birthday today, May 12! Although neither Fauré […]