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You Won’t BELIEVE What They Said About Us!

The National Audio-Visual Conservation Center has garnered a fair amount of media attention over the years and 2014 was no exception. Here’s a selection of print and broadcast stories from last year that, taken together, provide a good overview of who we are and what we do. The announcement of new additions to the National […]

Scrap for Victory!

This blog post was co-written with Jan McKee, Reference Librarian, Recorded Sound Section, Library of Congress. During World War II scrap drives were a popular way for everyone to contribute to the war effort. By recycling unused or unwanted metal for example, the government could build ships, airplanes and other equipment needed to fight the […]

New Year’s Eve with NBC

Within the Library’s NBC Radio History Collection there is an amazing and comprehensive card catalog of network programs, performers and guests from 1930 to 1960. The 8 x 5 inch cards give a complete history of commercial and sustaining programs (programs without a sponsor and with no advertising), performers and artists, and “radio personalities”  including […]

Gargantuan Graphophone Records

At some point time around the year 2008 the last physical audio format, the cd, seems to have nearly winked out of existence. Its replacement? An army of wispy, intangible files including mp3, .aiff, wave, ogg vorbis, flac and many others.  Of course, many of these formats produce very high-quality audio, and I can now pack a collection of […]

It’s scandalous! It’s immoral! It’s the “Turkey Trot”!

This blog post was co-written with Jan McKee, Reference Librarian, Recorded Sound Section, Library of Congress. This year, after Thanksgiving dinner with friends and family, why not burn off some of those calories and thwart those tryptophans by dancing the Turkey Trot instead of sleeping on the living room sofa?  This vigorous dance was developed […]

The Accidental Rock Star

Last night the Library of Congress honored veteran songwriter and performer Billy Joel with its coveted Gershwin Prize for  Popular Song. The Library of Congress awards the prize annually to a composer or performer whose lifetime contributions exemplify the standard of excellence associated with George and Ira Gershwin. It’s not entirely coincidental that the Library has also just uploaded a revealing interview with Joel […]

Earwitness to History: the Marine Corps Combat Recordings

This blog post was co-written with Megan Harris, reference specialist for the Veterans History Project, Library of Congress. What you’ve just heard is from the Marine Corps Combat Recordings, an amazing and vivid accounting of the war in the South Pacific during World War II. Not only are these recordings one of the most historically […]

The Elusive Buddy Bolden

 The following post is by David Sager,  Processing Technician in the Recorded Sound Section, Library of Congress. This post is in commemoration of the 84th anniversary of Buddy Bolden’s death and the never-ending discussion of his legendary lost cylinder recording. Charles “Buddy” Bolden, 1877-1931, often referred to as the “first man of jazz,” holds an […]