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Celebrating Black Performers in the New and Expanded National Jukebox!

This post was written by David Sager, Reference Specialist in the Recorded Sound Section. The Library of Congress National Jukebox has been updated and expanded! With a new URL, //www.loc.gov/collections/national-jukebox/about-this-collection/, and a new user-friendly player, the Jukebox is not only more flexible, but far more massive in scope, with the addition over 4,000 recordings from […]

On the Recording Registry: “The Stars and Stripes Forever” (1897)

HAPPY 4TH OF JULY!  And what a better way to celebrate than a look at one of America’s most patriotic hits?  Sousa’s enduring classic was named to the Library of Congress’ National Recording Registry in 2002.  In the essay below, author Ace Collins looks at the long-enduring and beloved classic. On October 1, 1880, a […]

HAPPY PRIDE! How “Y.M.C.A.” Became a Gay Anthem!

Today, on the final day of Pride, the Library of Congress’ National Recording Registry, with the help of author Josiah Howard, looks back at one of its most recent and best-known additions–the Village People’s “YMCA.”  Though, today, you’ll hear the track at everything from a school dance to a 50th anniversary party, it has also […]

On the Recording Registry: “The OKeh Laughing Record” (1922)

“The OKeh Laughing Record” original label Imported into the United States in 1922, “The OKeh Laughing Record” is one of the most unusual, (in its way) influential, and surprisingly enduring novelty records ever recorded. Actually, there is nothing overly complicated about the recording itself. On it, a solo cornetist begins a rather slow, sad, even […]

“Carnegie Hall Memories” by Lorna Luft

In 2003, only the second year of the National Recording Registry, the 1961 album “Judy at Carnegie Hall” was added to the Library of Congress’ esteemed list of landmark recordings.  Last year, the Library asked actress, singer, author and daughter of Judy Garland, Lorna Luft, to share her memories of that remarkable and deeply enduring […]

Bob and Ray

This post was written by Matt Barton, curator, Recorded Sound Section. Born in the early 1920s, Bob Elliot (1923-2016) and Ray Goulding (1922 – 1990), better known as “Bob and Ray,” never knew a world without radio, and reveled in the medium from early childhood. They became professional announcers while still in their teens, eventually […]

Rex Stout on the Air

This blog post was written by Matt Barton, curator of the Recorded Sound Section. Rex Stout (1886-1975) remains well known as the creator of Nero Wolfe, the blunt, erudite and mostly housebound detective with a passion for orchids and fine food. Stout wrote thirty-three novels and forty-one novellas from 1934 to 1975 detailing the exploits […]

Tuning in the March on Washington

This blog post was written by Matt Barton, curator of the Recorded Sound Section. For decades, the “March on Washington” has been represented in the media and collective memory chiefly by Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech, which has been seen and heard an incalculable number of times since he […]

Sousa and the Talking Machine

This blog post was written by David Sager, research assistant at the Recorded Sound Research Center. John Philip Sousa (1854-1932), the American composer and bandleader, who was known as “The March King,” was a profoundly talented and accomplished man. His musical compositions went beyond marches and included operettas, waltzes, and songs. He also wrote several […]