Creating a Digital Alexandria within the Library of Congress
March 23, 2015
How will the music of the future sound? How will we remember the music of the past? Thanks to a project I am deeply involved with - the National Recording Registry (NRR) - we will always be able to answer these questions.
To celebrate the NRR, every Wednesday I'll be hosting a "Saving Our Sounds" series on my Facebook page. I'll be posting a story from the registry and some history about the artifact.
Often referred to as “America’s Playlist,” the registry showcases a bountiful treasure chest brimming with many of the most evocative cultural milestones the human race has ever produced. These captivating artifacts document the lost folk heritage of indigenous cultures, milestone historical events, the infinite wonders of nature and "our long strange trip."
The NRR goes beyond music to celebrate poetry, comedy, drama, broadcasts and even mundane everyday sounds that have been a part of the soundscape of our lives. On March 25th, 2015, we'll announce the newest additions to this special catalog of audio history. The selections being added feature a rich and varied array of spoken-word and musical recordings - representing nearly every musical category.
As a child, I loved to poke around my parents’ record collection. One day my imagination was captured by a strange looking cover that said something about Pygmies, Africa and drums. Time seemed to move in slow motion as I gently put the album on the RCA Victrola and sank into my listening chair. I've never looked back. My love for music expands beyond the studio and I am constantly in awe of the true power of rhythm.
In 2000, I helped create the National Recording Preservation Act. According to board member Elizabeth Cohen, “The registry plays a vital role in preserving our cultural heritage. It will enable future generations to know who we were as well as our hopes and dreams."
The audio legacy we leave is an important part of our human experience and it's something we can all contribute to. You don't have to be a celebrity or musician to help preserve the rich musical heritage of humankind. To learn more about how you can participate click here:
To see the full registry click here:
You'll also find the Grateful Dead in the registry. Our Barton Hall show at Cornell University on May 8, 1977 was inducted in 2011. http://www.loc.gov/rr/record/nrpb/registry/nrpb-2011reg.html