The Library of Congress has announced this year’s selection of sound recordings to be preserved in the National Recording Registry. The list, which consists of 25 recordings, featured a wide variety of outstanding spoken and musical recordings that span the years 1925 through 1983.
This year’s selections include such renowned BMI songwriters and composers as Herbie Hancock (Head Hunters), Michael Jackson (Thriller), Roy Orbison ( “Oh Pretty Woman”), Kitty Wells (“ It Wasn’t God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels”) and Art Tatum (“Sweet Lorraine”). Almost 70% of the PRO-affiliated works on this year’s list are part of the BMI repertoire. View images and and listen to brief clips of these selections.
The National Recording Preservation Board, comprising experts from the music industry and preservation field, culled its list from nominations made by the public for recordings considered “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant.” Recordings must be 10 years old to be considered for preservation and final selections are made by the Librarian of Congress, James H. Billington.
The National Recording Registry was created by the National Recording Preservation Act of 2000, legislation that promotes and supports audio preservation. The registry celebrates the richness and variety of the nation’s audio legacy and underscores the responsibility to assure the long-term preservation of that legacy for future generations.
This year’s selections include (*indicates BMI entry):
- The first Trans-Atlantic Broadcast, March14, 1925
- “Allons a Lafayette,” Joseph Falcon*
- “Casta Diva,” from Bellini’s Norma
- “If I Could Hear My Mother Pray Again,” Thomas A. Dorsey*
- “Sweet Lorraine,” Art Tatum*
- Fibber McGee and Molly
- Wings Over Jordan
- Fiorello LaGuardia reading the comics
- “Call it Stormy Monday but Tuesday is Just as Bad,” T-Bone Walker*
- Harry S. Truman Speech at the 1948 Democratic Convention
- The Jazz Scene, Various Artists*
- “It Wasn’t God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels,” Kitty Wells*
- My Fair Lady, Original Cast Recording
- Navajo Shootingway Ceremony Field Recordings
- ‘Freight Train’ and Other North Carolina Folk Songs, Elizabeth Cotton*
- “Oh Pretty Woman,” Roy Orbison*
- “Marine Band Concert Album to Help Benefit the National Cultural Center (1963)
- “Tracks of My Tears,” Smokey Robinson and the Miracles
- “You’ll Sing a Song and I’ll Sing a Song,” Ella Jenkins
- “Music From the Morning of the World,” David Lewiston
- “For the Roses,” Joni Mitchell
- Head Hunters, Herbie Hancock*
- Ronald Reagan Broadcasts
- “The Sounds of the Earth,” Voyager Spacecraft
- “Thriller,” Michael Jackson*