By ERIN ALLEN
Following Librarian of Congress James H. Billington’s April 6 announcement of the 25 new additions to the National Recording Registry, numerous articles appeared in the press.
The Los Angeles Times music blog said “The Library of Congress certainly knows how to spread the love around when it comes to America’s aural preservation.”
Chris Richards of The Washington Post noted that many of the selected recordings could be found on iTunes. One of the selections, “Aja” by Steely Dan, is also the name of NPR host Michele Norris’ 11-year-old daughter. When announcing the registry selections and playing sound bites during her program, she admitted she named her daughter after the title track of the album.
Katherine Cole of Voice of America (VOA) made sure to point out that one of the selections is also a part of the broadcast outlet’s history: “From 1954 until his 1996 death, William Conover hosted VOA’s jazz programs, sending the music to countries where jazz was not often allowed. His 1956 interviews with musicians including Duke Ellington, Billie Holiday, Stan Getz and others are now a part of the Library of Congress National Recording Registry.”
MLB.com, the website for the Major League Baseball organization, provided a few fun facts about “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” (1908), one of the registry selections. “‘Take Me Out to the Ballgame’ was written by vaudeville star Jack Norworth, who was inspired by seeing an advertisement for baseball at the Polo Grounds, home of the New York Giants, while on a subway. The words were set to music by Albert Von Tilzer. Neither Norworth nor Von Tilzer had attended a baseball game, and neither did so for another three decades.”
Other national outlets running pieces included The Hollywood Reporter, Daily Variety, Associated Press, Time, Atlantic, Jet, The New York Times, ABC, CBS, NBC and PBS Newshour. Stories ran in local papers from California to New York and Louisiana to Texas. In addition, a variety of websites and blogs, including sify, techdirt, arstechnica, Gibson and contactmusic, ran announcements of the new registry selections.
Speaking of baseball-related recordings, the Library recently acquired a vast collection of sports broadcast recordings made prior to 1972 by John Miley.
New York Times reporter Vincent M. Mallozzi spoke with Miley regarding the acquisition. “There isn’t a word in the dictionary that can describe my happiness right now,” Miley said. I’m thrilled to finally find a place where all of these great memories will be preserved forever.” In addition to the Times, other major news organizations running the news were USA Today, The Wall Street Journal and ESPN.
Erin Allen is a writer-editor in the Office of Communications.