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Blog Posts by Subject: Music

I Read the Journal-American Today, Oh Dear: Beatles Files Part 1

Ladies and Gentlemen…The Beatles will be on view at The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts (LPA) from February 6 through May 10, 2014. A project of The GRAMMY Museum® at L.A. LIVE and Fab Four Exhibits, it commemorates The Beatles’ first tour of North America. The title and inspiration are taken from their appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show, February 9, 1964. It covers the brief time in which the Beatles toured for live concerts.Read More ›

Great Albums You Might Have Missed: Black 47's Fire of Freedom (1993)

I was sitting shotgun on DJ duty during a long volleyball road trip back in high school when I put on a new tape (yes, cassette days) that I was loving of a band I had recently seen playing live at SUNY Albany (yes, pre Internet days). The group was Black 47, the album

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"She Loves You" b/w "I'll Get You" by The Beatles, Swan S-4152

Recorded July 1, 1963 in London, UK.Read More ›

The Most Significant Drum Head in Popular Music, Part 2

Upon taking physical possession of the piece, my mind was set on two objectives. The first was to prove to myself that the drum head really was what it appeared to be. And number two, proving to the collecting world in general that this was, in fact, the Sullivan show drum head. Read More ›

Best of Patron Requests: Music (January 2014 Edition)

This list is a (sometimes) monthly compilation of my own personal favorite patron requests for music. I hope you will check out some of the great music that Library users have suggested we acquire! Provided are some great preview tracks for each. Just click on the titles to be taken to the catalog.Read More ›

The Holy Grail of the Percussion World, Part 1

William F. Ludwig himself put it best when he said, “On February 9th, 1964, a new musical event burst from the TV screens across America. The Beatles had arrived, featuring Ringo Starr and his Ludwig Black Oyster drums. Literally overnight everyone wanted a drum set like Ringo’s. The drum boom was born!”Read More ›

Remembering Pete Seeger: Friend of the Children

We all remember Pete Seeger for his courage and his music (equally by turns). What some of us may not know, or may have forgotten, was how prolific the man was in the realm of children's books and media. Introduce him to your kids—now has never been a better time. Here's a little list to get you started.Read More ›

Hittin' Those Low Notes

Every Song From The Morrissey Autobiography

I have been waiting for the release of Morrissey's Autobiography for quite some time. While reading this wonderful book I kept track of every song Morrissey mentions that was not part of his solo career or The Smiths. Below is a list of all the songs, the pages he mentions them, and a link to the sound recording from our catalog that contains the track. Enjoy!

Millie - "My Boy 

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Finding a Life at The New York Public Library: Emily Dickinson, the Avid Music Collector

December 10th is the birthday of Emily Dickinson (1830-1886), a beloved poet who in her youth was a talented pianist and active music collector. The collections of The New York Public Library serve to illuminate those interests and activities in a variety of ways.

Archives & Special Collections,Amherst College, used with permission.In 1846, Emily Dickinson's second cousin, Olivia Coleman, wrote to Emily from Philadelphia: "We discovered a new Music Store, and I purchased the song 'I'm alone—all alone,' for I am truly alone without 

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ON THE AIR: Music Landmarks in NYC - Yankee Doodle to Jay-Z

Pearl Street Native/Indigenous

AIR is a Native American and ancient colloquialism for music and voice, as heard upon the earth. Musicians and singers performed at festivals at sacred places like Pearl Street, where shells mounded for centuries, in Lenape tradition, to honor and "give thanks" for the sun, moon, stars, rain, wind and all elements of the air.

New Amsterdam. ca. 1625 - People arrived to the various ceremonies and festivals along the East River shoreline via rafts, canoes and by walking down the main island trail (widened for vehicles in the 

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December Author @ the Library Programs and More at Mid-Manhattan

Have you ever wondered what happens when a ghetto is unmade? Or what the future of Saudi Arabia means to the rest of the world? Or how overachievers do it? Do you think you know what real New Yorkers look like? Do you want to believe that

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Best of Patron Requests: Music (November 2013 Edition)

The Exciting Wilson Pickett (1966) by Wilson Pickett

An impressively consistent, upbeat, and danceable collection of '60s Rhythm & Blues. Every last track on this album is fantastic! In the '60s, Atlantic Records liked to send their artists southward to record, in order to get that "Memphis Sound." They'd go down to studios like Stax and Muscle Shoals to record with their incredible house bands. The resulting sound became known as Memphis Soul, and this record captures it 

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Review of "Exploring The Rise and Fall of Paramount Records" LIVE at NYPL

The line formed early outside of Edna Barnes Salomon Reading Room as this particular event in the Live from the NYPL series was the hottest ticket in town on a cold fall night. Who would have thought that a round table discussion regarding the collapse of quirky record 

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Best of Patron Requests: Music (September 2013 edition)

This list is a (sometimes) monthly compilation of my own personal favorite patron requests for music. I hope you will check out some of the great music that Library users have suggested we acquire!

Provided are some great preview tracks for each. Just click on the titles to be taken to the catalog.

Funky Highlife by C.K. Mann & Carousel 7

This is it. The best request of the batch! C.K. Mann paid his dues and polished his skills in the legendary Kakaiku Guitar Band 

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Number One Hits for the Year: 1979

I was recently going through a box of old photographs and came across photos from the first concert I ever attended: Kiss. October 21, 1979. Houston Summit. I was 10.

That got me to thinking of the music from that year.

1979 marked the end of arguably one of the most unfortunate eras in American music history:

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The Wonder Years: Music and References from Season One

What would you do if I sang out of tune? Would you stand up and walk out on me?

I don't know about you, but certain songs are for me forever associated with certain movies and television shows.

What do you think of when you hear Roy Orbison's "In Dreams"? How about when you hear Stealers Wheel's "Stuck in the Middle With 

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A Note on the Upcoming Record Sale at the Rodgers and Hammerstein Archives of Recorded Sound

1984 Record Sale FlyerOn a rainy spring morning in 1984, over 800 visitors swarmed the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts and purchased over 20,000 78s and LPs at the first Rodgers and Hammerstein Archives of Recorded Sound Duplicate Record Sale. The event raised $14,750 to support the activities of the archive, which began collecting recordings of all types as far back as 1930. Perhaps more importantly, the sale realized space critical to expand the archive, an archive which has since grown to become one of the world's largest, rarest, and most 

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10 Favorite Albums of the Year (So Far)

Daft Punk Random Access Memories Random Access Memories, the fourth proper studio album from Thomas Bangalter and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo delivers a mix of disco, soft rock, prog-pop, Broadway-style pop and of course, their stadium-dance sound. The series of songs takes the listener on a cohesive trip through different decades with an extreme attention to detail.

The Knife Shaking the 

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Women Composers: From the Middle Ages to the Present

Until relatively recent decades, women have had severely limited opportunities within Western art music especially composition. Unfortunately women were often encouraged as amateurs but not professionals. Historically, there have been many obstacles facing woman as professional performers and composers.

The first dates all the way back to the beginning of the fourth century, in keeping with the Pauline injuction, Mulier in ecclesia taceat, which translates to "Let women keep silence in church." Women could and did make music in their own separate convents, 

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