Librarian of Congress James H. Billington named 25 additions to the ninth annual National Recording Registry of the Library of Congress Wednesday.
"America's recorded-sound heritage has in many ways transformed the sound-scape of the modern world, resonating and flowing through our cultural memory," Billington said in a statement. "Audio recordings have documented our lives and allowed us to share artistic expressions and entertainment. Songs, words and the natural sounds of the world that we live in have been captured on one of the most perishable of all of our art media. The salient question is not whether we should preserve these artifacts, but how best collectively to save this indispensable part of our history."
Also among the selections announced Wednesday are Voice of America radio broadcasts by jazz producer Willis Conover; the parlance of the last Yahi Indian in 1915; the first Jazz at the Philharmonic concert in 1944; the Boswell Sisters' "It's the Girl"; and the first recorded sounds ever captured in 1853.
Notable performances by Nat King Cole, Les Paul, Lydia Mendoza, Blind Willie Johnson, The Sons of the Pioneers, George Crumb, John Fahey, Steely Dan and De La Soul also made the cut.