Jay-Z and Cyndi Lauper’s ‘Aural Treasures’ to Be Inducted Into the National Recording Registry

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Before the month of March becomes all about the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, let us divert your attention to another coveted musical honor that just introduced its class of 2019. Per THR, the National Recording Registry of the Library of Congress has announced the list of 25 songs, albums, and recordings it has deemed worthy of preservation this year, due to their “cultural, historic, and aesthetic importance to the nation’s recorded sound heritage.” The genre-spanning list of “aural treasures” includes Jay-Z’s Blueprint, Cyndi Lauper’s She’s So Unusual, as well as the songs “September,” by Earth, Wind & Fire, “Sweet Caroline,” by Neil Diamond, “Soul Man,” by Sam and Dave, and “La Bamba,” by Ritchie Valens. Outside the realm of music, a ’50s-era episode of Gunsmoke and Robert Kennedy’s speech about the death of Martin Luther King Jr. were included, as well as Ruth Draper’s monologues.

The complete list of this year’s National Recording Registry inductees can be read below, and grumble about the omissions in the comments.

Yiddish Cylinders from the Standard Phonograph Co. of New York and the Thomas Lambert Co. (c. 1901–05)

“Memphis Blues” (single), Victor Military Band (1914)

Melville Jacobs Collection of Native Americans of the American Northwest (1929–39)

“Minnie the Moocher” (single), Cab Calloway (1931)

Bach Six Cello Suites (album), Pablo Casals (c. 1939)

“They Look Like Men of War” (single), Deep River Boys (1941)

Gunsmoke episode “The Cabin” (Dec. 27, 1952)

Ruth Draper: Complete Recorded Monologues 1954–56

“La Bamba” (single), Ritchie Valens (1958)

“Long Black Veil” (single), Lefty Frizzell (1959)

Stan Freberg Presents the United States of America, Vol. 1: The Early Years (album), Stan Freberg (1961)

GO (album), Dexter Gordon (1962)

War Requiem (album), Benjamin Britten (1963)

“Mississippi Goddam” (single), Nina Simone (1964)

“Soul Man” (single), Sam & Dave (1967)

Hair (original Broadway cast recording) (1968)

Speech on the Death of Martin Luther King Jr., Robert F. Kennedy (April 4, 1968)

“Sweet Caroline” (single), Neil Diamond (1969)

Super Fly (album), Curtis Mayfield (1972)

Ola Belle Reed (album), Ola Belle Reed (1973)

“September” (single), Earth, Wind & Fire (1978)

“You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real)” (single), Sylvester (1978)

She’s So Unusual (album), Cyndi Lauper (1983)

Schoolhouse Rock!: The Box Set (1996)

The Blueprint (album), Jay-Z (2001)

Jay-Z, Cyndi Lauper Are Receiving One of Music’s Top Honors