You’ll Recognize Many Of These Songs Inducted To The National Recording Registry

Run by the Library Of Congress, the National Recording Registry inducts 25 recordings every year that “preserve our history through recorded sound and reflects our nation’s diverse culture.” In 2023 there were over 1,110 nominations, but you’ll know most of the recordings that were chosen. Remember that these are not only songs and albums, but spoken word or news recordings that capture a moment in our history.

National Recording Registry class of 2023

Here are the inductees:

  1. “The Very First Mariachi Recordings” — Cuarteto Coculense (1908-1909)
  2. “St. Louis Blues” — Handy’s Memphis Blues Band (1922)
  3. “Sugar Foot Stomp” — Fletcher Henderson (1926)
  4. Dorothy Thompson: Commentary and Analysis of the European Situation for NBC Radio (Aug. 23-Sept. 6, 1939)
  5. “Don’t Let Nobody Turn You Around” — The Fairfield Four (1947)
  6. “Sherry” — The Four Seasons (1962)
  7. “What the World Needs Now is Love” — Jackie DeShannon (1965)
  8. “Wang Dang Doodle” — Koko Taylor (1966)
  9. “Ode to Billie Joe” — Bobbie Gentry (1967)
  10.  “Déjà Vu” (album) — Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young (1970) 
  11.  “Imagine” — John Lennon (1971)
  12.  “Stairway to Heaven” — Led Zeppelin (1971)
  13.  “Take Me Home, Country Roads” — John Denver (1971)
  14.  “Margaritaville” — Jimmy Buffett (1977)
  15.  “Flashdance…What a Feeling” — Irene Cara (1983)
  16.  “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)” — Eurythmics (1983)
  17.  “Synchronicity” (album) — The Police (1983)
  18.  “Like a Virgin” (album) — Madonna (1984)
  19.  “Black Codes (From the Underground)” — Wynton Marsalis (1985)
  20.  Super Mario Bros. theme — Koji Kondo, composer (1985)
  21.  “All Hail the Queen” — Queen Latifah (1989)
  22.  “All I Want for Christmas is You” — Mariah Carey (1994)
  23.  “Pale Blue Dot” — Carl Sagan (1994)
  24.  “Gasolina” — Daddy Yankee (2004)
  25.  “Concerto for Clarinet and Chamber Orchestra” — Northwest Chamber Orchestra, Ellen Taaffe Zwilich, composer (2012)

While the first Mariachi recordings and the early recordings of the father of the Blues J.C. Handy seem pretty obvious, I scratch my head at “Sherry,” “Flashdance,” “Margaritaville”, and “Sweet Dreams.” One has to wonder that with 1,100 nominations, what were the ones that didn’t make it?

If you follow the link, you’ll see an explanation on why the National Recording Registry decided each one was worthy.

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