Preserving Music in the Digital Age

Preserving Music in the Digital Age

We examine the technological and legal challenges of preserving old music in the digital age.

The beginning of the 20th century saw the birth of jazz, country, blues, and big band. But most of the early recordings from the this musical era are either lost or have been unavailable to the public -- until now. Sony and the Library of Congress have come together to stream thousands of old tracks over the web on a site called the National Jukebox. We examine the technological and legal challenges of preserving old music in the digital age and listen back on the tracks that would inspire musicians for decades to come.

Guests

Eugene DeAnna

Head, Recorded Sound Section, Library of Congress, Packard Campus for Audio-Visual Conservation

David Sager

Curator, National Jukebox Project, Library of Congress; Jazz trombonist

Sam Brylawski

Consultant, National Jukebox Project, Library of Congress; Editor and Project Manager, Encyclopedic Discography of Victor Recordings (EDVR)

Related Links

Today's "National Jukebox" Selections

“Livery Stable Blues,” Performed by the Original Dixieland Jazz Band. Recorded February 26, 1917

"Rhapsody in Blue" Performed by the Paul Whiteman Concert Orchestra, with George Gershwin on the piano

“Serenade Espagnole,” Sung by Enrico Caruso. Recorded March 9, 1914

  1. “All going out and nothing coming in” rec. 10/11/1901 Sung by Bert Williams

  2. “Ain’t that a shame?” rec. 12/4/1901 Sung by Silas Leachman

More National Jukebox Picks from Curator David Sager

  1. “Money Blues” rec. 9/25/1916 Played by Joseph C. Smith’s Orchestra

  2. “Whispering” rec. 8/23/1920 Played by Paul Whiteman and his Ambassador Orchestra

  3. “Shveig telebende” rec. 5/16/1916 Performed by Anna Hoffman and Gus Goldstein

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The Kojo Nnamdi Show is produced by member-supported WAMU 88.5 in Washington DC.