YIVO Institute for Jewish Research: Yivo Launches The Ruth Rubin Legacy: An Online Sound Archive Of Yiddish Folksongs. “The YIVO Institute for Jewish Research (YIVO) announces the launch of a new online-exhibition highlighting the field recordings of over 1,500 Yiddish lider (songs) made by renowned vocalist and scholar, Ruth Rubin. Performed by some of the most extraordinary traditional singers of the 20th century, including Rubin herself, the 78rpm acetate discs, reel-to-reel tapes and cassettes recorded by Rubin between 1946 and the 1970s have been painstakingly re-assembled and are made accessible in an easy to use online platform for the first time. In addition to a state of the art search portal in which field recordings can be browsed by song title, genre, performer, and more, the exhibition includes a variety of materials including lectures, concerts, radio interviews, videos, and rare and unpublished manuscripts, photographs, and more.”
Library of Congress: National Recording Registry Reaches 500. “Tony Bennett’s hit single, ‘I Left My Heart in San Francisco’; the Latin beat of Gloria Estefan and the Miami Sound Machine’s 1987 ‘Rhythm is Gonna Get You’; the timeless soundtrack of ‘The Sound of Music’; Run-DMC’s 1986 crossover hit album ‘Raising Hell’; and radio coverage of the birth of the U.N. have been honored for their cultural, historic and aesthetic importance to the American soundscape. Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden today named these recordings and 20 other titles to the National Recording Registry of the Library of Congress as aural treasures worthy of preservation.” Including Chic’s LE FREAK. As an unashamed fan of disco, I am positively giddy.
Google Blog: Simple music-making for everyone. “For this year’s Music in Our Schools Month, we’ve added a new experiment to the website called Song Maker. It’s a simple way for anyone to make a song, then share it with a link—no need to log in or make an account. Anyone can instantly hear what you made, and even riff on it to make their own song. It lives on the web, so you don’t need to install any apps to try it. And, it works across devices—phones, tablets, computers.”
New-to-me: a database of contemporary musical theatre songs — ContemporaryMusicalTheatre.com . From the about page: “ContemporaryMusicalTheatre.com is a subscription website that connects voice teachers, students and musical theatre professionals with today’s best contemporary writers and songs. We represent over 180 writers and 500 largely unpublished songs, curated by industry professionals, searchable by voice and song type and available for purchase directly on our site. We are the only site that does not take a cent of the writers’ sales.”
Engadget: Google Assistant can ID that song for you . “You don’t need to have a Pixel 2 to get a built-in song identifier anymore: Google has finally given Assistant the ability to compete with Shazam. Next time you hear a nice tune playing, you can simply ask Assistant ‘What song is this?’ and it will reply with the title and artist. It will also toss in an info card with the title of the album where you can find the track, the date it was released and embedded links to Search, YouTube and Play that make it easier to get the song or to listen to it again.”
New-to-me, found via a Google Alert, looks like it’s relatively recent, from Yale: Digital Archive of Medieval Song. “This project will develop a digital platform to publish texts, manuscript images, music, and scholarly resources relating to medieval song in late-medieval England. Approximately 3,000 lyrics in English survive in 450 manuscripts from the twelfth to the early sixteenth century, alongside many more in Latin and French. The large majority are anonymous; some are copied with music. Only a fraction of this important repertory has been studied and performed. This Archive aims to make the close and careful study of these songs in original manuscripts accessible to the scholars and public who are interested in the rich history of song in England.”
NurseryWorld: Scottish Book Trust unveils new Song and Rhyme Library. “Housed on the Bookbug website, the new Song and Rhyme Library provides a searchable online catalogue of fun demonstration videos for parents, carers and early years practitioners in Scotland.” There’s not a lot here yet but songs in Gaelic and Scots are available as well as English.