April 14, 2011

John Fahey Enters the Library of Congress

New Entries to the National Recording Registry

Under the terms of the National Recording Preservation Act of 2000, the Librarian, with advice from the Library’s National Recording Preservation Board (NRPB), is tasked with selecting every year 25 recordings that are "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant" and are at least 10 years old. The selections for the 2010 registry bring the total number of recordings to 325.

17. "Blind Joe Death," John Fahey (1959, 1964, 1967)
In 1959 solo guitarist John Fahey self-published the first version of this album, pressing only 100 copies and distributing them locally in Washington, D.C. and among his acquaintances. In subsequent years, he re-recorded selections of the album on different occasions, expressing a preference for the more technically demanding performances on the 1967 stereo release. Heavily influenced by classic blues and folk 78-rpm recordings he had collected since his youth, Fahey’s solo guitar compositions also incorporate such surprising influences as the work of Charles Ives and Bela Bartok to forge uniquely personal statements.

Thanks to the Dust-to-Digital newsletter for drawing my attention to this gem.


  1. So finally Fahey enters eternity...
    Not one second too early...


  2. Whattya know?! LOC is a inexpensive way to copyright ones works, I copyrighted three of my discs through LOC. -Andrew S.