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"These records... exemplify the best qualities that make the recording arts such a vital part of our culture—and each not only uniquely reflects the zeitgeist of its time, but also possesses the enduring power of transcending time."
——NARAS chief
Neil Portnow

GRAMMY HALL OF FAME ADDS 33

Impressive Additions to Classic Collection Should Impress Academy's Dates
 NARAS has added 33 records to the Grammy Hall of Fame, underscoring once again that the Academy digs Al Jolson and Led Zeppelin.

The records, which include early recordings such as Jolson’s “Rock a Bye Your Baby With a Dixie Melody” (1918) and Ma Rainey’s “See See Rider Blues” (1925) as well as the BeatlesLet It Be, Zep’s eponymous album debut, Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” and lots of stuff in between, brings the total number of titles in the Hall to 639. And that’s just what they’ve got on vinyl.

"This year's inductees span nine decades and represent a diverse array of genres from classical and show tunes to blues, jazz and rock and roll," said Academy President Neil Portnow. "They exemplify the best qualities that make the recording arts such a vital part of our culture—and each not only uniquely reflects the zeitgeist of its time, but also possesses the enduring power of transcending time."

Neil then ran his hands lovingly over a copy of Mickey and Sylvia’s “Love Is Strange” (1957) and wondered when he’d get a chance to use the word “zeitgeist” in a quote again.

The Grammy Hall of Fame was launched in 1973 “to honor recordings of lasting qualitative or historical significance that are at least 25 years old.” An unofficial criterion is that all records must sound great if you’re, like, way blitzed.

The new list includes such singles as Frank Sinatra’s “I’ve Got the World on a String” (1953), “All I Have to Do Is Dream” by the Everly Brothers (1958), the Crystals’ “He’s a Rebel” (1962), Simon & Garfunkel’s “Sounds of Silence” (1965), “Aquarius/Let the Sun Shine In (The Flesh Failures)” by the 5th Dimension and Carly Simon’s “You’re So Vain” (1973).

Among the newly inducted LPs are Ellington at Newport (1956), Milestones by the Miles Davis Sextet (1958), Johnny Cash at San Quentin (1969), Joni Mitchell’s Court and Spark (1974) and the soundtracks to Walt Disney’s Fantasia (1956), West Side Story (1961), Funny Girl (1964) and Saturday Night Fever (1977).

The Grammy Hall of Fame will be highlighted during the upcoming Grammy Awards telecast on Feb. 8. For a complete list of inductees through 2003, click here.

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