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Discover Your “Musical DNA”

An online advertisement caught my eye: “Spotify & AncestryDNA Users Can Now Generate Personalized Playlists Based On Their DNA Heritage Results.”

Really? My musical DNA? What is that?

An article by Kaitlyn Wylde in the Bustle.com web site states:

AncestryDNA has joined forces with Spotify to create the ultimate personal playlist curation experience. And by “personal”, I mean the playlist that this partnership offers you will resonate with you very deeply — aka, the music is literally tuned to your DNA. Yes, using your AncestryDNA results, Spotify will put together a collection of songs that are based on your heritage. If you’re in the market for a closer connection to your music library, this special feature will definitely hit the spot. I mean, how much closer can you get than sharing DNA?

Music CDs, R.I.P.

A bit of history has faded away. Best Buy has stopped selling CDs at its stores. The sales of music CDs apparently is no longer profitable, due to digital streaming services such as Spotify, Apple Music, Pandora, and others.

Now CDs have gone the way of buggy whips. You can read more in an article in the MoneyWatch web site at: https://cbsn.ws/2KvkSzv.

CBC (English-language) and Radio-Canada (French) Music Library Closing, CD’s to be Digitised, Destroyed

It is sad news but I am not surprised. The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation is facing huge funding cuts from the government and increasing costs. The results include massive staff and production cuts. Rapidly developing technological developments are also driving the changes. The broadcaster, with its stations across the country has, over the decades, amassed a vast collection of recorded music and other artefacts. In 2012, and subsequent to a massive budget cut, the CBC began a policy of digitizing its collection to save space and storage costs, even as a move began to sell off buildings and move into smaller quarters. An executive with the project said, there will be no room in the new building for storage of the library.

Not only are CDs to be digitized and the destroyed, older records are to be destroyed without being converted to digital formats at all. The records to be destroyed include approximately 70,000 old 78rpm discs. Few of these were ever re-recorded on LP, and almost none of these exist on CD.

RootsTech 2016 Announces Keynote Speakers David Isay and Michael Leavitt and Musical Guests the Crescent Super Band, featuring Ryan Innes, and The Lower Lights

News from RootsTech:

SALT LAKE CITY, (January 8, 2016)—RootsTech, the largest family history conference in the world, announced today additional musical guests and keynote speakers who will join its inspiring all-star lineup. Nationally renowned musicians the Crescent Super Band and Ryan Innes will partner for an exclusive performance during the opening social event on Thursday, February 4. The session of RootsTech on Friday, February 5, will feature award-winning radio producer and founder of StoryCorps, David Isay, while the session on Saturday, February 6, will feature Michael Leavitt, who served in the Cabinet of President George W. Bush. Concluding the conference on February 6 will be the musical group The Lower Lights.

RootsTech_opening

MyHeritage Eurovision Bus heads to London

Attention European readers of this newsletter: You might want to attend the party on board the MyHeritage Eurovision Bus! According to an article in TVToday:


 

Fans are getting ready for Eurovision 2019, while music lovers spend the night in the pub.

MyHeritage’s Eurovision Bus has begun its tour of Europe, attending major pre-parties, hosting celebs and give Eurovision fans chances to win Eurovision tickets. The bus began its journey on April 6th in Amsterdam heading yesterday to Hamburg. It will be spending today in Copenhagen, however Brits wanting to get on board will need to head to London on April 14th.

The Internet Archive has Uploaded 450,000 songs Collected Before Myspace’s Massive Data Loss

I have written before learning about the music your ancestors enjoyed. (See https://blog.eogn.com/?s=music for a list of some of my previous articles about music.) Myspace used to be a good source for both old-time and modern music but last month, it became widely known that MySpace has lost much of the user data uploaded to it before 2016, including potentially million of music tracks from between 2003 to 2015. It is estimated that up to 53 million songs from 14 million artists were deleted.

Luckily, there is a free alternative.

Online Registration is Now Open for the Federation of Genealogical Societies’ 2019 National Conference

The following announcement was written by the Federation of Genealogical Societies:

The conference will be held August 21 – 24, at the Omni Shoreham hotel in Washington, DC. Hosted by the Federation of Genealogical Societies in cooperation with sponsoring local societies, corporate sponsors, and partner organizations, FGS 2019 offers a new full four-day format jam-packed with topics of interest to every genealogist. The theme for this conference is “Come Home to our Washington, DC.”

“We are so excited to open registration for the FGS annual conference. We have an extraordinary learning experience planned for everyone with a whole lot of added fun! We’re looking forward to seeing everyone this year in our nation’s capital,” said Faye L. Stallings, CG, President of the Federation of Genealogical Societies.

Conference Highlights

(+) Is Your CD-ROM Data Disappearing?

The following is a Plus Edition article written by and copyright by Dick Eastman. 

Genealogists are generally concerned with long-term data preservation. A lot of genealogists believe that the only method of preserving data is to print the information on paper. Yet, many of us have handled old pieces of paper that are decaying, crumbling, or fading to the point that the information is not readable. In fact, most paper manufactured in the past 75 years or so contains acids that will hasten the deterioration of the information you wish to preserve.

Even worse, the inks and laser printer toner we use today will fade in a few years, even if the paper survives. I already have papers in my filing cabinet I wrote or photocopied 25 or 30 years ago that have faded quite a bit. Some are already difficult to read because of faded ink or photocopy toner. Those papers probably will be unreadable in another 25 or 30 years.

As we have seen recently in several places around the world, paper is especially fragile. Paper documents are easily destroyed by fires, floods, earthquakes, mold, mildew, or building collapse. On several occasions, valuable paper documents have been lost forever due to simple burst water pipes.

Boston Public Library’s 78rpm Records Come to the Internet

This won’t help you discover your ancestors but will help you learn about the music they enjoyed. Following eighteen months of work, more than 50,000 78rpm record “sides” from the Boston Public Library’s sound archives have now been digitized and made freely available online by the Internet Archive.

Art Tatum

I am sitting here listening to It Had to be You by Jazz legend Art Tatum. The fidelity is what you would expect from a 78 rpm record made in 1944. That is, it is definitely low fidelity. However, it is obvious that Art Tatum was a keyboard maestro.

You can learn more about this new Boston Oublic Library’s additions to Archive.org’s collection of old music at http://bit.ly/2V5xVsm while the collection itself may be found at: https://archive.org/details/78rpm_bostonpubliclibrary.

 

RootsTech 2019 in Review

The following announcement was written by FamilySearch:

MyHeritage was Featured in a Unique Family History Tribute on the Steve Harvey Show

In honor of Black History Month, MyHeritage partnered with Steve Harvey to uncover and share the little known, yet inspiring legacy of musician and composer James Reese Europe. Through MyHeritage’s 9.5 billion historical records and a few family details, the company was able to reconstruct the life story and family tree of a musical legend who made an indelible impact on African American music while bravely serving his country in World War I.

Steve Harvey welcomed Europe’s great-grandson, Rob, and spoke with him about his great-grandfather’s legacy and how it’s influenced his life.

You can watch video of the episode in the player below or at: https://youtu.be/J0t-k5NEQDg.

The Singing Genealogists of Karnataka

Did you ever consider setting your family tree to music? How about musically reciting the members of the family tree for the past 9 centuries? And then doing that for multiple families?

That is what Helavas (professional genealogists) do in in ten districts of Karnataka, India.

An article by Amoolya Rajappa in TheWire.in web site describes the lives of the Helavaru community, a unique semi-nomadic tribe credited to have maintained documents containing the genealogy of several families in ten districts of Karnataka:

“It is believed that Helavas started practicing from the days of Basavanna, a 12th-century social reformer who rebelled against caste hierarchy and gender discrimination. Ever since they have carried on the practice of visiting households and narrating ancestral bloodlines in a lyrical fashion.”

The Global Family Reunion to Connect the World Again

The following announcement was written by the organizers of the Global Family Reunion:

Cousins across the continents come together to celebrate

14 February 2019: Four years ago, A.J. Jacobs, New York Times best-selling author, along with special guests including Ted Allen (Food Network), Dr. Mehmet Oz, comedian Nick Kroll, magician David Blaine, Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates, singer Lisa Loeb, filmmaker Morgan Spurlock, and musical group Sister Sledge (We Are Family), came together to celebrate the connectedness of the human family in an epic reunion unlike any other.

Almost 4,000 “cousins” gathered together at the main event in Queens, New York, while another 6,500 participated at simultaneous events around the world.

RootsTech 2019 Announces Lineup of Keynote Speakers and Entertainers

The following announcement was written by the RootsTech organizers:

RootsTech_2019_Keynote_Speaker_Collage.pngSalt Lake City, Utah (13 February 2019), RootsTech 2019, the world’s largest family history conference, announced its full lineup of keynote speakers and entertainers, including Saroo BrierleyPatricia HeatonDerek HoughJake Shimabukuro, and Steve Rockwood. Fueled by the popularity of DNA genealogy, social networking platforms, and related mobile apps, RootsTech 2018 had over 50,000 in-person and online attendees. Hosted by FamilySearch International, the conference will be held in Salt Lake City, Utah, February 27 through March 2, and select content is broadcast live online.

Keynote Speakers

RootsTech 2019 kicks off on Wednesday, February 27, with classes on topics such as DNA research, photo preservation, and using social media to preserve family legacies. Steve Rockwood, CEO of FamilySearch International, will be the featured keynote speaker on Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. mountain standard time.

How to Remotely Watch RootsTech 2019 Salt Lake City

The following announcement was written by the RootsTech organizers:

If you are unable to attend RootsTech 2019 in Salt Lake City, you have two remote viewing options. Some of the show’s sessions will be streamed live for free at RootsTech.org (see the broadcast schedule below)! If you want more, you can purchase a Virtual Pass to view additional sessions from the conference. RootsTech 2019 in Salt Lake City runs February 27 to March 3, 2019. Go to RootsTech.org to view the entire schedule of events.

The RootsTech daily general sessions will be broadcast live and for free. They include keynote addresses by Steve Rockwood, CEO of FamilySearch International, Patricia Heaton, popular actress from Everybody Loves Raymond and The Middle, Saroo Brierley, whose incredible family reunification story which inspired the movie, Lion, and Jake Shimabukuro, world renowned ukulele master.

In addition to the select free classes broadcasted, RootsTech is offering a Virtual Pass, which provides access to 18 online recorded sessions from the conference. You can watch playbacks from your laptop, tablet, or smartphone device whenever and however you’d like—for just $129. Go to Virtual Pass for more information.

IGRS adds 14,000 names to its Early Birth, Marriage and Death Indexes

The following announcement was written by the the Irish Genealogical Research Society:

Great news from the Irish Genealogical Research Society (IGRS). An additional 7,000 records have been uploaded to the Society’s Early Irish Birth, Marriage and Death Indexes, a unique collection of life event references from lesser-used and obscure sources. The update delivers 14,000 names, creating a new total names count for the three indexes of 274,000.

School Registers released Online by TheGenealogist

The following announcement was written by the folks at TheGenealogist:

TheGenealogist launches more school registers into its Educational Records adding tens of thousands of additional individuals.

  • The records can be used to discover a school pupil or university student’s achievements
  • Educational records will confirm birth dates and sometimes place of birth
  • Give father’s name and address useful when they are missing from the census
  • Give details of their later occupation etc.

Opinion: Your DNA Is Not Your Culture

This is a bit of a follow-up and a rebuttal to an article I published a few days ago: Discover Your “Musical DNA” at https://blog.eogn.com/2018/09/24/discover-your-musical-dna/:

Writing in The Atlantic, Sarah Zhang points out that “A Spotify playlist tailored to your DNA is the latest example of brands cashing in on people’s search for identity.”

MyHeritage becomes Presenting Partner of Eurovision 2019

The following announcement was written by MyHeritage:

September 26, 2018 – We’re delighted to share exciting news! MyHeritage, has been announced today by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) as Presenting Partner of the Eurovision Song Contest 2019! As the event’s main sponsor, MyHeritage has been granted extensive global association and event, media, and digital rights for the upcoming song contest.

The Eurovision Song Contest is a famous international song competition held annually since the 1950’s, primarily among the member countries of the European Broadcasting Union. It is the world’s biggest live music event, a hugely popular television event that has been watched live by an average of close to 200 million people in the past 3 years. The contest is hosted by the previous year’s winning country — as Israel won the 2018 competition, Eurovision 2019 will be held in Tel Aviv.

New Records Available To Search This Findmypast Friday

The following announcement was written by Findmypast:

There are over 222,000 new records and newspapers available to search this Findmypast Friday.

Irish Officers Died in the Great War, 1914-1919

Search over 1,000 records to learn more about the Irish officers who died in the First World War. Discover where and when an officer died, as well as the cause of death. You may also uncover details of an officer’s family and pre-war life.

Originally published in 1916 as Our Heroes, this book covered the period August 1914 to July 1916. It contained photographs, with biographical notes, of officers of Irish regiments and Irish officers of British regiments who had fallen in action, or who had been mentioned for Distinguished Conduct. Also included in this volume is a brief history of the chief events of the Great War (to July 1916) in which Irish regiments were engaged.

Honourable Women of the Great War, 1914-1918