Profile: Amanda Smith
Musician, Library of Congress
Amanda Smith joined the Library of Congress in 2013 as a Music Reader Services Librarian in the Music Section of the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped. She has been a musician most of her life, playing piano and then trumpet. She received a BM in Music Education from Appalachian State University, and a MM with a concentration in Music History and Literature and a MLIS in Library and Information Science from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. In the past, she assisted with the archival processing of dance collections in the Music Division of the Library of Congress. Amanda is a native North Carolinian, which she believes greatly influenced her fondness of Southern Appalachian music and folk music in general. She currently enjoys focusing her interests on American folk and vernacular music traditions of the early to mid twentieth century.
NoteStreams By Amanda Smith
A tour of music publishing, and transforming music manuscripts into publications for students and the performer.
Born in the 1890’s in Freestone County, Texas, Jefferson died some 30 years later on the 18th or 19th of December, 1929. At an early age, he was blind, or nearly so. As a young man, he traveled around Texas as a street musician.
Recently, I came across an article about an Egyptian orchestra made up solely of blind women musicians. The group has been active since the 1960s, branching out from the Al Nour Wal Amal Association – Al Nour Wal Amal, meaning “Light and Hope.” Stories about the group have been picked up by The New Yorker and National Public Radio (NPR). The Al Nour Wal Amal organization, and consequently its orchestra, stands apart in its mission, which is to protect the human rights of the women it embraces. However, the concept of completely blind and visually impaired performance groups are more common than one may think.