Héctor Lavoe and Juan Gabriel
Héctor Lavoe and Juan Gabriel Creative Commons

Every year since 2000, the Library of Congress picks 25 recordings for its National Recording Registry due to its merits as "audio treasures worthy of preservation for all time." This time around, the institution included two Latin American songs: Hector Lavoe's "El Cantante" and Juan Gabriel's "Amor Eterno", arguably each artist's most recognizable songs. The complete list of 25 songs includes songs by Abba, Green Day and The Notorious B.I.G.

"El Cantante" was the first single in Lavoe's 1978 album "Comedia". The song was written by Rubén Blades and produced by Willie Colón, two legends of the Salsa genre. It was a smash hit for Lavoe, rekindling his career after years of drug abuse and legal issues. It was also a critical success that gave him the nickname that would accompany him until his untimely death: El Cantante de los Cantantes.

"Amor Eterno" was written by Juan Gabriel in 1984, inspired by the death of his mother ten years before. The news found the singer/composer on tour in Acapulco, a fact that is recognized during the song's lyrics. The song was popularized by Rocío Dúrcal and has been covered by Il Divo, Silvana Estrada, Belinda and many more.

A record 2,899 nominations were made by the public this year to consider adding to the registry through its website The final list is decided by the National Recording Preservation Board based on their cultural, historical or aesthetic importance. This year's selections bring the number of titles on the registry to 650.

You can find the complete list of recordings selected for the 2024 National Recording Registry below:

  • "Clarinet Marmalade" – Lt. James Reese Europe's 369th U.S. Infantry Band (1919)
  • "Kauhavan Polkka" – Viola Turpeinen and John Rosendahl (1928)
  • Wisconsin Folksong Collection (1937-46)
  • "Rose Room" – Benny Goodman Sextet with Charlie Christian (1939)
  • "Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer" – Gene Autry (1949)
  • "Tennessee Waltz" – Patti Page (1950)
  • "Rocket '88'" – Jackie Brenston and His Delta Cats (1951)
  • "Catch a Falling Star" / "Magic Moments" – Perry Como (1957)
  • "Chances Are" – Johnny Mathis (1957)
  • "The Sidewinder" – Lee Morgan (1964)
  • "Surrealistic Pillow" – Jefferson Airplane (1967)
  • "Ain't No Sunshine" – Bill Withers (1971)
  • "This is a Recording" – Lily Tomlin (1971)
  • "J.D. Crowe & the New South" – J.D. Crowe & the New South (1975)
  • "Arrival" – ABBA (1976)
  • "El Cantante" – Héctor Lavoe (1978)
  • "The Cars" – The Cars (1978)
  • "Parallel Lines" – Blondie (1978)
  • "La-Di-Da-Di" – Doug E. Fresh and Slick Rick (MC Ricky D) (1985)
  • "Don't Worry, Be Happy" – Bobby McFerrin (1988)
  • "Amor Eterno" – Juan Gabriel (1990)
  • "Pieces of Africa" – Kronos Quartet (1992)
  • "Dookie" – Green Day (1994)
  • "Ready to Die" – The Notorious B.I.G. (1994)
  • "Wide Open Spaces" – The Chicks (1998)

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