The Blueprint has already gone down in hip-hop history; now, it joins a new prestigious rank among the U.S. National Registry.
Jay's groundbreaking 2001 rap record is among the 25 titles selected this year by the Library’s National Recording Preservation Board. Every year, the board selects 25 titles to add to their slate for their cultural and aesthetic significance.
That Jay-Z, former hustler turned rapper turned successful entrepreneur, and the embodiment of the American Dream, has been included is a huge step both for hip-hop and America. Considering how many radio stations refused to play “race records” around the time of rap’s inception, it’s significant that rap is being acknowledged as an art form with yet another historical accolade.
Other recordings included in the Registry this year: Nina Simon’s “Mississippi Goddam,” Earth, Wind & Fire’s “September,” Sam & Dave’s “Soul Man,” Neil Diamond’s “Sweet Caroline,” and a Robert F. Kennedy speech given after Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s 1968 assassination.