Folk Music: The Basics

Folk Music: The Basics

Folk Music: The Basics

Folk Music: The Basics

Synopsis

Folk Music: The Basics gives a brief introduction to British and American folk music. Drawing upon the most recent and relevant scholarship, it will focus on comparing and contrasting the historical nature of the three aspects of understanding folk music: traditional, local performers; professional collectors; and the advent of professional performers in the twentieth century during the so-called "folk revival." The two sides of the folk tradition will be examined--both as popular and commercial expressions. Folk Music: The Basicsserves as an excellent introduction to the players, the music, and the styles that make folk music an enduring and well-loved musical style. Throughout, sidebars offer studies of key folk performers, record labels, and related issues to place the general discussion in context.

Excerpt

Folk Music: The Basics is designed as an introduction to the history of folk music in Great Britain and the United States, concentrating on the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. I have drawn upon a wide range of sources, with the most helpful and important books listed in the bibliography, including the previously published Blues: The Basics by Dick Weissman. I have also added a discography of selected CDs, most of which should be currently available.

The student today has the good fortune to have available much of the recorded folk music of the twentieth century, so that the music is more than an abstraction. Of course, folk music can be variously defined, and I have tried a realistic interpretation in Chapter 1, although my later discussion might not always adhere to my own self-imposed musical limits. I explore these developments in both Great Britain and the United States, and in the process trace the strong historical connections and influences between the two, which I hope is my contribution to the ongoing literature. There has been a similar folk music history in Canada, but . . .

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