Homegrown Music: Discovering Bluegrass

By Stephanie P. Ledgin | Go to book overview

2

The Evolution of Bluegrass: A Mosaic of Influences

“We can't know where we're going until we know where we've been.” These are the words of Emmylou Harris, a star whose music has covered traditional roots to electrified country rock. 1

The history of bluegrass music is filled with a rich, colorful tapestry of tradition. Much of what is defined as bluegrass, or recognized under the bluegrass umbrella today, is largely dependent on its roots, the musics from which it grew and from which it is borrowed. And sometimes it is difficult to untangle these roots from the main “trunk” of bluegrass.

As explained in chapter 1, in the purist's book, bluegrass is not considered folk music. Yet, it did evolve from a number of true folk traditions, those of early Anglo-Americans as well as of African slaves, later free blacks. However, even these traditions are racially mixed to the point where there is not always a clear-cut division of whose music was the “original.”

This could also explain why a lot of the music lays claim to multiple sources, leading to varying versions and titles. The same song or tune often had a “white” interpretation in addition to a corresponding “black” rendering. Today, we have modern technology to help spread music across communities and cultures. More than a century ago, the lack of such audio or electronic technology likely encouraged people to, at the very least, get out and listen to, as well as share in, music. In mountain areas, whites and blacks were neighbors; music and dance were often “community” events.

Among the material brought over by early settlers were age-old English ballads and timeworn fiddle tunes of the Celtic Isles. Many immigrants were highly artistic, coming from the culturally developed areas of northwest

1Quote observed painted on a wall at the end of the “Sing Me Back Home” exhibit, Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, Nashville, Tennessee, February 2003.

-9-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Homegrown Music: Discovering Bluegrass
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 182

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.