I Wonder as I Wander: The Life of John Jacob Niles
Louisville native John Jacob Niles (1892–1980) is considered to be one of America's most influential musicians. As a composer and balladeer, Niles drew inspiration from the deep well of traditional Appalachian and African American folk songs. At the age of 16 Niles wrote one of his most enduring tunes, “Go 'Way from My Window,” basing it on a song fragment from a black farm worker. This iconic song has been performed by folk artists ever since and may even have inspired the opening line of Bob Dylan's “It Ain't Me Babe.” This book offers a rich portrait of the musician's ...Read More
God Bless America: Tin Pan Alley Goes to War
After Pearl Harbor, Tin Pan Alley songwriters rushed to write the Great American War Song—an “Over There” for World War II. The most popular songs, however, continued to be romantic ballads, escapist tunes, or novelty songs. To remedy the situation, the federal government created the National Wartime Music Committee, an advisory group of the Office of War Information (OWI), which outlined “proper” war songs, along with tips on how and what to write. The music business also formed its own Music War Committee to promote war songs.
Neither group succeeded. The OWI hoped that Tin Pan Alley could be converted ...Read More
The Women of Country Music: A Reader
Women have been pivotal in the country music scene since its inception, as Charles K. Wolfe and James E. Akenson make clear in The Women of Country Music. Their groundbreaking volume presents the best current scholarship and writing on female country musicians. Beginning with the 1920s career of teenage guitar picker Roba Stanley, the contributors go on to discuss Polly Jenkins and Her Musical Plowboys, 50s honky-tonker Rose Lee Maphis, superstar Faith Hill, the relationship between Emmylou Harris and poet Bronwen Wallace, the Louisiana Hayride’s Margaret Lewis Warwick, and more.
Charles K. Wolfe, professor of English and folklore at Middle ...Read More
Country Music Annual 2002
In the third volume of this acclaimed country music series, readers can explore topics ranging from the career of country music icon Conway Twitty to the recent phenomenal success of the bluegrass flavored soundtrack to the film O Brother, Where Art Thou?. The tricky relationship between conservative politics and country music in the sixties, the promotion of early country music artists with picture postcards, the history of “the voice of the Blue Ridge Mountains” (North Carolina radio station WPAQ), and the formation of the Country Music Association as a “chamber of commerce” for country music to battle its negative hillbilly ...Read More
Country Music Annual 2001
The swelling interest in popular music studies has far outpaced the outlets for publication. With the Country Music Annual, scholars, students, and interested readers have a place for sharing their research and ideas.
The subjects of this second volume range from one of the very first musicians to make country records, Henry Gilliland, to the current avant-garde work of the alternative country band Uncle Tupolo. Ernest Tubb’s musical roots, the origins of one of Roy Acuff’s classic gospel songs, and the Carter Family’s rhythms are discussed in these pages. Even NASCAR makes an appearance.
Advisory Board: Bill C. Malone, Nolan ...Read More
The Ballad Book of John Jacob Niles
A legend in the folk music community, John Jacob Niles enjoyed a lengthy career as a balladeer, folk collector, and songwriter. Ever close to his Kentucky roots, he spent much of his adulthood searching for the most well-loved songs of the southern Appalachia. The Ballad Book of John Jacob Niles brings together a wealth of songs with the stories that inspired them, arranged by a gifted performer. This new edition includes all of the melodies, text, commentary, and illustrations of the 1961 original and features a new introduction by Ron Pen, director of the John Jacob Niles Center for American ...Read More
Country Music Annual 2000
The swelling interest in popular music studies has far outpaced the outlets for publication. Country music, with its all-too-familiar stereotypes, has been particularly slow to gain scholarly acceptance. With the Country Music Annual, scholars, students, and even fans now have a outlet for the dissemination of research and ideas. Each volume of this new yearbook is devoted to all aspects of country music and is the only forum for series studies of the subject. Specific topics include old-time music, western swing, bluegrass, honky-tonk music, Cajun, instrumental music, Nashville sound era, new traditionalism, country rock, alternative country, Americana, modern folk, and ...Read More
Hell-Bent For Music: The Life of Pee Wee King
Pee Wee King's birth on February 18, 1914, into a Milwaukee working-class Polish family named Kuczynski was hardly an indicator that he would grow up to become a pioneer and superstar of country and western music. Certainly no one in the Polish-German community of his youth could have foreseen his influence on the direction of American popular music or his enduring fame on the stage of the Grand Ole Opry. Even Pee Wee King himself is incredulous at the unlikely twists and turns of his life and career.
Pee Wee King is best remembered today as the co-writer of the ...Read More
Singing The Glory Down: Amateur Gospel Music in South Central Kentucky, 1900-1990
In Singing the Glory Down, William Lynwood Montell contributes to a fuller understanding of twentieth-century American culture by examining the complex relationships between gospel music and the culture of the nineteen-county study area in which this music has flourished for a hundred years. He has recorded the memories and feelings of those who were young while the movement gathered steam and who remember it at its high point, and stories about those who have passed over that river about which they loved to sing.
In the early 1900s, a singing school or gospel convention was a major social event that ...Read More
Virginia's Blues, Country, & Gospel Records, 1902-1943: An Annotated Discography
During the years before World War II, hundreds of traditional musicians were sought out by commercial record companies, brought to New York or into local—often makeshift—studios, to cut recordings that would be marketed as "race" and "hillbilly" music. Virginia was home to scores of these performers, several of whom were to become internationally known. Among them were the Carter Family, the Golden Gate Quartet, Charlie Poole, and the Stoneman Family, whose music has touched millions of listeners far beyond the confines of the Old Dominion.
It is this historically important body of recordings from this unique period that forms the ...Read More
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