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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
lucky_p This Forum & American Folk Music (100* d) RE: This Forum & American Folk Music 02 Sep 04


I see your point, except that folk music, particularly its "roots" element (i.e., union songs, songs of the civil war/revolutionary war, songs of the westward migration, women's songs, freedom songs, field hollars, appalachian banjo and fiddle tunes, cajun culture, sea chanteys, and the list goes on) -- this not tin pan alley and it is not popular music (except the "singer-songwriters" who are really performing popular music, and while much of it I do like, it is not "folk music.") Folk music has a social and political agenda, always has. It has a life beyond the words and melody and harmony. It's a political statement when the expectation is that the audience will be encouraged to sing along with the performer, as peers, as part of the performance, rather than the performer singing for a passive, silent audience. In short, there are many special dimensions and characteristics of folk music that sets it apart from other forms of music and, I believe, elevates it in some ways like traditional jazz and blues -- other "homemade" music. And it should be proud of itself for that distinction, and promoted as such, and represent an artistic/musical bulwark against the violence and ignorance and cheapness of so much of popular music/popular culture today.

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