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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Cuilionn The Last Generation? (130* d) RE: The Last Generation? 18 Nov 09


Reminds me of the debate over the survival of the Gaelic language. For at least three hundred years, Hie-Heid-Yins and BigWigs and Muckety-Mucks have been holding forth with their Expert Opinions that the poor wee language of those quaint island barbarians is surely hanging on by its fingernails, about to fall into the Yawning Chasm of linguistic and cultural extinction. When I started studying the language myself, about 14 years ago, there were ten thousand LESS "native" speakers than there are today, and the number of people with some degree of facility with the language has practically doubled as social and political changes have made Gaelic "ethnically hip" again.

The Music of The Folk is like that-- push it to the brink, and push The People to the brink, and several things are likely to happen:

Some Folk will declare the End and jump over. Some Folk will sit down at the edge and start sobbin' until a few of them hit a harmony, and they'll rediscover The Blues. Some Folk will stand up and shout that they don't wanna jump, until a bunch of them are shouting together, and they'll rediscover Protest Songs. Some Folk will start listening to all the amazing edge-of-the-cliff stories around them, get seized with a tune or two, start passing the stories around, and that'll be a session, a concert, a hootenanny, a ceilidh... and Folk Music will keep on keepin' on, because there's this crazy human impulse that seems to keep Folks singing--and singing together--no matter what.


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