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GUEST,Big Ballad Singer US Folk Revival of '50s and '60s...? (18) RE: US Folk Revival of '50s and '60s...? 30 Jun 11


The first books I read about anything folk-related were about blues singers from the Mississippi Delta and Piedmont regions of the Southern U.S. Those books almost all referenced the Carter family and/or Jimmie Rodgers. Researching them, esp. the Carters, ultimately led me to discover Woody Guthrie, as did my early appreciation for Bob Dylan's catalog.

I generally stayed away from the more 'commercial' folk artists (ironic, though, because the Carters, such bastions of down-home traditionalism, were HUGE recording stars of their day), but it wasn't because I knew any better... it was because I worked at a bookstore with a good music section. They always had the Smithsonian/Folkways recordings, and we were allowed to take home the "in-store play" copies after they had been broadcast in the store. I got hold of Woody, Roscoe Holcomb and a ton of others.

These days, I see a book about "folk music", and anymore, they've got pictures of Simon/Garfunkel, Joni Mitchell and a lot of other decidedly non-trad people on the cover or in the index.

I'm guessing it won't be long 'till there's a new "rediscovery" of old-time music, just like what happened with the "O, Brother..." phenomenon.

Ukulele craze, anyone? ;)


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