web site hit counter The Beautiful Music All Around Us: Field Recordings and the American Experience - Ebooks PDF Online
Hot Best Seller

The Beautiful Music All Around Us: Field Recordings and the American Experience

Availability: Ready to download

 The Beautiful Music All Around Us presents the extraordinarily rich backstories of thirteen performances captured on Library of Congress field recordings between 1934 and 1942 in locations reaching from Southern Appalachia to the Mississippi Delta and the Great Plains. Including the children's play song "Shortenin' Bread," the fiddle tune "Bonaparte's Retreat," the blues  The Beautiful Music All Around Us presents the extraordinarily rich backstories of thirteen performances captured on Library of Congress field recordings between 1934 and 1942 in locations reaching from Southern Appalachia to the Mississippi Delta and the Great Plains. Including the children's play song "Shortenin' Bread," the fiddle tune "Bonaparte's Retreat," the blues "Another Man Done Gone," and the spiritual "Ain't No Grave Can Hold My Body Down," these performances were recorded in kitchens and churches, on porches and in prisons, in hotel rooms and school auditoriums. Documented during the golden age of the Library of Congress recordings, they capture not only the words and tunes of traditional songs but also the sounds of life in which the performances were embedded: children laugh, neighbors comment, trucks pass by. Musician and researcher Stephen Wade sought out the performers on these recordings, their families, fellow musicians, and others who remembered them. He reconstructs the sights and sounds of the recording sessions themselves and how the music worked in all their lives. Some of these performers developed musical reputations beyond these field recordings, but for many, these tracks represent their only appearances on record: prisoners at the Arkansas State Penitentiary jumping on "the Library's recording machine" in a rendering of "Rock Island Line"; Ora Dell Graham being called away from the schoolyard to sing the jump-rope rhyme "Pullin' the Skiff"; Luther Strong shaking off a hungover night in jail and borrowing a fiddle to rip into "Glory in the Meetinghouse." Alongside loving and expert profiles of these performers and their locales and communities, Wade also untangles the histories of these iconic songs and tunes, tracing them through slave songs and spirituals, British and homegrown ballads, fiddle contests, gospel quartets, and labor laments. By exploring how these singers and instrumentalists exerted their own creativity on inherited forms, "amplifying tradition's gifts," Wade shows how a single artist can make a difference within a democracy. Reflecting decades of research and detective work, the profiles and abundant photos in The Beautiful Music All Around Us bring to life largely unheralded individuals--domestics, farm laborers, state prisoners, schoolchildren, cowboys, housewives and mothers, loggers and miners--whose music has become part of the wider American musical soundscape. The hardcover edition  also includes an accompanying CD that presents these thirteen performances, songs and sounds of America in the 1930s and '40s.  


Compare

 The Beautiful Music All Around Us presents the extraordinarily rich backstories of thirteen performances captured on Library of Congress field recordings between 1934 and 1942 in locations reaching from Southern Appalachia to the Mississippi Delta and the Great Plains. Including the children's play song "Shortenin' Bread," the fiddle tune "Bonaparte's Retreat," the blues  The Beautiful Music All Around Us presents the extraordinarily rich backstories of thirteen performances captured on Library of Congress field recordings between 1934 and 1942 in locations reaching from Southern Appalachia to the Mississippi Delta and the Great Plains. Including the children's play song "Shortenin' Bread," the fiddle tune "Bonaparte's Retreat," the blues "Another Man Done Gone," and the spiritual "Ain't No Grave Can Hold My Body Down," these performances were recorded in kitchens and churches, on porches and in prisons, in hotel rooms and school auditoriums. Documented during the golden age of the Library of Congress recordings, they capture not only the words and tunes of traditional songs but also the sounds of life in which the performances were embedded: children laugh, neighbors comment, trucks pass by. Musician and researcher Stephen Wade sought out the performers on these recordings, their families, fellow musicians, and others who remembered them. He reconstructs the sights and sounds of the recording sessions themselves and how the music worked in all their lives. Some of these performers developed musical reputations beyond these field recordings, but for many, these tracks represent their only appearances on record: prisoners at the Arkansas State Penitentiary jumping on "the Library's recording machine" in a rendering of "Rock Island Line"; Ora Dell Graham being called away from the schoolyard to sing the jump-rope rhyme "Pullin' the Skiff"; Luther Strong shaking off a hungover night in jail and borrowing a fiddle to rip into "Glory in the Meetinghouse." Alongside loving and expert profiles of these performers and their locales and communities, Wade also untangles the histories of these iconic songs and tunes, tracing them through slave songs and spirituals, British and homegrown ballads, fiddle contests, gospel quartets, and labor laments. By exploring how these singers and instrumentalists exerted their own creativity on inherited forms, "amplifying tradition's gifts," Wade shows how a single artist can make a difference within a democracy. Reflecting decades of research and detective work, the profiles and abundant photos in The Beautiful Music All Around Us bring to life largely unheralded individuals--domestics, farm laborers, state prisoners, schoolchildren, cowboys, housewives and mothers, loggers and miners--whose music has become part of the wider American musical soundscape. The hardcover edition  also includes an accompanying CD that presents these thirteen performances, songs and sounds of America in the 1930s and '40s.  

55 review for The Beautiful Music All Around Us: Field Recordings and the American Experience

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jim

    For the true folk music enthusiast, this collection may not be much of a revelation. For a dilettante like myself, it was something completely new, and quite different than what I expected. Combined with the disc of actual recordings from ordinary people, recorded in their communities and often in their homes, this book brings a very real, personal look into the lives of people you've never heard of, whose performances were collected in the Library of Congress and often influenced the music we h For the true folk music enthusiast, this collection may not be much of a revelation. For a dilettante like myself, it was something completely new, and quite different than what I expected. Combined with the disc of actual recordings from ordinary people, recorded in their communities and often in their homes, this book brings a very real, personal look into the lives of people you've never heard of, whose performances were collected in the Library of Congress and often influenced the music we hear every day, without a thought for where it might have originated. The book begins with an introduction describing the efforts of John Work III, professor at Fisk University in Memphis and accomplished musician himself, along with the Lomaxes (John and his son Alan) of the Library of Congress, to preserve folk music for future generations by using portable disc-cutting machines to create records throughout the country. Work's idea (and personal contributions in his local area) sparked the effort, and from 1934 to 1942, the Lomaxes and their associates traveled through the country, primarily, it seems, in the South and West, to collect and record American folk music for preservation in the Library of Congress. Along the way, they collected glimpses into the lives of their subjects, and Stephen Wade took it upon himself, decades later, to flesh out these glimpses and tell the stories of the people and the experiences that drove their music. Along the way, he traces the origins of the songs themselves, explains (as best as can be determined) how they came to be in the form they were recorded in by the Lomaxes, and (fascinatingly) where they went from there. Each chapter (there are 12) tells the tale of a different recording, and breaks the narrative into several overlapping parts. Usually, the chapters begin and end with the personal stories, family backgrounds and biographical information about the singer or instrumentalist who made the recording. Along the way, Wade includes the stories about his personal encounters with the relatives and friends whom he interviewed, and pieces together what he can of the recording sessions themselves. Most of the performers recorded more than one song, but the focus of each chapter is a particular song, and so Wade also tells the biography of the song, and along the way highlights the evolutionary nature of folk music. So, fr example, the recording of "Coal Creek March" by Pete Steele tells the story of Pete and his family, but also tells the tale of the coal miners' battle with the mine owners at Coal Creek, traces the antecedents of the tune from other fiddle tunes, and talks of the others who recorded the same piece for the Library. It is usually clear why the specific recording in questions was chosen- Steele's take on the tune was widely acknowledged as the best, including by his eventual lifelong friend Pete Seeger, who obviously had greater fame. Meanwhile, bill Stepp's unique take on "Bonaparte's Retreat" lives on in Aaron Copland's Rodeo, which we hear today whenever we see the "Beef: It's What's for Dinner" commercials from a few years back. Wade's travels take him to small villages, old railyards, mountain hollows, and prisons in search of the stories. His chapter on Charlie Butler's "Diamond Joe," for instance, reveals only a little about the man who recorded a unique and influential version of a traditional tune, one that would be later recorded by many famous singers (including Bob Dylan); what became of Butler after his release is not well known. However, the lives of inmates at Parchman Prison in Mississippi, where Butler toiled for years and where he recorded the song, is given fascinating depth. Likewise, there is a mystery surrounding the eventual fate of Ora Dell Graham, the ebullient 12-year-old black girl in rural Mississippi, whose schoolyard chants (Pullin' a Skiff and Shortenin' Bread) give insight to the everyday lives of desperately poor black folks in that time and place, were the accidental result of a wrong turn taken by Alan Lomax. She may have died in a holdup in the mid 1940's, but it seems most likely that her sister was the one involved there, and Ora Dell was killed in an auto accident on her way out dancing at around the same time. Listening to her confident and clear voice on the recording, and learning of her difficult life and untimely death, creates a connection in the mind of the reader that goes beyond mere academic interest, and reaches into a emotional response, forming a bond that was, generally, the point of folk music for the people who engaged in playing or singing it. While some chapters are slower than others, the best stories create recognition in the reader, not only o the enduring value of the music itself, but in the inherent value of the lives of ordinary people, with whom we have nothing in common but our shared humanity. It is this human response to music and the emotions it evokes that allows us, today, to look back across years, long distances and yawning cultural divides, and enrich our lives with the stories of these performers, as well as the musical tales they shared.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Dan

    There's a famous book called "A People's History of the United States". Had that title not already been taken, it would have been a good title for this book. This book is really just a CD of old folk songs with really extensive liner notes. Wade has selected 13 songs from the Lomax collection and set out to tell the stories of how the recordings came to be and of who the people were that recorded them. In telling these stories, Wade provides insight into the experiences and stories of ordinary Am There's a famous book called "A People's History of the United States". Had that title not already been taken, it would have been a good title for this book. This book is really just a CD of old folk songs with really extensive liner notes. Wade has selected 13 songs from the Lomax collection and set out to tell the stories of how the recordings came to be and of who the people were that recorded them. In telling these stories, Wade provides insight into the experiences and stories of ordinary Americans from various walks of life. The only connecting thread is that at some point they ran into a folk song collector who asked to record them. Wade then tells the stories of the recordings themselves, where they went, who they inspired, and how they became weaved into the fabric of American and often international culture. In most of the cases, the artist who recorded them never had any idea of the impact the recording had. The stories are sometimes funny, sometimes sad, but always enlightening. This is a great book for anyone interested in the American experience from multiple sources whose stories would not otherwise be told.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Derek

    The stories in this book are powerful and humbling, and Wade's research is exhaustive, his writing eloquent. An absolute must-read for anyone interested in folk music, field recordings, and U.S. social history from the Depression era. Comes with a CD that includes all the songs that the book features. The stories in this book are powerful and humbling, and Wade's research is exhaustive, his writing eloquent. An absolute must-read for anyone interested in folk music, field recordings, and U.S. social history from the Depression era. Comes with a CD that includes all the songs that the book features.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth

  5. 4 out of 5

    Nathan Griffin

  6. 4 out of 5

    Chuck Naffier

  7. 5 out of 5

    Heather Grove

  8. 4 out of 5

    Kate Fritz

  9. 5 out of 5

    Frank Scott

  10. 5 out of 5

    Kenneth Jackson

  11. 5 out of 5

    Gail

  12. 4 out of 5

    Amelia Cotter

  13. 4 out of 5

    Dan and Jane Harrod

  14. 5 out of 5

    Owen Langston

  15. 4 out of 5

    Adam Schweigert

  16. 5 out of 5

    Namrirru

  17. 5 out of 5

    Will

  18. 4 out of 5

    Larry Henry

  19. 4 out of 5

    David Bird

  20. 5 out of 5

    Nolan Vallier

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jeff Clark

  22. 4 out of 5

    Patrick J. McGoldrick

  23. 5 out of 5

    Megan

  24. 5 out of 5

    S. L.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Vrteach

  26. 5 out of 5

    Ellen Hunter

  27. 5 out of 5

    Bill

  28. 5 out of 5

    Malcolm Smith

  29. 5 out of 5

    Lauren

  30. 4 out of 5

    Laura

  31. 5 out of 5

    René

  32. 5 out of 5

    Linda

  33. 5 out of 5

    Anthony Vaver

  34. 5 out of 5

    Kasia

  35. 5 out of 5

    Seth Stern

  36. 5 out of 5

    David Williams

  37. 5 out of 5

    Teddy

  38. 4 out of 5

    Alex Taylor

  39. 4 out of 5

    Brent

  40. 4 out of 5

    Ross Mohn

  41. 4 out of 5

    Gregory

  42. 4 out of 5

    Katie

  43. 5 out of 5

    Herbert Gambill

  44. 5 out of 5

    Vestal Public Library

  45. 4 out of 5

    Sara

  46. 5 out of 5

    Barry Chern

  47. 4 out of 5

    Hannahcamera

  48. 5 out of 5

    Bibliomama

  49. 4 out of 5

    Trevor

  50. 5 out of 5

    Candace

  51. 4 out of 5

    Adam

  52. 4 out of 5

    emily

  53. 5 out of 5

    Pat Padden

  54. 4 out of 5

    C.

  55. 5 out of 5

    Greg

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.