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Folk Music

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Folk Music and Song in the WPA Ex-Slave Narratives

Between 1937 and 1940 fieldworkers in the Works Progress Administration’s Federal Writers’ Project interviewed around 3,500 formerly enslaved people in North America, resulting in roughly 20,000 pages ...

Cabin Boys, Milkmaids, and Rough Seas

By Jessica M. Floyd
Categories: Folklore

During his correspondence with erotic folklore collector Gershon Legman, famed chantey singer and collector Stan Hugill (1906–1992) shared unexpurgated versions of the songs in his repertoire. These ...

My Memories of John Hartford

My Memories of John Hartford is a memoir about author Bob Carlin's years working alongside singer, songwriter, banjoist, and fiddler John Hartford (1937-2001). Throughout his short life, Hartford was ...

Poor Gal

Poor Gal: The Cultural History of Little Liza Jane chronicles the origins and evolution of a folk tune beloved by millions worldwide. Dan Gutstein delves into the trajectory of the “Liza Jane” family ...

Making Music

The banjo has been emblematic of the Southern Appalachian Mountains since the late twentieth century. Making Music: The Banjo in a Southern Appalachian County takes a close look at the instrument and banjo ...

Rags and Bones

Contributions by Joshua Coleman, Christine Hand Jones, Kevin C. Neece, Charlotte Pence, George Plasketes, Jeffrey Scholes, Jeff Sellars, Toby Thompson, and Jude Warne

After performing with Ronnie Hawkins ...

Rugs, Guitars, and Fiddling

By Chris Goertzen
Categories: Folklore

What do exotic area rugs, handcrafted steel-string guitars, and fiddling have in common today? Many contemporary tradition bearers embrace complexity in form and content. They construct objects and performances ...


Born in 1928 in a tent on the shore of Loch Fyne, Argyll, Duncan Williamson (d. 2007) eventually came to be recognized as one of the foremost storytellers in Scotland and the world. Webspinner: Songs, ...

Following the Drums

Following the Drums: African American Fife and Drum Music in Tennessee is an epic history of a little-known African American instrumental music form. John M. Shaw follows the music from its roots in West ...

Songs of Earth

By Anna L. Wood
Foreword by Robert Garfias
Introduction by Victor Grauer
Contributions by Stella Silbert
Categories: Music And Ethnomusicology

Based upon Cantometrics: An Approach to the Anthropology of Music (1976), by Alan Lomax, Songs of Earth: Aesthetic and Social Codes in Music is a contemporary guide to understanding and exploring Cantometrics, ...