Monday, September 01, 2008

The folk sound

Been trying to dig through some Alan Lomax recordings lately. He was a musician and recorder of music throughout the 20th century in America and beyond, who contributed over 10,000(!) recordings and interviews to the Library of Congress. He often travelled to rural locales and through his recordings gave an audience to many performers of blues, folk, bluegrass, and other traditional music who otherwise most likely would not have been heard beyond their own local area. His knowledge of early music was so encyclopedic that he worked with Carl Sagan as a consultant for the record sent to space to represent earth's music to any aliens with a record player and some groove.

Where to start with some of his recordings? With so many, I haven't yet begun to scratch the surface. But I have so far liked his southern recordings and prison songs.


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