the banjo america s african instrument

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The Banjo

Author : Laurent Dubois
ISBN : 9780674968837
Genre : History
File Size : 73. 35 MB
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American slaves drew on memories of African musical traditions to construct instruments from carved-out gourds covered with animal skin. Providing a sense of rootedness, solidarity, and consolation, banjo picking became an essential part of black plantation life, and its unmistakable sound remains versatile and enduring today, Laurent Dubois shows.

America S Instrument

Author : Philip F. Gura
ISBN : 0807824844
Genre : Music
File Size : 30. 69 MB
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This handsome illustrated history traces the transformation of the banjo from primitive folk instrument to sophisticated musical machine and, in the process, offers a unique view of the music business in nineteenth-century America. Philip Gura and Jame

African Banjo Echoes In Appalachia

Author : Cecelia Conway
ISBN : 0870498932
Genre : Music
File Size : 75. 24 MB
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Throughout the Upland South, the banjo has become an emblem of white mountain folk, who are generally credited with creating the short-thumb-string banjo, developing its downstroking playing styles and repertory, and spreading its influence to the national consciousness. In this groundbreaking study, however, Cecelia Conway demonstrates that these European Americans borrowed the banjo from African Americans and adapted it to their own musical culture. Like many aspects of the African-American tradition, the influence of black banjo music has been largely unrecorded and nearly forgotten--until now. Drawing in part on interviews with elderly African-American banjo players from the Piedmont--among the last American representatives of an African banjo-playing tradition that spans several centuries--Conway reaches beyond the written records to reveal the similarity of pre-blues black banjo lyric patterns, improvisational playing styles, and the accompanying singing and dance movements to traditional West African music performances. The author then shows how Africans had, by the mid-eighteenth century, transformed the lyrical music of the gourd banjo as they dealt with the experience of slavery in America. By the mid-nineteenth century, white southern musicians were learning the banjo playing styles of their African-American mentors and had soon created or popularized a five-string, wooden-rim banjo. Some of these white banjo players remained in the mountain hollows, but others dispersed banjo music to distant musicians and the American public through popular minstrel shows. By the turn of the century, traditional black and white musicians still shared banjo playing, and Conway shows that this exchange gave rise to a distinct and complex new genre--the banjo song. Soon, however, black banjo players put down their banjos, set their songs with increasingly assertive commentary to the guitar, and left the banjo and its story to white musicians. But the banjo still echoed at the crossroads between the West African griots, the traveling country guitar bluesmen, the banjo players of the old-time southern string bands, and eventually the bluegrass bands. The Author: Cecelia Conway is associate professor of English at Appalachian State University. She is a folklorist who teaches twentieth-century literature, including cultural perspectives, southern literature, and film.

That Half Barbaric Twang

Author : Karen Linn
ISBN : 025206433X
Genre : Music
File Size : 76. 29 MB
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This is an interpretation of the changing and conflicting images of a musical instrument as found in the national, commercial culture of the United States.


Author : Bob Carlin
ISBN : 1495011240
Genre : Music
File Size : 47. 60 MB
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(Book). The banjo is emblematic of American country music, and it is at the core of other important musical movements, including jazz and ragtime. The instrument has been adopted by many cultures and has been ingrained into many musical traditions, from Mento music in the Caribbean and dance music in Ireland. Virtuosos such as Bela Fleck have played Bach, African music, and Christmas tunes on the five-string banjo, and the instrument has had a resurgence in pop music with such acts a Mumford and Sons and the Avett Brothers. This book offers the first comprehensive, illustrated history of the banjo in its many forms. It traces the story of the instrument from its roots in West Africa to its birth in the Americas, through its coming of age in the Industrial Revolution and beyond. The book profiles the most important players and spotlights key luthiers and manufacturers. It features 100 "milestone instruments" with in-depth coverage, including model details and beautiful photos. It offers historical context surrounding the banjo through the ages, from its place in Victorian parlors and speakeasies through its role in the folk boom of the 1950s and 1960s to its place in the hands of songwriter John Hartford and comedian Steve Martin. Folk, jazz, bluegrass, country, and rock the banjo has played an important part in all of these genres. Lavishly illustrated, and thoughtfully written by author, broadcaster, and acclaimed banjoist Bob Carlin, this is a must-have for lovers of fretted instruments, aficionados of roots music, and music history buffs.

The Guitar In America

Author : Jeffrey Noonan
ISBN : 1604733020
Genre : Guitar
File Size : 33. 16 MB
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The Guitar in America offers a history of the instrument from America\'s late Victorian period to the Jazz Age. The narrative traces America\'s BMG (banjo, mandolin, and guitar) community, a late nineteenth-century musical and com-mercial movement dedicated to introducing these instru-ments into America\'s elite musical establishments. Using surviving BMG magazines, the author details an almost unknown history of the guitar during the movement\'s heyday, tracing the guitar\'s transformation from a refined parlor instrument to a mainstay in jazz and popular music. In the process, he not only introduces musicians (including numerous women guitarists) who led the movement, but also examines new techniques and instruments. Chapters consider the BMG movement\'s impact on jazz and popular music, the use of the guitar to promote attitudes towards women and minorities, and the challenges foreign guitarists such as Miguel Llobet and Andres Segovia presented to America\'s musicians. This volume opens a new chapter on the guitar in America, considering its cultivated past and documenting how banjoists and mandolinists aligned their instruments to it in an effort to raise social and cultural standing. At the same time, the book considers the BMG community within America\'s larger musical scene, examining its efforts as manifestations of this country\'s uneasy coupling of musical art and commerce. Jeffrey J. Noonan, associate professor of music at Southeast Missouri State University, has performed professionally on classical guitar, Renaissance lute, Baroque guitar, and theorbo for over twenty-five years. His articles have appeared in Soundboard and NYlon Review .

Banjo For Dummies

Author : Bill Evans
ISBN : 9781118746257
Genre : Music
File Size : 63. 26 MB
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Play your way to banjo-playing expertise Traditionally associated with country, folk, and bluegrass music, the banjo is accessible to anyone with the patience and willpower to learn it. This second edition of Banjo For Dummies does the rest of the work for you with updated practice lessons, teaching techniques, and step-by-step examples. With this guide, you will learn tips and techniques for selecting the right instruments and accessories, how to develop correct hand position and posture, and how to tune, care for, and make simple repairs to the instrument. An updated multimedia component features companion audio tracks and complementary video lessons that cement the concepts readers gain during their reading. Written by Bill Evans, an accomplished five-string banjo player, teacher, writer, and historian Includes access to "how-to" videos on Ideal for anyone who wants to learn to play this classic instrument For musicians hoping to lend their art an edge or interested learners looking to pick up a unique skill, Banjo For Dummies is a must-have, straightforward guide to success.

Hidden In The Mix

Author : Diane Pecknold
ISBN : 9780822394976
Genre : Music
File Size : 43. 16 MB
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Country music's debt to African American music has long been recognized. Black musicians have helped to shape the styles of many of the most important performers in the country canon. The partnership between Lesley Riddle and A. P. Carter produced much of the Carter Family's repertoire; the street musician Tee Tot Payne taught a young Hank Williams Sr.; the guitar playing of Arnold Schultz influenced western Kentuckians, including Bill Monroe and Ike Everly. Yet attention to how these and other African Americans enriched the music played by whites has obscured the achievements of black country-music performers and the enjoyment of black listeners. The contributors to Hidden in the Mix examine how country music became "white," how that fictive racialization has been maintained, and how African American artists and fans have used country music to elaborate their own identities. They investigate topics as diverse as the role of race in shaping old-time record catalogues, the transracial West of the hick-hopper Cowboy Troy, and the place of U.S. country music in postcolonial debates about race and resistance. Revealing how music mediates both the ideology and the lived experience of race, Hidden in the Mix challenges the status of country music as "the white man’s blues." Contributors. Michael Awkward, Erika Brady, Barbara Ching, Adam Gussow, Patrick Huber, Charles Hughes, Jeffrey A. Keith, Kip Lornell, Diane Pecknold, David Sanjek, Tony Thomas, Jerry Wever


Author : Claude McKay
ISBN : 0156106752
Genre : Fiction
File Size : 36. 5 MB
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A wandering Black longshoreman searches for racial and individual identity amid the fugitives who congregate in the waterfront slums of Marseilles

The Akonting

Author : Steve Levitt
ISBN : 1484898621
Genre : Music
File Size : 49. 31 MB
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This book tells a fascinating story, based on recently uncovered and seldom known history, about an African legacy that appears to have had a profound impact on a musical instrument that America holds dear, the banjo. This illustrated story, in rhyming narrative form, is based on the history of the present day American banjo beginning from a distant ancestor, the Akonting, which is the traditional folk lute of the Jola people of Senegambia, West Africa. The story unfolds as the Akonting, along with similar West African instruments, came to the Americas during the Transatlantic slave trade and led to the development of early slave gourd banjos which ultimately evolved over time to become the banjo we know today. The Akonting's unique combination of a key structural feature along with a specific playing style, today often called 'clawhammer' or 'frailing, ' appears to have had a significant influence on how the present open back 5-string banjo is both constructed and often traditionally played. The Akonting is now viewed as an important predecessor of today's banjo and its music.

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