Early Downhome Blues: A Musical and Cultural Analysis

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UNC Press Books, Feb 1, 2014 - Music - 340 pages
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Hailed as a classic in music studies when it was first published in 1977, Early Downhome Blues is a detailed look at traditional country blues artists and their work.

Combining musical analysis and cultural history approaches, Titon examines the origins of downhome blues in African American society. He also explores what happened to the art form when the blues were commercially recorded and became part of the larger American culture. From forty-seven musical transcriptions, Titon derives a grammar of early downhome blues melody. His book is enriched with the recollections of blues performers, audience members, and those working in the recording industry.

In a new afterword, Titon reflects on the genesis of this book in the blues revival of the 1960s and the politics of tourism in the current revival under way.

 

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Contents

Down Home
3
The Singers Perspective
30
Early Downhome Blues on Record A Representative Sample
59
Musical Analysis Toward a SongProducing System
137
Formulaic Structure and Meaning in Early Downhome Blues Lyrics
175
Recording the Blues
193
The Cultural Significance of Race Record Advertisements
218
Afterword
261
Patterns of Record Purchase and Listening
281
Sermon by the Reverend Burnett Dickinson Is There Harm in Singing the Blues?
287
NOTES
289
Bibliography
305
Index
313
Copyright

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Page 4 - Census has defined a plantation as a "continuous tract of land of considerable area under the general supervision or control of a single Individual or firm, all or a part of such tract being divided into at least five smaller tracts, which are leased to tenants.

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About the author (2014)

Jeff Todd Titon is professor of music at Brown University and author of Downhome Blues Lyrics, Powerhouse for God, and Give Me This Mountain.

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