The Voices that Are Gone: Themes in Nineteenth-Century American Popular Song
In this unique and readable study, Jon Finson views the mores and values of nineteenth-century Americans as they appear in their popular songs. The author sets forth lyricists' and composers' notions of courtship, technology, death, African Americans, Native Americans, and European ethnicity by grouping songs topically. He goes on to explore the interaction between musical style and lyrics within each topic. The lyrics and changing musical styles present a vivid portrait of nineteenth-century America. The composers discussed in the book range from Henry Russell ("Woodman, Spare That Tree"), Stephen Foster ("Oh! Susanna"), and Dan Emmett ("I Wish I Was in Dixie's Land"), to George M. Cohan and Maude Nugent ("Sweet Rosie O'Grady"), and Gussie Lord Davis ("In the Baggage Coach Ahead"). Readers will recognize songs like "Pop Goes the Weasel," "The Yellow Rose of Texas," "The Fountain in the Park," "After the Ball," "A Bicycle Built for Two," and many others which gain significance by being placed in the larger context of American history.
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accompaniment African-American American popular song Annie Lisle appears banjo beauty beloved blackface Boston century Charles chorus Civil Clock comic composers coon coon songs courtship dance death dying early Edward Edward Harrigan ethnic EXAMPLE famous Favorite Songs folkish genre genteel George George Frederick Root German Hamm Harrigan Harris heart Henry Clay Hewitt Ibid immigrant Indian Irish Italianate Jackson James James Hewitt Jim Crow John Kiss lady land lover lyricists melody minstrel minstrelsy mother musical style Native Americans night nineteenth nineteenth-century nostalgia o'er phrases piano played Pond & Co published ragtime Reprinted rhythms romantic Root rural Sang scene second verse sentimental serenade setting sheet music sing singer ſº Solo Songs songwriters Stephen Foster story Sweet syncopation Tawa theater thee theme third verse tick Tin Pan Alley tone tradition tune urban Witmark women Work’s