Early Downhome Blues: A Musical and Cultural Analysis

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University of North Carolina Press, 1994 - Music - 318 pages
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. A compact disk including nineteen outstanding examples of early blues music is included with this new edition. Combining musical analysis and cultural history, Titon examines the origins of downhome blues in the African American tradition. 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-eight 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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About the author (1994)

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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