Traditional Music Archive

Monday Music: Sam Amidon “Tribulation”

Today’s Monday Music comes from Sam Amidon, a folk singer from Vermont whose reinterpretations of traditional music are layered both with familiarity and an eerie sense of deconstruction. In an interview with Uprooted Music Revue Amidon explained his craft this way: “Well, I’ve never actually written a song. What I do is take old folk
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The Seed and the Story: Alive Inside Documentary. What Can Be Done Where You Are?

Earlier last week a friend called my attention to an online preview of the documentary film, Alive Inside.  Produced by Ximotion Media, the film follows social worker Dan Cohen as he brings IPods filled with music to residents in a nursing home.  It’s not long before the patients—many of whom were previously silenced by dementia—begin
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The Seed and the Story: Paths of Tradition Bearing

The Seed and the Story is a weekly column exploring folklife, sustainability, oral history, human rights,and community in Yell County, Arkansas.   The column is published in the Post Dispatch and is syndicated in the Courier.  Please remember to support your local paper and independent media!  The Seed and the Story column is just of many features you can
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Monday Music: Freakwater “Gravity.”

Back in the days before webpages, facebook, and Spotify,  I read a lot of record label catalogs, scouring the artist descriptions for something that sounded worth taking a gamble on. As a big fan of  The Sea and Cake, Tortoise, and Seam, I was reading through the Thrill Jockey catalog when I came across Freakwater.
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The Seed and the Story: Learning From Students and Folkstreams films

The Seed and the Story is a weekly column exploring folklife, sustainability, oral history, human rights,and community in Yell County, Arkansas.   The column is published in the Post Dispatch and is syndicated in the Courier.  Please remember to support your local paper and independent media!  The Seed and the Story column is just of many features you can
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Friday Video: Almeda Riddle: Now Let’s Talk About Singing.

This past week I had my students watch a few films from the wonderful resource, Folkstreams, an internet site hosting hundreds of folklife films.  One of the films we watched was Almeda Riddle: Now Let’s Talk About Singing.  The film was produced by George West in 1985. It had been a few years since I’d
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Monday Music: Sister Clara Hudmon “Stand by Me.”

Today is a good day for Sister Clara Hudmon.  This song, which is one of my favorites of all time, can be heard on Harry Smith’s Anthology of American Folk Music, Volume 4. Hope everyone is having a great Monday!  
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Music Monday: Secret Sisters “House of Gold.”

Or Music Tuesday, rather. So sorry for being a day late. Folklorist Rachel Reynolds Luster told me about these ladies a while back, specifically mentioning their version of “House of Gold.”  She was so right.  I listen to this song sevearl times a week, and every time I get the chills. Follow the Secret Sisters
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Oxford American Offices Open in South Main Neighborhood

The Oxford American magazine recently purchased Juanita’s old space in downtown Little Rock, and this past Saturday they hosted an open house for the new location. The majority of the magazine staff will continue to operate out of their offices at UCA in Conway and this location will serve as both a home base for
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“Group Singalongs Provide Comfort For a Livelihood Lost”: Relearning Songs Lost During a Stroke.

This wonderful audio piece has been making the rounds in the folklore world this week.  Produced by Hal Cannon of the Western Folklife Center for the What’s in a Song series, the audio essay features folklorist Barre Toelken discussing how he’s rediscovering some of the songs he lost after his stroke.  From NPR: For the past several years,
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