In the summer of 1936, over one hundred fiddle tunes, many of them unique, along with thousands of songs, were collected and notated throughout a large part of Mississippi. Roughly 130 novice field workers captured beautiful tunes and tantalizing fragments. As a body of work, it is an unparalleled and fascinating snapshot of vernacular music as heard in Mississippi in the early part of the recorded era. However, this music was unpublished and forgotten.
In 1939, building on the contacts made three years earlier, Herbert Halpert led one of the last and best executed of the WPA folklore projects which recorded audio performances in Mississippi. Some, but not all, of those distinctive fiddle tune recordings have been published. Additionally through cassette tape copies passed hand to hand, some of these distinctive tunes have regained currency and popularity among contemporary fiddlers. In Mississippi Fiddle Tunes and Songs from the 1930s, this great music is at last widely available.
Publisher: University Press of Mississippi
Number of pages: 448
Weight: 1406 g
Dimensions: 279 x 216 x 33 mm
"There's really no way to fully describe this wonderful historic collection. The music, transcriptions, stories, photos, maps, and even the website support www.mississippifiddle.com--this is a must-have source for tunes, along with a big help in understanding the life behind and around the music."
--Dan Levenson, Banjo Newsletter
"This is an important book, grand in scope and scale, and grand in its impact. . . .Harry Bolick, with the assistance of Stephen Austin, easily captures honors for THE book on regional old-time music for the second decade of this century. Mississippi Fiddle Tunes and Songs from the 1930s is a must-have for anyone interested in American old-time music."
--Andrew Kuntz, Fiddler Magazine
"Designed for fiddlers and folk music enthusiasts who want to work from accurate transcriptions of authentic, field-collected music from an earlier era, Mississippi Fiddle Tunes and Songs from the 1930s is an important addition to an under-represented part of American folk music, namely printed transcriptions of regional tune repertoires. Further, the description of the Library of Congress collecting trips to Mississippi, along with representations from the collectors' field notes and photographs, will interest the historian and tune collector."
--Jeff Todd Titon, author of Old-Time Kentucky Fiddle Tunes