Hillbilly, honky-tonk, Nashville glitz, or alt.country: what makes music authentically country? Country music - whether found in country barn dances, the plaintive twang of Hank Williams, the glitzy glamour of Dolly Parton, or the country-pop sound of Faith Hill - has always maintained an allegiance to its own 'authenticity'. Its specific sounds and images have changed over time, but country music has consistently been associated with the working class and ideals like unspoiled rural life and values and humble origins. The music suggests not only 'simple' musical arrangements and old-time instruments such as the banjo and fiddle, but performers who identify with everyday fans. ""Natural Acts"" explores the ways that musicians - particularly female artists - have established a 'natural' country identity. Pamela Fox focuses on five revealing moments in country performance: blackface comedy on radio and stage before 1945 (concentrating on Opry performers Jamup and Honey); the minstrel's 'rube' or hillbilly equivalent (typified by Opry legend Minnie Pearl); post-war honky-tonk music and culture (Hank Williams, Ernest Tubb, Kitty Wells, Jean Shepard); the country star autobiography of the 1980s and 1990s (Loretta Lynn, Naomi Judd, Tammy Wynette, Dolly Parton, Reba McEntire); and the recent roots phenomenon known as alt.country (Michelle Shocked, Drive-By Truckers, Gillian Welch, Iris DeMent).
Publisher: The University of Michigan Press
Number of pages: 298
Weight: 386 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 20 mm