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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Bounty Hound What makes a new song a folk song? (1710* d) RE: What makes a new song a folk song? 11 Sep 14

Bounty Hound and Howard it would appear that you are clearly, and possibly deliberately, missing the points that Jim Carroll is making.

Terribus, I can't of course speak for Howard, although I suspect his answer may well be the same.

I am in no way missing the points that Jim is making. In fact if you read earlier in the thread, you'll find me expressing admiration and respect for the work Jim has done over the years. Without the likes of Jim the tradition may well have been lost.

But, my issue is Jim's refusal to acknowledge that the process continues, and that new 'folk' music is being created today. It may be that the 'process' is different and songs are being shared in a different way, and it is easy to establish authorship and a definitive version of those songs, but of course society and technology has changed enormously in the last 60 years, Those new 'folk' songs are every bit as valid as traditional songs passed through an oral tradition, and as I've said several times, if a new song is influenced by, or shows respect to the tradition, then it has every right to be called 'Folk music'

I've asked Jim more than once to 'define' those new songs that I happily call folk, but he's declined to give a clear answer, (although he has acknowledged the value of such songs) instead stating that they are songs in the 'style' of, and then stating that folk is not a style, but a process, and a song cannot be 'folk' unless it has been through that process.

What might be helpful would be to hear a concise definition from Jim of those songs I would call new folk music.

It seems to me that it is merely a romantic notion that only songs that have gone through the 'oral' process can be folk, so perhaps it would also be useful to have a concise statement from Jim as to why he thinks that transmission by the technology we now have available (which he in part embraces, otherwise we would not be having this debate!) is less valid than oral transmission.


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