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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Candyman(inactive) What makes a traditional song? (60* d) RE: What makes a traditional song? 14 Jul 03


Near as I can tell, the real traditional folksingers that I've had a chance to know, really couldn't care less about whether a song was traditional in an academic sense or how they came to learn it. They've just chosen songs that they've liked.

Missippi John Hurt introduced "Goodnight Irene" by saying he got from a Leadbelly record. He also sang popular material from records like "You Are My Sunshine" and "Hot Time In The Old Town Tonight."

Doc Watson has a large repertoire that was handed doen through his family, but it pales in comparison to the hundreds and hundreds of songs that he learned from radio and records. Everything from Jimmie Rodgers to the Monroe Brothers to the Everly Brothers to Tom Paxton and Bob Dylan.

I remember an afterhours session with Almeda Riddle, the great repository of traditional Ozark balladry, and she sang an a acapella version of Roger Miller's "King Of The Road."


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