Mudcat Café message #3187830 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #138735   Message #3187830
Posted By: John P
14-Jul-11 - 07:00 PM
Thread Name: Do purists really exist?
Subject: RE: Do purists really exist?
who think they are right despite there being no right or wrong.


What have I learned? Maybe that I am a singer of folk songs rather than a folk singer

Yeah, I've heard that one too. That type of distinction never made much sense to me. Someone who sings folk songs is a folk singer. Can you imagine telling a rocker that they are not a rocker, but a player of rock songs? After all, REAL rockers only existed in the 60s . . . :^)

Another one that's never made much sense to me is the idea that people should only do songs from their own locale. There was a club here several years ago that had a policy that traditional folk music could only be performed by people from the country the music came from. At the time, I was doing almost exclusively English, Irish and Scottish music. Since my cultural heritage here in the US is English in origin, they were just saying that I couldn't come there and play music from my cultural heritage. I wondered what difference it made if an ancestor of mine left the farm in the 1800s and moved to American while some London bloke's ancestor left the farm in the 1800s and moved to London. Both of us were probably brought up on American and English pop music and got into traditional folk when we were young adults. What difference does it make what country we were born in? That's making something other than the music itself and the skill of the performer be the important thing. Pedantry on a pedestal. I honored their right to do whatever they wanted in their club, but I thought it was a stupid policy.