Mudcat Café message #8591 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #2224   Message #8591
Posted By: Barry Finn
13-Jul-97 - 09:57 PM
Thread Name: What is a Folk Song?
Subject: RE: What is a Folk Song?
BK, truthfully I'd rather listen to Killing Me Softly With Kung Fu.

I don't really seperate (here in the DTanyway) between traditional or contempory, or take borderline folk as a slight, in here it seems there's enough self-control, most have an understanding of what is folk, I'm not the music police & it's not my fourm(thank god). My main concern, as stated above, is without some respect, folk music may become pop (an example- pop irish, commerical). The erosion of folk as a form or type may end up being in the hands of those who don't care. There's a great debate as to whether or not folk music is on a decline , with the loss of funding & grants, the decisions in the airways to drop folk from a prime time if not altogether, the closing of many clubs and the decrease in the number of true folk festival (by that I mean those that promote folk musicans as opposed to some singersongwriters or main stream money drawers) and last those that at one time were considered traditional festivals (these are a dying breed). There are festivals that cater to certain traditions, Mystic is an example, but there were others, Eisteddfod was at one time considered traditional, many yrs. back, I don't know what causd it's demise, but I do know that alot of people didn't want to see or hear an overabundance of selfpromoting singer/songwriters, although I think in recent yrs. they tried to change this. Now this brings me to the comment about songwriters like Ewan McColl & others that weren't commented about like Stan Rogers, Archie Fisher, Eric Bogle, Kate Wolfe & lesser knowns like Tom Lewis & Jim Payne. In my opinion these and there like have been at this type of music for quite some time & their feel for it is like an instinct & some of them sing & write about it from the point of a gun (Tom Lewis & Cyril Tawney were Sub Mariners), there are alot of newer singer songwriters that have no reason or love for doing what they're doing, no life experence from which to write from, don't understand the tradition they're trying to write about but they can play an instrument & have a voice & are well equipped to do PR work & take the job for far less (here's one erosion factor) in order to get exposure. These others have or are standing the test of time or when they're heard there's not doubt (when it walks like a duck & it looks like a duck & talks like a duck, it's a duck) about their music & some are so fine they're taking in as being traditional by mistake (I do maybe 4 of McColl's, that folks ask about & are surprised to find they're not trad-quite the complement). I like the jazz idea but I don't like coming to that. Barry Finn