Ascensión Mazuela-Anguita is the current scholar in the Jon B. Lovelace Fellowship for the Study of the Alan Lomax Collection, and has been using her time at the Library of Congress to explore materials held at the AFC related to Lomax’s 1952–53 field recording trip to Spain. In this recent guest post on the Kluge Center blog she describes the cataloging and metadata work she has been doing, and explains how it will help connect Lomax recordings with collections of traditional song transcriptions held by the Spanish National Research Council in Barcelona.
In addition to the research she reports on in the post, Ascensión has built skills with GIS tools by creating a ‘story map’ charting Lomax’s travels in Spain. The map draws from online audio-visual material hosted by the Association for Cultural Equity, but all of the original items are held in the Archives at the American Folklife Center. Visit her map here.
Screen shot of Lomax story map
This blog post about the singer-songwriter Billy Bragg is part of a series called “Hidden Folklorists,” which examines the folklore work of surprising people, including people better known for other pursuits. Billy Bragg will be here for a book talk, July 21 at 7:00 pm in the Mumford Room of the James Madison Memorial Building. […]
Note: This is the second in a series of posts about the murder ballad “Batson.” This one discusses the performance recorded by John A. and Alan Lomax from a trio of musicians including Wilson Jones, a.k.a. Stavin’ Chain, in 1934. A little while back, I presented for the first time anywhere a version of the […]
It’s May 6, and the people of Helston, Cornwall, are celebrating Flora Day , a large outdoor festival featuring dancing in the streets throughout the town . One of the fascinating elements of the festivities is the “Hal An Tow” procession, featuring dramatic enactments, dancing, and a distinctive song, also called “Hal An Tow.” Three […]
One hundred years ago this month, February 26, 1917, what is generally acknowledged as the first recording of jazz was released. “Livery Stable Blues,” performed by the Original Dixieland Jass Band  was a best-selling record for Victor, but is a problematic “first” as it is a recording of a white band performing an African […]
Song of the Week: Barbara Allen Since my junior year in high school, when my dad handed me a copy of Tom Rush’s Blues, Songs, and Ballads (1964) the song “Barbara Allen” has held onto me. Little did I know back then that this is Child Ballad 84, that it is one of the most collected ballads […]
This recollection is in memory of the Center’s founding director, Alan Jabbour, who died on January 13, 2017, and whose career and contributions are described in this blog post. Today’s text and photographs are by Carl Fleischhauer, a retired American Folklife Center staff member and a colleague of Alan’s for 46 years. Alan Jabbour and […]
Happy Chinese New Year! The Year of the Rooster begins on Saturday, January 28th. To celebrate, here are four recordings of Chinese music recorded on Victor in 1902 and 1903. We hope that someone reading this article might be able to tell us more about these songs. The recordings are part of the collections of […]
On behalf of the American Folklife Center, I’m very sad to pass on the news of the death of our founding director, Alan Jabbour. Alan was a folklorist, fiddler, fieldworker, and friend of the highest caliber, and he will be missed at AFC and around the world. AFC’s current director, Betsy Peterson, expressed the feelings […]
This is a guest post by Todd Harvey, acquisitions coordinator at the American Folklife Center (AFC). The American Folklife Center is pleased to announce a major acquisition, the Cooperative Recreation Service collection (AFC 2016/051) donated to the Center by fiddler, scholar, and publisher Bruce Greene. The Cooperative Recreation Service is a publishing company founded during […]