BOONE—The Appalachian Journal has published its first special edition on Appalachian music. This double issue (vol. 42, nos. 3-4) is the largest one in the journal’s 42-year history, with 300-plus pages and 60-plus contributors.
Guest editors Mark Freed and Trevor McKenzie are both musicians and music teachers who kick off this issue with a roundtable discussion: 25 musicians, teachers and scholars who select and describe their Appalachian “Top 10” playlists, offering lively defenses of their choices.
There are new poems by Michael Dowdy, Michael McFee, R.T. Smith, Diane Gilliam, Joseph Bathanti, George Ella Lyon, Dana Wildsmith, Dean Sturgill, Jeffrey Burghauser and Jesse Graves. Film reviews on music documentaries feature a surprising variety of Appalachian music and performers. Articles on Appalachian musicians such as Bascom Lamar Lunsford and Charlie Poole are also included.
Two in-depth interviews with Appalachian musicians feature the Krüger Brothers, who arrived in Wilkes County, North Carolina, from Switzerland to perform, further study, and make their own contributions to American folk music, and Bill Withers, a West Virginia native and rhythm and blues) singer/songwriter, interviewed by public radio correspondent Anna Sale. The interviews delve into issues of creativity, identity, regionalism and much more.
Musician Sue Massek provides “Herstory,” describing her musical roots and influences of Appalachian women on her own work. Massek stars as Sarah Ogan Gunning in “Precious Memories,” an innovative one-woman play by singer/songwriter/activist Si Kahn, featured in this issue.
Music historian and faculty member of East Tennessee State University’s Bluegrass, Old Time, and Country Music Studies program Ted Olson examines the Bristol Recording sessions and their relationship to the development of modern country music.
Grammy-winning musician, storyteller and television host David Holt provides a photographic essay featuring many of his Appalachian “Heroes & Mentors” in country, bluegrass and old-time music. Artist, musician, folk music fieldworker/scholar Art Rosenbaum and photographer/painter Margo Rosenbaum also contribute their art to this issue.
Ethnomusicologist Dave Wood describes both the blessings and the curses associated with musical transcription in his review of Clare Milliner and Walt Koken’s “The Milliner-Koken Collection of American Fiddle Tunes.”
Reviews of “Pretty Good for a Girl,” “Wayfaring Strangers” other books and a landmark Doc Watson CD collection round out this special edition. The “Chronicle” and “By the Numbers” highlight recent news and facts from across the Appalachian region.
Visit http://appjournal.appstate.edu for more information. Annual subscriptions are $24 a year or $20 for this double issue. To order a copy or subscribe, send your name, address and payment to Appalachian Journal, Belk Library, Box 32026, Appalachian State University, Boone, NC 28608.
Appalachian Journal is also available at the University Bookstore on campus.
Appalachian Journal, founded in 1972, is an interdisciplinary, peer-reviewed quarterly featuring field research, interviews and other scholarly studies of history, politics, economics, culture, folklore, literature, music, ecology and a variety of other topics, as well as poetry and reviews of books, films and recordings dealing with the region of the Appalachian mountains.
About Appalachian State University
Appalachian State University, in North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains, prepares students to lead purposeful lives as global citizens who understand and engage their responsibilities in creating a sustainable future for all. The transformational Appalachian experience promotes a spirit of inclusion that brings people together in inspiring ways to acquire and create knowledge, to grow holistically, to act with passion and determination, and embrace diversity and difference. As one of 17 campuses in the University of North Carolina system, Appalachian enrolls about 19,000 students, has a low student-to-faculty ratio and offers more than 150 undergraduate and graduate majors.