Friday, August 30, 2013

From the Southern Tradition: The Banjo

One of the most unique contributions of the South to the musical arts is the banjo.  For this instrument we thank our African brothers and sisters.  Its singular sound is common among older country, bluegrass, and folk music of the South but has also spread to other countries like Ireland.  To hear some authentic Southern banjo music written by Joel Walker Sweeney, play this video of 'Ole Tare River' (written about 1840).

As pleasant as it is to hear it played, it would be far better (and more satisfying) for us to learn to play the banjo or the fiddle for ourselves in order to keep our traditions from dying out and becoming mere museum relics.

On this theme, please give a listen to a couple of excellent lectures by friends of the Abbeville Institute.

The first by Thomas Minsel: 

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