Tag Archives: history

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Blues Music: Marketing Nostalgia Using “Race Records” in the 1920s & 1930s

Folklorists like to romanticize blues music as being a pure expression of culture, but recorded blues music was carefully marketed to its intended audience from its very beginning. As early as the 1920s, music aimed at African-Americans was labeled as "race music", and the best way to advertise it was in the pages of African-American...
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A World Not Ours Documentary Film Review: A Look Inside Palestinian Refugee Camp Ain al-Hilweh

Regardless of your feelings about Palestine, A World Not Ours is a must watch for those interested in themes of landlessness, family, and what it means to be privileged. Through the narrative lens, we get a glimpse into life inside a semi-permanent Palestinian refugee camp in south Lebanon. It is, of course, neither possible to...Read...
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Forgotten Gems & Dusty Classics: Blind Bluesmen – Willie Johnson, Willie McTel, Willie Reynolds, Gary Davis, Snooks Eaglin

The “blind bluesman” is perhaps the dominant image of the genre, and one that evokes a number of associations. As noted by scholar Joesph Witek, the idea of the “blind genius” dates at least as far back as Homer. Given that many of these musicians were extraordinarily talented, their blindness might have fed popular interest...Read...
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