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The Land Where the Blues Began [Anglais] [Broché]

Alan Lomax

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Description de l'ouvrage

1 janvier 1993
Lomax, who has done more than anyone else to make black music of the South known as a glorious expression of American art, summs up sixty years of "discovering the African American musical heritage in this journey through the Mississippi Delta.
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Amazon.com: 4.6 étoiles sur 5  29 commentaires
29 internautes sur 34 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Read this book, Savor it, Treasure it 15 juin 2001
Par First Things First - Publié sur Amazon.com
The Land Where the Blues Began is one of the finest books on any subject I've ever read in my life. Every magical benefit of reading came poring forth from its pages, including deep and fascinating discovery, chills, outrage, tears, joy, laughter, amazement and finally, understanding and awe. Alan Lomax embarked on a personal odyssey to the Mississippi Delta serving up one of the great vicarious thrill rides any reader with a hankering to learn where rock and roll, and rhythm and blues came from. Armed with primitive recording equipment and a lifetime's experience researching the folk and popular music of the world (following in his father's distinguished footsteps in this endeavor), Lomax plunges us directly into the redneck towns and the plantations, where the Blues emerged from a fascinating combination of African musical roots, Folk...Popular...and Church Music, and the hollers which slaves, prisoners, levee workers, rail gangs, mule drivers, sharecroppers and roustabouts would sing out to express their rage, pain, heartsickness, loneliness, hopelessness and frustrations. Finding giants of the blues in dilapidated shacks in the middle of nowhere, Lomax coaxed many into performing for his acetate machines. Also haunting the bars, with names such as the Dipsy Doodle, in the black sectors of heavily segregated towns, Lomax (who is white) repeatedly puts his personal safety in jeopardy as he defies the redneck deputies' orders and ends up swigging homemade whiskey and eating fresh barbecue while recording legendary performances. If all this weren't enough, the book weaves the evolution of the Blues in with poignant memoirs of impoverished childhoods, family life, prison life, farm labor, Jim Crow, unthinkable mistreatment, murder, and devastation. Fashioning musical instruments out of pieces of wire and wooden boxes, tree branches or anything available, these masters created, nurtured and passed down their knowledge to subsequent generations until it flowered in the hands of a young and inspired new crop of Blues giants. Eventually blacks seeking a better way of life were able to move North into the urban areas of Chicago, New York, Kansas City and other places, and the adventurous among the Blues musicians followed them there, where the Blues kept people in touch with their roots and linked them emotionally to their Southern heritage. Here, the musicians were horribly exploited by white recording executives who invited them to record their music, and robbed them blind when a recording did well on the radio and/or in the stores. Eventually the mature Blues style inspired the world's greatest pop and rock musicians from the Rolling Stones and The Beatles to Eric Clapton, all of whom were British and discovered American Blues music at its commercial inception. Later, they introduced it back to the American masses who had for the most part not yet been exposed to it. As I finished the book, I was awestruck that these impoverished yet heroic people who lived in the shacks, shouting their laments to the cotton fields and the sky above, had a massive and magnificent influence on the world which few human beings will ever achieve. Hats off to Blind Lemon Jefferson, Son House, Robert Johnson, Fred McDowell, Big Bill Broonzy, Muddy Waters and so many others, especially the now-forgotten faceless progenitors of the style, without whom today's popular music would have an entirely different and far less rich character. And three cheers for Alan Lomax whose passion and love for the people and music he documents, coupled with his original and rich writing style leaves us in an emotional heap at the end of our journey.
16 internautes sur 19 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Read, Then Listen Again And Really "Hear" The Blues 1 octobre 2003
Par D. Sean Brickell - Publié sur Amazon.com
Think you know the blues? Yeah, well so did I. But after reading this book, coupled with the current PBS series on The Blues, I'm diving back into stuff I've listened to for decades, but never really "heard." Quite possibly the best book ever written on the subject and one that I'll be re-reading for a long time.
11 internautes sur 13 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 In showing us the Blues, Lomax reveals a hidden culture. 20 février 1998
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
As a native, white expatriot Mississippian, I read with great interest Alan Lomax's account of the genesis of the Blues--which he considers the most important indigenous musical form of the 20th century globally. As grand a claim as this is, Lomax carries the credentials and the experience to back it up. Aside from the music, what he reveals is bitter suffering and unconscionable cruelty against African-Americans, the quality of whose lives was scarcely better than those of their slave grandparents. Out of this tragedy grew an art and a culture than far surpassed that of the oppressors. The poignant majesty of these folk poets is engaging and arresting. Their ability to find beauty, humor, passion, and dignity in lives that were riven with strife speaks of the indomitable spirits of these people. Lomax's research was timely, because much of the music and poetry he heard in the 40's no longer exists, and he chronicles an invaluable chapter in the history of American art and culture. Dr. William Bradley Roberts
4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Tales of Woe and Joy 27 avril 2000
Par Jason P. Gubbels - Publié sur Amazon.com
I plunged into this book unsure of what to expect, knowing little of Alan Lomax and his contribution to American culture. I emerged overcome with emotion at the stories and lives contained within this book. Lomax's story is not his own, but those of the African Americans he interacted with over the course of his career. And their stories are brutal, hilarious, depressing and uplifting. As Lomax travels across the South with his portable recorder, he discovers and re-discovers musical traditions that have helped sustain a rural culture, and will serve as the bedrock of modern American popular culture. The characters we meet are truly unforgettable - hardly a day goes by when I don't suddenly flash upon Blind Sid Hemphill, Son House, or many others. Lomax's portrait of the South is a tough one, and many times the ugliness makes for difficult reading. But these are the stories that we'd rather keep swept under the rug, tales of vicious brutality and lynchings, the shadowy secrets of America and the black struggle for equality, and it says as much as any slave narrative or civil rights chronicle. For those who agree that American culture is ultimately African in origin, this book will be an affirmation. For those unaware of the rich cultural tradition forged by a proud group of individuals, it will be a revelation. And as an unforgettable portrait of America, warts and all, this is a history book that breathes life on every page. Reading this book should change your life, a lofty claim too often bestowed casually on works that don't deserve the hype. Believe the hype this time - Lomax's story demands to be told, remembered, and taken to heart. We forget the cruel causes of the blues at our own peril.
3 internautes sur 3 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Stunning oral history of rural blacks in the early 1900's. 28 octobre 1998
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
This book details the life of the poor, southern black in the early and middle portion of the twentieth century, not only in terms of the music, but perhaps more interestingly, with reference to the traditions and mores of those who were born and lived under the "plantation" system. The unbelievable stories and recountings of the individuals made me understand much more deeply the true effects of slavery as well as the reasons for so many of the difficult to explain behaviors we see in the inner city today. And of course, the highly romantic history of the origins of the blues makes fascinating reading for any jazz or blues buff.This book affected me more than nearly any other I've read in the last 10 years.
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