Folk Music: The Basics gives a brief introduction to British and American folk music. Drawing upon the most recent and relevant scholarship, it will focus on comparing and contrasting the historical nature of the three aspects of understanding folk music: traditional, local performers; professional collectors; and the advent of professional performers in the twentieth century during the so-called "folk revival." The two sides of the folk tradition will be examined--both as popular and commercial expressions. Folk Music: The Basics serves as an excellent introduction to the players, the music, and the styles that make folk music an enduring and well-loved musical style. Throughout, sidebars offer studies of key folk performers, record labels, and related issues to place the general discussion in context.
Ronald Cohen is Emeritus Professor of History at Professor of History at Indiana University Northwest. He is the author of several books on traditional music, including Rainbow Quest: The Folk Music Revival and American Society, 1940-1970 (Univ. of Massachusetts Press, 2002), and the editor of Alan Lomax: Selected Writings, 1934-1997 (Routledge, 2003).