Articles/Blogs

Generations
Episode 8 (African-American string band, fiddle & banjo traditions)

This week we hear some powerful string band music from white Appalachian performers including the legendary Camp Creek Boys, Tommy Jarrell, and the Buckstankle Boys.  But that…


11 Important Black Folk Music Artists

Black artists have played an enormous part in moving forward the history of American folk music, from the slave spirituals to early field recordings, songs of the civil rights…

Generations
James Allen Bland

James Alan Bland (October 22, 1854 – May 5, 1911), also known as Jimmy Bland, was an African-American musician and song writer. Bland was one of 8 children born in Flushing,…

Generations
The Banjo: African Echoes

To the average American, maybe not a musician, maybe just a regular person like you or like me the musical instrument called the banjo brings up certain images to mind.  It…

Generations
Bringing The Banjo From 'Africa To Appalachia'

While typically associated with traditional bluegrass, country and even jazz, the banjo has roots that stretch all the way back to West Africa. Musician Jayme Stone made that…

Generations
Blind Blake

Little is known of Blake's life. Promotional materials from Paramount Records indicate he was born blind and give his birthplace as Jacksonville, Florida, and it seems that he…

Generations
Charley Patton

Charley Patton (died April 28, 1934), also known as Charlie Patton, was an American Delta blues musician. He is considered by many to be the "Father of the Delta Blues" and is…

Generations
Gus Cannon

Gus Cannon (September 12, 1883 – October 15, 1979) was an American blues musician who helped to popularize jug bands (such as his own Cannon's Jug Stompers) in the 1920s and…

Generations
The Banjo, the 1800s and the Blues

There is a deep connection between the banjo and the blues, but this influence was no doubt exhibited in different ways in different parts of the country. The fiddle and the…

Generations
Why Black Banjo: The Black Banjo List Serve

I started Black Banjo Then and Now because I thought Black banjoists I kept meeting online needed to get together. As well, we soon found other banjoists and scholars needed a…

Generations
The Extinction of the Black Banjo in the United States -- 1900 - 1930

Jim Carrier  - My Appalachian Music Fellowship study in June 2009 was in furtherance of developing a film documentary dealing with the extinction of the Black Banjo that…

Generations
Otis Taylor – Recapturing The Banjo

Students and fans of bluegrass and old time music, and a great many people with an interest in American folk music, know of the African roots of our beloved banjo. Academics…