... this page is part of the Web Site of George North ...

20th Century Pop Culture


Dr. Douglas Brinkley, PhD Bolingreen OH, (Diplomatic Biographer)
currently working with Jimmy Carter ...
assistant Gunther Breaux

Lets have fun, culture movies, UNO need a cource like this

will focus on the Blues to rock 'n' roll, use popular culture to exlaine recent events.

Why is George Washington on the dollar? What about Billy the Kidd, Jessy James, why does America have an outlaw tradition?

In 4 parts:
Popular Music
Hollywood and Films
Highways and Automoiles
Generation X, today's young people

What were the best sellers in th '30s, Junk literature ... Why was is so popular?

Texts include:
Blues People, LeRoi Jones
Mystery Train, Greil Marcus
Screening Out the Past, Lary May
Road Scholar, Andrei Codrescu
Generation X, Douglas Coupland
Jajic Bus, maybe

2 Papers (5 pages), 2 exams

Mystery Train is the best Rock music book ... what is rock 'n' roll ... how to look at Graceland and Elvis...

What is Popular Culture?
consumed by lots of people, big, not sure how to deal with it. In making of a new nation, the United States need heroes to provide identity for its citizen ... what it ment to be American, not European. Who was the American ? George Washington was a natural choice, "Father of our Country." A land owner, slave holder, map maker (important), military leader, guerrilla fighter ... great military figure ... image grew slowly. Parsons Weans was a writer who make a fortune writing about Washington, the literature that people needed, created the mythical figure of Washington.

Daniel Boone , another mythical figure created by real estate companies to prove that moving west was safe, he killed 200 indians by himself ... what is the reason for such a figure ...

Davy Crocket , politician in the mold of Andrew Jackson ... president form Tennessee ... anti-elitists ... Crocket was elected to congress as a populists ... in his canpaign he hired a journalist to writht tall tails about his life, bigger than life ... it was paid political ads ... killed at Alamo, he had come to Texas for free land and got caught up in the war with Mexiaco ... Texas, the only state that was originally a nation.

Boone, Daniel Pennsylvania, Nov. 2, 1734, achieved fame as a frontiersman in the era of the American Revolution. As a youth he settled with his Quaker parents in western North Carolina. Boone went as a wagoner on the expedition of Gen. Edward BRADDOCK to Fort Duquesne (1755), but he came into prominence much later for his explorations and hunting expeditions in the Kentucky region. He first visited that area in the winter of 1767-68, and on a second expedition from 1769 to 1771 he went through the Cumberland Gap. When speculator Richard HENDERSON, who had organized the TRANSYLVANIA COMPANY, planned a settlement in Kentucky in 1775, Boone was the natural choice to blaze a trail. He marked out the WILDERNESS ROAD and founded the settlement of Boonesborough on the Kentucky River. In the Revolution Boone helped the Kentucky settlements as a hunter and as an Indian fighter. He was captured by the Shawnees in 1778, but he escaped and later traveled to the East to bring in more settlers. Although Boone held public office in Kentucky (including serving in the Kentucky legislature), he first became well known in the East, and even in Europe, because of the account of his exploits given by John Filson in The Discovery, Settlement, and Present State of Kentucke (1784). Boone then figured in Lord Byron's poem Don Juan. As a result, Boone was set apart from his fellow hunters and explorers, and a variety of myths were woven around his life. Boone suffered major disappointments after the Revolution. The absence of proper land titles resulted in the loss of his Kentucky lands, and in the late 1790s he moved to what is now Missouri. When he died there on Sept. 26, 1820, he was the most famous of frontier heroes.

There are many other BIGGER than life figure from the 19th century ... Billy (William Barner) the Kid, cold blooded murder ... Jassy James ... the outlaw tradition. What does it say about America?

What does it say for us today? Why is there a celebration of violence, an obsession?

Horatio Alger, tales of an American Dream, poor boy does heoric deed, is discouered, and becomes fabulously weathy ... writing during the 'Guilded Age' ... need a way to justify ... if you were poor, than it must be your fault.

Spencerism ... The system of logical positivism developed by Herbert Spencer, setting forth the idea that evolution is the passage from the simple, indefinite, and incoherent to the complex, definite, and coherent.

American Dream ... An American ideal of a happy and successful life to which all may aspire: "In the deepening gloom of the Depression, the American Dream represented a reaffirmation of traditional American hopes ... through hard work you will be somebody ... missing for lifestyles of today ...

Parthian work ethic ... God prases those who work hard ... maybe the opposite of Generation X ...

What is it about America that brings us to create a character like Superman?

11 Jul 94

Cross Roads, film by Walter Hill with Ralph Machcio ... white boy gets the Blues

Robert Johnson recorded 29 of 30 songs, Eugene is looking for Willie Brown ... learning classical guitar, wants to play the Blues ... his instructer tells him that he can't serve two masters. Finds Willie Brown (Blind Dog Fulton) in a prision hosipital, 70 years old, serving life for murder. Willie goats Eugene into helping him escape ... to go to Mississippi and find lost song ... "aint no man got no car" "money roll on my hip next to my wip". Catchs bus runs out of money "Welcome to Blues VIlle - HoBo", Hwy 61, Mississippi ... Home of the Blues ... this is the real thing, aint no book, mississippi string tie ... play ... sound like a train, it's gonna take Eugene ten years ... buys new guitar ... "Muddy Waters invented electricity" - Lightin' Boy & Blind Dog ... a legend.

12 Jul 94

Boy meets girl, boy looses girl, boy gets girl back ...

Blues man never travels the road without his pistal, Willie, 80 years old fugitive, country blues harmonica player. Eugene will learn the last song and get famous. Sheriff Tilford ... "things be changed, but again they seem the same"

Different sides of the street, country - blues ... Willie Smoakhouse Brown, prince of the delta bluse, on the road to learn something, hand on the strings, hand on her ass

Aint no 30th song, boy on the road, thinking about the girl he lost ... Blues ... Lightning Boy gets the Blues

Cross Roads ... "if you play it right, he's gonna come" ... the devil ... "you got what you were supposed to get, nuttin is ever as good as you want ..." Jack Butts ... a contest for Willie ...

Making the guitar talk, Jimmy Hendrix ... Beethoven Blues ... Lighting Boy makes his blues and VICTORY ...

Blues People ... whites understood the Blues as music ... but they didn't understand where it came from


Woodie Guthrie ... 1920 ... IWW Industrial Wokers of the Word ... unite ... Eugene Debs, socialest presidentual candidit with 20% of vote in three different elections.

1890 - popularism, faith in the people, distrust of power eilete. Political Popularism

Romantic (Artistic) Populism, Woddie Guthrie, Joe Hill, Wild Bill Haywood, IWW, music in the square to attract people to the message. Hill and Haywood would be killed, Haywood's body (1/2) would be buried in Kremlin wall with John Reed. Bob Dylan travels to meet Woody on his death bed

What is "Dixie" ... before 1840 ... the centeral states brought their corps to market down the Mississippi to New Orleans ... were paid in Dixie Notes, New Orleans money ... come to the land of Dixie ... after some time, Dixie would be used to refer to the southern slave states. After building of the Rail Roads ... the south would be come isolated form the rest of the country ... with more and more tarding going east on the RR. Dixie Land Jazz is a New Orleans creation around the 1900's, sheet music arrangments of Jazz. Louis Armstrong revolutions was being the first soloist, singing and playing , putting an individual stamp on the music ... an American way of doing things.

Dizzy Gillespie ... a soloist who's performance was different every night, improvisation, spontaneous, the next step after Armstrong.

Miles Davis ... individual compositions, music in you face, my expression of the moment, without form, totoal improvisation ... creator of modern Jazz ... coined "COOL" meaning take control of yourself.

Jackson Polic, art for the moment ...

This explosion in free art ... was occuring during a period of oppression, McCarthyism

Walt Witman, Leaves of Grass ... life work ... provided for American democracy a distinctly American voice. Emerson saw the need for an American voice, Witman's work gave America Poetry for everyone ... a song of myself ... 1820 - 1870

Whitman --> Bluse --> Jazz ...

Religion, earily American predeterminism, 1st great awakening ... you can be saved with good behavior ... settiling the west, self-interpertation, no churched, traveling preachers, road shows, 2ng great awakening ... you can interpet the Bible yourself. The Mormans created their own Bible, fastes growing religion in the world.

1890 Popularism ... William Gennings Bryan, Spanish American War,


FS Turner Thysis - America is movement, constant movement, Fronteer Thysis, from Virgenia wast and south, move for movement sake. Movement became a schological valve, even if you didn't move, you alwasy kewn that you could move. In this way, America was a different culture than the Europian cultures from which its settlers had come.

LeRoi Jones , history professor, Blues People is a groundbreaking history of Aferican-America History ... establishing American Black history, showing that Negro culture is totally different than American or Europian. Establishes 1617 as the beginning of American Negro history ... shows how the Blues developed out of the Black American experience. Tries to establish that Aferica is still in the Negro, even though it has been suppressed for over 300 years.

Nat Turner , from Virgenia, most prominent person to rise up against white slave owners, learned to read and wright, believer in the accult, black magic ... considered the American Prostant culture evil. Spread talk of a slave rebillion, did lead a revolt in which many whites were viscously killed. In 1831, this sent a wave terror through out the South. This event could be considered the beginning of Black Power. Turnner become a black folk hero, a symbol of revenge against the white oppressors. This is an examble of the Stagerrle, Stak-o-lee myths. The beginning of revenge ... puting the fear of a slave insurection in white slave owners. Stak-o-lee was the myth that proceeded Turnner.

Blues is an expression of the oppressed peoples. Whites could have never have invented the Blues, though anyone could learn the Blues.

Jones (Ameria Beraca), poet, playwirte, very articulate, claimed the Blues for Black Americans, the most potent art form that is uniquely American. In 1961 he is creating Black American History, showing that the Negro culture is NOT primitive, the Blues is high are, its not Aferican, it is Black American. Blues is a fundementally sound historical work. A a critical time in History, 1961-63, Jones starts Black history.

Miles Davis, John Coletrain, Marcus Garvey


Tulane Jazz Archives

Greil Marcus, formost rock critic, Mystery Train is a seminal (Highly influential in an original way; constituting or providing a basis for further development),

American history, culture is an interlectual battle between pragmatism (Philosophy. A movement consisting of varying but associated theories, originally developed by Charles S. Peirce and William James and distinguished by the doctrine that the meaning of an idea or a proposition lies in its observable practical consequences) and free thinking.

Pragmatism , a belief in the rational, Ben Franklin, Farmers Almanic, superstructure, materilism, impersonism, motivated by money. Free thinking, artist, poets, Jothan Edwards (American theologian and philosopher whose original sermons and writings stimulated the Great Awakening, a period of renewed American interest in religion) Whitman, Walt , (American poet whose great work Leaves of Grass (first published 1855), written in unconventional meter and rhyme, celebrates the self, death as a process of life, universal brotherhood, and the greatness of democracy and the United States), sub-culture. Poets often define America, come from a different tradition, too much pragmatism leads to George Orwell 1984, loss freedom, lost on individuality, need of speritial renewal, an Aferican-American tradition

Rock 'n' Roll in US starting in 1950, is a comming out, a reawakening, out of the pragmatism. It was the rebellion of Baby-Boomers against the conformity that their parents represented. The ethic that Monday to Friday was work, Sunday was worship, only Saturday was a day to feel good ... Rock 'n' Roll said that every day was Saturday. The wealth accululating after world war II and the expanding middle class made this kind of rebellion possible. An irony of the Rock 'n' Roll erra is an a real way, it was the desire for American Culture that end Communist domination in Eastern Europe, and it was that same culture that American pragamatism was trying to suppress. As it always happens in America, the success of R&R is coopted by the corport culture of big business.

Andy Warhol , (American artist. A leader of the pop art movement, he produced paintings and silk-screen prints of commonplace images, such as soup cans and photographs of celebrities) ... the only real art is commercial art, money makes Art, if it doesn't sell, its not art. Popular Art and pupular culture is Warhol's view of the modern condition, is saying in America any true artice will be coopted.

Only way to counter this is to be totally aware, to see in an original way, to keep fresh.

William Carlos Williams , poet (A Red Wheel Barrow), American poet whose verse is marked by a lucid, spare style and vivid observations of the everyday. Key is to think, where can we make honest decessions.

Mystery Train

Robert Johnson, why is he right ...
The Bank, Sly and the Family - pure music, how did they do it
Randy Newman

Elvis Presly - a must read, Elvis is the unterment symbol of American popular culture, Why is ge the most reconizable symbol in American pupular culture, cult symbol in the world.

Popular Culture, is the premeer representation of America, Rock 'n' Roll is the best representation of life today, Elvis is the supreme example of it.

18 Jul 94

Mystery Train, Greil Marcus

Thesis: The true artists of Rock 'n' Roll, Elvis, Little Richard, Bob Dylan, ... have a claim to fame that will outlive most of their contempories, even Presidents ...

Mystery Train is a journey into roots music, that illustrates the roots of America, a serious look at Rock 'n' Roll ... Rock 'n' Roll as high art. A story about Randy Newman, The Band, Sly and the Family Stone, people and groops that invented their own versions of Rock ... and the problems caused by an expectation in America of constantly having to reporve themselves.

Harmonica Frank ... no albums, one song on Sun Records, poor southern white, singer of the Black sound ... compared to LBJ because both had the ability to escape from their restraints. Exemplified the anti-establishment attitudes of Americans ... a anti-interlectual attitude not found in Europe ... a celebration of crudeness. Harmonica Frank, Rock 'n' Roll, and LBJ, exhibit the populus stamp on socity in America ... a national impuls to exagrate poorness. Marcus is using Rock music and Harmonica Frank to write a history of America, saying that Harmonica Frank is an authentic American. What matters about Frank is the sense of freedom he brought to his music, a good-natured contempt for conventional patterns of life. In a way, its a put on, contempt for conventional patterns of life, transforming it into absurdity.

Robert Johnson ... the notion in America, that with an equal start, anyone could succeed. The Blues is about connection all those people who don't succeed ... coming from the oppression of Black Americans ... As an artist, Johnson had his finger on the pulse of America ... a world without redemption, to succeed he had to become a demone himself, he doesn't buy into the dream of success, he is the voice of utter dispair, no where to go, no promised land ... it was through his dispair, that his music was able to come out. Blues made the terror of the world easier to endure, but blues also made those terrors more real. He dispaired over the hypocrisy of a battle of good and evil ... if only Christmas day would come ... his music was on outlet for this dispair, his constant travel, drink, womanizing ... he lived out a romantic view of America. A ture American folk hero.

The Inheritors:

The Band ... Canadains, playing the southern music, backup group for Bob Dylan. "Night I drove Old DIxie Down" ... Robbie Robertson ... great musicians, wanted to feel America like Robert Johnson did, to pick cotton, to be black ... allowed the Band to make their own music ... their music celebrates a romantic version of America, it is a rebellion against normal life styles, safe, satisfying, main street America. Like in Dylan's "Ballad of the Thin Man" ... something is happening here, and you don't know what it means ...

Harmonica Frank, Robert Johnson, the Band, and Bob Dylan all have to reject the traditional battle between good and evil, to make their deal with the devil, and the expression of this comes out in their music. Robert Johnson laments not being allowed to be part of main stream America, Bob Dylan laments ever having been part of it.

Sly Stone and the Myth of Staggerlee

p65 ... Nkrumab
p66 ... StagerLee
p66 ... Bobby Seals being an American, being a man
p68 ... male ancestry, Aferican American

the Family, "There's a riot going on ...

Basic Point, Sly ... dying young is hard to take ... a reveolution, we're not going to be denied anything anymore ... pluged into LeRoi Jones, hope of black idenity, but petered out

17 Jul 94

Mystrain Train ... Staggerlee ... Black connection ... Nat Turner
Malcom X ... LeRoi Jones ... evolution of American Black Music

Randy Newman's populus music, talking about the piople in his music ... song writer, not interested in achieving Pop statue ... music is everyday life of real people


... is the opposite of Robert Johnson, p121 ... a liberator of women, made it posible for women to look at men as sex symbols, led an unconcious revolution, everyday is Saturday, in '50s and '60s, he was considered a great danger, through his music he showed that Rhythm & Blues was an attitude, was not a concious rip off of black music ... broak the ground for all that followed him. Got involved in movies earily because of the uncertainity of how long his and Rock 'n' Roll popularity would last ... raised RnR and R&B to high art in '60s, no one could see that in the '50s. Today Elvis is a commodity ... even a Religion ... he can mean anything to anybody ... Elvis had a great talent and great ambition.
p174, Finale
p175 ...

Elvis Aron Presley, b. Tupelo, Miss., Jan. 8, 1935, d. Aug. 16, 1977, did not invent rock 'n roll, he did more than anyone to popularize it, and he was rock's most powerful performer. From the mid-1950s, the "King's" vocal mannerisms, sideburns, and attitude--a combination of sex and sneer--made him an international hero of the young. Presley's success began with his recording of the blues song "That's All Right, Mama," written by the black singer Arthur Crudup. Presley's rendition combined his potent, shouted vocal style with a fast, hard, country-and-western-music instrumental backing. It won considerable attention and eventually a recording contract with RCA Victor. With national promotion, Presley's subsequent recordings became instant hits: "Heartbreak Hotel" in 1956, followed by "Hound Dog," "Don't Be Cruel," "Love Me Tender," and "All Shook Up." His concerts and television appearances drew huge audiences, and his 33 movies, which were minor films at best, increased his fame. Even after his death, Presley's cult continues, and Memphis, Tenn., where he is buried, has become a place of pilgrimage. The U.S. Postal Service released a stamp on Jan. 8, 1993, the 58th anniversary of his birth. The printing of 500 million was the largest commemorative issue in the postal service's history.

Bo Diddley ... blackman, electric guitar ... blues gospel, songs all named after him, a real character. Born in Mississippi, grew up in Chicago, signed by Chess Records, did not make much money from his music ... sold rights to his songs for almost nothing, Highway 61 north ...

Louis Armstrong , New Orleans, Jazz Trumpet, played with King Oliver Creo jazz Band, made famous the Jazz soloist ... individual expressiveness, breaking out of the combo to an individual, also famout for his vocals, popularized Skat ... making your voice sound like the instrament ... popularized Jazz, proved that a Jazz artice could be an echonomic success.

Duke Ellington ... self taught, gospel, dance, ragtime, a great natural Blues musician, changes the rules with his creative piano bring Jazz to new hights through his composing, bring Europian music into American own Jazz.
Edward Kennedy "Duke" Ellington, b. Washington, D.C., Apr. 29, 1899, d. May 24, 1974, was a pianist and orchestra leader and the most prolific composer in JAZZ history. As the leader of his own band, Ellington became a popular New York City jazzman in the early 1920s. From 1927 to 1931, he and his orchestra were the stars of Harlem's famous Cotton Club; Ellington's broadcasts from the club made him a national celebrity. His first European tour (1933), brought him international fame as well. His orchestra featured many of the greatest jazz artists of the time and Ellington's compositions were tailored to their special talents. They created a unique sound and a precision and clarity that won them a reputation as the finest orchestra in jazz. Ellington wrote over 1,000 short pieces--"Mood Indigo," 1930, was his first important hit, and there were countless others; concertos for orchestra and jazz soloist, including "Clarinet Lament" and "Concerto for Cootie" (both 1935); long concert pieces in the jazz idiom, such as "Black, Brown and Beige," (1943); three large religious works; and several movie scores.

Miles Davis , for Illinois, grew up in St. Louis, migrated Jazz to the next level, playing music that was unique each performance. The introduction of long playing records allowed Davis to bring his style of playing to many people, the Birth of Cool, hard bop, be bop, he was always elevating his music, breaking new ground. Miles Dewey Davis, Jr., b. Alton, Ill., May 25, 1926, d. September 28, 1991, was a jazz trumpeter, composer, and bandleader. Davis was one of the most innovative musicians of the 1960s and '70s, helping to establish several important jazz styles. Born to a well-to-do black family, Davis studied at the Juilliard School. He joined Charlie PARKER's BEBOP band in 1945. In 1949-50 his small jazz group made some of the first "cool" jazz records, reflecting a departure from the hard-driving, aggressive bop of Parker. In 1954, Davis's recording "Walkin'" initiated the hard-bop style that dominated jazz for several years. In the 1960s he recorded music that blended rock and jazz elements. His best-selling album, Bitches Brew (1970), signaled his success in extending the boundaries of jazz and established a style that was heavily explored by other musicians throughout the 1970s. In 1981, after a five-year hiatus in his musical activity, Davis returned to performing and recording. Davis's work in the 1980s included the soundtrack to the film Siesta (1987), and Amandla (1989). Davis played with and influenced many talented young performers--most notably John COLTRANE--who later became jazz masters on their own.

Woodie Guthrie , born in Oklahoma, a song writer, newspaper, bad singing voice, was on his own as a teenager, traveled widely, lived by his witts, a man of great contraditions, in California, played on the streets, womenizer, became involved in social movements, IWW, migrant workers, communist party. Left wing, right wing, checken wing, all the same to me. Became a commercial success in New York. Genuinely for the people. A true American. Woodrow Wilson "Woody" Guthrie, b. Okemah, Okla., July 14, 1912, d. Oct. 4, 1967, was a folksinger and songwriter who represents for later generations the quintessential folk poet. Guthrie was an itinerant laborer and wandering musician in his youth, and his works--more than 1,000 songs--reflect his life-long involvement with such issues as unemployment and social injustice. His relaxed, ironic, counter-culture style provided a model for later singers, especially Bob Dylan, Phil Ochs, and Tom Paxton. Guthrie's songs fall into several broad categories: Dust Bowl Ballads, 12 records made in the 1930s for the Library of Congress Folk Song Archive; political and union songs; songs he wrote in support of various New Deal projects and for the American war effort; and a large group of children's songs. "This Land is Your Land" is perhaps his most famous work. His son, the composer and singer Arlo Guthrie, b. New York, July 10, 1947, continues in his father's profession, although his songs--including the 1967 hit "Alice's Restaurant"--are less overtly political. He played himself in the successful film Alice's Restaurant (1969).

Leadbelly , from La., real Blues man ... traveled in Louisiana and Texas, spent many years in prosion where he developed much of his music. Was discovered by the Lomax's who recorded some of his music. Toured country with Woody Guthery, his music expressed the emotions of everyday life in America. The black singer and guitarist Leadbelly, b. Huddie Ledbetter in Mooringsport, La., Jan. 21, 1888, d. Dec. 6, 1949, spent most of his life as an itinerant laborer and street singer in the small towns of the deep South. Accompanying himself on his 12-string guitar, Leadbelly sang the work songs, blues, hollers, and dance tunes of the black country people of his time. The folk-song archivist John A. Lomax heard him in a Louisiana penitentiary, recorded his songs, and helped obtain his release. Leadbelly came to New York in 1934 and, from that year until his death, sang throughout the country and abroad, both in concert and on recordings. His posthumous influence on the folk music revival of the 1950s and '60s was enormous.

Josh White , folk singer, song writer, with Lead Belly, great singing voice, did not sound like a blues singer, became a big echonomic success, very popular in New York. The Weavers, formed in 1948, were the first folk musicians to achieve commercial success, paving the way for the great popular boom in folk music in the late 1950s and 1960s. Folksinger and banjoist Pete SEEGER and bass-voiced singer Lee Hays, b. Little Rock, Ark., 1914, d. Aug. 26, 1981, had sung in the early 1940s with The Almanac Singers (their members numbered, at one time or another, Woody GUTHRIE, Burl IVES, Josh White, and Cisco Houston),

The Lomax's, Alan and John , well educatied, funded by the Library of Congress to document folk songs in the south. Worked to perserve much of the black music and song in the '30s and '40s. Worked with Lead Belly and Josh WHite ... captured slave culture. The field of American folk song study is founded in the work of John Avery Lomax, b. Goodman, Miss., Sept. 23, 1875, d. Jan. 26, 1948, and his son, Alan Lomax, b. Austin, Tex., Jan. 31, 1915. John was an English professor and banker who studied folklore as an avocation. In the early 1900s, equipped with an Ediphone cylinder recording machine, he traveled the backroads of the Southwest, collecting songs that had never appeared in print before the publication of his book, Cowboy Songs and Other Frontier Ballads (1910). In 1933, with his 18-year-old son, Alan, and with a recorder built into the back of his car, Lomax traveled the South and West again. The results of that trip were published as American Ballads and Folk Songs (1934). The Lomax working materials were given to the newly formed Archive of American Folksong of the Library of Congress, and Lomax was made honorary curator--a post later filled by Alan, who continued to collect and record both in America and in Europe.

Pete Seeger , from wealthy family, fold singer, left home at 19, traveled widely, populist, environmentalest, saved middle of Hutson, involved in communists party in '40s, black listed by committee on unAmerican activities, did not want to be a pop culture star ... "If I had a Hammer, This land is you Land", popularity revived in '60s. 1948 Joe McCarthy ... kill the new deal, black list anyone involved with sociolists party, fold music was communists. American folksinger, composer, song collector, and five-string banjo virtuoso Peter Seeger, b. New York City, May 3, 1919, has been a leading force in the movement to revive the FOLK MUSIC tradition in America. His father, Charles Seeger, b. Mexico City, Dec. 14, 1886, d. Feb. 8, 1979, was a musicologist. Pete's stepmother Ruth Crawford Seeger, b. East Liverpool, Ohio, July 3, 1901, d. Nov. 18, 1953, composed her own music, tightly organized atonal pieces, as well as transcribing and arranging hundreds of folksongs from the Archive of American Folksong. Half brother Michael, b. New York City, Aug. 15, 1933, is a folk-song collector and founder of the New Lost City Ramblers. Half sister Margaret (Peggy Seeger), b. New York City, June 17, 1935, sang as a soloist and with her husband, the Scottish folk specialist Ewan MacColl (1915-89). Pete Seeger left Harvard University during his sophomore year, first to hobo around the United States, then to work in the field with John and Alan Lomax (see LOMAX family), the song collectors. In 1940, Seeger and Woody GUTHRIE organized the Almanac Singers; in 1948, Seeger helped to found The Weavers, a commercially successful folk group and the inspiration for such later groups as the Kingston Trio and Peter, Paul, and Mary. Seeger recorded more than 50 albums and, after the blacklisting 1950s, appeared regularly in concerts and on television. The many famous songs he composed include "If I Had a Hammer" (written with Lee Hayes), "Kisses Sweeter than Wine," and "Where Have All the Flowers Gone."

Irma Thomas ... New Orleans original, roots in gospel, R&B pioneer, not well recogonized until recently.

Bessie Smith ... great vocolests, blues singer for Tennessee, influenced by minstrel shows traveled widely, 159 recordings, primative sytle, Janice Joplan influence, died in contraversal car accident ... Known as the "Empress of the Blues," Bessie Smith, b. Chatanooga, Tenn., Apr. 15, 1894, d. Sept. 26, 1937, was the most successful female blues singer of the 1920s. She began her career as a singer in honky-tonks and tent shows, but in 1923 went to New York for her first recording session. She was an immediate sensation, and during the succeeding decade she recorded and toured extensively. She was hearty, forthright, and totally uninhibited in her performance as well as in her life. Because of her impeccable rhythmic sense and her ability to improvise around the structural confines of the blues, Gunther Schuller, in his book Early Jazz, calls her the first important jazz singer. The circumstances of her death, in an automobile accident in Mississippi, were the subject of a play by Edward Albee (The Death of Bessie Smith, 1960).

Ellis MARSALIS , professor of music at UNO, father of Winton, Bradford, and other, chair of Jazz studies, There is no Jazz industry ... Jazz is bigger than life, but not well understood. The name Marsalis became known to jazz enthusiasts in 1980-81, when trumpeter Wynton Marsalis, b. New Orleans, La., Oct. 18, 1961, joined Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers, and his dazzling technique and genius at improvisation were first heard. The son of jazz pianist and teacher Ellis Marsalis, Wynton studied classical music at New York's Juilliard School. In 1982, he formed his own band with older brother Branford, b. New Orleans, Aug. 26, 1960, a brilliant tenor saxophonist. Wynton has been the only artist to win Grammy awards for both classical and jazz recordings, in 1984, and has since won many other awards for his work in jazz. His recent recordings include 1991's three-volume Soul Gestures in Southern Blue. Branford is not only a fine jazz and classical artist, he is also an accomplished rock musician--he has played with rock star Sting, among others--and a movie actor (Throw Momma from the Train, 1987, School Daze, 1988). In 1992 he joined the Tonight Show as music director for new host Jay Leno. Delfeayo Marsalis, b. New Orleans, July 20, 1965, is gaining renown as a producer of jazz recordings, including Branford's 1992 blues recording.

Fats Domino , Rock 'n' roll progenitor Antoine "Fats" Domino, b. New Orleans, La., May 10, 1929, grew up playing a pounding rhythm-and-blues-style piano and singing in his hometown. Domino's first million-selling record, "The Fat Man," was released in 1949, and he was eventually to record 23 gold singles, most of them during rock 'n' roll's formative years, 1955-60. "Blueberry Hill" (1956) is his most famous recording

Ella Fitzgerald , Jazz singer, Virgenia, American success story, influenced by Harlam Renassance, Jazz singer, couldn't sing the bluse, instremental singer, Scat, 1st Lady of Song, a singer Musician. The singer Ella Fitzgerald, b. Newport News, Va., Apr. 25, 1918, is second only to Billie Holiday in her popularity and in the influence she has had over several generations of pop-music singers. Her career began (1934-39) with Chick Webb's band, which she led for a year after his death. After recording (1938) "A-tisket, A-tasket," she had countless hits, sang with Duke Ellington, Count Basie, and other major bands, and appeared as a soloist with more than 40 symphony orchestras. A great scat singer and ballad interpreter, she consistently lifted often trivial material to the level of high jazz art.

Ornette Coleman , Sax, poor backgroun, self taught, "Free Jazz" Style, improvising, invent your own music, brought the blues back to Jazz, Ornette Coleman, b. Fort Worth, Tex., Mar. 9, 1930, is a saxophonist and composer whose ideas have aroused bitter controversy while at the same time obtaining new avenues for avant-garde jazz musicians. Largely self-taught, Coleman began playing alto sax in his early teens. His recording Free Jazz (1960), a 37-minute improvisation for jazz octet on Coleman-composed themes, set the tone for his later work, much of which continues in the improvisational mode. Other works, however, are completely scored compositions: a 21-movement suite for orchestra (Skies of America, 1972), for example.

John Coltrain , piano ... uperclass black family, only chile, speritial music, BeBop, Wanted to solve world probles through his music, in SF Church of John Coltrain ... John William Coltrane, b. Hamlet, N. C., Sept. 23, 1926, d. July 17, 1967, is considered one of the major innovators of contemporary jazz. A saxophonist (tenor and soprano) and composer, Coltrane began his career in big bands, played with Miles Davis in the late 1950s, and formed his own quartet in 1960. He became one of the leaders of a jazz movement, called the New Wave, that sought greater freedom from harmonic and thematic restrictions in improvisation. Coltrane created incredibly sustained periods of improvisation within the confines of a single chord or scale pattern--a style related strongly to Indian musical practice. His influence on modern jazz is considered second only to that of Charlie Parker.

Thelonious Monk , piano, New York, power in one note, fame didn't come until '60s. Played with John Coletrain, styles were very different, but blended well together, studied at Juliard, Beets "Beet Nikes (Sputnick) ... underground Jazz, Pianist and composer Thelonious Sphere Monk, b. Oct. 10, 1918, d. Feb. 17, 1982, was one of the founders of the jazz style that became known as BEBOP. Although he played in bands with Dizzy Gillespie, another bebop originator, and with Coleman Hawkins, most of Monk's work was as a soloist or as the leader of small groups. As a composer he contributed numerous pieces that are still standards in the jazz repertoire. Among them are "Round Midnight" and "Straight No Chaser." Because of his harmonic manipulations, which stretched the boundaries of tonality, he is considered one of the principal influences on avant-garde jazz.

In the '50s and '60s Jazz was influencing all the arts, poets, painter, improvs, spontianious, in revole against conforminity, did not become a comodity,

Elvin Jones , less well known, drummer ... most distintive style, played with Coltrain, made the drums into an instrument ... nobody better.

Jazz ...

Jazz is the only indigenous American musical form to have exerted an influence on musical development throughout the Western world. Created by obscure black musicians in the late 19th century, jazz was at first a synthesis of Western harmonic language and forms with the rhythms and melodic inflections of Africa. The African musical idiom present in black vocal music--SPIRITUALS, the work song, the field holler, and blues--was the structure through which popular tunes of the time were transmuted into jazz. The music was characterized by improvisation, the spontaneous creation of variations on a melodic line; by syncopation, where rhythmic stress is placed on the normally weak beats of the musical measure; and by a type of intonation that would be considered out of tune in Western classical music. (See BLUES for a discussion of this type of intonation.)

In its beginnings jazz was more an approach to performance than a body of musical compositions. The black marching bands of New Orleans, which often accompanied funeral processions, played traditional slow hymns on the way to the cemetery; for the procession back to town, they broke into jazzed-up versions of the same hymns, RAGTIME tunes, or syncopated renditions of popular marches. The instruments in the marching band--a cornet or a trumpet to carry the melody, with a clarinet and trombone to fill in, and a rhythm section of drums or a string bass--formed the nucleus of the first jazz bands, which usually added only a piano, guitar, or banjo.


The earliest recordings identified as jazz were made in 1917 in New York by the Original Dixieland Jazz Band under the leadership of Nick La Rocca. The members were white musicians from New Orleans, playing in a style that they learned from blacks in that city. Although the early jazz artists occasionally cut records, it was only when jazz bands traveled to Chicago and New York City that the music became available nationwide through recordings released by the major record companies. The first important recordings by black musicians were made in 1923, by King OLIVER's Creole Jazz Band, a group that included some of the foremost New Orleans musicians then performing in Chicago: Louis ARMSTRONG, Johnny and "Baby" Dodds, and Honore Dutrey.

Many white groups in Chicago and elsewhere adopted the style, among them the New Orleans Rhythm Kings and the Wolverines, led by Bix BEIDERBECKE. The characteristics of this early style, known as Dixieland, included a relatively complex interweaving of melodic lines among the cornet (or trumpet), clarinet, and trombone and a steady chomp-chomp beat from the rhythm instruments (piano, bass, drums). The texture was predominantly polyphonic. Most bands used no written notation, preferring "head" arrangements agreed upon verbally; improvisation was an indispensable factor.

During the 1920s jazz gained in popularity. The two most important recording centers were Chicago and New York, although all sections of the country were caught up in the dances that were closely associated with the music. The period itself became known as the Jazz Age.

In Chicago the most influential artists were members of small bands like the Wolverines. In New York, on the other hand, the trend was toward larger groups with two or more trumpets, one or two trombones, three or four reeds, plus a rhythm section. The larger groups played in revues and vaudeville shows and in large dance halls and theaters.


As the decade progressed, the performance styles in all groups featured more written arrangements and placed increasing emphasis on solo performance. Representative of the many players who led the outburst of jazz virtuosity that marked the 1920s were Sidney BECHET, Ferdinand "Jelly Roll" MORTON, Coleman HAWKINS, Armstrong, and James P. Johnson. Among the leaders in establishing the sound of the new big bands were Fletcher HENDERSON (with Don Redman, his arranger) and Edward Kennedy "Duke" ELLINGTON. It was Henderson who developed the performance style that became known as SWING, featuring call-and-response patterns between brass and reeds, extensive use of the riff--the repetition of a motif--for ensemble work and as accompaniment for soloists, elaborate written arrangements, and the frequent insertion of improvised solos. Ellington extended the role of bandleader beyond mere arranging and into the area of composition, principally because of his need to provide music for the Cotton Club revues in Harlem. Many of his compositions were popular hits in their own time and have become standards for jazz players.

Another important facet of the jazz scene in New York was to production of vocal blues recordings marketed principally to blacks. Because of the unique form of the blues, many of the best jazz performers were used as back-up artists for the insertion of instrumental "comments" between the sung phrases. The most definitive singer of the period was Bessie SMITH, whose 1920s recordings are considered landmarks of vocal blues.


The dominant idiom of the 1930s and much of the 1940s was swing. Utilized almost exclusively for dancing, the music of the big bands borrowed heavily from the techniques introduced by Henderson. Among the most popular bands were those led by Benny GOODMAN, Glenn MILLER, Woody HERMAN, Tommy and Jimmy DORSEY, and Artie Shaw. As a counterpart of the highly arranged orchestrations of these New York-based bands, a Kansas City swing style developed under the influence of Count BASIE and Bennie Moten that emphasized a blues vocabulary and form as well as tempos of breakneck speed and an overwhelming use of riffs. Among the outstanding soloists associated with Kansas City was Lester YOUNG of the Basie band.


In the early 1940s a rejection of the restrictive arrangements required by big-band style spread among jazz musicians. Under the leadership of Charlie PARKER, Dizzy GILLESPIE, Thelonious MONK, and others, a style known as bop, or BEBOP, emerged on the New York scene.

It represented a return to the small group concept of Dixieland, with one instrument of a kind rather than the sections used by swing groups. Emphasizing solos rather than ensembles, bop players developed an astounding degree of virtuosity. Bop was extremely complex rhythmically; it used extensions of the usual harmonic structures and featured speed and irregular phrasing. It demanded great listening skill, and its erratic rhythms made it unsuitable for dancing. Because of its sophistication, bop resulted in the first breakaway of jazz from the popular music mainstream. The style was adopted by many performers during the 1940s and 1950s but was rejected by others who preferred the more conservative techniques of swing.


One of the most important new jazz styles of the 1950s was known as "cool." Inaugurated by a group of highly trained academic performers under the leadership of Miles DAVIS, cool was a return to the carefully organized and scored principles of swing but without the latter's emphasis on call-and-response and riffing. The ensembles played frequently as an entire unit and included a number of new instruments in jazz: French horn, flute, baritone sax, flugelhorn, and others. The players rejected the emotional emphasis of bop as well as its exploitation of range and virtuosity. They preferred to play in the middle register, utilizing a smooth attack, little vibrato, and largely on-beat phrasing.

Third Stream

Closely allied to cool jazz was the attempt to combine modern classical forms with jazz techniques. The style, known as "third stream," used improvisational segments interwoven with compositions scored for symphony orchestras and chamber groups, including string quartets. Musical forms identified with classical tradition were utilized--fugue, rondo, symphonic development. Polyphony became an important texture, best exemplified by the jazz fugues played by the MODERN JAZZ QUARTET.


The jazz of the 1960s was in many ways a mirroring of the social ferment of that decade. Much of the performance was characterized by a search for freedom from melodic, harmonic, and rhythmic restraints. One of the leaders was Ornette Coleman, whose 1960 album, Free Jazz, set the tone of the decade. It featured eight musicians improvising individually and collectively without predetermined thematic material of any kind. The ultimate result was a breakdown in the traditional framework for improvisation, which had relied for decades on melodic variations based normally on a stated tune or harmonic progression. Cecil TAYLOR and others moved even farther away from traditional jazz practice and used atonality and other dissonances.

The leading figure of the decade was John COLTRANE. In many of his performances he abandoned tonality completely and improvised at length within a single scale structure or over a single chord or mode. His many followers cultivated an almost totally emotional style, extending the expressive range of their instruments to screaming, moaning, and piercing outbursts of passionate sound. As a result, the audience for jazz decreased dramatically and many critics expressed the fear that the art was doomed.


The decade of the 1970s, however, brought renewed interest in jazz, with a revival of many of the older, more traditional concepts and the addition of several new ones. The popularity of big bands, using many of the devices of swing, spread to high school and college campuses. Thad Jones, Mel Lewis, Woody Herman, and Count Basie provided the leadership for this renaissance of big-band style.

Many leading musicians, on the other hand, turned toward a fusion of ROCK MUSIC and jazz, trading on the overwhelming popularity of the 1960s rock innovations. Among the leaders in the fusion movement were Miles DAVIS, Herbie Hancock, Chick COREA, Wayne Shorter, and George Benson. Their music placed great emphasis on the use of electronic instruments, enlarged percussion sections, repeated melodic and rhythmic figures, and relatively long segments performed without any significant harmonic change.

Other leading players like McCoy Tyner experimented extensively with modal themes and drone effects, reflecting the black identification with Eastern religions and spiritualism. Large-scale dissonant compositions for jazz groups gained in popularity under the influence of men like Anthony Braxton and Sun Ra. At the same time, more traditional performers like the New Orleans Preservation Hall Jazz Band found enthusiastic audiences.

The 1980s were years of eclectic additions to jazz language. African music began to penetrate and color the jazz picture, just as in Africa the new "Afro-Pop" combined jazz influences with African sounds and rhythms. Latin-American music--Brazilian music, especially--added another new strain to jazz.

More jazz musicians were classically trained, and many of them, like the MARSALIS brothers, were technical perfectionists. Yet, in contrast to a music that was becoming more difficult and complex, interest was reviving in improvisation, the heart of jazz before the electronic age.

21 Jul 94

Son House , from Mississippi, mentor of Robert Johnson, Bottle Neck Blues Guitar, played in Jackson ... Blues or Black Church, -- Alan Lomax ... reduicovered in 1960's ... was first a preacher, than a Blues man.

Chuck Berry , from St. Louis, a poet, family man, more popular in Europe, great performer, recorded for Chess Records, played many different types of music, blues, R&R, R&B, C&W ... seminal Rock & Roll musician ... lived a wild life as a teen and young adult, exployted by press ... used to make Rock & Roll star an outlaw, every parrent's worst nightmare ... many soungs about autos, was an auto thief in youth, autobiagraphy is a good book about how it was being a black man in America. Basicly uneducated. "Roll over Beethoven" here comes Rock & Roll ... a revolution ... played at Bill Clenton's inaugural. Charles Edward Anderson Berry, b. Wentzville, Mo., Oct. 18, 1926, is a black American singer-songwriter-guitarist who has been one of the most important influences in the development of ROCK MUSIC. From 1955, the year of his first hit, "Maybellene," Berry's music has characteristically combined blues tunes with wry, country-influenced narratives describing teenage frustration, young love, and fast cars. Such Berry songs as "Roll Over, Beethoven"(1956), "Rock and Roll Music" (1957), "Sweet LIttle Sixteen" (1958), and "Johnny B. Goode" (1958) have become classics of the rock genre.

Robert Johnson ... Hwy 61 ... the Blues Man, jump a train, play some blues, rebelling against slave culture, wanted complete freedom, died at age 27 ... posioned, played the bottle neck guitar, nasel singing, direct link to Aferican music.

Billy Holiday ... from New York, lived a hard life, didn't like being called a blues singer ... influenced by Harlam Resoniance, nickname Lady, through her sining, she make music her own, became a herion addict in later life, The jazz singer Billie Holiday, b. Eleanora Fagan in Baltimore, Md., Apr. 7, 1915, d. July 17, 1959, is ranked by many as the finest vocalist and stylist that jazz produced in the 1930s. The illegitimate child of a jazz guitarist, Holiday's early years were scarred by poverty. After moving with her mother to New York City, she began singing in small Harlem nightclubs and recorded a few songs with Benny GOODMAN and Duke ELLINGTON. But wide public recognition came only with a series of recordings (1935-39) she made with the pianist Teddy WILSON and his band. Her subsequent recordings were almost always accompanied by groups that included the top instrumentalists of the day; among the finest are those she made with the saxophonist Lester YOUNG. Holiday's later career was marred by personal tragedy and by a drug addiction she tried vainly to conquer. She made her final appearance (June 1959) at a benefit concert in New York, where a few days later she was arrested on her deathbed on narcotics charges. Her most memorable recordings include several acid-toned songs, among them "Strange Fruit" (1939), about a lynching in the South and "God Bless the Child" (1941), one of her own compositions, about poverty.

Crockett, Davy Limestone, Tenn., Aug. 17, 1786, was one of America's most colorful frontiersmen and folk heros. Coming from a poor pioneer family, he received no real education as a child but picked up the skills of a hunter, scout, and woodsman. He served (1813-14) under Andrew Jackson in the wars against the Creek Indians. After returning to Tennessee to farm, he was appointed (1817) a local magistrate, an office that required him to learn to read and write more proficiently. Elected a "colonel" in the militia, he also served two terms (1821-25) in the Tennessee legislature, and he defended the squatter rights of his west Tennessee constituents. As a U.S. congressman (1827-31, 1833-35), Crockett won a reputation as an amusing, shrewd, and outspoken backwoodsman, and it was in Washington that the legend of the man as a coonskin-hatted bear hunter, Indian fighter, and tall-tale teller was promoted by his Whig allies to compete with President Jackson's image as a democrat. Crockett's opposition to Jackson's Indian-removal policies estranged him from the Democratic party, and this disagreement cost him his fourth bid for election in 1834. His bitterness over the defeat inspired him to leave (1836) Tennessee for Texas, where he died on Mar. 6, 1836, defending the ALAMO during the TEXAS REVOLUTION.

Alger, Horatio Although he was an ordained Unitarian minister, Horatio Alger, b. Jan. 13, 1834, d. July 19, 1899, is best known as the author of such juvenile novels as Ragged Dick (1867), Luck and Pluck; or, John Oakley's Inheritance (1869), and Tattered Tom (1871). The Alger formula is always the same: a brave but poor youth performs a daring rescue that wins the gratitude and patronage of a wealthy benefactor. Mabel Parker, written in 1878 but published only in 1986, is one of Alger's few novels for adults, but it shares with his works for children a clumsy plot and a multitude of stereotypes. Despite the essential mediocrity of his writings, however, more than 20 million of his books were sold during his lifetime.

Mike Fink , c.1770-1823, an American frontier hero, was a keelboatman on the Ohio and Mississippi rivers whose physical prowess became legendary in oral and written folklore. A formidable brawler dubbed "king of the keelboatmen," he was also known for his skill in telling tall tales.

Billy the Kid was one of several aliases of William H. Bonney, b. New York City, Nov. 23, 1859, a New Mexico outlaw whose short, bloody career became a legend. By the age of 18 he had been charged with 12 murders. While working as a cowhand in the Pecos Valley, he turned to cattle rustling. After the gang he led killed a sheriff and a deputy, he was captured and sentenced to death. He escaped from jail, killing two guards, but was trapped and shot to death on July 13, 1881. A ballet based on his life, with music by Aaron COPLAND, was first performed in Chicago in 1938.

Stax Records the R&B record house, in Memphis, provieded a place for the polished studio sound to be recorded for many aferican-American groups and artices. MoTown Records

Nat Turner , b. Southampton County, Va., Oct. 2, 1800, d. Nov. 11, 1831, led the deadliest black slave revolt in United States history and died for it. Turner, born a slave, became a skilled carpenter as well as an exhorter, or preacher. He believed that he was the chosen instrument of a vengeful God; through violence he hoped to achieve retribution and freedom for his race. Interpreting a solar eclipse as the signal for action, Turner launched his insurrection on Aug. 21, 1831. His following grew to about 70, and at least 57 whites were killed before the revolt was quashed about 4 days later. Turner, captured on October 30, was tried and executed, as 16 of his followers already had been. The insurrection caused hysteria among southern whites, prompting the vengeful killing of many innocent slaves and leading to the enactment of stricter slave codes. It effectively ended any southern sympathy for abolitionism.

Whitman, Walt ... The greatest of 19th-century American poets, Walt Whitman, b. West Hill, Long Island, May 31, 1819, d. Mar. 26, 1892, abandoned his given name Walter when he published (1855) his first book of poetry, LEAVES OF GRASS, which must be counted among the seminal works of American literature. From then on he became "Walt Whitman, an American, one of the roughs, a kosmos," a poet who sought a personal relationship with his readers. The third of eight children, Walt Whitman was born near Huntington, Long Island, on a small farm that the family left in 1824 when they moved to Brooklyn, where his father was an unsuccessful builder, and where Walt attended public schools. At the age of 11 he began to learn printing, a trade with which he remained associated for many years as printer, journalist, and newspaper editor. Although his formal education was limited, he was teaching school in Long Island by the time he was 17 years of age. In 1838-39 he edited a weekly newspaper, The Long Islander, which is still in existence. For the next 10 years Walt drifted from one job to another, often losing newspaper posts because of his political views. He occasionally taught school, wrote short stories and poems for magazines, and edited such newspapers as the New York Aurora and Evening Tatler and the Brooklyn Daily Eagle. As a contributor (1848) to the New Orleans Crescent, he made a trip to the South, his first exposure to the vastness of the "States" that he later extolled in his poetry. About 1850 he returned to his family in Brooklyn and, until the death of his failing father in 1855, assisted him in the building business. Paid for, and in part typeset, by Whitman himself, Leaves of Grass (1855), including the famous "Song of Myself," launched his career as a poet. The book did not win universal acclaim, however, because his irregular poetry as well as his candid anatomical references antagonized many early readers. Until the beginning of the Civil War, while revising and expanding Leaves of Grass, Whitman supported himself by free-lance journalism. Late in 1862, Whitman went to the battlefront in Virginia to find his brother George, who had been wounded, and then returned to Washington, where he worked in various government departments. He served as a volunteer nurse to soldiers, Northern and Southern, who were sick and dying in the unhygienic military hospitals in Washington. He supplied his "comrades" with food and other necessities and wrote letters home for them. In Drum-Taps (1865) Whitman printed poems based on his wartime experiences; Sequel to Drum-Taps (1865-66) contained what later became two of his most famous works, "When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom'd" and "O Captain! My Captain!" commemorating the death of Lincoln. A prose volume, Democratic Vistas (1871), followed a few years later. Whitman remained in Washington until 1873, when he suffered a paralytic stroke that left him permanently crippled. Moving to Camden, New Jersey, to be near his mother and his brother George, he remained there until his death. Although he never again held a job, he regained some of his former strength and supported himself by printing and selling his own books and writing for newspapers and magazines. Leaves of Grass, which was constantly expanded, slowly became known in the United States and abroad; and Whitman, now acknowledged as a major literary figure, welcomed writers and artists from all over the world to his modest house on Mickle Street, which is today preserved as a shrine. Personally as well as poetically revered, he collected his autobiographical reminiscences in Specimen Days and Collect (1882), which incorporated the earlier Memoranda during the War (1875). Although frequently in great pain after 1885, Whitman continued to write poems and prose pieces. He completed the last revision of Leaves of Grass shortly before his death; he is buried in a tomb, which he designed himself, in Harleigh Cemetery, Camden. Having set himself a difficult task--to create a poetry that would reflect the American melting pot of races and nationalities, the democratic aspirations of the people, and the physical vastness of the United States--to accomplish his goals Whitman replaced traditional English form and meter with a rhythmic unit based on the meaning and natural flow of the lines. The subject matter, like the rhythm, was intended to be as free as the people and included topics usually avoided by the era's poets--commonplace experiences, labor, sexuality. He remains the nation's great celebrator and affirmer of democracy, freedom, the self, and the joys of living.

Dylan, Bob , born Robert Allen Zimmerman in Duluth, Minn., May 24, 1941, is a singer, songwriter, and guitarist. Dylan was perhaps the most influential voice of the protest era of the early 1960s and is today one of the leading musicians in the field of folk rock. The son of a small-town storekeeper, Dylan taught himself to play the piano, guitar, and harmonica. Influenced by Woody Guthrie and the blues genre, he began his career as a folksinger in 1960. His appearances in New York City's Greenwich Village coffeehouses soon earned him a recording contract. His song "Blowin' in the Wind" became the anthem of the civil rights movement, and the folk protest songs he wrote from 1961 to 1964 seemed to express the hopes and angers of his generation. In 1965, Dylan turned to rock music, and concert tours with his new rock band made him an international celebrity. Dylan's 5-record set, Biograph (1985)--which contains over 50 of his songs written from 1961 to 1981--chronicles the changes in Dylan's musical attitudes: fiery and impassioned in the early years; more personal, withdrawn, and apolitical as the years wear on. Dylan has published a prose and poetry assemblage, Tarantula (1971), has acted in and directed films, and continues to tour and record.

Black Panther party was a militant organization of blacks founded in Oakland, Calif., in 1966 by Huey P. Newton and Bobby G. Seale . Panther leaders called upon blacks to arm themselves for a struggle against their oppressors and collected small arsenals. At the same time, the party provided free breakfasts, financed by donations from local merchants and wealthy sympathizers, for children in some ghetto areas. It also opened schools and medical clinics. Several armed clashes with the police occurred. Huey Newton was found guilty of killing an Oakland policeman in 1967, but the conviction was reversed on appeal. He was charged with murder in a street brawl in 1974 and fled to Cuba. Seale and other Panther leaders were accused of torturing and murdering a former Panther whom they suspected of being a police informer, but the jury failed to reach a verdict. Another leader, Eldridge CLEAVER, fled to Cuba and Algeria to avoid imprisonment for parole violation; he later returned, abandoned radicalism, and became a proselytizer for Christianity. The Panthers lost a leader in 1969 when Chicago police made an early-morning raid on a Panther residence and killed Fred Hampton in his bed. The movement declined after quarrels among its leaders increased and as black radicalism waned in the 1970s. Two former Black Panthers were implicated in the Brink's robbery incident in New York in 1981.

Populist ... The Populist party was formed in the 1890s at the culmination of a period of agrarian discontent in the United States. The party traced its roots to the farmers' alliances, loose confederations of organizations that had formed in the South and West beginning in the late 1870s and expanded rapidly after about 1885. The alliances advocated tax reform, regulation of railroads, and FREE SILVER (the unlimited minting of silver coins). In 1890 many candidates who supported alliance objectives were elected in state and local contests. Encouraged by these results, alliance leaders formed a national political party, officially the People's party, but usually called the Populist party. At a convention in Omaha, Nebr., in 1892, the Populists nominated James B. WEAVER of Iowa as their presidential candidate. Hoping to unite Southern and Western farmers with industrial workers of the Northeast, the party adopted a platform calling for government ownership of the railroads and the telephone and telegraph systems; free silver; a graduated income tax; a "subtreasury" plan to allow farmers to withhold crops from the market when prices dipped; the direct election of U.S. senators; immigration restriction; an 8-hour day for industrial workers; and other reforms. In the election of 1892, Weaver received more than a million popular votes and 22 electoral votes, but the Democratic candidate, Grover Cleveland, won the election. Several Populist candidates won election to Congress that year and in 1894. In 1896 the Populist party was overshadowed by the Democrats, who took up the issue of free silver and other Populist goals and nominated William Jennings BRYAN of Nebraska. The Populists supported Bryan but substituted their own candidate, Thomas Edward WATSON of Georgia for the Democratic vice-presidential nominee. The Republican candidate, William McKinley, won the election. As farm prices rose, agrarian protest was defused. The Populist party, unable to broaden its base by winning the votes of industrial workers, split in 1900 over the issue of fusion with the Democrats. Although Watson ran as the Populist candidate in 1904 and 1908, the party's significance all but disappeared after 1908. The term populism, however, continued to be used in U.S. politics to refer to the grass-roots movements claiming to represent the "common people" against big business and industry. Huey Long of Louisiana was a notable populist, in this sense. Populism in recent years has been invoked in presidential campaigns by Fred Harris of Oklahoma, George McGovern of South Dakota, and George Wallace of Alabama.

Pop Culture is trail guide to America ... demonstrated by music, from blues, to Jazz, to Rhythm and Blues ... a heritage for Black Americans

Exam -

1. Blues People, why did LeRoi Jones write ... what is the orgin of the blues, how is blues and Jazz connected.

2. Myth and American history ... George Washington to Elvis ... how a socity creates larger than life persons, folk hero's
3. Myster Train ... Greil Marcus ... What is thysis, why is R&R so important, what does it say about America ... Robert Johnson, Sly, Elvis 25 Jul 94

Movies ... we live in a most remarkable time ... "The American Century" ... an extraordinary transformation ... even though the American empire is being deconstructed, the influence of American Popular Culture can be traced to the CHicago worlds fair in 1890, with the showing of the lightbulb, etc. Miracles are part of everyday life, its a wonder New York hasn't sunk into the ocean. It is hyper-industrialization - lack of individulism, group thinking, environmental degragation, an improverished world.

Emerson wanted to know what made America so unique, American ingenuity, industrial inventions

The great symbols of Industrial America are the Movies and the Automobile ... Henry Ford made mass production work, the assembly line, with interchangable parts ... resulting in shorter work week, and more leisure time. The Motion pictures both reflected this increase in leisure time and provided an outlet, somthing to occupy this new leisure time. Movies and the Automobile are the most import symbol of American Popular culture.

Movies provided the ability, for the first time to see images of other parts of the works ... the earily movies created problems for Victorian industrial America ... a prevailing view of the world was the Darwin view of servival of the fitists, it was their own falt that poor people were poor, it was not accepted that sociaty had an obligation to intervene. These feeling was a way for the very rich to justify themselves, the rich also saw that they had a duty to help perfect all of mankind ... Big business needed to keep workers satisfied. At the turn of the century, the movie industry was focusing/reflecting these ideas. There was a recognization of the effect that movies couled have on these issues. How could the newly found leasure time of the mass of people be channeled. And there was a fear that of what effect the moral standard of the immigrant male would have on American women.
Earily movies were seen as a tool that could be use to help control these sititutations ... that correctly sensored, movies could help guide these forces, stress morials and virtures of Victorian America.
The movies houses, unlike earily theaters with seperate seating by class, had reasonalble prices, and themselves changed attitueds, allowing the lower and middle classes to act like the upper class. Instead of dispising the rich, they could be like the rich.
These save things give rise to movie Stars, who are at the same time, fictional and real characters. Mass consumerism, was both fostered by and benefited from movie stars. The most famous were Pickford and Fairbanks, the perfect couple, through wanting to immulated the lifestyle of movie starts, warking people learned how to fill their leisure time. The movies were a relief valve for the stress of work-a-day life.

26 Jul 94, Hollywood in the Beginning ...

Hollywood ... in 1903, Hollywood was a small village, and the residents wanted it that way. It was the small independent film makers that moved west first, trying to escape the unlawness that conpitation generated. Not till 1911 did a major studio locate in Hollywood. California had everything, city, harbor, moutains, desart, snow, wild west ... Cecel B DeMille, pictures in the sun, new one everyweek,

DW Griffith, epic films change everything ...

after WWI, Europe film industry collapsed, 90% of all films are made in US. The streets of Hollywood would become the most formilar site in the world. The movies, by showing California caused a real estate boom, homes of the starts, expecially PicFair becomes a symbol of American Royality, with its residents keeping court with the worlds. Studios would expand and create whole new communities, bigger and better, temples of Silent drama.

Mary Pickford ... best known woman in the world, her long blond curls became a fashon, Fairbanks and Pickfort were widely popular

27 Jul 94

The unbelievable impact of TV ...

TV is so new, it full impact can't be realized ...
Politics ... sound bite ... beginning with Eisenhower in 1952, and Kennedy - Nixon, in 1960 ... placed a greater importance on looks and style ... today, success in politics is all about handing TV
Power of Networks ... sound bite news ... network priorities b ecome national priorities, compared to CSPAN ... unedited live coverage ...
Advertising ... 1920 mass consumerism with mass marketing ... target marketing ... TV is an unmatched medium to influence buying habits, Nikes, soap, fashion, the importance of advertisers use of demographics, the connection between advertising, movies, food, TV all are being connected (McDonnalds/Flintstones), the placement of products in movies is big business, out of control. The Warhol view of American Art is advertising
Lasting images ... Kennedy's assassination ... Vietnam war, the use of TV by anti-war movement that turned tide on American support ... Watergate ... Clarence Thomas ...

Have to wonder, is TV a positive or negative influence ... TV violence, Networks say we are just showing what the audience wants to see ... content to the lowest common denominator ... Should TV be more responsible? Everything in America has a price, is violence on TV one price we have to pay for TV itself ... we are the consumers, we make the choice, we make a deal with the devil.

Great absorber of Leisure time ... for kids and adults, a baby sitter, Kerouac observing in the '60 how every home, row after row, street after street, with the TV on, watching or not.

Entertainment ... turn the TV on, turn the problems of the day off, sit back and enjoy ... what's wrong with that?

International ... is a US product with global impact, creating a global citizen, American TV is an export, desired around the world, may give the world an incorrect impression of American, that it is too violent, dirty, fast, vulgar, but it is still desired by all

Road Scholar ...

Walt Witman, "The Open Road" ... universal express of self, escape, freedom, escape, since of wandering, road of choice ... uniquely American ... Mobil home, retire and travel, the nation that created the motor home, home is no longer pertinent. Movement for movement sake, Huck Fin, boats and trains, hobo,

First travel book, "A Hoosier Holiday" Theodore Driser ... in 1914, first true book about the automobile, auto travel becomes a cottage industry, road side attractions, national parks, tourists attractions, drive through a tree, most famous road of all Route 66 , from Chicago, St Louis, to Santa Monica - the road west, "The Road of Flight" ... symbol of westward movement, and the settling of California in the 20th Century ... and the industry it helped to create, tourists industry that developed along its route ... and its literature that developed, travel guides, travel books, tour guides, "Road Literature" ... people would read discover America publications, even if they didn't read much else.

Books of Road Literature:

Henry Miller ... "The Air Condition Nightmare" ... Miller hated American culture, compared to Europe, American Air Conditioned, All-you-can-eat restaurants, and its transplanted history ... London Bridge in mid-western town, experience Germany at Bush Gardens ... entertainments to American, offensive to some Europeans.

John Steinbeck ... "Travels with Charlie" ... travel America with a camper and a dog ... discover America, how big, remarkable, fun, ... opposite of Miller book

Jack Kerouac ... "On the Road" 1957 ... travels cross country, coast to coast for no good reason, movement for movement sake ... if you move, you got a new chance ... starts Grateful Dead .. new frontier of the mind.

Tom Wolf ... "Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test" ... the unsettling of America, the real freedom is just taking off

Key, in Europe roads lead into cities, in America, roads lead out of city.

Road Scholar ... cynical look at travel ... Coast to Coast Late in the Century ... taking a look at old road attractions and finding a billion sub-cultures ... American culture is not one culture ... underneath Mass-culture is a billion individual cultures

Generation-X , a cynical ... disbelief in the good intentions of another --- what's in it for you ... total cynicism ... late in the century, where are we going ...