Looking Up at Down: The Emergence of Blues Culture

Looking Up at Down: The Emergence of Blues Culture

By: William Barlow (author)Paperback

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More than just a history of a musical genre, Looking Up at Down traces the evolution of the various strands of blues music within the broader context of the culture on which it commented, and discusses its importance as a form of cultural resistance and identity for Afro-Americans. William Barlow explores the lyrics, describes the musical styles, and portrays the musicians and performers who created this uniquely American music. He describes how the blues sound-with its recognizable dissonance and African musical standards-and the blues text, which provided a bottom up view of American society, became bulwarks of cultural resistance. Using rare recordings, oral histories, and interviews, Barlow analyzes how the blues was sustained as a form of Afro-American cultural resistance despite attempts by the dominant culture to assimilate and commercialize the music and exploit its artists.

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About Author

William Barlow is Associate Professor in the Radio, Television, and Film Department of Howard University. A music programmer for alternative radio stations for more than fifteen years, he currently produces "Blue Monday" on WPFW-FM. He is also the author of Voice Over: The Making of Black Radio.


Before the Blues Part I: Rural Blues Introduction 1. "I Been 'Buked and I Been Scorned": The Folk Roots of the Blues 2. "Everyday Seems Like Murder Here": Mississippi Delta Blues 3. "Po' Boy, Long Ways from Home": East Texas Blues 4. "Pickin' Low Cotton": Piedmont Blues Part II: Urban Blues Introduction 5. "Laughin' to Keep from Cryin'": Vaudeville Blues 6. "Chocolate to the Bone": Urban Blues in the South 7. "Stormy Monday": Urban Blues in the Southwest 8. "Goin' Down Slow": Urban Blues in the Midwest 9. "Looking Up at Down": Chicago Blues Conclusion Notes General Index Song Index Permissions

Product Details

  • publication date: 01/06/1990
  • ISBN13: 9780877227229
  • Format: Paperback
  • Number Of Pages: 440
  • ID: 9780877227229
  • weight: 703
  • ISBN10: 0877227225

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