Meeting Jimmie Rodgers
How America's Original Roots Music Hero Changed the Pop Sounds of A CenturyBook - 2009
"Up from the roots" musical heroes regularly emerge in America, seemingly showing up from nowhere with the power not just to speak to us, but to represent us. Elvis Presley, Hank Williams, and Johnny Cash were all like that. But before them, influencing all three and myriad performers incountry music, rock and roll, blues, bluegrass, commercial folk, Western Swing, cowboy crooning, and pop, was America's original popular roots music hero, Jazz Age vaudevillian and recording star Jimmie Rodgers. This book is the first to look at Rodgers' deep, under-explored musical legacy from a21st Century perspective. An anchor in the Country Music, Rock and Roll and American Songwriters' Halls of Fame, Rodgers has been promulgated as the songwriting "Singing Brakeman," "The Father of Country Music," and the rough and rowdy king of white man's blues, his image becoming so multiplex over time that the artisthimself becomes vague. His immense but diffused musical contribution, it's said, is just "out there in our musical DNA", and Meeting Jimmie Rodgers traces all of the fascinating mutations and adaptations throughout the history of American popular music.Through carefully researched accounts, first-hand interviews and musical examinations, author Barry Mazor tracks, colorfully and conversationally, the remarkably varied places the man's music has gone, how it got there, and how our sense of its has been altered by re-interpreters who've grabbedhold of it along the way, including potent performers from Ernest Tubb to Lead Belly, Bob Wills, Woody Guthrie, Bill Monroe, Jerry Lee Lewis, Merle Haggard, Dolly Parton, Doc Watson, Bob Dylan and Lynyrd Skynyrd. In reconstructing Rodgers' singular, far-flung legacy, Mazor clears the way forreaders to experience the music for themselves again directly - meeting Jimmie Rodgers and his music not as some "weird artifact" from a remote era , but as a potent, immediate force.
Publisher: New York : Oxford University Press, 2009.
Characteristics: viii, 376 p. :,ill. ;,24 cm.