This handsome illustrated history traces the transformation of the banjo from primitive folk instrument to sophisticated musical machine and, in the process, offers a unique view of the music business in nineteenth-century America. Philip Gura and James Bollman chart the evolution of "America's instrument," the five-stringed banjo, from its origins in the gourd instrumentsThis handsome illustrated history traces the transformation of the banjo from primitive folk instrument to sophisticated musical machine and, in the process, offers a unique view of the music business in nineteenth-century America. Philip Gura and James Bollman chart the evolution of "America's instrument," the five-stringed banjo, from its origins in the gourd instruments of enslaved Africans brought to the New World in the seventeenth century through its rise to the very pinnacle of American popular culture at the turn of the twentieth century. Throughout, they look at how banjo craftsmen and manufacturers developed, built, and marketed their products to an American public immersed in the production and consumption of popular music. With over 250 illustrations--including rare period photographs, minstrel broadsides, sheet music covers, and banjo tutors and tune books--America's Instrument brings to life a fascinating aspect of American cultural history....
|Title||:||America's Instrument: The Banjo in the Nineteenth-Century|
|Number of Pages||:||400 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
America's Instrument: The Banjo in the Nineteenth-Century Reviews
Rich, dark, creamy banjo porn. If you like musical instruments for their looks as well as their sound, and indeed the mystery of their stories, if you feel the past vibrating in tune with a taut string from the attic, you need this book.
"By the 1860s more and more banjo makers followed in Ashborn's footsteps, for, as we shall see, most often inventive banjo design, that which might indeed lead to true innovation, originated with those makers who wholeheartedly embraced the possibilities of mechanized production. Most violin makers, for example, as well as guitar makers such as Martin, continued to build instruments by traditional methods, patiently training apprentices in the various steps necessary to produce an entire instrument by themselves. But by the 1860s the banjo had become anything but traditional, with a score of patents filed in which its design was changed, often quite radically, as various banjo makers capitalized on the nation's growing infatuation with the instrument. Its basic form - a five-string neck and a circular sounding chamber - established, the banjo began to appear in a bewildering number of variations as makers sought to adapt the instrument to the new kinds of music people wished to play on it. In 1840 the banjo had been a symbol of the American South in general and the slave plantation in particular. But after its initial popularization on the minstrel stage led to its wholesale embrace by Victorian America, it came to represent the aspirations of a burgeoning mechanic class who brought to its design and manufacture the same invention through which they had transformed other areas of American industry. It truly was becoming America's instrument." "The piano may do for love-sick girls who lace themselves to skeletons, and lunch on chalk, pickles, and slate pencils. But give me the banjo. Gottschalk compared to Sam Pride or Charley Rhoades, is as a Dashaway Cocktail to a hot whisky punch. When you want genuine music - music that will come right home to you like a bad quarter, suffuse your system like strychnine whisky, go right through you like Brandreth's pills, ramify your whole constitution like the measles, and break out on your hide like the pin-feather pimples on a pickled goose - when you want all this, just smash your piano, and invoke the glory-beaming banjo!" --Mark Twain, 1865