Tuesday, April 30, 2013

A very funky tribute to Alan Lomax and his Sounds of the South field recordings


"Trials, Troubles, Tribulations" by Sharon van Etten and Justin Vernon duet Sounds of the South musicNOW -- uploaded by YouTube user nosnah227

http://www.dukechronicle.com/articles/2010/09/16/duke-performances-reimagines-sounds-south-hayti The Chronicle - independent daily at DUke University

By Andrew Hibbard | September 15, 2010

Ethnomusicologist Alan Lomax’s 1961 release of southern field recordings, Sounds of the South, is an eight-disc extravaganza of delta blues, gospel and southern folk music entrenched in a rich cultural history.

And almost 50 years after its initial release on Atlantic Records, the project has found a new life in the hands of Durham band Megafaun and Richmond jazz collective Fight the Big Bull’s Matt White. With the vocal assistance of Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon and musician Sharon Van Etten, this supergroup of sorts is reinterpreting Lomax’s recordings, filtered through the present day.

* * *

But, if not odd, the reality of the project is certainly disparate. How does Fight the Big Bull, a contemporary, brassy jazz big-band, fit in with so-called indie folk trio Megafaun and two disarmingly beautiful vocalists, Justin Vernon and Sharon Van Etten? Moreover, how do they come together under the concept of recreating southern field recordings?

For White, the answer is simple.

“In the public point of view, we’re on opposite sides of the spectrum, but we’re informed by a lot of the same things,” he said.

Indeed, what inspires all of these musicians is an incredible awareness of and engagement with historical tradition. What separates them in all of their different form and genre-bending impulses is the trajectory the history takes them on.

“They’re totally willing to experiment. Lots of things sound right to their ears,” Greenwald said. “They’ve listened to an enormous amount of stuff…. There seems to be a totally sincere interest in all sorts of different sounds and all sorts of different ways of thinking about music.”

To be sure, the character of the Sounds of the South performances will be avant-something. But what fuels this impulse is the sense of tradition.

http://belatedbaby.wordpress.com/2011/05/25/in-case-you-missed-it-megafaun-justin-vernon-sharon-van-etten-do-sounds-of-the-south/ Belated Baby - by four duke students -- "Trials, Troubles, Tribulations" and a cover of Mississippi Fred Mcdowell's "Write Me a Few Lines" w/ links to reviews

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