Folk & Traditional Music of the Western Continents

The folk & traditional music of Europe, Africa & the Americas explored.

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Studying the Structure of Folk Music
Music of any sort, and folk music especially, should be examined in two ways: 1) for itself, its structure and its aesthetic effect, and 2) in its cultural context, its function and its relationship to other aspects of life. The second of these views has been briefly covered in Chapter I. We have tried to show how folk music and the music of nonliterate cultures, as a unit, differ from other kinds of music as far as their origin, transmission, and cultural function are concerned. We should now like to devote some pages to the question of musical structure. In the subsequent chapters we shall examine various mu­sics, continent by continent, from both of these viewpoints. But in order to talk about music we need to develop a vocabulary, and talk-

E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III