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The blues? Ain't no first blues. The blues always been - Nelson "Big Eye" Delisle, early New Orleans jazz clarinetist, in response to an Alan Lomax question in 1940

Author Topic: question about Mississippi John Hurt interview  (Read 1348 times)

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Offline jphauser

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question about Mississippi John Hurt interview
« on: September 08, 2014, 05:09:44 PM »
Years ago, I came across an interview of Mississippi John Hurt by Tom Hoskins posted on Stefan Grossman's website and I just came across it again today and I'm wondering where it was originally published.  It  took place on October 13, 1963 in Washington, DC.  Nick Perls was also there.  Here is a link to the interview.

http://www.guitarvideos.com/interviews/mississippi-john-hurt

Does anybody happen to know the original publication info???
Thanks.


Offline bnemerov

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Re: question about Mississippi John Hurt interview
« Reply #2 on: September 09, 2014, 12:11:50 PM »
 jostber,
Nope.
best,
bruce

Offline nobocaster

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Re: question about Mississippi John Hurt interview
« Reply #3 on: September 10, 2014, 12:29:41 AM »
  It was published in Sing Out! magazine at some point.  Somewhere I have a photocopy of it.  I'll try to dig that up and see if it has any other info.

Offline jphauser

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Re: question about Mississippi John Hurt interview
« Reply #4 on: September 10, 2014, 10:22:22 AM »
  It was published in Sing Out! magazine at some point.  Somewhere I have a photocopy of it.  I'll try to dig that up and see if it has any other info.

Thanks Nobocaster!
I found a table of contents webpage on Sing Out! with what I believe to be an interview titled "Scrapin' the Heart and Knockin' Them Back: Mississippi John Hurt" with Grossman's and Hoskins's names attached to it.  This might be it.  It's volume 34 #4 Feb/March/April 1995.  Does this sound like the interview to you?  Here's a link to the page.

http://www.singout.org/394toc.html

jim

Offline Stuart

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Re: question about Mississippi John Hurt interview
« Reply #5 on: September 10, 2014, 05:42:28 PM »
Hi Jim:

Sing Out! seems to be the most likely place if it was published shortly (perhaps within a year) of when it was done. However, I think that Stefan would have given the attribution on his site as "Originally published in____." He was active in the NYC music scene around that time and I doubt that he would have missed it--or not have given proper credit.

I checked Philip Ratcliffe's book on MJH and he only cites Stefan's site as the source (p. 247, n.49). Perhaps it was recorded, transcribed, but never found its way into print. Pete Seeger did an interview that is on the "Memorial Anthology"  CD that I don't think appeared in print, but I may be wrong.

I'll let nobocaster search his archives and render the final verdict.

And you can always e-mail Stefan directly or post a question on The Woodshed.
« Last Edit: September 10, 2014, 06:05:40 PM by Stuart »

Offline jphauser

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Re: question about Mississippi John Hurt interview
« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2014, 06:38:29 AM »
Hi Jim:

Sing Out! seems to be the most likely place if it was published shortly (perhaps within a year) of when it was done. However, I think that Stefan would have given the attribution on his site as "Originally published in____." He was active in the NYC music scene around that time and I doubt that he would have missed it--or not have given proper credit.

I checked Philip Ratcliffe's book on MJH and he only cites Stefan's site as the source (p. 247, n.49). Perhaps it was recorded, transcribed, but never found its way into print. Pete Seeger did an interview that is on the "Memorial Anthology"  CD that I don't think appeared in print, but I may be wrong.

I'll let nobocaster search his archives and render the final verdict.

And you can always e-mail Stefan directly or post a question on The Woodshed.


Thanks Stuart.  I'll try e-mailing Stefan since he not only holds the answer but might also provide a little background info.  The 1995 piece in Sing Out! is an interview according to Robert Ford's A Blues Bibliography which shows the subtitle as "A Classic Interview with Mississippi John Hurt."  Seems odd that it may not have been published until 1995--maybe it originally appeared much earlier and was reprinted for some reason.

Jim


Offline nobocaster

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Re: question about Mississippi John Hurt interview
« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2014, 09:58:31 AM »
I can't find the article yet..  I just moved and some of my stuff is still in boxes.  The '95 article you found is the one I have.  I remember the title, and it is just a transcription of the interview with a short introduction story.  I agree that it would be odd for that to be the first print of that.  I'll keep looking.  Perhaps at the end there is a "originially published in..."

  Cheers,
  Devin

Offline nobocaster

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Re: question about Mississippi John Hurt interview
« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2014, 10:08:48 AM »
  Wait a second...  I got confused here.  The interview I'm talking about is the one that occurred at John Hurt's house in Avalon when he was first contacted by Hoskins.  That's what was published in Sing Out! in '95. 

  Sorry for throwing you off the trail there.

  Devin

Offline Stuart

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Re: question about Mississippi John Hurt interview
« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2014, 10:37:44 AM »
Thanks, Devin. There's no bibliography in Ratcliffe's book, so I'll see if I can find it in the notes. However, on p.267, n.43 he mentions an unpublished tape recording of an interview made by Tom Hoskins in March 1963 at the Hurt home in Avalon. Maybe this is the one that's related to the 1995 Sing Out! piece, not the October 13, 1963 interview posted on Stefan's site. Bruce will probably know.
« Last Edit: September 11, 2014, 12:46:07 PM by Stuart »

Offline bnemerov

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Re: question about Mississippi John Hurt interview
« Reply #10 on: September 11, 2014, 11:47:58 AM »
Hi all,

Hoskins did interview Hurt at Hurt's house during the initial home recording. It is on the "Discovery" CD in its complete form---we didn't edit anything. It is almost 16 minutes long.

However, it's not the same as that on the Grossman link at the start of this thread; which says the interview was conducted later that year in DC, after John was brought out of Mississippi. The DC interview appears to be a transcription of something much longer; it goes on to a second reel of tape.

The two interviews--one audio and one in text-- are quite different. Jessie participates in the March home interview but seems to be absent in the October DC interview.
best,
bruce
« Last Edit: September 11, 2014, 12:01:56 PM by bnemerov »

Offline Stuart

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Re: question about Mississippi John Hurt interview
« Reply #11 on: September 11, 2014, 12:45:04 PM »
Thanks, Bruce. I reread my post and saw that it was less than clear, so I edited it in an attempt to eliminate the ambiguity.

IIRC, the "Discovery" CD was released after Phil's book went to press.

You're right about the length of the October 1963 interview. It may have been too long to publish in its entirety in Sing Out! back in '63-64--at least not in a single issue. Hopefully, Stefan will shed a little light on this.
« Last Edit: September 11, 2014, 12:46:40 PM by Stuart »

Offline jphauser

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Re: question about Mississippi John Hurt interview
« Reply #12 on: September 12, 2014, 06:55:02 AM »
You're right about the length of the October 1963 interview. It may have been too long to publish in its entirety in Sing Out! back in '63-64--at least not in a single issue. Hopefully, Stefan will shed a little light on this.

You're right Stuart, part of the interview appeared in Sing Out!  Here is Stefan's response on The Woodshed forum:
 
Sing Out! published a small part of the interview years ago. The complete interview appeared on the website once the digital world began.

Offline Stuart

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Re: question about Mississippi John Hurt interview
« Reply #13 on: September 12, 2014, 09:01:48 AM »
Thanks, Jim. It was a lucky guess, if anything.

I subscribed to Sing Out! for a couple years in the 1960s and again in the 70s, and an interview of that length would not have fit, unless the entire issue was devoted to it, so it isn't surprising that it was only printed in part. In any event, it's good by Stefan to make the complete interview available on his site.

Offline jphauser

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Re: question about Mississippi John Hurt interview
« Reply #14 on: September 13, 2014, 06:59:17 AM »
I subscribed to Sing Out! for a couple years in the 1960s and again in the 70s, and an interview of that length would not have fit, unless the entire issue was devoted to it, so it isn't surprising that it was only printed in part. In any event, it's good by Stefan to make the complete interview available on his site.

I imagine this happened a lot.  There's probably a lot of interviews or parts of interviews of bluesmen that remain unpublished. 
« Last Edit: September 13, 2014, 04:18:03 PM by jphauser »

 


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