collapse

* Member Info

 
 
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

* Like Us on Facebook

Turpentine is all right, providing that wages are good, but I can make more money now, out somewhere choppin' cordwood - Tampa Red, Turpentine Blues

Author Topic: Can anyone help me with a definition of Country Blues please.  (Read 1139 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Rivers

  • Tech Support
  • Member
  • Posts: 6929
  • I like chicken pie
Re: Can anyone help me with a definition of Country Blues please.
« Reply #15 on: March 01, 2017, 08:52:57 PM »
Logic may help us out here. Arguably, the 'country' adjective would have been redundant until some 'other' type of blues appeared, since it was all rural up until then, or at least I think we can assume it was.

If we follow that logic it's not too much of a stretch to think that some new form of blues had to have appeared to make a 'country' qualifier necessary. Maybe it first appeared during the great migration to the northern cities. Maybe it appeared as recently as Muddy Waters first plugging-in for the Chess brothers in 1946 and ripping it up in the clubs. He had a song called 'Country Blues' recorded for the Loc. I don't know if he carried it across to his electric band repertoire but I imagine he did.

Just my 2 cents on possible origins of the term.

Offline Stuart

  • Member
  • Posts: 2605
  • "The Voice of Almiqui"
Re: Can anyone help me with a definition of Country Blues please.
« Reply #16 on: March 02, 2017, 12:22:21 AM »
That thought crossed my mind as well: "In contrast to/ compared to/  parallel to/ etc. to/ what?" But it could also have been a stand alone identification of some kind, or instead of referring to a type of song style or genre, it could have even possibly referred to theme(s) or content. I wish I knew what the first person(s) to use the term specifically had in mind and how it evolved from there, if in fact there was a single starting point. Different people could have come up with it independently, with different lines of transmission between individuals and changes of meaning along the way. It's been known to happen. And as you might guess, I've seen this phenomena before, albeit in a different subject area.

Offline oddenda

  • Member
  • Posts: 597
Re: Can anyone help me with a definition of Country Blues please.
« Reply #17 on: March 02, 2017, 05:19:36 PM »
Rivers -

          I'm sure that Muddy did not name his LofC piece "Country Blues", but that Alan Lomax did. He certainly did William Brown's "Mississippi Blues"... no mention of the state anywhere in the lyrics! "WE often have that tendency in the moment!! Even me. I remember a respected researcher wanting to spell it "reals" instead of "reels" back in the day. White folks... gotta love us.

pbl

Offline Rivers

  • Tech Support
  • Member
  • Posts: 6929
  • I like chicken pie
Re: Can anyone help me with a definition of Country Blues please.
« Reply #18 on: March 02, 2017, 08:38:18 PM »
Thanks Peter. Maybe add Lomax to the list of progenitors of the CB term.

Likely as not it was always floating around out there, like granny's 'country baked beans', which were pretty much the same as cousin Leroy's plain old 'baked beans'. Folks probably thought granny's tasted better as a result of innocent downhome marketing setting up their expectations for a good time.

'Country'-anything is still big in the USA and elsewhere, and seldom seen as a negative. Many people yearn for what they believe would be a more enlightened lifestyle outside the cities and towns. Whoever said 'you can't miss what you never had' was wrong. Living on a farm, after yet another day full of deadlines, multitasking and unplanned events, I would say 'be careful what you wish for!'

I wouldn't trade it though, and will now stop rambling.
« Last Edit: March 02, 2017, 09:06:33 PM by Rivers »

Offline Mr.OMuck

  • Member
  • Posts: 2605
    • MuckOVision
Re: Can anyone help me with a definition of Country Blues please.
« Reply #19 on: March 03, 2017, 06:32:09 AM »
I've also heard it referred to as Hillbilly Blues by at least one Black woman from Baltimore in her 70's. I bet only a few of you remember when it was frequently referred to as "Primitive" Blues or "Primitive Country Blues". In an academic context, painters like Masaccio were likewise referred to as Italian primitives. I think they meant it to mean foundational rather than undeveloped.
My loathings are simple: stupidity, oppression, crime, cruelty, soft music.
Vladimir Nabokov (1899 - 1977)

http://www.youtube.com/user/MuckOVision

Offline Gilgamesh

  • Member
  • Posts: 74
  • Howdy!
Re: Can anyone help me with a definition of Country Blues please.
« Reply #20 on: March 03, 2017, 05:00:16 PM »
I can only stand so much deconstruction and historical revision and I cain't stands no more! The idea that the designation "Blues" or "Country Blues" (I prefer Rural) was a fiendish segregationist plot put together by smart record execs is mostly nonsense. When you say that someone like Sam Charters, and after all who the hell was he, invented the phrase in 1959 I don't know whether to laugh or cry. Inadvertently in your righteous zeal, you folks have gone over the edge into disempowering the people who invented this music and most likely named it that which it was later called by White folks. Twist this way and that, believe what you want, compile and present your evidence, but that don't make it so.

Was this directed at me? Because I specifically said Charters did not invent the phrase "country blues" in 1959.

Offline Gilgamesh

  • Member
  • Posts: 74
  • Howdy!
Re: Can anyone help me with a definition of Country Blues please.
« Reply #21 on: March 03, 2017, 05:07:53 PM »
I think many people nowadays would define "country" blues as being virtually synonymous with acoustic blues. Of course we can argue that Muddy plugging in is still "country" blues, but his 1950s sound is quite different from his 1940 sound.

Offline Rivers

  • Tech Support
  • Member
  • Posts: 6929
  • I like chicken pie
Re: Can anyone help me with a definition of Country Blues please.
« Reply #22 on: March 03, 2017, 05:31:47 PM »
Ah yes and what about... Houston Stackhouse covering Tommy Johnson, Howlin' Wolf's entire output, Lightnin' Hopkins plugged-in, Robert Nighthawk, Arthur Crudup, late Memphis Minnie, Fred, Burnside, and so on. If it isn't country blues it must be electric country blues.

Genre names are slippery customers and hard to nail down. Give a concise definition, under three paragraphs, and people will shoot it full of holes.
« Last Edit: March 03, 2017, 05:47:35 PM by Rivers »

Offline Mr.OMuck

  • Member
  • Posts: 2605
    • MuckOVision
Re: Can anyone help me with a definition of Country Blues please.
« Reply #23 on: March 03, 2017, 06:59:27 PM »
@Gilgamesh,
No, more the idea which has gained traction in the past decade that the name was invented as a marketing strategy. Maybe as a corollary to the pre existing name. People tend to run away with a good idea with a germ of truth.


« Last Edit: March 03, 2017, 07:00:56 PM by Mr.OMuck »
My loathings are simple: stupidity, oppression, crime, cruelty, soft music.
Vladimir Nabokov (1899 - 1977)

http://www.youtube.com/user/MuckOVision

Offline Mr.OMuck

  • Member
  • Posts: 2605
    • MuckOVision
Re: Can anyone help me with a definition of Country Blues please.
« Reply #24 on: March 03, 2017, 09:57:12 PM »
And here I was hopin' you'd come to the rescue with the musical parameters John!...Oh well! :(
My loathings are simple: stupidity, oppression, crime, cruelty, soft music.
Vladimir Nabokov (1899 - 1977)

http://www.youtube.com/user/MuckOVision

Offline thickpete

  • Member
  • Posts: 54
  • Folks that ain't broke is badly bent...
Re: Can anyone help me with a definition of Country Blues please.
« Reply #25 on: March 09, 2017, 06:12:51 PM »
No right answer to this obviously - though Muck's (while evocative and not inaccurate) resonates least with me.

But then I love most music/sound and enjoy that most which is least self constricted.

Quote
?I understand the categorization of music, but I really don?t adhere to categories at all.  See, I see things in their totality, not in their segmented manner that man has superimposed upon them. ?Did you like the music?? ?Fine.? That?s all that?s necessary.?
Walt Dickerson


Offline Mr.OMuck

  • Member
  • Posts: 2605
    • MuckOVision
Re: Can anyone help me with a definition of Country Blues please.
« Reply #26 on: March 09, 2017, 08:53:18 PM »
Hey thick, if you're going to get into argument posture, at least have the courage to put forth your argument. Personally however, I don't give a flying duck's ass what does or doesn't resonate with you!
My loathings are simple: stupidity, oppression, crime, cruelty, soft music.
Vladimir Nabokov (1899 - 1977)

http://www.youtube.com/user/MuckOVision

Offline thickpete

  • Member
  • Posts: 54
  • Folks that ain't broke is badly bent...
Re: Can anyone help me with a definition of Country Blues please.
« Reply #27 on: March 11, 2017, 07:00:27 PM »

Easy there O'Muck.....No argument posture from me. Though my comment may read more snarkily than I intended it to. My simple statement was that there was no clear and meaningful definition of the term - same as with all musical "genres". That's all. I thought my meaning was obvious - though not intended as hostile. Meant as a comment on the arguments put forth and not intended as ad hominem.

Happy trails....
« Last Edit: March 11, 2017, 07:12:43 PM by thickpete »

Tags:
 


anything