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Now why don't you do something from your neck of the woods? - Carl Rutherford, to Mick Knight, Port Townsend 98

Author Topic: Linthead Stomp  (Read 2927 times)

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Offline uncle bud

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Linthead Stomp
« on: May 10, 2009, 08:51:11 PM »
Anyone read this one or heard anything?



Linthead Stomp - The Creation of Country Music in the Piedmont South
by Patrick Huber

Product Description
This title presents the urban and industrial roots of American country music.Contrary to popular belief, the roots of American country music do not lie solely on southern farms or in mountain hollows. Rather, much of this music recorded before World War II emerged from the bustling cities and towns of the Piedmont South. No group contributed more to the commercialization of early country music than southern factory workers. In "Linthead Stomp", Patrick Huber explores the origins and development of this music in the Piedmont's mill villages.Huber offers vivid portraits of a colorful cast of Piedmont millhand musicians, including Fiddlin' John Carson, Charlie Poole, Dave McCarn, and the Dixon Brothers, and considers the impact that urban living, industrial work, and mass culture had on their lives and music. Drawing on a broad range of sources, including rare 78-rpm recordings and unpublished interviews, Huber reveals that the country music recorded between 1922 and 1942 was just as modern as the jazz music of the same era. "Linthead Stomp" celebrates the Piedmont millhand fiddlers, guitarists, and banjo pickers who combined the collective memories of the rural countryside with the upheavals of urban-industrial life to create a distinctive American music that spoke to the changing realities of the twentieth-century South.

Offline oddenda

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Re: Linthead Stomp
« Reply #1 on: May 11, 2009, 02:26:04 AM »
The description is VERY good; I hope that the content lives up to it. Who's the publisher? This could be a "keeper".

Peter B.

Offline uncle bud

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Re: Linthead Stomp
« Reply #2 on: May 11, 2009, 06:06:21 AM »
The publisher is the University of North Carolina Press. It's a 440-page hardcover released in Oct. 2008 according to Amazon.




Offline Mr.OMuck

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Re: Linthead Stomp
« Reply #3 on: May 11, 2009, 07:18:10 AM »
Great title

My loathings are simple: stupidity, oppression, crime, cruelty, soft music.
Vladimir Nabokov (1899 - 1977)

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Offline Stuart

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Re: Linthead Stomp
« Reply #4 on: May 11, 2009, 08:26:35 AM »
Andrew: 

Thank you for bringing this to our attention. None of the libraries in the area have it, but I just submitted a purchase / ILL request to the King County Library System. If they decide to do ILL, I'll probably be able to eyeball it in a week or two.

Here are a couple of links:

http://www.uncpress.unc.edu/browse/book_detail?title_id=1544

http://www.amazon.com/Linthead-Stomp-Creation-Country-Piedmont/dp/0807832251

http://www.bookfinder.com/


As Peter says, it looks like a "keeper." Given that it can be had for under $25 USD, it certainly is within striking distance.

Offline uncle bud

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Re: Linthead Stomp
« Reply #5 on: May 11, 2009, 09:26:45 AM »
Stuart - still keeping those librarians busy! I agree, for the price, seems like you can't go too far wrong with this one. Just so folks know, you can use the "Look Inside" feature at Amazon to see the table of contents, some sample pages, and the index for the book, if you're curious.

Offline Johnm

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Re: Linthead Stomp
« Reply #6 on: May 11, 2009, 09:34:00 AM »
Hi all,
I'm relying on memory, so consider this suspect, but I believe the title of the book came from an instrumental by the obscure mandolin player Phebel Wright.
All best,
Johnm

Offline Stuart

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Re: Linthead Stomp
« Reply #7 on: May 11, 2009, 09:50:21 AM »
Hi all,
I'm relying on memory, so consider this suspect, but I believe the title of the book came from an instrumental by the obscure mandolin player Phebel Wright.
All best,
Johnm

Right you are:

http://www.document-records.com/fulldetails.asp?ProdID=DOCD-32-20-03

Offline RobBob

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Re: Linthead Stomp
« Reply #8 on: May 12, 2009, 06:08:43 AM »
I started the book the other night.  And so far so good.  It goes in  great depth into the culture of the mill town and the society that produced so much great music.  While marketed as old time mountain music, much of the music that was recorded came from a society that was  based upon the new manufacturing culture of the time.  The marketing was much like Marshall McCuen's (sp?) Bonanza Land ideas of the late 60's.  Things of the recent past provide comfort so therefore are appealing.  The musicians discussed in the book may have had mountain or rural roots but were living the life of the modern southern lower middle class of the day.  It is not usually the middle class that produces great music but those, like Charlie Poole, trying to escape a life of mind numbing and back breaking toil, who become vectors that strike artistically.  It is interesting too how players feed on each other in artistic  and predatory ways.

It is a well researched book so far and the pictures of the mills are interesting for me as they are just blights upon the land of this post industrial landscape in the Carolinas.  You can't separate the land and the man when it comes to indigenous music.

Offline uncle bud

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Re: Linthead Stomp
« Reply #9 on: November 17, 2009, 08:26:27 AM »
Linthead Stomp has won an award from the Association for Recorded Sound Collections (ARSC) in their 2009 ARSC Awards for Excellence in Historical Recorded Sound Research. "The awards are presented to authors and publishers of books, articles, liner notes, and monographs, to recognize outstanding published research in the field of recorded sound."
BEST RESEARCH in RECORDED COUNTRY MUSIC
Linthead Stomp: The Creation of Country Music in the Piedmont South, by Patrick Huber (University of North Carolina Press)


Offline daveharrisonemanband

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Re: Linthead Stomp
« Reply #10 on: November 17, 2009, 02:34:15 PM »
Sorry to be so mono here but is there any info on one man bands in there? Fate Norris, Panhandle Pete, Henry Whitter, Gwen Foster etc. Thanks.

Offline doctorpep

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Re: Linthead Stomp
« Reply #11 on: November 29, 2009, 05:50:05 PM »
I've never heard of Dave McCarn. This is most definitely not Dave Macon, right?
"There ain't no Heaven, ain't no burning Hell. Where I go when I die, can't nobody tell."

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Offline dj

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Re: Linthead Stomp
« Reply #12 on: November 29, 2009, 06:02:49 PM »
Quote
This is most definitely not Dave Macon, right?

Nope, McCarn is right.  He recorded a dozen sides in 1930 and 1931.

Offline DanceGypsy

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Re: Linthead Stomp
« Reply #13 on: May 14, 2010, 07:23:59 AM »
Dave McCarn was a Piedmont textile worker who rambled a bit in his early twenties, and he actually recorded his much-discussed "Cotton Mill Colic" right here in Memphis, Tennessee.  The story, which I got from Linthead Stomp, is that after hoboing around out west, McCarn landed in Memphis, broke and desperate.  He was headed to a pawnshop to sell his guitar, but at the door he heard some black fellows talking about getting some strings for their instruments to try to make a record for the recording outfit that was in town.  Intrigued, McCarn shelved the pawn shop plan and followed the to the session (perhaps being held at the Peabody Hotel).  The A&R man told McCarn that they would record him on Monday, and to come back after the weekend.  Dave told the man he couldn't wait, that he was broke and needed to get home.  The man acquiesced, and McCarn recorded "Cotton Mill Colic," netting himself $25 which allowed him to return home to North Carolina.

McCarn's guitar playing is reminiscent of Sam McGee, and he also blows a harp to his own guitar accompaniment.  He has at least one instrumental with a real ragtime feel to it.  Really good stuff.

The book itself is a captivating reads, and I highly recommend it to anyone with an interest in old-time string band music, the roots of bluegrass or the music/sociological history of the Piedmont.  The basic premise is that it was urban forces, rather than some fancied transmission of pure mountain melodies, that resulted in the creation of music waxed on 78s in the 1920's and 30's in and around Piedmont cotton towns.  The premise is well-argued and well-supported, but even more interesting are the four case studies of the artists themselves.

It is a good idea to get a couple of Old Hat Record compilations to listen to in conjunction with this book.  Gastonia Gallup: Cotton Mill Songs and Hillbilly Blues (Old Hat 1007) has a several Dave McCarn songs, and a chunk of its liner notes are excerpted from Linthead Stomp.  Also, In the Pines: Tarheel Folk Songs and Fiddle Tunes (Old Hat 1006) has much to offer to bring the pages of Linthead Stomp to life.

Offline Lyle Lofgren

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Re: Linthead Stomp
« Reply #14 on: May 14, 2010, 09:00:41 AM »
I read it last year, and I can't add much to what's already written (such as about Dave McCarn), but I highly recommend the book. It has quite a bit of information I've not run across elsewhere.

Lyle

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