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Folk music in the United Stateslocked

  • Norm Cohen


The definitions of “folk music” and the older “folk song” (earliest OED citation, 1847), have vexed antiquarians, folklorists, musicologists, music historians, anthropologists, ethnomusicologists, and all other scholarly writers who have tried to use the terms with some degree of precision. A definition that satisfies all users and applies to all cultures and eras, is, to say the least, challenging, mainly because most users have in mind particular characteristics as defining “folk music,” and few such characteristics are invariant with time and locale....

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