(b Pittsburgh, PA, Jan 29, 1915; d Paterson, NJ, March 18, 1995). American writer on jazz, record producer, and folklorist. He coedited one of the first scholarly books on jazz with Charles Edward Smith, Jazzmen: the Story of Hot Jazz Told in the Lives of the Men who Created It (New York, 1939). Supported in part by Guggenheim Fellowships (1953, 1955), Ramsey conducted extensive fieldwork throughout the American South, photographing African American life and recording interviews and music. The results of his travels are detailed in his books Been Here and Gone (New Brunswick, NJ, 1960) and Where the Music Started (New Brunswick, NJ, 1970). Many of his field recordings were released by Folkways Records as Music of the South (1954). He produced a historical anthology of recordings for Folkways titled Jazz (1950–53). Later, grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities (...
Alex Harris Stein
revised by Jere T. Humphreys
(b Elgin, IL, May 25, 1914; d DeKalb, IL, Feb 17, 2003). American music educator, scholar, and administrator. He obtained degrees in instrumental music (BS 1937) and in education and English (MA 1939) from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana, and in musicology from University of Michigan (PhD 1950). He taught music and English in the public schools of Griffith, Illinois (1938–41), and in the laboratory school at Eastern Illinois State Teachers College (1941–3). After serving in the US Army during World War II (1943–6), he completed his doctoral studies and joined the music faculty at the University of Michigan (1949), where he established a leading doctoral program in music education and directed 51 doctoral dissertations. He served as dean of the School of Music (1969–79) and retired from the faculty in 1984. Britton was president of the Music Educators National Conference (MENC) (...
(b Perth Amboy, NJ, Feb 19, 1766; d New York, NY, Sep 28, 1839). American playwright, librettist, theater manager, historian, and painter. Despite losing his sight in one eye due to an accident, Dunlap became a professional portrait painter in his youth, and he was noted for his paintings of George Washington. In 1784 he traveled to London and studied painting with Benjamin West. Upon his return to the United States in 1787, he began writing plays and became America’s first professional playwright. Over a period of 40 years he translated, adapted, or wrote more than 70 plays, many of which used music by composers such as Benjamin Carr, Alexander Reinagle, Victor Pelissier, and James Hewitt. He was influenced by the plays of German dramatist August von Kotzebue, whose works he translated and made popular in the United States.
Dunlap’s The Archers, or Mountaineers of Switzerland (1796...
Allison A. Alcorn
(b Kingston-on-Thames, Surrey, UK, March 14, 1940). English dealer in musical instruments, rare music books, music iconography, and related ephemera. After leaving school at the age of 16, Bingham trained as a quantity surveyor and opened his own surveying business in 1961, about the same time he began dealing in general antiques. He had a partnership in a musical instrument business for one year until 1966, when he opened his first independent shop at 247 Kings Road, London. Through extensive travels Bingham obtains and sells both Western and non-Western instruments. He specializes in assembling collections of European woodwinds, illustrating their development also with patent documents, methods, and other materials. His shop at 11 Pond Street features collections of metronomes, oil paintings of musicians, trade cards, tuning forks, and trade catalogues in addition to instruments. Major museum clients include the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York), the National Music Museum (South Dakota), the Musée de la Musique (Paris), and the Musashino Academia Musicae (Tokyo), while private collectors have included Joe R. Utley, Nicholas Shackleton, and H. Iino. Bingham has also published several important works on musical instruments, such as William Waterhouse’s ...
Jere T. Humphreys
(b Wylie, TX, Oct 17, 1913; d Tallahassee, FL, Dec 13, 2004). American Music educator, conductor, scholar, and administrator. He earned degrees from North Texas State College (BS 1934), Teachers College, Columbia University (MA 1938), and New York University (EdD 1943). He was director of music for public schools in Texas (1934–7) and New York (1938–41), and taught at New York University (1941–3) and the University of Texas (1946–7). He served as an Executive Officer in the US Army Medical Administrative Corps in the United States and Philippines (1943–6). He then taught at Florida State University (1947–66), where he was named Distinguished Professor (1961). During those years he held a Fulbright Fellowship to Japan (1956–7) and summer appointments at North Texas State University, University of Michigan, and Indiana University. He served on committees and advisory boards for the US Department of State International Cultural Presentations Program (...
(b Piraeus, 1897; d Piraeus, 1981). Greek composer, music teacher, conductor, music manager, and historian.
He studied music theory with Geōrgios Lampelet and Armando Marsik at Athens Conservatory, and continued his studies in Leipzig with Fritz Benesevic and Max Steinizer. From 1914, and for several years, he was a teacher of vocal training in several schools and a professor in the Academy of Film Studies, of the Higher School of Cinema. He was a member of the board of the organization ‘Ellēnikon Melodrama’ [Greek Melodrama] and directing advisor; founder and conductor of the choir in the church of the Greek community in Leipzig; and founding member of the board of the Union of the Critics of the Theatre and Music, the organization ‘Arxaion Drama’ [Ancient Drama], the Greek Society of composers, writers, and publishers, among others. He was the director of the journal Mousika Chronika [Musical Chronicles] (...
(b Passaic, NJ, July 20, 1934; d Washington, DC, July 2, 1994). American Musician, promoter, record producer, author, folklorist, and museum administrator. He grew up in Passaic, New Jersey, and it was at Swarthmore College that he was first exposed to folk music. He became one of the most important individuals behind the scenes during the folksong revival of the late 1950s. Rinzler performed on many instruments but was mainly associated with the mandolin. He was a onetime member of the urban bluegrass group the Greenbriar Boys.
Rinzler decided he would rather spend his time promoting the music of others than performing himself. He studied with Alan Lomax in England. Rinzler was appointed the chief talent scout for the Newport Folk Festival and was the person responsible for bringing traditional musicians such as Clarence Ashley, John Hurt, Maybelle Carter, and others to the festival. His fieldwork for the festival led to the rediscovery of Ashley and, in turn, the discovery of guitarist Doc Watson. He later managed Watson and Bill Monroe, organizing shows nationwide....
(b Lincoln, NE, Aug 23, 1960). American Director, adapter, and educator. From a family of academics, Zimmerman received her BS, MA, and PhD at Northwestern University in Performance Studies under the mentorship of Frank Galati. The program focused on how to adapt works of literature for the stage; much of Zimmerman’s later work would reflect such scholarly and text-based influences. Based in Chicago, her career began at Lookingglass Theatre Company, a troupe whose founding members also attended Northwestern. The company’s aesthetic focused on storytelling through strong physicality and breathtaking aerobatics within a highly presentational style, as seen in Zimmerman’s 1990 production of The Odyssey. In 1995 she joined the artistic collective of the Goodman Theatre—a roster of resident directors formed by artistic director Robert Falls—and led a production of All’s Well That Ends Well. Other early notable adapted productions at the Goodman included The Arabian Nights and The Notebooks of Leonardo da Vinci...
(b New York, NY, Aug 15, 1933; d Lexington, VA, Aug 7, 2009). American performer, documenter, and promoter of traditional southern folk music. The son of musicologist charles Seeger and composer ruth Crawford , Mike Seeger first came into contact with folk music through the field recordings that Alan Lomax and Charles Seeger had made for the Library of Congress in the 1930s. Inspired by the sounds of the Carter Family, Dock Boggs, and Gid Tanner, Seeger taught himself to play banjo, guitar, mandolin, fiddle, and autoharp. By the mid-1950s he was playing in bluegrass bands around the Washington, DC, area.
In 1958 he joined forces with John Cohen and Tom Paley (the latter replaced by Tracy Schwarz in 1962) to form the New lost city ramblers , pioneers in the revival of early southern string band and bluegrass music. While recording and touring with the Ramblers, Mike maintained a vigorous solo career. His mastery of multiple instruments and diverse southern folk styles is evident on his ...
[Miguel José ]
(b Petra, Majorca, Spain, Nov 24, 1713; d Mission San Carlos Borromeo, Alta California [now in Carmel, CA], Aug 28, 1784). Spanish Franciscan friar and founder of the Alta California missions. Baptized Miguel José, upon joining the Franciscan order at age 17 he took the name of Junípero, after a companion of St. Francis. In 1742 Serra obtained a doctorate in theology at the Lullian University in Palma de Mallorca, where he was a professor of theology. Known as a forceful and zealous preacher with a resonant voice, in 1749 Serra sailed for New Spain to become a missionary. He served in the missions in the Sierra Gorda from 1750 to 1758, and the missions he administered there prospered. In order to better serve the indigenous population he served there, he learned the Otomí language. In 1758 Serra was recalled to the San Fernando College in Mexico City, where he remained until ...