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date: 24 February 2020

Lunsford, Bascom Lamar locked

  • Loyal Jones


(b Mars Hill, NC, Mar 21, 1882; d Asheville, NC, Sept 4, 1973). American folk-music collector and performer. He played the fiddle and sang as a child, but had no formal musical training. His first job, as a traveling fruit-tree salesman in the mountain areas of the Carolinas, Georgia, and Tennessee, brought him into contact with the Appalachian folk-music tradition. He learned folklore methodology and observed professional standards of collection; in order to preserve the culture he organized the Mountain Dance and Folk Festival in Asheville, North Carolina, in 1928, which has taken place annually since then. Lunsford was also involved in the establishment of several other folk festivals, and in 1949 was invited to represent the United States at the first International Folk Music Festival in Venice, Italy. He recorded for the Library of Congress his own collection of over 300 folksongs, tales, and other items, and made numerous commercial recordings. He also traveled widely to lecture on and perform traditional music. His compositions include the extremely popular “Mountain Dew” (...

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