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78 BluesFolksongs and Phonographs in the American South$
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John Minton

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9781934110195

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781934110195.001.0001

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A Special Prayer on The Man That’s A-Catching The Record

A Special Prayer on The Man That’s A-Catching The Record

(p.95) Chapter Five A Special Prayer on The Man That’s A-Catching The Record
78 Blues

John Minton

University Press of Mississippi

This chapter argues that old-time records have achieved a new level of conceptual autonomy, an equal partner in Southern music and song. The record has transfigured the basic components of the musical event: its setting, its participants, even the musical tradition itself. The musical tradition has also been redefined as a record, understood not just as a physical object and its three-minute time-span but as an instantaneous meeting of imaginative minds, a momentary union of cultural beings transcending the mundane boundaries of product and process to achieve the idea of art: a prayer, a hymn, a ceremony, a transcendent reality absolutely in tune with itself.

Keywords:   old-time records, Southern music, Southern song, musical tradition

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