Blues Talk 5:
W.C. Handy and the "birth" of the blues

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Books, links, and other useful resources (listed roughly in the order they're mentioned in the video):


Muir, Peter G.  Long Lost Blues:  Popular Blues in America, 1850-1920.  U of Illinois Press, 2010.

Evans, David.  “The Guitar in Blues Music of the Deep South.”  In Guitar Cultures, ed. Andy Bennett and Kevin Dawe.  Berg, 2001.

Ottenheimer, Harriet.  “Blues in the Heartland:  African-American Music and Culture in the Middle West.  In Black Heartland:  African American Life, the Middle West, and the Meaning of American Regionalism.”  Occasional Paper Series 1.2 (1997):  16-36.

Mississippi field holler (Joe Savage/Alan Lomax) [YouTube video]

Kubik, Gerhard.  Africa and the Blues.  UP of Mississippi, 2008.

Otis Rush, “I Can’t Quit You, Baby.”  American Folk Blues Festival. [YouTube video]

Blackmon, Douglas.  Slavery By Another Name:  The Re-Enslavement of Black Americans from the Civil War to WWII.  Doubleday/Anchor, 2008.

Handy, W. C.  Father of the Blues:  An Autobiography.  1941.  DaCapo, 1969.

Douglass, Frederick.  Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass.  1845.

Washington, Booker T.  Up From Slavery.  1901.

Southern, Eileen.  The Music of Black Americans:  A History.  3rd edition.  W. W. Norton, 1997.

Lee, Spike.  Bamboozled.  2000.  [DVD]

Gussow, Adam.  Seems Like Murder Here:  Southern Violence and the Blues Tradition.  Chicago, 2002.

Gilroy, Paul.  The Black Atlantic:  Modernity and Double Consciousness.  Harvard UP, 1993.

Wagner, Bryan.  Disturbing the Peace:  Black Culture and the Police Power after Slavery.  Harvard UP, 2009.

Wald, Elijah.  Escaping the Delta:  Robert Johnson and the Invention of the Blues.  Amistad, 2004.

Abbott, Lynn and Doug Seroff.  “’They Cert’ly Sound Good to Me’:  Sheet Music, Southern Vaudeville, and the Commercial Ascendancy of the Blues.”  American Music 14.4 (Winter 1996): 402-454.