Mississippi Delta & Hill Country (1978)
On the Greenville Levee (1978)
Appalachia (1982-1983)
New Orleans (1982)
Cajun Louisiana (1982-1985)

Sacred Harp (1983)
Johns Island (1983)

 

Mississippi Delta & Hill Country (1978)

Bluesmen; fife-and-drum ensembles; former muleskinners and railroad tie-tampers; and tall-tale reciters. Performers include Skip James collaborator Jack Owens, former Mississippi Sheik Sam Chatmon, diddley-bow player Lonnie Pitchford, fife legend Otha Turner, and R. L. Burnside in his first film appearance.

 

 

On the Greenville Levee (1978)

In the summer of 1978, Alan Lomax, John Bishop, and Worth Long spent two days on the levee in Greenville, Mississippi, interviewing Walter Brown, Joe Savage, Bill Gordon, and William S. Hart -- former levee-camp laborers, river roustabouts, and Parchman Farm inmates. The result was a remarkable collection of reminiscences, tall tales, field hollers, and oral history preserved on two hours of video tape, presented in its original order here. (This footage is part of the 1978 Mississippi collection but in order to maintain the conversation's original running order, it's also presented separately here.)

 

 

Appalachia (1982-1983)

Cloggers and buck dancers; bluegrass and string bands; white gospel groups; stories, folktales, and ballads from coal miners, tobacco farmers, and former bootleggers, filmed in Virginia, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina, and Kentucky. Performers include Ray and Stanley Hicks; union activist and singer Nimrod Workman; fiddler Tommy Jarrell; the ballad singers of Sodom Laurel, Madison County, N.C.; the Piedmont blues stylists John Dee Holeman and Algia Mae Hinton, and the National Sacred Harp Convention in Fyffe, Alabama.

 

 

New Orleans (1982)

Funeral parades; Mardi Gras Indians and Social Aid and Pleasure Clubs; the Dirty Dozen Brass Band; veterans of the Storyville hot jazz scene; and scenes from Jazz Fest and Preservation Hall.

 

 

Cajun Louisiana (1982-1985)

Cajun cowboys, string bands, zydeco groups, fiddlers, and scenes from the Cajun and creole Mardi Gras celebrations. Performers include Dennis McGee, Dewey Balfa, Canray Fontenot, Bois Sec Ardoin, Michael Doucet and BeauSoleil, Boozoo Chavis.

 

 

Sacred Harp (1982)

Footage from the 1982 Holly Springs (Georgia) Sacred Harp Convention and of a number of its participants individually. (This footage is also part of the 1982-1983 Appalachia collection.)

 

 

Johns Island (1983)

Hymns, church services, folktales, and children's game songs from the South Carolina sea island, Johns Island.

 

 


These clips are made possible in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

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