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American Folklife Center: Library of Congress, An Illustrated Guide

 Music and Spoken Word

Margaret O. Moody sings for Anne Grimes
Margaret O. Moody sings for Anne Grimes, Chillicothe, Ohio, September 9, 1955.

(Anne Grimes Collection. Photo by James Grimes)

In the 1950s, Anne Grimes documented vestiges of traditional singing and dulcimer playing in central and southern Ohio, where she lived, in photographs and recordings. Here, Margaret O. Moody sings a song learned from her family, who first settled in Ohio in the early 1800s.

The printed copy of the American Folklife Center Illustrated Guide includes an Audio CD. The selections on the CD are presented here as mp3 files, along with the notes provided in the book. Additional links to online collections have been added to enhance the web presentation of this guide.

Produced by Jennifer Cutting
with selection assistance from Judith Gray,
Todd Harvey, Ann Hoog, and Michael Taft

Staff Engineer: Jonathan Gold

Mastering Engineer: Charlie Pilzer, Airshow Mastering

Disc transfers: Brittany Muehl and Larry Appelbaum
James Sam, The Cutting Corporation

Digital conversion: Peter Alyea.

Additional assistance:
Matthew Barton and Marcia K. Segal

Conversion of sound files for the online audio presentation:
John Barton and Jonathan Gold

Recordings are presented in RealPlayer format, and in MP3 if available. RealPlayer requires free downloadable software. Select this link for information "About Copyright and the Collections."

Select the RealPlayer or MP3 link next to the title to play each recording:

1. "Roll the Old Chariot Along" and "Haul the Woodpile Down." RealPlayer  MP3 (0:57) Photo of collector in the Foreword . Singers unknown. Sea shanties recorded by Robert W. Gordon in the San Francisco Bay Area of California in the early 1920s. Gordon Cylinder Collection, cylinder 50, AFC 1928/002: AFS 18,995 A. [More recordings from the Gordon Cylinder Collection are available online in the AFC presentation Folk-Songs of America: The Robert Winslow Gordon Collection, 1922-1932.]

2. "Manabus Tells the Ducks to Shut Their Eyes." RealPlayer  MP3 (1:23) Photo of collector in the Foreword. Sung by Louis Pigeon. One of many legends concerning the culture hero Manabus. In this story, he tricks ducks into dancing with their eyes closed by promising to sing them his songs, then wrings their necks one by one until one bird peeks, and they escape. Recorded by Frances Densmore in Keshena, Wisconsin, July-August, 1925. Frances Densmore Menominee Cylinder Collection, AFC 1952/001: AFS 10,687 B5.

3. "For to Drive My Father’s Cows" and “British Grenadiers." RealPlayer  MP3 (1:18) Photo in the Preface. Sung and played on the fiddle by Carrie B. Grover. Recorded by Eloise Hubbard Linscott in Gorham, Maine, 1943. Eloise Hubbard Linscott Collection, AFC 1942/002: AFS 28,143 A1-2.

4. "Rocky My Soul." RealPlayer  MP3 (1:38) Photo in A National Project with Many Workers. Sung by Uncle Rich Brown. Recorded by John A. and Ruby T. Lomax in Sumterville, Alabama, October, 1940. John and Ruby Lomax 1940 Southern States Recording Trip Collection, AFC 1940/003: AFS 4027 B1. [This collection is available online as the American Memory presentation Southern Mosaic:The John and Ruby Lomax 1939 Southern States Recording Trip.]

5. "Mr. Phonograph." RealPlayer  MP3 (1:11) Text in A National Project with Many Workers. Jesse Walter Fewkes talking to the new Edison cylinder recording machine in order to demonstrate its capabilities to a visiting Passamaquoddy man. Probably recorded in Boston, late 1890-early 1891. Jesse Walter Fewkes Passamaquoddy Cylinder Collection, AFC 1972/003: AFS 14,737 B15.

6. "Shove It Over." RealPlayer  MP3 (2:35) Sung by Zora Neale Hurston, with spoken commentary. Track lining song learned by Hurston from Charlie Jones on a railroad construction camp near Lakeland, Florida, in 1933. Recorded by Herbert Halpert for the Federal Writers Project in Jacksonville, Florida, June 18, 1939. Herbert Halpert / Southern Recording Trip 1939 Collection, AFC 1939/005: AFS 3136 A1.

7. "Old Uncle Rabbit" and "Sea Lion Woman." RealPlayer  MP3 (1:19) Photo of collector in A National Project with Many Workers. Sung by Christine and Katherine Shipp. “Sea Lion Woman” was featured in the 1999 Paramount film The General’s Daughter. Recorded by Herbert Halpert in Byhalia, Mississippi, May 13, 1939. Herbert Halpert / Southern Recording Trip 1939 Collection, AFC 1939/005: AFS 3008 A1 and B3.

8. Dance song with solo vocal. RealPlayer  MP3 (2:00) Text in A National Project with Many Workers. Bambara dance music performed on balaphons (gourd-resonated xylophones) and hand drums by an ensemble of professional musicians, with solo vocal by local singer “Lizahbet.” Recorded by Arthur S. Alberts in the “pagan” (non-Muslim) quarter of the city of Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso (formerly Upper Volta), 1949. Arthur S. Alberts Collection, AFC 1953/008: AFS 10,754 A9.

9. "Jesus Leads Me All the Way." RealPlayer  MP3 (3:43) Photo of collector in A National Project with Many Workers. Sung with stamping and clapping by Reverend Goodwin and the Zion Methodist Church congregation. Since most Christian churches forbade slaves from drumming, the Gullah style evolved with singers stamping and clapping rhythmic accompaniment. In this recording, singers stamp (and later clap) on the beat. Toward the end, however, they shift abruptly to a syncopated clapping pattern while their singing remains unsyncopated, a superb example of the survival of African polyrhythms in the New World. Recorded by Henrietta Yurchenco in John’s Island, South Carolina, March 29, 1970. Henrietta Yurchenco / John’s Island Collection, AFC 1996/066: 1.

10. Helen Hartness Flanders / "The Farmer’s Curst Wife." RealPlayer  MP3 (3:52) Photo of the collector in A National Project with Many Workers. Duncan Emrich introduces Vermont folksong collector Helen Hartness Flanders, who in turn introduces Asa Davis, an Irish-American singer from Vermont. Davis was one of three singers who performed at a lecture and concert entitled “New England Balladry,”presented by Flanders in the Coolidge Auditorium of the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., on February 27, 1948. Helen Hartness Flanders Collection, AFC 1948/001: AFS 9127 A.

11. Reactions to the Bombing of Pearl Harbor. RealPlayer  MP3 (1:39) Text in A National Project with Many Workers. Recorded by Philip Cohen and Alan Lomax in Washington, D.C., December 8, 1941. “Man-on-the-Street” Interviews Collection, AFC 1941/004: AFS 6358 A. [Additional recordings from this collection are available in the American Memory presentation, After the Day of Infamy: "Man on the Street" Interviews Following the Attack on Pearl Harbor, December 7, 1941.]

12. "White as Snow." RealPlayer  MP3 (1:45) Text in A National Project with Many Workers. Riddles spoken by Maggie Hammons Parker, with comments by Alan Jabbour. Recorded by Alan Jabbour and Carl Fleischhauer in Marlinton, West Virginia, April 23, 1972. Hammons Family Collection, AFC 1972/014: AFS 14,722 A3.

13. "White House Blues." RealPlayer  MP3 (2:50) Photo in A National Project with Many Workers. Alan Jabbour introduces the American Folklife Center’s first Neptune Plaza Concert: a performance by the Bluegrass Cardinals, featuring Don Parmley (banjo), David Parmley (guitar), Randy Graham (lead vocal, mandolin), Warren Blair (fiddle), and John Davis (bass). Recorded by the Library of Congress on the steps of the Thomas Jefferson Building, April 25, 1977. Neptune Plaza Concert Series Collection, AFC 1977/003: AFS 18,983.

14. "Tom Dooley." RealPlayer  MP3 (0:46) Photo in Folk Music and Song. Sung by Frank Proffitt, Sr. Recorded by Frank Warner in Beech Mountain, North Carolina,1940. Anne and Frank Warner Collection, AFC 1950/002: AFS 15,264 A2.

15. "A Young Man’s Love" / "With His Old Gray Beard A-Shining." RealPlayer  MP3 (1:49) Related text in Folk Music and Song. “Young Man’s Love” sung by Gloria Trail. “Old Grey Beard” sung by Reba and Wilma McDonald. Recorded by Vance Randolph in Farmington, Arkansas, October, 1941. Vance Randolph Collection, AFC 1941/001: AFS 5286 A2 and B2.

16. "Soldier’s Joy." RealPlayer  MP3 (2:08) Photo in Folk Music and Song. Played on tenor banjo by Myrtle B. Wilkinson and on fiddle by Mrs. Ben Scott. Recorded by Sidney Robertson Cowell in Turlock, California, October 31, 1939. Sidney Robertson Cowell California Folk Music Project Collection, AFC 1940/001: AFS 4772 A2. [This collection is available online as the American Memory presentation California Gold: Northern California Folk Music from the Thirties.]

17. "Hijo, hijo, mira esta muher." RealPlayer  MP3 (0:34) Photo in Folk Music and Song. Children’s game song sung by Josephine and Aurora Gonzalez, Pearl Manchaco, Lia Trujillo, and Adela Flores. Recorded by John A. and Alan Lomax in San Antonio, Texas, May 1934. John A. and Alan Lomax 1934-35 Southern States Recording Trip Collection, AFC 1935/002: AFS 10 A1.

18. "Figure Eight," done to the tune of "Sally Goodin." RealPlayer  MP3 (1:40) Photo of collectors in Folk Music and Song. Square dance with Walter King, caller; Willard Brewer, fiddle, and Red Harmon, guitar. Recorded by Charles L. Todd and Robert Sonkin at Shafter FSA migrant labor camp, Shafter, California, August 4, 1940. The Charles L. Todd and Robert Sonkin Migrant Worker Collection, AFC 1985/001: AFS 4114 A1. [This collection is available on line as the American Memory presentation Voices from the Dust Bowl: The Charles L. Todd & Robert Sonkin Migrant Worker Collection.]

19. Chorus and dance. RealPlayer   MP3 (1:07) Photo in Folk Music and Song. Sung and played by Rais Mahamad ben Mohammed and ensemble, musicians of the Haha tribe in Tamanar. Recorded by Paul Bowles in Essaouira, Morocco, August 8, 1959. Paul Bowles Moroccan Music Collection, AFC 1960/001: AFS 11,625 3B.

20. "Já Estas Com os Copos" (“You’re Already Drunk, Don’t Drink Any More”). RealPlayer (2:52) Photo in Folk Music and Song. Musicians Olivete Maria Poulart (singer), Mário Bulhões (acoustic guitar), and Duarte Tavares (Portuguese guitar), performing a song from the Portuguese fado tradition at the IV Seasons Restaurant in Lowell, Massachusetts. Recorded by Barbara Fertig in Lowell, Massachusetts, November 14, 1987. Lowell Folklife Project Collection, AFC 1987/042: LFP-BF-R001.

21. "Whipping a slave." RealPlayer  MP3 (1:10) Related text in Story and Other Narrative Forms. Interview with Laura Smalley about the days of slavery. Recorded by John Henry Faulk in Hempstead, Texas, 1941. John Henry Faulk Texas Recordings Collection, AFC 1941/016: AFS 5496 A and B. [For an anthology of recordings of former slaves from AFC collections, see the American Memory presentation Voices from the Days of Slavery: Former Slaves Tell Their Stories.]

22. "The Golden Arm." RealPlayer  (1:18) Photo in Story and Other Narrative Forms. Excerpt from a story told by North Carolina storyteller Jackie Torrence. Recorded at the 1986 National Storytelling Festival, Jonesborough, Tennessee. International Storytelling Collection, AFC 2001/008: 83FEJC01 A1.

23. "The Heifer Hide." RealPlayer (2:21) Photo in Story and Other Narrative Forms. Excerpt from a “Jack tale” told by North Carolina farmer and storyteller Ray Hicks. Recorded at the 1990 National Storytelling Festival, Jonesborough, Tennessee. International Storytelling Collection, AFC 2001/008: 90FEPT11.

24. "Mad, Glad, Sad." RealPlayer (2:46) Related text in Story and Other Narrative Forms. Interview with veteran James F. Walsh, who was a gunner in the Korean War. Recorded by J.G. Webb in Chicago, Illinois, on September 9, 2003. Veterans History Project Collection, AFC 2001/001/1939. [For more video and audio recordings of veterans, see the Veterans History Project online presentation Experiencing War].

25. Reactions to the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. RealPlayer  MP3 (4:08) Related text in Story and Other Narrative Forms. Interview with Lillie Haws, owner of a New York City bar, conducted by Sarah Phillips in New York City, on November 12, 2001. September 11, 2001, Documentary Project Collection, AFC 2001/015: SR297. [For additional recordings and other materials see the American Memory presentation September 11, 2001 Documentary Project.]

26. "Tabuh Gari." RealPlayer  MP3 (2:03) Photo in Dance. Played by the gamelan semar pegulingan ensemble, or “love gamelan” named for Semar, the god of love. Recorded by the Fahnestock South Sea Expedition in Ubud [Teges], Bali, in 1941. Fahnestock South Sea Collection, AFC 1986/033: AFS 25,863 A.

27. "Constant Billy." RealPlayer  MP3 (1:02) Related text in Dance. Sung and fiddled by one of England’s most renowned Morris dance musicians, Sam Bennett, from the village of Bampton-in-the-Bush, Oxfordshire. Recorded by James Madison Carpenter on Dictaphone cylinder in Bampton, England, in 1933. James Madison Carpenter Collection, AFC 1972/001: AFS 19,903.

28. "Grand Entry Song." RealPlayer  MP3 (3:08) Related text and photo in Dance. “Grand Entry” is the name for the occasions in which all of the powwow dancers enter the arena, announced by an emcee as they arrive. Rufus White translates the song: “Our relatives are making their way into the arena. God, please watch over us.” Words include, “Pity us, and look at us, and watch over us.” Played by the Host Drum. Recorded by Carl Fleischhauer at the 1983 Omaha powwow in Macy, Nebraska. 1983 Omaha Powwow Collection, AFC 1986/038: 0388. [To learn more about Omaha powwows and hear recordings of the events, go to the online American Memory presentation, Omaha Indian Music.]

29. "They Was Made Out of Scraps." RealPlayer  MP3 (2:08) Photo in Material Culture. Interview with quilter Alma Hemmings recorded by Geraldine Johnson in Dobson, North Carolina, on September 19, 1978. Blue Ridge Parkway Folklife Project Collection, AFC 1982/009: AFS 21,504: BR8-GJ-R68. [See also, the American Memory Presentation Quilts and Quiltmaking in America, 1978-1996.]

30. "My Father Can Remember." RealPlayer  (1:33) Photo in Community Life and Celebration. Interview on the history of Pinelands cranberry harvesting with Mark Darlington, whose father invented a type of dry harvester and later developed the wet harvester. Recorded by Mary Hufford in Whitesbog, New Jersey, in November, 1983. Pinelands Folklife Project Collection, AFC 1991/023: AFS 23,869 PFP83-AMH015.

31. "I Made All My Children’s Dresses." RealPlayer  MP3 (1:08) Related text in Community Life and Celebration. Interview with retired garment worker Rose Vecchierella about the sewing she did at home for her family. Recorded by David Taylor in West Paterson, New Jersey, on August 9, 1994. Working in Paterson Project Collection, AFC 1995/028: WIP-DT-A009. [This collection is available online as the American Memory presentation Working in Paterson: Occupational Heritage in an Urban Setting.]

32. "Why Rancher Les Stewart Shuns New Technology for Branding." RealPlayer  MP3 (0:56) Photo in Community Life and Celebration. Interview with Les Stewart videotaped by Carl Fleischhauer and William A. Wilson at the Ninety-Six Ranch, Paradise Valley, Nevada, on May 9, 1981. Paradise Valley Folklife Project, AFC 1991/021: NV81-VT4. [Collection materials selected from the Paradise Valley Folklife Project are available online in the American Memory presentation, Buckaroos in Paradise: Ranching Culture in Northern Nevada, 1945-1982.]

33. "The Donkey’s What Carried Mary to the Inn." RealPlayer (3:42) Text in Community Life and Celebration. Interview with Al and JoAnna Collette on the St. Joseph’s Day foods in their family recipe book. Recorded by Paula Manini and Paola Tavarelli in Pueblo, Colorado, on June 24, 1990. Italian Americans in the West Collection, AFC 1989/022: IAW-PM-A002.

34. "Welcoming the Spirit of the Sage." RealPlayer (2:40) Photo in Community Life and Celebration. The Confucian Ritual Orchestra from Taiwan performs a ceremony to commemorate the birthday of Confucius at Castelar Elementary School in Chinatown in Los Angeles, California. Recorded by Nora Yeh on October 27, 1984. Nora Yeh Kemeny Family Collection, AFC 2000/018.

35. "Unconstant Lover." RealPlayer  (1:36) Photo at the top of this page. Sung by Margaret O. Moody. Recorded by Anne Grimes in Chillicothe, Ohio, on September 9, 1955. Anne Grimes Collection, AFC 1996/003 21A.

Bonus Track:

"The United States Needs Prayer, Everywhere." RealPlayer MP3 (2:21) Photo of the collector in A National Project with Many Workers. Sung by Lulu Morris and the congregation of the African Methodist Church. Recorded by Herbert Halpert in Tupelo, Mississippi, in May, 1939. Herbert Halpert / Southern Recording Trip 1939 Collection, AFC 1939/005: AFS 2959 B1.


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