Story of the Blues

ISBN-10: 155553354X

ISBN-13: 9781555533540

Edition: 1998 (Revised)

Authors: Paul Oliver

List price: $29.95
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Featuring over 200 vintage photographs and a new introduction by the author, the engaging, informative volume brings to life the African American singers and players who created this rich genre of music as well as the settings and experiences that inspired them. The author deftly traces the evolution of the blues from the work songs of slaves, to acoustic country ballads, to urban sounds, to electric rhythm and blues bands. Oliver vividly re-creates the economic, social, and regional forces that shaped the unique blues tradition, and superbly details every facet of the music, including themes and subjects, techniques, and recording history.
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Book details

List price: $29.95
Copyright year: 1998
Publisher: University Press of New England
Publication date: 4/30/1998
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 288
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.00" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.990
Language: English

Paul Hereford Oliver was born in Nottingham, England on May 25, 1927. He trained as a painter and sculptor at the Harrow School of Art, but switched to graphic design because most art materials aggravated his asthma and various allergies. After receiving a diploma from Goldsmith's College in London in 1948, he returned to the Harrow County School to teach art. In 1955, he received an art-history degree from the University of London. He wrote numerous books on blues music including Bessie Smith, Blues Fell This Morning, The Story of the Blues, Screening the Blues: Aspects of the Blues Tradition, Savannah Syncopators: African Retentions in the Blues, Songsters and Saints: Vocal Traditions on Race Records, Broadcasting the Blues: Black Blues in the Segregation Era, and Barrelhouse Blues: Location Recordings and the Early Traditions of the Blues. He was also as an architectural historian. His books on architecture included Shelter and Society, English Cottages and Small Farmhouses: A Study of Vernacular Shelter, Dwellings: The House Across the World, and Built to Meet Needs: Cultural Issues in Vernacular Architecture. He died on August 15, 2017 at the age of 90.

Long Hot Summer Days: The background of Afro-American music in the meeting of cultures after the Civil War
Cottonfield Hollers: Origins of blues in work songs, field hollers and the ballads of the songsters
Down the Dirt Roads: Traditions of the plantations around the Mississippi Delta and emergent blues techniques
Froggy Bottom to Buckhead: Blues singers of Texas, Alabama and Georgia; development of guitar and piano music
Bed Slats an' All: String, washboard and jug bands; Beale Street blues and the medicine show entertainers
Rabbit Foot and Toby Time: Minstrel and tent shows, vaudeville theatre circuits and the women 'Classic blues' singers
Struttin' that Thing: Black migrations in the Jazz Era; piano music in the South, in Chicago and Detroit
Walking the Basses: Urban blues and boogie-woogie of St. Louis, Indianapolis, Louisville and the Mid-Western cities
Hard Time Everywhere: Blues and the record industry: themes and personalities of the post-Depression years
Chicago Breakdown: Blues bands of Chicago's South and West Sides in the 'thirties and 'forties
Back to Mississippi: The continuity of the rural blues tradition in Mississippi before the Second World War
Travelin' Men: Guitar rags and harmonica breakdowns in the Eastern States, the Carolinas and Tennessee
The Number One Scab: Barrelhouse piano; the effects of recording; Kansas City blues and the migration to the West Coast
King Biscuit Time: Blues on the radio networks; post-war blues centres of the South and the urban North
Blues and Trouble: Rhythm and blues; the rise of modern styles; blues and the international audience
Music Examples
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