By Loyal Jones
It truly is acknowledged that Bascom Lamar Lunsford could "cross hell on a rotten rail to get a folks song"―his Southern highlands folk-song compilations now represent one of many biggest collections of its sort within the Library of Congress―but he did even more than collect songs. He preserved and promoted the Appalachian mountain culture for generations of individuals, founding in 1928 the Mountain Dance and people competition in Asheville, North Carolina, an annual occasion that has formed America's competition move. unswerving Jones pens a full of life biography of a guy thought of to be Appalachian song royalty. He additionally features a "Lunsford Sampler" of ballads, songs, hymns, stories, and anecdotes, plus a discography of his recordings.
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Additional resources for Minstrel of the Appalachians: The Story of Bascom Lamar Lunsford
4. , p. 13. 5. , pp. 15-18. 6. , p. 18. 7. , p. 19. 8. Letter from Nelle Lunsford Greenawald, 6-2-74. 9. John Angus McLeod, Minstrel of the Appalachians, unpublished biography of Lunsford in the Mars HIli College Library, 1973, p. 15. 10. , p. 10. 11. , p. 20. 12. , p. 21: McLeod, op. , pp. 16-17. 14. See Sharp and Karpeles, English Folk Songs from the Southern Mountains, 2 vols. (London: Oxford University Press), 1932, reprinted 1952, 1960. 15. McLeod, op. , p. 19. 16. Telephone conversation with Nelle Lunsford Greenawald, 7-8-81.
Lunsford was a strong Democrat, taking after his father, the old Confederate, 23 rather than after his Republican-Unionist relatives on his mother's side of the family. So, It was the Democrats who sought his aid against well-entrenched Republicans. Bascom was asked to help reorganize the party after Its chairman resigned and to elect a Democratic sheriff and other officials. Lunsford's success In bringing In a complete slate of Democrats brought his name to the attention of party leaders in Raleigh.
He said "Booth" was from an old fiddle tune. " He sang two ver- 39 sions of it in the Columbia recordings, describing the second as a more modern text. "This is the fiddle tune of Booth, and the words Mr. ] Morgan gave me, of Transylvania. " This statement implies that it was just another song in the oral tradition. "Booth" was one of four songs he sang about the assassination of presidents. W. " He does not however, explain how he came to be singing it so soon after the tragedy occurred.