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Hillbilly Maidens, Okies, and Cowgirls: Women’s Country Music, 1930-1960 by Stephanie Vander Wel (2020)

Hillbilly Maidens, Okies, and Cowgirls: Women’s Country Music, 1930-1960 by Stephanie Vander Wel (2020)

Going back to the early days of medicine shows, vaudeville and traveling entertainment troupes, female performers there already had their regular part in the entertainment industry; and country music, or hillbilly music as it was first named, played a role in building up that reputation. For example, what in the 1940s was transported as “parodic […]

Vaudeville Melodies: Popular Musicians and Mass Entertainment in American Culture… by Nicholas Gebhardt (2017)

Vaudeville Melodies: Popular Musicians and Mass Entertainment in American Culture… by Nicholas Gebhardt (2017)

While in the last part of the 19th century so-called “high art,” opera, theater, classical music and the like were deemed “too good” for the average working audience, these forms of entertainment ended up elite controlled in the US. Controlled namely by those who wanted to solidify their own standing by attending such entertainment and […]

Birth of an Industry: Blackface Minstrelsy and the Rise of American Animation by Nicholas Sammond (2015)

Birth of an Industry: Blackface Minstrelsy and the Rise of American Animation by Nicholas Sammond (2015)

The mere mention of the word ”minstrelsy“ brings back numerous unpleasant, racist, stereotypical and humiliating issues of the past. It is interesting to find out then, that many of the most popular cartoon characters were actually modeled on or even continued the line of minstrelsy characters: the most popular would be Walt Disney’s (early) Mickey […]

Ragged But Right. Black Traveling Shows, “Coon Songs,” and … by Lynn Abbott and Doug Seroff (2012)

Ragged But Right. Black Traveling Shows, “Coon Songs,” and … by Lynn Abbott and Doug Seroff (2012)

For several decades, a very distinctive form of African American minstrel show was the most popular form of entertainment for black audiences in the South, its fame covering almost the entire country by and by. The beginning of this art form (that was in parts of the country available until the late 1940s) and its […]