The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #99782   Message #1992715
Posted By: Stewart
10-Mar-07 - 02:03 PM
Thread Name: virtuosity and traditional music
Subject: RE: virtuosity and traDitional music
I agree, Lisa. I'd like to have all - virtuosity, good musicianship,AND authenticity, knowledge of and sensitivity to the tradition.

Great musicians playing 'folk music' with flawless classical technique, but with no authenticity doesn't cut it with me. Worst of all are over-produced symphony orchestras trying to do 'folk music.'

On the other hand musically untrained folk musicians are sometimes hard to listen to, but are interesting and important for their authenticity and sensitivity to the tradition.

I know a musician who many adore as a great protest singer songwriter. His musicianship is reasonably good. His persona is that of one of the working class and he sings in the style of Woody Guthrie and Bob Dylan about his fight for the rights of the under trodden people. But in my opinion he lacks authenticity. Outside of his stage persona he can really be a pretty nasty person, and his Woody and Bob style of speaking doesn't carry over into his other life - it's an obvious put on. So I really don't enjoy listening to him.

Many classical musicians try to make the crossover to folk music, but know little or nothing about the tradition. They also come over as artificial.

On the other hand there are classical musicians who have either grown up with traditional music or taken the effort to learn about it, understand it, and listen and listen to it, who are great. They can really convey the feeling in their music, and they are a joy to listen to. One has to have a certain humility and not flaunt one's virtuosity.

Cheers, S. in Seattle