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Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock

GUEST,Sam Pirt 09 Oct 00 - 09:24 AM
Jeri 09 Oct 00 - 09:49 AM
Wavestar 09 Oct 00 - 09:54 AM
GUEST,Sam Pirt 09 Oct 00 - 10:12 AM
IanS 09 Oct 00 - 10:13 AM
GUEST,ericroyer 09 Oct 00 - 10:19 AM
Mooh 09 Oct 00 - 10:20 AM
Jeri 09 Oct 00 - 10:53 AM
GUEST,Dave Forshaw, UK 09 Oct 00 - 11:00 AM
hesperis 09 Oct 00 - 11:11 AM
Dharmabum 09 Oct 00 - 11:24 AM
Mbo 09 Oct 00 - 12:16 PM
AllisonA(Animaterra) 09 Oct 00 - 12:32 PM
dick greenhaus 09 Oct 00 - 12:47 PM
mousethief 09 Oct 00 - 01:00 PM
JulieF 09 Oct 00 - 01:10 PM
Wavestar 09 Oct 00 - 01:33 PM
GeorgeH 09 Oct 00 - 01:51 PM
Benjamin 09 Oct 00 - 05:13 PM
GUEST,Sam Pirt 10 Oct 00 - 11:39 AM
Mbo 10 Oct 00 - 11:50 AM
MikeofNorthumbria 10 Oct 00 - 12:31 PM
GeorgeH 11 Oct 00 - 12:42 PM
paddymac 11 Oct 00 - 01:17 PM
GUEST 11 Oct 00 - 06:57 PM
MikeofNorthumbria 12 Oct 00 - 12:16 PM
McGrath of Harlow 12 Oct 00 - 12:42 PM
Lena 13 Oct 00 - 12:46 AM
GUEST,Guest Young Trad Muso 04 Feb 09 - 10:36 AM
Sleepy Rosie 04 Feb 09 - 12:17 PM
GUEST,TJ in San Diego 04 Feb 09 - 12:49 PM
JohnB 04 Feb 09 - 02:10 PM
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Subject: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: GUEST,Sam Pirt
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 09:24 AM

Last weekend I was at the semi-finals of the young folk award and a discussion was going on about bringing younger audiences in to folk music and the best way of doing this.

One thing seemed to be appearing in the discussion where there was an assumption that if you put drums and bass behind the music it will have a wider appeal, which is in essence what folk rock is at a basic level. This does seem to work to a point.

But

Why bother with drums and basses when the music can stand up for its self very well. It almost seems to me like you are trying to hide the true music with loud drums & bass so that people will hear less of the trad melodies etc and more of the standard drum and bass sounds they are aware of. Will this be then really 'converting' them as such or just giveing them most of what they know with a few added extras, therefore not making as bigger impact on the audience. Do folk musicians know that folk music has loads of energy, subtlety and drive and it can stand up to popular music.

422 (winners of last year's Young folk awards and also the band I play in) don't need drums or bass. Our line up is fiddles, guitar, whistle and accordion and I can tell you we drive the music along. Drums & bass if anything would flatten our arrangements. How then can we get this real music out to young audiences? without resorting to standard tactics of drum and bass?

OK so I realise I may have ruffled a few feathers, but I do like folk rock I just am asking what people think about this and how we can get the more trad folk music (or dance/celidh music) out to a wider audience. It does have an appeal, its not strange its just that people don't know about it.

Cheers, Sam


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: Jeri
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 09:49 AM

Sam, this is just an opinion, and I don't know if I'm even close to right.

The appeal in traditional music first comes from people wanting to do it, not just listen. That's always been the way the music's survived. People learn to love it because it's their music, then learn to love other people who do it well.

If you change the music to be more like pop, then you've got pop music. Please note, this isn't a value judgement - I quite like some of it. It's just that you won't have created an interest in traditional music by doing that.

I've seen other discussions on this, and there seems to be an opinion that young people don't get involved in folk because their image of a folkie is one of a mature, somewhat rotund bearded guy with his finger jammed in his ear. Kids place an awful lot of importance on image, and the current image (right or wrong) says "this is not your music." Maybe if the image changed, kids would be more interested. Of course, I have no idea how you would do that, other than with advertising and being seen with "cool" people and in "cool" places.

If you don't want to change the music, you have to change people's attitudes toward it.


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: Wavestar
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 09:54 AM

Start when they are younger, Sam. It worked for me.

I know what you mean about folk rock, though. I like much of it, but it's a different kind of music. The problem is, young people are trained to react badly to 'traditional' things, so even if they like the music, they won't 'like' it, if you know what I mean.

Appeal in situations where there's no pressure to look cool and you may get somewhere. Congrats on winning with your band, btw...

-Jessica


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: GUEST,Sam Pirt
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 10:12 AM

Hi

Jeri your quite right loads of enjoyment comes from playing the music its self which as a result brings with it learning the skills to play it. I started playing accordion at the age of 12 and have been playing accordion for eight and a half years and playing the tunes is if not as fum, MORE fun than listening to folk music.

Cheers, Sam


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: IanS
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 10:13 AM

Hi,

Good thread topic - I think trying to get young people interested in traditional music is crucial to keeping the music alive. The band I play in use all acoustic instruments and I agree that bass and drums can blast out the more subtle nuances of the music - I think that percussion if used correctly can add drive. Recently the band that I play in appeared at a folk festival on the same bill as a band featuring drums, bass and electric guitar (playing very loud) and we were really pleased and surprised to recieve this review which I think is exactly what you are talking about. http://www.freefolk.com/ceolta.htm

The editorial of the freefolk web page is also in agreement with yourself.

The other thing that makes me smile is that it takes me about 20 seconds to put my fiddle in its case and make my way to the bar while the drummer is still putting their kit away 20 minutes later, and the bass player is trying to put their back in joint after carrying a bass cabinet 20 years later.

Ian


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: GUEST,ericroyer
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 10:19 AM

Jeri, you said "appeal in traditional music first comes from people wanting to do it, not just listen". I think that may have something to do with why traditional music has survived today alongside the pop music world but playing the music is only part of the appeal. If this were true everyone would have to be a musician to appreciate music. I think what is called traditional music has to get out of the all-player mode to grow, (or it can stay just how it is which is great). I was at a Bluegrass festival and there was a group of teenagers there. One of them was a picker, but he brought a bunch of his friends to listen and it seemed to me to take the music out of the "pickin party" relm and into a larger um... cultural place. boy, do I sound silly or what?


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: Mooh
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 10:20 AM

What bothers me most, I think, is the inclination towards the playing of drums in an incessant monotonous plodding beat that sounds more like a computerized disco dance track than something that's alive. Don't get me wrong, I love lots of rock music and am a huge Led Zeppelin fan among other groups. But, drums and bass, as a rhythm section, should swing, move, lilt, or whatever, with the music. Turning the live feel of traditional music to the dead march of computer beats, even when generated by human hands, sucks the life out of the music.

There are many good "folk/rock" bands which do the drums and bass thing well, not the least of which would be Cape Breton's Slainte Mhath. But they come from the tradition. There's a good chance that where the rhythm section thing is done poorly, the participants don't come from, or perhaps understand, the tradition. Either way, to use one style in everything a band plays reduces the bands affectiveness.

My remaining complaint is the limited use of other percussion instruments which are commonly available, from other types of drums to shakers etc, by the rock oriented bands. When coupled with the unimaginative use of a standard drum kit, this makes the potentially most lively instrument a dead bore.

In short, it's not so much that drums are used but how they are used.

That said, there's lots of room for no drums at all, particularly where a rhythm can be kept by other instruments. Nowadays, guitars are as much percussion and rhythm than anything, but most any instrument can be used to support the rhythm.

My (longwinded) $0.02 (Cdn funds), Mooh.


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: Jeri
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 10:53 AM

Ericroyer, good point about "If this were true everyone would have to be a musician to appreciate music." There are loads of people who come to listen who don't play anything, and some who don't sing along on choruses. So why do they pick folk music? Perhaps it's precisely because folk has a small audience. At its biggest, folk has a bunch of small audiences, spread out all over. The people who don't play have friends who do. They can share a beer with the musicians and ask about the music. This is a good thing if people want to really be a part of the music. It's not so good if people expect celebrities, because most folk musicians I've met don't consider themselves celebrities and are uncomfortable being treated like one. Let's face it, the "star" is a major factor in pop music.

(Cynical mode) So someone who's used to -
"Wow, that new CD by Mucous really rocks, and did you know the bass player has a discussion forum and sometimes even answers questions? Wow - he really cares about his fans. Did you see that picture of him in "Guys With Guitars" magazine? Ooh...that sequined kilt was incredible!"

...gets to a folk venue, and thinks -
"Well, he's cute, but where's the spandex? I saw him in a shop the other day, and he was actually chatting with ordinary people. He can't be too good if he doesn't have a bodyguard. He's just one of us - nothing special."


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: GUEST,Dave Forshaw, UK
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 11:00 AM

Well, play it fast and play it loud, I will probably be stoned anyway, so what the heck? If the lyric is folk, thenit is a folk song, more to do with content than style of music/presentation. If young uns want thrash folk/acid folk/heavy metal welly-boot folk, so what, as they grow, ans as they age, they will see a use for quieter, more traditional presentation. Untill then..... rock on & folk off!!


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: hesperis
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 11:11 AM

As someone interested in web design, I have to say that image can be important in getting younger audiences. If you put good pictures on your posters/flyers/whatever, that don't make you look like 'stars' but that do put across to people your love of the music you play and the larger tradition behind it, you might get a few more people.

Folk grew out of rural experience: farms, small towns, communities, where people played and listened and danced because it was their idea of fun. (That and there wasn't TV back then.) Music brings people together. Now a lot of music is created in cities, and is getting impersonal. That's all they know about. But the vitality of folk would probably blow them away!

If you emphasise the communication and connection aspect of it, and at the same time have an identity as a cool, young 'trad band', you might get more young people out.
If you have fun, the audience usually has fun, and brings friends next time...

Just my thoughts.

~*sirepseh*~


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: Dharmabum
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 11:24 AM

I agree 100% Jessica, My kids were exposed to all forms of music at an early age.(Is in the womb early enough? I would play my guitar next to my wifes belly.)
I brought my kids to folk festivals where they not only were exposed the music but saw other kids involved with it as well. I also brought them with me whenever I was playing in a child friendly venue.
I always thought it very important that they were exposed to all other forms of music also,rock,classical,etc. But I made a point of letting them know where alot of the popular music has come from. For example when, I was 16 (IM 47 now)I was listening to Eric Clapton play Crossroads & just had to find out who Robert Johnson was.
The same holds true today. If the younger audience is exposed to traditional folk, via,folk rock,celtic rock, or what have you,it may spark interest in some,not all, to dig just a little deeper. To discover the music's roots.
I'm very proud to say that though my daughter may have Metallica in her cd player at any given time,it could also be Dylan or traditional Scottish bagpipe music.
I think any trad. music will stand the test of time irregardless of what the pop culture may add to or take away from it.After all, we're all here at theMudcat ,playing,singing,& keeping the folkfires burning.

Ron.


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: Mbo
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 12:16 PM

My philosophy: If it's good, I'll listen to it. BTW Radiohead's new album ROCKS!


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: AllisonA(Animaterra)
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 12:32 PM

Great topic, Sam! And great to see you around here again!
There will always (I hope) be a small group of intelligent, creative, nonconforming young'uns who will look beyond what's "cool" and "what everybody else is listening to" and will discover great music, be it folk, blues, or medieval contrapuntal. I was at a gathering a month ago when a lovely young woman of 21 turned to me and showed me a cd and said, "Look at this great musician I just discovered!" It was Dougie MacLean- not the purest folkie, but a great introduction!


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 12:47 PM

mbo- (and others)

You should give a listen to Mr Pirt's album (or rather the group's album) Certainly drives; certainly not rock. It's caled "one" and the group is called "422"

There's more than one way to grab an audience.


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: mousethief
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 01:00 PM

In my experience you don't need a drum or bass to grab a young audience, just a funny song, or a song that tells a genuininely interesting story.

Alex
O..O
=o=


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: JulieF
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 01:10 PM

I agree with the mass exposure approach to introducing children to any kind of music, along with encouraging them to play. My daughter, when younger, has slept through some great bands (Fairport, Battlefield etc) The balance between trad , folk rock, acid croft etc just depends on the individual. I have heard some horrendus attemts to Modernise folk music but also some brilliant stuff eg some of the Scottish Folk dance stuff. As a teenager Cat will come to concerts such as Runrig with us and we are letting her go to see the Levellers with friends of her own age. It is always interesting to see how she develops - at the moment she wants the music for all Nirvana's songs and plans to get aout to trad sessions after her GCSEs.

To sum up - indoctrinate from a early age with every type of music possible and accept that tastes will diverge from time to time - sometimes its good to generate a generation gap - just to help with teenage friction and remember to search the luggage for your CDs when they leave for University

Julie


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: Wavestar
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 01:33 PM

A lot of good that last did my parents, Julie - I've still got a bunch of what were once their CDs, and I'm in 3rd year. Every once in a while they figure it out and ask for them back...

Regarding music appreciation / musicians - A big way I got into traditional music, and still appreciate it, is dancing. Who's foot doesn't tap for lively jigs? I've had dancing contests in the local pub trad. session - who can last the longest! As a kid and still now I went to contra dances, which, at least in Vermont, are being seen more and more as 'cool', or at least not absolutely uncool. If you don't love the music after a night of dancing like that, there's something wrong with you :)

-J


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: GeorgeH
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 01:51 PM

Trouble with most folk rock is that it's far more dated than most of the rest of the current folk scene . .

I suppose I've spent about 30 years trying to get young people listening to folk music, with at least an occasional degree of success . Folk Rock as a whole would never be a genre I'd recommend to . . well, anyone, really!

To really get someone hooked on folk you've got to get them to a musical experience which makes the hairs on the back of their neck tingle . . and 98% of Folk Rock doesn't do that, great fun though it might be.

In the three years when I was promoting concerts the band which had the greatest success with young people was Flook! (and that was even before they had a bodhran player).

So . . I can't find much to disagree with your assessment of things, Sam . . But what were you doing back at this year's semi-finals??

Oh, as an aside . . At Sidmouth this year, after the Martin Simpson concert, we were talking to a German woman who'd heard Martin in Oxford, almost by chance, and as a result of that she'd decided to do a bit of "exploring" of what Folk was all about . . She was enjoying Sidmouth musically, but she said what really struck her was the LACK of age division amongst the audiences.

And my daughter (slightly older than Sam) likes considerably less Folk/Rock than I do, but will make an exception for Home Service . .

Just my (also long-winded) 2p . .

G.


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: Benjamin
Date: 09 Oct 00 - 05:13 PM

I agree with Matt in that I'll listen to anything I think is good.

As for me, I was raised listening to Pete Seeger's childrens records when I was a kid, as well as Bob Dylan and Simon and Garfunkel (and I love all of those guys and their music!).
As I got older, my dad was buying CDs of blues artists he had records of in the 60s. Guys like John Hurt, Blind Willie Johnson, Sonny Terry and Brownie McGhee, etc.
In high school, A teacher of mine got listening to groups like Earth Wind and Fire which got me into soul. Then I found Paul Simon's Rythm of the Saints CD which had been sitting of the shelf for years and listened to it. I then found the Video of the Graceland Tour and was introduced to African music.
I have since been listening to all sorts of music from all over the world. It helped that my parents raised me listening to a lot of it, but I had to find it myself again at some point.

As for the issue of getting young people to listen (as if I'm not young enough) young people want to feel that what they are listening to is new. When working with Jr. High kids last year, they were always talking about Kid Rock, Britney Spears, Nsync, etc. It was funny to me because I could see it as what I listened to in the late 80's in a different package (MC Hammer, etc.) That's a hard issue to adress to deal with. Most of them haven't had a chance to really experience it, so they just listen to what's cool. Image is what sells with a lot of young people. That's what your dealling with.
Just my thoughts from observations.

BMW


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: GUEST,Sam Pirt
Date: 10 Oct 00 - 11:39 AM

I think if you try to get your audience into the real folk music that is not trying to be anything else just great trad music you won't confuse your audience and probably give them a great feeling in the fact they have discovered this great music that is as good as say garage, classical, drum & bass, jazz or trance

So how do you actually get your audience to come to the venue?

Say for example you have a great trad band with loads of enegry and drive, as we have discussed above, how do sell it & promote it. And where would you base it, run it and what time would you put the gig on?

I pose many questions but I think it is an important issue for all musicians to keep in mind, come on catters show us what your made of!!

Cheers, Sam


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: Mbo
Date: 10 Oct 00 - 11:50 AM

HEY! MY NAME IS KIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIID!!!


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: MikeofNorthumbria
Date: 10 Oct 00 - 12:31 PM

"A long, long time ago … I can still remember …" that some people – most of them as old then as I am now – were asking this very question "How do we get more kids interested in folk music?" Back then, they rarely asked us kids what we thought. So perhaps this thread represents some kind of progress. But it will probably achieve little more than those earlier discussions did, and for a similar reason. It goes like this:

Youth is a law unto itself – and rightly so. Youth is the time for exploration and adventure, for breaking rules and defying authority. Marriages and mortgages, parenthood and pension plans, will turn most of our young rebels into conformists soon enough – so let them experiment while they can. Some of their musical preferences may seem alien to us (if Men are from Mars, and Women are from Venus, then Teenagers must be from Alpha Centauri), but so what? - our youthful enthusiasms sounded just as obnoxious to our elders.

When I was a teenager, getting involved in the folk movement was like joining an underground musical conspiracy. We thought of ourselves as prisoners who'd discovered an escape tunnel into a magic kingdom, where parents and teachers had no jurisdiction. And if parents and teachers had tried to open the front door of that kingdom for us, we'd probably have run a mile in the opposite direction. So, while I'm happy to share my musical pleasures with people of any age, I try not to thrust them on anybody who doesn't find them congenial. Particularly if they're young enough to be my kids. And especially if they ARE my kids.

So what about bass and drums as a backing for folk music? Do they make traditional material more acceptable to the young? Maybe – it depends on how well they're played, and even more on who's playing them. My experience, for what it's worth, is that what pulls in young audiences is the chance to see young performers strutting their stuff – whatever instruments they're playing. Us oldies should get out of the way, and let them get on with it.

"Our sons and our daughters are beyond our command …"

Wassail!


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: GeorgeH
Date: 11 Oct 00 - 12:42 PM

"Youth is a law unto itself – and rightly so". Utter bollocks! This whole youth/non-youth myth is all a part of the establishment "divide and conquer" strategy! Young and not-so-young have far more in common than tbey have to separate them . .

No-one, of any age, likes being told what to do (or - worse still, being compelled to follow those instructions). Everyone need to continue to explore and discover, and even - on occasions - rebel.

But to return to the point . . MOST of those I know who are really into Folk - be they young or old - are committed to it because it is so DIFFERENT to other "musics". Whereas MOST folk-rock seeks to make it sound more like something else.

Of course in its early days Folk Rock may not have been like that . . .

G.


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: paddymac
Date: 11 Oct 00 - 01:17 PM

It is a good thing to love whatever you do (musically or otherwise), but it does not follow that everyone else should also love what you do. To think that they should, or would if given a chance, is not far different than to say that all people should (or, eventually, must) go to the same church, or vote the same way, or believe anything or everything in the same way or to the same extent, etc.

Be glad we don't all like the same stuff, and appreciate that our likes and dislikes change through life for lots of different reasons. My own metaphorical view is simply to keep the door open so that I, and anyone else, can walk in, or out, as we choose. All a part of the grand buffet called life.


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: GUEST
Date: 11 Oct 00 - 06:57 PM

Bass and drums (kits) have a greater dynamic range than a lot of the smaller more portable instruments which are stereotypically associated with folk music.

Dynamic range however is not inversely proportional to melodic capacity and "musicality".

In a classical orchestral situation or in a Gamelan orchestra bass sounds and percussion are integral to the music.

Folk musicians need to embrace a broader view of "folk" and instrumentation if a younger more diverse audience is desired.

Bass and drums are instruments and its how you use them.

As they say Bass and drums dont kill music "People Do!"


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: MikeofNorthumbria
Date: 12 Oct 00 - 12:16 PM

Hi!, GeorgeH – did I tread on your corns, or something?

Of course, you're perfectly entitled to disagree with my remark that "Youth is a law unto itself". But is your conclusion based on experience ? If so, you've led a sheltered life.

My experience has been different. For the record, it includes 28 years as a parent, and 35 as a teacher (mostly with adolescents and young adults). Also various musical activities involving young people – playing for sing-along sessions in schools, calling for children's barn dances, and helping with workshops for juvenile morris teams at Sidmouth and Whitby festivals. Oh yes, and I was young once – a long time ago, but I can still remember it vaguely.

And my conclusion? Young people habitually ignore instructions from their elders - especially parents and teachers. At home, we say "… eat up your greens … do your homework … keep your bedroom tidy …", and they seldom respond positively. At college, we say "cite your sources properly … leave the lab as you would wish to find it … back up your data on a spare floppy…" , but it makes little impact. So why on earth should we expect them to take our advice on the kind of music they listen to?

Youngsters don't enjoy being lectured. They much prefer to discover things for themselves. Of course, they need help from people with more experience. But unless the help is offered discreetly, it's liable to be rejected out of hand. And if this is true in schools and colleges, it's even more true with leisure-time activities. Young folks need to find their own path to musical fulfilment. If it leads them to our door, we should welcome them in. If they seek our advice, we should give it freely. But until they ask us, we should let them be.

And by the way, GeorgeH - if you're still listening - I agree entirely with your proposition that we should all strive to remain young at heart – ever open to new ideas and hungry for new experiences. It's just that constraints like the day job and the mortgage payments (plus the various ailments that afflict our ageing flesh) tend to tie us down a bit as the years go by. But if I'm ever lucky enough to get a lucrative early retirement deal, I'll see you round the campfire at the next festival (youngsters welcome,drums and bass optional).

Wassail!


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 12 Oct 00 - 12:42 PM

I think George mixes up two things - "this whole youth/non-youth myth is all a part of the establishment "divide and conquer" strategy! Young and not-so-young have far more in common than tbey have to separate them . ."

There is indeed a divide and exploit stategy all right. It tries to exploit people by dividing them up and packaging and so forth, and age-group is just one of the ways it tends to that. Labelling different types of music and the people who love them, as incompatible with each other is another example. ("What is Folk...")

And one of the best things about folk music is that it can show this kind of thing up for the lie that it is.

But the lies only work because they are based on divergences and differences and rivalries that do actually exist, and Mike is quite right in what he says about young people wanting to split off and do their own thing.

It's like some kind of social dance, with people going apart and then coming together.Advance and retreat. Turn your back on each other. Promenade. What the exploiters and oppressors want to do is chop little bits off it and sell it, so that the whole thing is fragmented.

But in the end it works out. I believe that there are more young people seriously into making good music, and who respect the music of their parents and grandparents generations, than there have ever been in the lifetime of any of us.


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: Lena
Date: 13 Oct 00 - 12:46 AM

I don't know if Callie will be around to read this,but.
At my birthday party,weeks ago,in a moment when I was very drunk and Callie& friends were playing very beautifully,a guy a couple of years older than me came up quite arrogantly about how folk music should be like.I remember him shutting my music book (were I keep lyrics and sheet music from folk stuff )saying that there is no point in using it cause that is not the music teenagers will listen to.It made me laugh a lot.Who gives a XXXC about bloody teenagers?!Thay don't make culture,they provide money to corporate crocodiles.And anyway,I was a teenager not a log time ago and I used to listen and enjoy folk music.Beside the fact that teenagers from non celtic-anglo countries listen and dance to irish reels like they would dance to techno music:it's exotic enough to them to do the job.Anyway.Where is the problem of young people writing new folk?!It tells stories and feelings that will be part of people's background some day.Drum and bass are often used siply to polish the sound and make it more appealling to young people.Not many teenagers would love an hurdy gurdy and a mandolin as they would love a fiddle on some rock drums.It just sounds more familiar and fresh to them. I think that folk music is a call.You get to it.At it's everybody's music:you get to it and you play it.Often,it's the only place you belong to.Not a coincidency that so much folk playing comes from 'immigrants' " countries:your music and your sound is the only bit of homeland you can carry with you.Someone a while ago posted a message saying that folk music was the spontaneous sound of urban areas now,and that rap music is the only possible folk now.it's not true.Not a drop of my blood answers to rap music,because it might appeal teenagers but it's not part of my background.It's not the sound of my mother's voice,it doesn't tell me the history of people.I guess the main problem between young people and folk music is the former's tendency to new things and a lack of interest in old past things(which is half of the problem...there comes a time in which you realize that the best way to sort out many troubles is to get back to the human wisdom accumulated in centuries...poetry,songs,paintings,your grandparents' stories from when they were your age...and that's the time in which you stop being a teenager and acquire a vague connection with the world).I've heard some beautiful,deep,moving folk music from young people.Even if not many of my generation are yet on folk music...I guess in a couple of years there will be more on the mudcat.
sorry for the long posting.
And besides.Callie,I've got a tape of of that kid at my birthday plays like.I saved it .You should hear it:it sounds incredibly bad.Hilarious.


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: GUEST,Guest Young Trad Muso
Date: 04 Feb 09 - 10:36 AM

Not all young players have been groomed to play, I got into it in mid to late teens, when I discovered how great good sessions can be! Mmm, beer and good tunes what a great combination... encourage drinking from an earlier age to lubricate the enjoyment of tunes, sorry, that's me being silly...

Agree with a view above that participation is a big part of really getting into folk, those that have felt the buzz of lifting a room when playing a flying set of reels with friends are likely to be hooked for life.... I personally love being able to do this acoustically but playing plugged in with bass and kit is great too!

So many threads seem to suggest that the tradition is delicate, I see it as really rather robust! Youngun's should be encouraged to play msuic because it'sfantastic,


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: Sleepy Rosie
Date: 04 Feb 09 - 12:17 PM

Would love to know the approximate ages of those contributing their thoughts to this thread...

I think that in order to answer that question posited, you would need to specifically target such a question to as many trad enthusiasts in their twenties as possible, discover what turned them onto the music, and then figure out a way of reproducing the formula.

As a person in her thirties who enjoys the odd music fest - but isn't specifically attracted to folk clubs - My own take would be that infiltrating non-folk music festivals with good young trad performers would be one possible way forward.


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: GUEST,TJ in San Diego
Date: 04 Feb 09 - 12:49 PM

The core of rock is the beat. Lyrics, mainly, take a back seat. Often, real musicianship does also. The frosting on that cake has come to be distortion, volume, pyrotechnics, choreography and stagecraft. As for vocalists, "American Idol" disease seems to have become dominant.

For an example of one musician's transitiion, I remember when Lightfoot went from nearly pure acoustic (upright bass and acoustic guitars, with Red Shea) to having percussion and amplification, eventually incorporating pedal steel, driving electric bass and distortion, etc. He was, no doubt, trying to find ways to be relevant as tastes rapidly changed. He was not alone. When I listen to his earlier work now, I find I still prefer it, for the most part. The focus is on the lyrics, the melody line is clear - you hear a song without the overlay of noise.

An audiologist friend reminded me that a huge proportion of our young folks have some degree of hearing loss by the time they are in their late teens or early 20's. They have grown up with high-volume, high energy performances and most would probably find straight acoustic music boring - and hard to hear. On occasion, however, I have been pleasantly surprised to see my son's band and others gaining wider acceptance doing "unplugged" pieces. Maybe there is hope. I'd like to see a return to a certain level of simplicity in music.


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Subject: RE: Young Audiences - Trad Folk V Folk Rock
From: JohnB
Date: 04 Feb 09 - 02:10 PM

Well Sleepy Rosie, the age of the people contributing has gone up getting on for ten years since the thread started, I wonder if their opinions have changed since October 2000?
JohnB


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