Thursday, August 23, 2018

Carpe Diem #1504 America's folkmusic

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

What a wonderful month this is. All those different kinds of music full of joy and sadness that inspire us to create haiku and tanka (or other form of Japanese poetry). Yesterday we listened to a wonderful Inuit song about the Goddess of the Sea and today I love to inspire you through American folkmusic. Let me tell you a little bit more about the American folkmusic.

American folk music has no precise nameable origin because it organically grew out of a communal tradition more than for entertainment or profit. There are folk songs that date so far back they can be considered oral histories. Certainly, in America, songs by traditional American folk singers like Leadbelly and Woody Guthrie tell stories that often don’t even appear in history books.
From its origins, folk music has been the music of the working class. It is community-focused and has rarely enjoyed commercial success. By definition, it is something anyone can understand and in which everyone is welcome to participate. Folk songs range in subject matter from war, work, civil rights and economic hardship to nonsense, satire and, of course, love songs.
From the onset of American history, folk music has shown up at times when the people needed it most. The earliest folk songs rose from slave fields as spirituals such as “Down by the Riverside” and “We Shall Overcome.” These are songs about struggle and hardship but are also full of hope. They sprang from the need of the worker to go to a place in her brain where she knew there was more to the world than the hardships she was facing at the time.

I hope you enjoyed this piece of American folkmusic and that it inspires you to create Japanese poetry.

This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until August 30th at noon (CEST). I will try to publish our new weekend-meditation later on. For now ... have fun!


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