Hoedowns, Reels, and Frolics: Roots and Branches of Southern Appalachian Dance (Music in American Life) (Paperback)

Hoedowns, Reels, and Frolics: Roots and Branches of Southern Appalachian Dance (Music in American Life) By Phil Jamison Cover Image

Hoedowns, Reels, and Frolics: Roots and Branches of Southern Appalachian Dance (Music in American Life) (Paperback)


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In Hoedowns, Reels, and Frolics, old-time musician and flatfoot dancer Philip Jamison journeys into the past and surveys the present to tell the story behind the square dances, step dances, reels, and other forms of dance practiced in southern Appalachia.
These distinctive folk dances, Jamison argues, are not the unaltered jigs and reels brought by early British settlers, but hybrids that developed over time by adopting and incorporating elements from other popular forms. He traces the forms from their European, African American, and Native American roots to the modern day. On the way he explores the powerful influence of black culture, showing how practices such as calling dances as well as specific kinds of steps combined with white European forms to create distinctly "American" dances.
From cakewalks to clogging, and from the Shoo-fly Swing to the Virginia Reel, Hoedowns, Reels, and Frolics reinterprets an essential aspect of Appalachian culture.
Philip Jamison is a nationally-known old-time musician, flatfoot dancer, and square dance caller, who teaches Appalachian music and dance, as well as mathematics, at Warren Wilson College in Asheville, North Carolina. He writes on Appalachian music and dance at www. philjamison.com.
Product Details ISBN: 9780252080814
ISBN-10: 0252080815
Publisher: University of Illinois Press
Publication Date: June 29th, 2015
Pages: 304
Language: English
Series: Music in American Life
"A valuable contribution to our deeper understanding of the rich, intricate, and elaborate culture of the Appalachian mountain region of America."--Civil War Book Review

"This book is meticulously researched, a thorough telling of the story of Appalachian dance, beginning with its European, African-American, and Native-American roots, continuing to modern times. Perhaps because he’s a dancer himself, Jamison writes in a very engaging, reader-friendly manner which scholars and hobbyists alike should appreciate. Highly recommended"--Bluegrass Unlimited

"Jamison demonstrates how the history of dance is the story of America: immigration, race, trade, culture, identity, fashion, social stratification, and innovation. The closer you look, the more fascinating it all becomes. . . .
This book is about dance, true, but it also provides an analogue for so many other things, reminding us, once again, that few forms of art. . . are ever quite what they seem."--Sing Out!
"No praise is too high for this book. . . . Essential for anyone interested in American dance history or southern Appalachian culture."--Country Dance and Song Society News

"An enjoyable read. Valuable for those interested in dance, music, African American studies, Native American studies, and US history in general. Recommended."--Choice

"Phil Jamison has done an admirable job… Hoedowns, Reels, and Frolics is highly informative and entertaining; it would be a worthy addition to the library of any folk dance-- or folk music-- scholar or enthusiast."--Journal of Folklore Research