[Harp-L] Harmonica in Bluegrass
- To: "'Harp-L'" <harp-l@xxxxxxxxxx>
- Subject: [Harp-L] Harmonica in Bluegrass
- From: "Dennis M. Cooper" <dcooper@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Sun, 23 Jan 2011 09:16:50 -0700
- Thread-index: Acu7GPC/nYFRwDMqS72nyJhfBdrQ/Q==
Bill Monroe, considered the "father" of bluegrass music, utilized the
talents of DeFord Baily who not only played harmonica for the band he also
composed the "Evening Prayer Blues", one of Mr Monroe's hits.
Monroe was also known to employ piano and accordian players in his band.
In addition to harmonica I play bass, dobro, finger-style guitar and piano.
The next time a bluegrass purist talks about the "traditional
instrumentation" of bluegrass point out the fact that Bill not only used a
harmonica in his band, but a black man played it. In the 30's, 40's, & 50's
that was pretty revolutionary in itsself.
It's all about the style of music, not the instrumentation. Here in the
Northwest USA the "traditional instrumentation" bluegrass snobs abound, but
a few of us are breaking into the acoustic music scene a step at a time.
That said, blowin' a 12-bar blues solo in the middle of a traditional
bluegrass number should be a hangin' offense....
Dennis M. Cooper
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