Bluegrass Music in the Shenandoah Valley Oral History, 1991

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Summary Information

Repository:
Special Collections, Carrier Library, James Madison University
Creator:
Hogge, Thomas
Title:
Bluegrass Music in the Shenandoah Valley Oral History
Collection No.:
SdArch 14
Date:
1991
Extent:
1 folder, 1 audiocassette, 1 cd, .07 Cubic Feet
Language of the Material:
English
Abstract:
The Bluegrass Music in the Shenandoah Valley Oral History, 1991 is comprised of an audio recording and transcript associated with an interview conducted with JMU English professor, Cameron C. Nickels, who discusses bluegrass and country music in general, and his experiences as a bluegrass musician.

Preferred Citation

[identification of item], [box #, folder #], Bluegrass Music in the Shenandoah Valley Oral History, 1991, SdArch 14, Special Collections, Carrier Library, James Madison University, Harrisonburg, VA.

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Bio/Historical Note

Thomas Hogge, an undergraduate student at James Madison University, conducted this interview as part of the coursework for Anthropology 284, in the Fall of 1991.

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Scope and Content

The Bluegrass Music in the Shenandoah Valley Oral History, 1991 is comprised of an audio recording and transcript associated with an interview conducted with JMU English professor, Cameron C. Nickels, who discusses bluegrass and country music in general, and his experiences as a bluegrass musician. Describes training, both by others and self-taught, on various instruments including classical and folk, with guitar as his primary instrument. Reminisces about the Hippie Movement and the influence that music had on his life during the late 1960s and early 70s. Recalls learning how to finger pick and experiences teaching at the Mill City School of Folk Music in Minneapolis, St. Paul. Describes his first exposure to bluegrass music. Compares and contrasts Western and Eastern bluegrass (influence of the Grand Ole Opry and Appalachian music), and East Coast bluegrass. Talks about various musicians in the Shenandoah Valley who have influenced him (Ben May and Bugsy Frank, banjo); and various groups he has played with including "Two-Gun Terry and Friends" and "Dominion Express" (Eddy Michael, fiddle; Frank Evans, guitar; and Two-Gun Terry, bass, mandolin, fiddle; Spike Stroop, fiddle; and others). Mentions cutting a recording; types of music they have played and sung, from bluegrass to country to gospel; their playing schedule; and types of places they have played. Discusses the definition of a folk musician and the concept of learning songs through an oral tradition. Mentions favorite bluegrass songs and other professional groups. In general provides a perspective on how performing music has played an important role in his life.

Recorded at Dr. Cameron Nickels' office at Keezell Hall, Rm. 409, James Madison University, Harrisonburg, Va. on November 21, 1991.

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Arrangement

Items are arranged in no particular order.

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Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

Collection open to research. Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection. Please contact Research Services staff before visiting the James Madison University Special Collections Library to use this collection.

Use Restrictions

The copyright interests in this collection have been transferred to the James Madison University Special Collections Library. For more information, contact the Special Collections Library Reference Desk (library-special@jmu.edu).

Acquisition Information

Donated by Thomas Hogge, January 7, 1992.

Processing Information

Audiocassettes were transferred to MAMA-R 700MB gold cd-r using Tascam cc-222 mkII; 270mb in 2006.

Location

Special Collections, Carrier Library, James Madison University

880 Madison DriveMSC 1704Harrisonburg, Virginia 22807library-special@jmu.eduURL: https://www.lib.jmu.edu/special/

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Index Terms

Genre and Form

  • oral histories (literary works)

Personal Name

  • Hogge, Thomas

Subject

  • Bluegrass musicians -- Virginia -- Biography
  • Bluegrass music -- Shenandoah River Valley (Va. and W. Va.) -- History and criticism
  • Country musicians -- History and criticism
  • Folk music -- Shenandoah River Valley (Va. and W. Va.)
  • Folk songs, American -- Southern States -- History and criticism

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Collection Inventory

Title/Description Instances
Cameron Nickels interviewed by Thomas Hogge, November 21, 1991
Transcript, November 21, 1991 Box 1 Folder 1
Original audiocassette, November 21, 1991 Media Cabinet 1 Audiocassette SA014-CS-001
Preservation master cd Media Cabinet 1 CD SA014-OP-001