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Site Seeing - Folk musicFolk music

Folk music usually describes music transmitted (and modified) in an oral tradition. The changes introduced as the music is sung, remembered, modified and passed on give it a special folk character quite different from anything composed. The whole subject is fascinating, and is an area we've neglected at Music & Vision so far. Until we put this right with high quality articles by experts in the genre, here are some pointers to other places on the web with interesting folk content.

I'll leave any other introductions to Stephen Ide, who knows rather more about folk music than me, and who has written an article called Folk Music on the Internet which also covers folk music newsgroups and mailing lists.


Folk Music Magazines

  • Crossroads is a resource for radio, retail, labels and artists in the folk and world music business.

  • Dirty Linen Online is a U.S.-based magazine - an abridged version of the hardcopy Dirty Linen Magazine available throughout the world.

  • Based in the UK and edited by Ian Anderson, Folk Roots Magazine is the 'world's leading roots, folk and world music magazine'. Includes festival listings for Britain and Europe.

  • The Mudcat Café is 'a magazine dedicated to blues and folk music', containing the 'Digital Tradition Folksong Database' (which can be downloaded to use off-line), and shortly to feature automated concert listings.

  • Sing Out! is a 47 year-old quarterly folksong magazine - a paper publication with an internet home page. The associated web site at allows searching of all the songs printed since the first issue of the magazine.



Reference sites

  • Yahoo's folk music section has some interesting links at . It's worth also looking in their magazines section.

  • For a slightly more 'home grown' list of sites, try the Open Directory Project, whose folk listings are at .

  • Jay Glicksman's comprehensive Folk Music Home Page is mostly a list of links to other sites, although it also contains some original material.

  • is the self-proclaimed 'comprehensive source for folk and acoustic music resources on the World Wide Web'. Unless the folk music world has stood still for nearly a year (which I doubt), the 'Last Modified: Sunday 05 Apr 1998' statement seems to indicate that you might not find the most up-to-date information here. Associated with is a commercial branch - which sells CDs and provides downloadable extracts.

  • A Glossary of Musical Instruments and Styles (originally compiled by ARC music) is maintained by Hobgoblin Music.

If you've reached this far and still want more, there are always the various forms of folk dancing ... a good (although UK-centred) starting point is Webfeet: Dancing on the Web . Then you could try listening to FOLK IMAGE - 'the internet's D.J.'d folk music audio program' - a series of two hour radio programmes webcast in Real Audio from the United States. The most recent is January 31st 1999. Alternatively, there are the 400 or so member sites of the Folk Music webring to explore!

Copyright © Keith Bramich, March 9th 1999.

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