American Patchwork

1978 to 1983
United States
From 1978 to 1983, Alan Lomax and several crews (first film, then video) travelled through the American South and Southwest, documenting its traditional music—brass bands, second-liners, and Mardi Gras Indians in New Orleans; miners, moonshiners, and Primitive Baptists in Kentucky; flat-footers, string bands, and Piedmont blues in North Carolina; Cajun cowboys, fiddlers, and zydeco stompers in French-speaking Louisiana; and fife-and-drum ensembles, gospel quartets, former railroad track-liners, levee-camp muleskinners, and players on the pre-war blues circuit in Mississippi; and the vernacular music and material culture among Mexican American communities and the Tohono O'odham, Yacqui, and Mountain Apache in Arizona. This footage ultimately totaled some 350 hours and was edited into Lomax's "American Patchwork" series, which aired on American public television in 1991. But given the strictures of the form, hundreds of discrete performances, narrative segments, and compelling scenes were left unseen.The project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

New Orleans (1982)

Alabama Sacred Harp (1982)

Johns Island, South Carolina (1983)

On the Greenville Levee (1978)

Brooklyn Giglio (1982)

Arizona (1983)

Cajun Louisiana (1982–1983)

Mississippi Delta and Hill Country (1978)

Appalachia (1982–1983)

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