Doo-dah!: Stephen Foster And The Rise Of American Popular Culture (1st Da Capo Press Ed)

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9780306808524: Doo-dah!: Stephen Foster And The Rise Of American Popular Culture (1st Da Capo Press Ed)

Stephen Foster (1826–1864) was America's first great songwriter and the first to earn his living solely through his music. He composed some 200 songs, including such classics as "Oh! Susanna,” “Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair," "Old Folks at Home (Way down upon the Swanee River),” and "Camptown Races (Doo-dah! Doo-dah!).” He virtually invented popular music as we recognize it to this day, yet he died at age thirty-seven, a forgotten and nearly penniless alcoholic on the Bowery. The author reveals Foster's contradictory life while disclosing how the dynamics of nineteenth-century industrialization, westward expansion, the Gold Rush, slavery, and the Civil War infused his music, and how that music influenced popular culture.

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Review:

Ken Emerson's thickly textured narrative features an affectionate examination of American music's diverse strands as well as a perceptive portrait of the nation's first great songwriter. Stephen Foster (1826-64) was born in Pittsburgh and visited the South only briefly, yet songs like "My Old Kentucky Home" and "Oh! Susanna" drew on black Southern culture to create a uniquely American form of popular music. The author is clear-sighted about the complex blend of racism and genuine compassion that infused Foster's "blackface" compositions.

About the Author:

Ken Emerson, a former editor of The New York Times Magazine and New York Newsday, has written about popular music for thirty years. He lives in New Jersey.

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Book Description The Perseus Books Group, United States, 1998. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Da Capo Press.. 226 x 152 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****. Stephen Foster was America s first great songwriter. The composer of classics such as Oh! Susanna, Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair, Beautiful Dreamer, My Old Kentucky Home, Old Folks at Home ( Way down upon the Swanee River ), and Camptown Races ( Doo-dah! Doo-dah! ), Foster virtually invented popular music as we recognize it to this day. Yet by his death in 1864, at the early age of thirty-seven, he was all but forgotten. In the first biography of Foster in more than sixty years, Ken Emers makes the man as well as his music come alive. Foster s life was riddled with contradictions. Although his songs celebrated the rural South, he scarcely set foot there, spending most of his life in Pittsburgh, the smoky cradle of America s industrial revolution. He won fame by writing blackface minstrel songs, doing what white boys from Irving Berlin to Elvis Presley to Michael Bolton have been doing ever since: mimicking black music. Yet the best of his songs transcended burnt-cork caricature and expressed a profound sympathy for African Americans that even Frederick Douglass applauded. Foster s yearning for respectability drove him to write genteel love songs, but these ballads were belied by his own broken marriage. Unable to equal the success of his earlier hits, he died a nearly penniless alcoholic on the Bowery. Doo-Dah! evokes not only Foster s songs but the wide-ranging music of his era, from high opera to low dives, and it looks ahead to the ragtime, rock, and rap of our own century. It s a sweeping panorama with a cast of characters that extends from Davy Crockett to Andrew Carnegie, from America s first great classical pianist, Louis Moreau Gottschalk, to its first grea proponent of Afrocentrism, Martin Delany. It was the era of industrialization; of steamboats, railroads, and the telegraph; of westward expansion and the California gold rush; and, of course, of slavery and the Civil War. Foster absorbed it all, and all of it infused his music. Bookseller Inventory # APC9780306808524

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Book Description The Perseus Books Group, United States, 1998. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Da Capo Press.. 226 x 152 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****.Stephen Foster was America s first great songwriter. The composer of classics such as Oh! Susanna, Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair, Beautiful Dreamer, My Old Kentucky Home, Old Folks at Home ( Way down upon the Swanee River ), and Camptown Races ( Doo-dah! Doo-dah! ), Foster virtually invented popular music as we recognize it to this day. Yet by his death in 1864, at the early age of thirty-seven, he was all but forgotten. In the first biography of Foster in more than sixty years, Ken Emers makes the man as well as his music come alive. Foster s life was riddled with contradictions. Although his songs celebrated the rural South, he scarcely set foot there, spending most of his life in Pittsburgh, the smoky cradle of America s industrial revolution. He won fame by writing blackface minstrel songs, doing what white boys from Irving Berlin to Elvis Presley to Michael Bolton have been doing ever since: mimicking black music. Yet the best of his songs transcended burnt-cork caricature and expressed a profound sympathy for African Americans that even Frederick Douglass applauded. Foster s yearning for respectability drove him to write genteel love songs, but these ballads were belied by his own broken marriage. Unable to equal the success of his earlier hits, he died a nearly penniless alcoholic on the Bowery. Doo-Dah! evokes not only Foster s songs but the wide-ranging music of his era, from high opera to low dives, and it looks ahead to the ragtime, rock, and rap of our own century. It s a sweeping panorama with a cast of characters that extends from Davy Crockett to Andrew Carnegie, from America s first great classical pianist, Louis Moreau Gottschalk, to its first grea proponent of Afrocentrism, Martin Delany. It was the era of industrialization; of steamboats, railroads, and the telegraph; of westward expansion and the California gold rush; and, of course, of slavery and the Civil War. Foster absorbed it all, and all of it infused his music. Bookseller Inventory # APC9780306808524

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Book Description Da Capo Press. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Paperback. 416 pages. Dimensions: 8.9in. x 6.0in. x 1.2in.Stephen Foster (18261864) was Americas first great songwriter and the first to earn his living solely through his music. He composed some 200 songs, including such classics as Oh! Susanna, Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair, Old Folks at Home (Way down upon the Swanee River), and Camptown Races (Doo-dah! Doo-dah!). He virtually invented popular music as we recognize it to this day, yet he died at age thirty-seven, a forgotten and nearly penniless alcoholic on the Bowery. The author reveals Fosters contradictory life while disclosing how the dynamics of nineteenth-century industrialization, westward expansion, the Gold Rush, slavery, and the Civil War infused his music, and how that music influenced popular culture. This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Paperback. Bookseller Inventory # 9780306808524

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