Dick Spottswood: A Discographer on the Record

Tue May 14, 12pm
Presented by: Library of Congress
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The renowned discographer, researcher, author, broadcaster, and scholar of folk and ethnic music Dick Spottswood will join us at the Library of Congress to participate in a two-part event in the Benjamin Botkin Folklife Lecture Series. The event will feature an interview with AFC staff members about his career and accomplishments followed by a panel with prominent Washington DC folklorists, ethnomusicologists, and archivists highlighting his numerous contributions to American music.

Among his many other accomplishments, Spottswood is celebrated as the author of the essential Ethnic Music on Records: A Discography of Ethnic Recordings Produced in the United States, 1893-1942, a seven-volume listing of early sound recordings by foreign language and minority groups in the U.S.; the 15-volume LP series Folk Music in America, produced for the Library of Congress to mark the 1976 Bicentennial; his research on Caribbean, South American, Bluegrass, Blues, and Country recordings; and his contributions to hundreds of influential reissue recordings by labels such as Arhoolie, Rounder, Yazoo, and Bear Family as well as his own Melodeon and Piedmont labels. 

We will discuss all of these aspects of his work, as well as his experiences as long-time host of the two-hour program "The Dick Spottswood Show" on Bluegrass Country radio WAMU, (88.5 HD 2 in the Washington metro area, or use the link on the title to listen via webstream); co-founder of Bluegrass Unlimited magazine; a founding member of the Association for Recorded Sound Collections; and the recipient of numerous awards and honors. We’ll also touch on his current work on a new edition of Country Music Sources (2002), a study which combines bibliography with discography to trace the history of old songs, hymns, and dance tunes.

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