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Electric FolkThe Changing Face of English Traditional Music$
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Britta Sweers

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780195174786

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195174786.001.0001

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The Music

The Music

A General Overview

(p.143) Five The Music
Electric Folk

Britta Sweers

Oxford University Press

This chapter provides a broader overview of the different musical elements that form the hybrid genre electric folk. This includes adaptations from the tradition (e.g. Child Ballads, broadsides, uneven metric-rhythmic structures), borrowings from modern music (particularly progressive rock), and specifically hybrid elements like the sound combination of electric and acoustic instruments. The complexity of electric folk becomes particularly apparent in the variety of arrangement possibilities employed by the musicians. Another significant characteristic is the integration of traditional singing styles. The physical and ornamental techniques have been adapted from a variety of sources and were combined with new elements (including Bulgarian singing styles). The chapter is completed by a discussion of the performance practices such as rehearsal practices, differences between live and recorded versions, yet also amplification and volume of electric and acoustic instruments.

Keywords:   electric folk, musical style, musical hybridity, Child Ballads, broadsides, progressive rock, electric instruments, acoustic instruments, traditional singing, performance practice

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