Post navigation Victoria Bouloubasis collaborates on digital piece about North Carolina activism surrounding the “forced disappearance” of student in Ayotzinapa, Mexico

Folklore Master’s student Victoria Bouloubasis, collaborated with fellow journalist (and current UNC JOMC grad student) Andrea Patiño Contreras on a digital piece about the North Carolina activism surrounding the “forced disappearance” of students in Ayotzinapa, Mexico last fall. Bouloubasis and Contreras documented the Ayotzinapa parents’ visit to NC through a series of short Instagram videos and essays. They chose this medium to match the contemporary form of online activism fueling the movement. They wanted tell this story through the voices of the #Caravana43 and the NC immigrants (#NC43) who brought them here. Bouloubasis and Contreras felt that their voices are indicative of a changing South and a civil rights movement not yet laid to rest.

Bouloubasis and Contreras rolled out our first Instagram essay and will do this once a day for 8 days. Check them out on Victoria (@thisfeedsme) or Andrea’s (@andreapatino) Instagram page.

There is also a Medium page with the full story: bit.ly/NCCaravana43.

Glenn Hinson gives keynote address at Communities of Song Conference

Glenn Hinson will give the keynote address, “Signifying Style: Ecologies of Social Critique in African American Poetics” at the upcoming Department of Music conference: “Communities of Song: Performing Sung Poetry in the Modern World. The keynote address will be at 3:45 p.m. on April 2 in the Person Recital Hall followed by a reception at Top of the Hill.

Organizers of the conference hope to convene a conversation about sung poetry not only for its poetics but for its association with social memory. By singing poems, musicians and other social agents transform poetry into cultural performances. Repertories of sung poetry frequently play a critical role at moments of community formation, be these collective national, ethnic, postcolonial, or otherwise. In practice, sung poetry is instrumental for social action as well as for marking and sculpting geography.

To find out more visit the conference website.

Southern Music Class Visits Mama Dip’s Kitchen

Students in Dr. William Ferris's Southern Music course enjoy a class at Mama Dip's Kitchen in Chapel Hill.

Southern Music students with Mildred Council, owner of Mama Dip’s Kitchen in Chapel Hill.

Students in Dr. William Ferris’s “Southern Music” (History 571/Folklore 571) had the pleasure of sharing a class on “Southern Music and Food” over breakfast at Mama Dip’s Kitchen on the morning of November 18th.  The class opened with a brief lecture by Dr. Ferris that included selections by Bob Wills (“That’s What I Like About the South”), Bo Carter (“Banana in Your Fruit Basket”), Tony Joe White (“Polk Salad Annie”), Big Bill Lister (“RC Cola and Moon Pie”), and Goodie Mob (“Soul Food”).  The highlight of the class was a presentation by Mildred “Mama Dip” Council who explained how she created the restaurant and the ties of food and music she remembered growing up in rural North Carolina.  The meal concluded with a performance of “Amazing Grace” by Mary D. Williams, a student in the class.

Music Maker Relief Foundation celebrates 20th Anniversary

Music Maker Relief Foundation, under executive director (and UNC Folklore grad) Tim Duffy, works “to preserve the musical traditions of the South by directly supporting the musicians who make it, ensuring their voices will not be silenced by poverty and time.”

The Folklore Program would like to congratulate the entire Music Maker team on their 20th anniversary and their continuing successes in supporting not only southern music, but also the people who make it.

For more on the foundation and its twentieth anniversary, you can listen to Tim Duffy’s interview on the Tavis Smiley Show or a recent feature on NPR’s Here and Now.

Oct. 13: Guest Speaker Michael Mason, director of the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage

Join Dr. Michael A. Mason as he discusses the past, current, and future work of the Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage. Rooted in principles of cultural democracy and social equality, the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage supports the understanding and sustainability of cultural heritage and diversity in communities across the United States and around the world, and produces the annual Smithsonian Folklife Festival and Smithsonian Folkways Recordings. A group of Maasai in an impromptu song and dance session.

Event held in Donovan Lounge, 2nd floor Greenlaw, Oct. 13, 2014 at 5:30 p.m.

French translation of Bill Ferris’ ‘Give My Poor Heart Ease’ book wins prestigious prize

The French translation of UNC historian William Ferris’ book, Give My Poor Heart Ease: Voices of the Mississippi Blues, has won a prestigious prize from Académie Charles Cros in the world music book category.

Ferris is the Joel R. Williamson Eminent Professor of History and senior associate director of the Center for the Study of the American South in UNC’s College of Arts and Sciences. He is the former chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Les Voix du Mississippi (Editions Papa Guédé), the French translation, received the Coup de Coeur de l’Académie Charles Cros Musiques du Monde for Ferris and publisher Benjamin Daussy. The Charles Cros Academy is an organization that acts as an intermediary between government cultural policy makers and professionals in the music and recording industries. It was named for Charles Cros, one of the pioneers of sound recording.

The Academy is probably best known for the grand prize it has given out every year since 1948, the Grand Prix du Disque, the premier French award for musical recordings.

Give My Poor Heart Ease was originally published by UNC Press in 2009. Throughout the 1960s and ‘70s, folklorist Ferris toured his home state of Mississippi, documenting the voices of African Americans as they spoke about and performed the blues. B.B. King, Willie Dixon and other artists’ stories are told through personal reflections and Ferris’ photographs, audio and video via a companion DVD and CD. In an autobiographical introduction, Ferris reflects on how he fell in love with the vibrant musical culture that was all around him, but was considered off limits to a white Mississippian during a troubled era.