The Appeal of Americana

For some, Americana music is the time-tested remedy for any emotional ailment of the human heart. It is the soulful expression of human complexity – a heartfelt and timeless tale of the many problems that plague mankind. It is something that people can identify with no matter what their background and this is why it enjoys such wide appeal.

Americana is the term given to American folk music. This music category is broad and it can include gospel, jug bands, old time music, Bluegrass, country music, Blues, Native American music, Cajun and Appalachian folk. The music is called ‘American’ because it is distinctly different from other music styles commonly found in the rest of the world. Thus it is either native to the United States or it was born here. Much of this music has gone on to provide the foundation of other musical styles such as rock and roll, jazz, and rhythm and blues. Because of this, Americana music is also sometimes call ‘roots music’.

A number of musicians have become famous for their involvement in this style of music. If one looks under the Americana category in a music store, you might expect to see names such as Woody Guthrie, Maggie Simpson, Son House, Pete Seeger, Leadbelly, Hazel Dickens, Blind Lemon Jefferson, Washington Phillips, Jean Ritchie, Mahalia Jackson, Peter, Paul and Mary and Fiddlin’ John Carson. More recent years have seen the likes of Ralph Stanley, Ricky Skaggs, Keb’ Mo’ and John Denver being added to this list.

Whether you are new to the scene or have long been a fan of Americana, you will likely be interested in attending the Americana Music Festival and Conference in Nashville, Tennessee this year from the 17th to the 20th of September. It might seem like a long way off, but ticket prices are steadily increasing so it would be a good idea to get your tickets now. You will also be able to hear scores of Americana music on American radio as well as see a list of the Top Ten Americana in the February 21st issue of the Rolling Stone Magazine. So go to this year’s annual music festival and make new friends who share your passion for this great music genre. You won’t regret it.