Songs as a history resource

Song-writers are essentially observers; that’s where the process begins; that’s where the ideas or interpretations or slants that song-writers present in a song originate. Each good song-writer, in his/her own way, is looking at his/her environment and relaying aspects of that. It follows then that when historians are going back over a period of history, they will often find in the songs of that period valuable indications of the state of affairs back then. Sometimes a casual passing comment by a song-writer will become an important lead for the historian.

Just this week, for instance, a Tradewinds fan, Romesh Singh, sent me a note enquiring about a song in an “old time calypso” medley I recorded some  …..To continue reading, login or subscribe now.

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