Category Archives: music

Name one other banjo player who wears Prada. And I don’t mean Prada overalls. —Natalie Maines The lead singer of the breakout bluegrass trio the Dixie Chicks, Natalie Maines, was born on October 14, 1974. The singer joined the Dixie … Continue reading

Tonight, the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) will induct folklorist, musician, bluegrass historian, and University of Illinois Press author Neil V. Rosenberg into the International Bluegrass Hall of Fame at its awards show in Raleigh, North Carolina. Rosenberg currently serves … Continue reading

Story songs had won love from an admiring public since the days when drunken Vikings flung wandering skalds into a nearby volcano. When the wireless came along, story songs filled the air in a different way. The story song “El … Continue reading

Country music superstar Marty Robbins was born on September 26, 1925. In three decades as a singer and songwriter Robbins placed a staggering 94 songs on Billboard’s country music charts. His musical style ranged from rockabilly rave-ups to pop standards … Continue reading

There is a possibly apocryphal story about Loretta Lynn’s classic “Coal Miner’s Daughter.” Supposedly, Lynn’s original version of the song included ten (or eight or twelve) verses. Hearing it, her producer Owen Bradley said something along the order of, “Loretta, … Continue reading

Jazz innovator Charlie “Bird” Parker was born on August 29, 1920 in Kansas City. Before his death at age 34, Parker transformed jazz with harmonic creativity and complex melodic saxophone lines. Chuck Haddix, author of Bird: The Life and Music of Charlie … Continue reading

Several University of Illinois Press books were honored with the 2014 Awards for Excellence from the Association for Recorded Sound Collections. The winners will be acknowledged at the awards ceremony at the ARSC national conference in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in May 2015. … Continue reading

The release of the film Get On Up in early August rekindled interest in the life and music of James Brown. One of the most staggeringly influential entertainers in American culture, a man for whom we need to invent a … Continue reading

Hippydom’s high holy day, August 15, marks the anniversary of those three days of peace, love, and mud known as Woodstock. Those who care about the iconic rock festival know that Joan Baez performed while pregnant, Pete Townshend brained Abbie … Continue reading

Three UIP titles are available in paperback editions today. Locomotive to Aeromotive: Octave Chanute and the Transportation Revolution Earth, water, air—Octave Chanute grappled with the very elements themselves. He built the massive Chicago and Kansas City stockyards, bridged the so-called unbridgeable Missouri … Continue reading