A Florida Fiddler: The Life and Times of Richard Seaman by Gregory Hansen

By Gregory Hansen

A musical existence as wonderful metaphor for Florida's cultural landscape.

This biography of 97-year-old Richard Seaman, who grew up in Kissimmee Park, Florida, depends on oral historical past and folklore study to outline where of musicianship and storytelling within the state's historical past from one artist's viewpoint. Gregory Hansen provides Seaman's evaluation of Florida's altering cultural panorama via his tall stories, own event narratives, legends, mess around track repertory, and outlines of day-by-day life.

Seaman's formative years thoughts of fiddling performances and rural dances clarify the position such gatherings performed in development and retaining social order in the neighborhood. As an grownup, Seaman moved to Jacksonville, Florida, the place he labored as a machinist and played together with his kinfolk band. The evolution of his musical repertory from the early Twenties in the course of the Nineteen Fifties offers a source for reconstructing social lifestyles within the rural south and for figuring out how alterations in musical type replicate the state's more and more city social constitution. Hansen contains a set of Seaman's mess around tunes, transcribed for the advantage of performer and researcher alike. The thirty tall stories incorporated within the quantity represent a consultant pattern of Florida’s oral culture within the early years of the twentieth century.

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Additional info for A Florida Fiddler: The Life and Times of Richard Seaman

Example text

George remembers the storm, “Oh my, yes,” he answers, and Richard returns to his story: It blowed the roof off my daddy’s house, and this old ¤ddle was laying up on a table—up in the upstairs bedroom. Well, it got wet, naturally. So I drove down there to see how my folks were after the storm. Their house was roo®ess. Downed trees were everywhere. And I went up there and found my old ¤ddle all laying all over the ®oor. It was strung up, and when water got on it, I think it went off like a rattrap.

They put it out on this old Bluebird label, which was a subsidiary of RCA at the time. And I heard through the grapevine. I don’t doubt it, but somebody told me that the tune has been recorded by around one hundred different artists over the period of years. And here’s the beauty of it. But it’s not so beautiful, but it happened. I gave Ervin my half—just like you’d share a cigarette. I never will forget it. ” I said, “Ervin, I don’t have time to fool with no ¤ddle tune, I’ve got to go check on my cab in a few minutes and go to work.

So I think we’ll get started and work our way across and have everybody play a piece and talk a little and see what happens. ”2 Bob introduces the guitar player who plays with the Salt Run bluegrass band of St. Augustine and has agreed to back up the ¤ddlers for this session. Following Bob’s introduction, Chubby Wise picks up on the theme of Bob’s introduction. He interjects, “You know, I think it’s funny here, speaking of the old-timers, I believe the three of us are the only ones that Noah invited in the ark to play a ¤ddle for him when he built it.

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