Monthly Archives: January 2015

Blog 1: Definition of Bluegrass

According to Goldsmith, bluegrass is expansive 20th century acoustic string-band music based in traditional styles. Rosenburg tends to agree with Goldsmith as he writes, bluegrass is a music where people accompany themselves with acoustic instruments, rapid tempos, high-pitch and lonesome vocals. While this definitions tend to overlap, the Encyclopedia of Appalachia and Merriam-Webster correspondence tightly. These sources are more simply put that bluegrass is an American music played on stringed instruments with harmony singing and gospel. The film, High Lonesome: The Story of Bluegrass, puts a more specific example to define bluegrass. The film reads bluegrass as Bill Monroe’s sound composed of hillbilly style, high pitch, fast tempos and religion. To me, I combine these definitions. I phrase bluegrass as 20th century American music with fast tempo, harmony, lonesome sound with high-pitch and acoustic instruments. This sound is best shown thrown Bill Monroe’s Bluegrass Boys, and to the ear registers as a fast folk.