The Otha Turner Family Picnic: Occupying Musical and Social Space In-Between Saturday Night and Sunday Morning
Description: This thesis concerns African-American fife and drum band music, a pre-blues genre that was a fixture at summer picnics in the Mississippi hill country from the late nineteenth century through most of the twentieth century. The picnics held a unique place in African-American life, a crossroads of juke joints and churches, blues and gospel, individuality and family. Using the African-American paradigm of a Saturday night / Sunday morning people, I describe the Otha Turner Family Picnic, the last picnic to feature fife and drum band music, locating it and the music in-between the secular and sacred aspects of African-American life from both a musical and a social standpoint.
Date: May 2011
Creator: Vermilyea, Carl P.