The Sounds of 1848

Interview + Performance

Saturday, June 19, 2004

When newcomers arrived in America they brought their music with them. Refugees from the Irish famine, which started in 1845, carried over some of the songs that we think of today as American standards, but when the tunes hit American soil, they changed. Fiddle player Paul Woodiel, Chris Layer, a fife and flute player, and vocalist Brendan O’Shea perform "Johnny I Hardly Knew Ye" and "Turkey in the Straw." Kurt and Simon Schama also talk about how minstrel shows propagated ugly stereotypes of African-Americans, while beginning the long process of blending black and white music in America.


Simon Schama and Paul Woodiel

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