Roscoe Holcomb CD/LP Release Party- Sat. Dec. 5th, 2pm

Join us on Saturday, December 5th at 2pm for a celebration of the new “Roscoe Holcomb – San Diego State Folk Festival 1972” CD/LP release on Tompkins Square Records. These exceptional recordings come from the vast & remarkable Lou Curtiss Sound Library. This event will include a discussion with Lou Curtiss about Roscoe Holcomb, old-time music & his life’s work as a festival organizer & archivist. Clinton Davis of the G Burns Jug Band will be performing some banjo songs from his native state of Kentucky, including some Roscoe Holcomb tunes. And Tompkins Square Records owner, Josh Rosenthal, will likely be giving a short reading from his new book, The Record Store of the Mind. CD & LP copies of the new Roscoe Holcomb release, as well as copies of Rosenthal’s new book, will be available for purchase.

Roscoe Holcomb was discovered in Daisy, KY by John Cohen in 1959. He never desired to be recorded or even perform for his neighbors. He was a very poor, working class man who suffered from emphysema and black lung. Holcomb was simply a “back porch musician” in 1959. He quickly became recognized as an American treasure. Roscoe Holcomb’s music represents the old, deep soul of American music. His singing & banjo playing has a very distinct, high-pitched, wailing fervor to it, showing the influence of the primitive Baptist churches in remote Appalachia. His old-time songs are deeply traditional; many were centuries old. And he was strongly influenced by African-American music, singing with deep & haunting blues & aggressively pickin’ his banjo with speed. This music perfectly symbolizes the soul of America and its music: battered & pained, yet stubborn, excited, strange & transcendently beautiful. There’s a reason why musicians like Bob Dylan consider Roscoe to be one of their biggest influences.

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