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Back in 1961 it was still possible to know a few of America’s original country musicians from the ’20s and ’30s. Renowned and celebrated musician and artist John Cohen came of age at the confluence of Old Time and early Bluegrass music, the historic intersection of traditional and folk music. Cohen travelled the country playing music, recording, and documenting what was to be a generation of musicians who would influence American music and culture for decades to come.
Travelling between the Union Grove Fiddlers’ Convention to the Grand Old Opry to a Coal Celebration in Hazard, Kentucky, Cohen made historic photographs of performers like Bill Monroe and Doc Watson, the country’s very first all bluegrass show, and a bluegrass bar in Baltimore, among much more. Speed Bumps on a Dirt Road presents Old Time music as the root of Country music.
Includes photographs of: Flatt & Scruggs, Fiddler “Eck Robertson” in Amarillo Texas, Doc Watson, bluegrass fiddler “Tex” Logan, The Stanley Brothers at Sunset Park, Sara & Maybelle of the Carter Family, and Cousin Emmy Alice & Hazel and a dulcimer in a parking lot.
Speed Bumps on a Dirt Road is a living document of country music’s founding fathers and mothers. John Cohen photographed musicians, at home, backstage at public events, from the wings at fiddlers’ conventions, out in country music parks, and in the studio for live radio show performances and recording sessions.