The Old-Time Herald Volume 13, Number 4

We Just Knew That We Loved Kentucky Music:
A Conversation With Kentucky Collector and Fiddler John Harrod
Interviewed by Scott Prouty
The Bill Livers String Ensemble; L-R: Jane Harrod, John Harrod, Natalie Andrews, Bill Livers, Eric Larsen, Ben Griffith. Frankfort, KY. Frankfort Expo.

John Harrod was born in 1946 in Shelby County, Kentucky, and with the exception of two years in England, he has lived in Kentucky his whole life. Over time, he became one of the leading documenters of older styles of traditional music in Kentucky, particularly its strong fiddle tradition.

In the 1990s, Harrod donated his collection to the Sound Archive at Berea College; later, he gave copies of it to Morehead State University. In 2012, I received a Sound Archives Fellowship from Berea College to carry out this oral history interview with him.

The idea behind the project was to capture John Harrod's observations about teaching, documenting and disseminating traditional music in Kentucky since the 1970s . . . Topics discussed include Harrod's family background, his approach to field recording, rural life in mid-20th-century Kentucky, and the influence of geography on musical traditions, as well as anecdotes concerning specific musicians and “hotbeds” of traditional music.

Complete article in print edition. Subscribe now!

<<<Return to 13-4 Index

The Old Time Herald PO Box 61679• Durham, NC • 27715-1679
Phone (919) 286-2041