From Library Journal
Bollman's collecting passion is material on historic banjo manufacture and marketingAhe houses over 300 instruments, thousands of photographs, numerous patents, trade catalogs, ads, sheet music covers, periodicals, and banjo-themed "realia" in his Boston-area home. For this book, he shared his vast knowledge of banjo history with cultural historian Gura (English/American studies, Univ. of North Carolina, Chapel Hill), who augmented his research using other public and private collections. Thus, academic scholarship and collecting enthusiasm have combined to produce a responsible, entertaining overview of the banjo as an artifact of 19th-century American culture, one that crossed racial, economic, and stylistic lines and had a real effect on later musical developments, especially ragtime. Recommended for large American music and popular culture collections.ABonnie Jo Dopp, Univ. of Maryland Lib., Coll. Park
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[This book] makes it clear that the banjo is an essential constituent of what Greil Marcus once called 'that old, weird America."Times Literary Supplement"