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Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Americana Bands Should Take a Hint From Henry Flynt

Posted by on Wed, Feb 5, 2014 at 11:40 AM

I wish that more of today’s Americana groups would emulate Henry Flynt and stop sucking the soul out of the Band, Neil Young’s Harvest, and Poco. Born in 1940 in Greensboro, North Carolina, Flynt is an American avant-garde/minimalist violinist and philosopher who draws on hillbilly music and the blues to forge incredibly riveting compositions that radiate a powerful soulfulness despite (because of?) the academic rigor with which he creates his music. Flynt's masterpiece, “You Are My Everlovin’,” is perhaps the most poignant long-form drone piece I’ve ever heard. Play it at someone’s funeral and watch the room flood with tears.

Flynt gets to the essence of his instrument and locates the motifs that move you most. He can make his fiddle whine and grind like a rusty barn door, and it’s absolutely adrenalizing. Granted, the innate cosmic and hypnotic qualities of Flynt's music are more difficult to master than the familiar, well-worn country-folk-rock tropes modern Americana bands pump out. But it would be invigorating to hear more young musicians strive for something deeper than whatever it is the Avett Brothers and their ilk are giving us.

 

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Larry Mizell, Jr. 1
hot tip. "everlovin" gives great drone.
Posted by Larry Mizell, Jr. on February 5, 2014 at 11:57 AM · Report this
2
This post served at least one function: It spurred Seattle's James Watkins to send me this link to a piece he composed that's very much in the vein of Henry Flynt—and it's great.

http://vimeo.com/43089317
Posted by Dave Segal on February 5, 2014 at 2:45 PM · Report this
3
There's plenty of roots/Americana music out there that isn't so boring and lame, but you wont find it from the Avett Brothers or whatever overhyped-band-with-a-banjo that's playing at some big festival.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PZxt_3SHc…

google/youtube search keywords: Muddy Roots, Farmageddon, Deep Blues, Hillgrass Bluebilly, Moonrunners, ..
Posted by chrisgreen on February 5, 2014 at 3:00 PM · Report this

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