Folk Music Experience



Course Number



Please note: Our plan is for this course to meet outside for the first month or so of the course - until the weather gets bad - and then to meet in the Fairhaven auditorium.

This course combines playing traditional folk music with the study of the contexts in which folk music has evolved. For this quarter, we will do something a little different and study the ukulele, and the music that is played on the ukulele in a number of different musical genres, but especially the music of Hawaii where the uke has its roots. Students will be expected to participate in discussions on readings assigned during the first five weeks of the course. The class will choose several tunes to practice together over the course of the quarter. In addition, each student will also be asked to introduce one song to the class that enriches our knowledge of folk music or the context within which folk music has been written and performed. We will encourage, but will not require, that these songs come from music related to the ukulele, and we will have several ukes on hand for students to play or use in learning to play the ukulele. Students will write a short research paper that forms the basis for their presentation on the song and its context. Students will also be responsible for learning and practicing the songs that are presented to the class, including practice in small groups. Students are encouraged to gain practice at playing one or more folk music instruments during the course, and are invited to join the course even if they are beginners at playing an instrument or if they prefer to just sing.

Texts: There will be no one text for this course - readings will be assigned from a variety of sources.

Credit/Evaluation: Regular attendance and participation in our weekly sing, informed participation in class discussions, one short research paper and song presentation, and practicing music in a small group.



Fall 2021
Course Instructor