Music: Singing the U.S. Scene

They sang as they went, from Salty New England to dusty Oklahoma. In the Johnny Appleseed country—Ohio and Indiana—they sang of Johnny Appleseed. They recounted Paul Bunyan's exploits in one of his own legendary stamping grounds, wooded north Michigan, while husky loggers clapped and yowled. They regaled Louisiana audiences with Creole songs. In their 7,500-mile, 21-State trip they warmed U.S. hearts with songs that were part of their soil and blood. Last week, when a dirt-stained bus rolled them from Greensboro, N.C. into Manhattan, the American Ballad Singers had wound up their first U.S. tour.

The man who led the Ballad Singers...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!