Texas Jailhouse Music: A Prison Band History by Caroline GnagyTexas Jailhouse Music: A Prison Band History by Caroline Gnagy

Texas Jailhouse Music: A Prison Band History

byCaroline Gnagy

Paperback | May 2, 2016

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Inside the Texas State Prison is a surprising story of ingenuity, optimism and musical creativity. During the mid-twentieth century, inmates at the Huntsville unit and neighboring Goree State Farm for Women captured hearts all over Texas during weekly radio broadcasts and live stage performances. WBAP's Thirty Minutes Behind the Walls took listeners inside the penitentiary to hear not only the prisoners? songs but also the stories of those who sang them. Captivating and charismatic, banjo player Reable Childs received thousands of fan letters with the Goree All-Girl String Band during World War II. Hattie Ellis, a young black inmate with a voice that rivaled Billie Holiday's, was immortalized by notable folklorist John Avery Lomax. Cowboys, songsters and champion fiddlers all played a part in one of the most unique prison histories in the nation. Caroline Gnagy presents the decades-long story of the Texas convict bands, informed by prison records, radio show transcripts and the words and music of the inmates themselves.
Title:Texas Jailhouse Music: A Prison Band HistoryFormat:PaperbackDimensions:192 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.31 inPublished:May 2, 2016Publisher:Arcadia Publishing Inc.Language:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1626198675

ISBN - 13:9781626198678

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Editorial Reviews

Drawing deeply on prison records, radio show transcripts, and the words and music of the inmates themselves, music writer Caroline Gnagy passionately tells the stories of these men and women musicians -- who also were inmates -- in her powerful new book, Texas Jailhouse Music: A Prison Band History (The History Press). Above all, Gnagy is careful to present singers and musicians as real people -- mothers, fathers, lovers, friends -- who happen to be behind bars. No Depression