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Americana (music): Wikis

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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

For other uses, see Americana (disambiguation).

Americana is an amalgam of roots music formed by the confluence of the shared and varied traditions that make up the American musical ethos; specifically those sounds that are merged from folk, country, rhythm & blues, rock & roll and other external influential styles.[1] Americana is popularly referred to, especially in print, as alternative country, alt-country or sometimes alt.country.

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Americana as a radio format

Americana, as defined by the Americana Music Association (AMA), is "American roots music based on the traditions of country. While the musical model can be traced back to the Elvis Presley marriage of 'hillbilly music' and R&B that birthed rock 'n roll, Americana as a radio format developed during the 1990s as a reaction to the highly polished sound that defined the mainstream music of that decade."[1] Because of listener interest in the artists who do not fit as comfortably in the country or rock genres, a radio format called "Americana" was developed by the AMA and reported by R&R (Radio & Records, a radio trade publication). Born out of the Triple A, non-commercial, country and other formats, the Americana format is the sum of the parts that have showcased Americana music since its inception.

The AMA grew out of the format as an effort to bring all Americana music supporters, performers, and professionals together to expand the visibility and viability of the music. The radio format, including the term "Americana," began in early 1995 thru efforts of Rob Bleetstein of San Francisco, and Jon Grimson of Nashville. Bleetstein became the first Americana chart editor as Gavin (a former radio trade publication) magazine created the first Americana radio chart which was published on January 20, 1995. This came about when KFAT (defunct) radio in Gilroy, California went off the air, and Bleetstein went to the Gavin Report, asserting that they were missing a category of music. He described the KFAT format, which had the widest playlist of any station in the country, and most of whose artists whose music would come to be known as Americana. Bleetstein worked closely with KFAN "Texas Rebel Radio" in Texas and KPIG in California in developing the Americana format. Both stations had been on the air with their own versions of an independent format for several years and had been instrumental in the development of the the AAA format as well. The publisher agreed and gave Bleetstein the job of creating and running the chart. Grimson coined the term Americana and became the first Americana radio promoter after having promoted the music previously at Warner Brothers Records Nashville, and promoting those releases that WB worked to radio formats outside the mainstream country stations. The AMA was later established to expand the musical format outside of strictly radio, but still including the radio aspect as well. The non-profit AMA now runs the Americana radio chart.

Notable Americana artists

Some of the significant artists in the genre are:

Notes and references

External links

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