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Collection Number: 20490

Collection Title: Stephen Wade Collection, 1950s-2013

This collection has access restrictions. For details, please see the restrictions.


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Size 13 feet of linear shelf space (approximately 1500 items)
Abstract The collection of white musician, record producer, and writer Stephen Wade (1953- ) contains press clippings, posters, magazines, performance programs, and other printed and published items; scrapbooks; commercial recordings; and non-commercial audio and video recordings, both analog and digital. Materials document Wade's musical career and his projects on American traditional music. Scrapbooks and press clippings pertain chiefly to Wade's one-person theatrical show called "Banjo Dancing," which combines storytelling, traditional music, and percussive dance. Commercial recordings are 78 rpm, LP, and other discs from the personal collection of American folklorist and anthropologist with expertise in Haitian life, Harry Courlander. Non-commercial audio and video recordings contain musical performances by Wade and others, and most are related to his projects on American traditional music, particularly Banjo Diary: Lessons from Tradition (2012) and the Smithsonian Folkways compilation Hobart Smith, In Sacred Trust: The 1963 Fleming Brown Tapes (2005). The collection also includes numerous audio and video recordings compiled by Wade, including dubs of live performances and commercial releases of folk music and bluegrass by mostly white performers, such as Blue Sky Boys, Carter Family, Buell Kazee, Jimmy Martin, Earl Scruggs, and Stanley Brothers. The addition of 2018 contains audio and moving image materials relating to Bruce Kaplan, a white folklorist and founder of Flying Fish Records, a Chicago based record label that specialized in folk, blues, gospel music, and country music. The addition includes master audio tapes of Flying Fish artists, including the Zion Harmonizers, Hickory Wind, and Bryan Bowers; live recordings of the Berryville bluegrass festival; copies of Martin, Bogan & Armstrong's Barnyard Dance (1972); as well as film and video recordings related to Bruce Kaplan. Acquired as part of the Southern Folklife Collection.
Creator Wade, Stephen.
Language English
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Restrictions to Access
This collection is not available for immediate or same day access. Please contact Research and Instructional Service staff at wilsonlibrary@unc.edu to discuss options for consulting this collection.
Copyright Notice
Copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.
Preferred Citation
[Identification of item], in the Stephen Wade Collection #20490, Southern Folklife Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Acquisitions Information
Received from Stephen Wade in August 2013 (Acc. 101898) and June 2018 (Acc. 103394).
Sensitive Materials Statement
Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations, the North Carolina Public Records Act (N.C.G.S. § 132 1 et seq.), and Article 7 of the North Carolina State Personnel Act (Privacy of State Employee Personnel Records, N.C.G.S. § 126-22 et seq.). Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g., a cause of action under common law for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual's private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill assumes no responsibility.
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The following terms from Library of Congress Subject Headings suggest topics, persons, geography, etc. interspersed through the entire collection; the terms do not usually represent discrete and easily identifiable portions of the collection--such as folders or items.

Clicking on a subject heading below will take you into the University Library's online catalog.

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Stephen Wade (1953- ) of Chicago, Ill., is a white musician, writer, record producer, scholar of American traditional music, and the creator and performer of the one-person stage show "Banjo Dancing." He is the author of numerous articles for newspapers, magazines and journals, and encyclopedias, as well as the book, The Beautiful Music All Around Us: Field Recordings and the American Experience (2012, University of Illinois Press). His discography includes Dancing Home (1990, Flying Fish), Dancing In The Parlor (1997, County Records), Banjo Diary: Lessons From Traditions(2012, Smithsonian Folkways), Across the Amerikee ‎(2017, Smithsonian Folkways) and A Storyteller's Story: Sources Of Banjo Dancing (2019, Patuxent Music).

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Processing Information

This summary description was created in July 2018 to provide information about unprocessed materials in Wilson Special Collections Library.

Encoded by: Laura Smith, July 2018

Updated by: Anne Wells, September 2021

Since August 2017, we have added ethnic and racial identities for individuals and families represented in collections. To determine identity, we rely on self-identification; other information supplied to the repository by collection creators or sources; public records, press accounts, and secondary sources; and contextual information in the collection materials. Omissions of ethnic and racial identities in finding aids created or updated after August 2017 are an indication of insufficient information to make an educated guess or an individual's preference for identity information to be excluded from description. When we have misidentified, please let us know at wilsonlibrary@unc.edu.

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