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eMusic Features

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Smithsonian and Folkways: From Latin America to the Cosmos

By Richard Gehr, Contributor

According to Harold Courlander, when the ethnomusicologist asked Folkways Records founder Moses Asch sometime in the mid 40s if he'd like to release field recordings Courlander had made in Haiti, Asch replied, "I'd be crazy not to." That decision led to Courlander and Asch collaborating on what would become the Ethnic Folkways Library, a voluminous catalog of international music Asch hoped would comprise nothing less than "an encyclopedia of world sound." In his handsomely illustrated and… more »

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The 13 Greatest Ghost Songs of All Time

By Mike McGonigal, Contributor

It's Halloween, which is the best holiday out of all the holidays that don't involve presents. On Halloween, everyone pretends to be afraid of ghosts, which are generally thought to be the spirits of dead people who, for some reason or another, are caught in between worlds. I'm not sure I believe in ghosts. It's probably all the Scooby Doo episodes I watched as a kid; ghosts were never real, but rather just Old Mr. Thompson… more »