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Lomax the Songhunter

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Encore Broadcast Date: September 2, 2008

PBS Premiere: August 22, 2006


Alan Lomax was "the song hunter." He devoted his life to recording the world's folk tunes before they would permanently disappear with the rise of the modern music industry. In Lomax the Songhunter, filmmaker Rogier Kappers seeks to tell Lomax's story by interviewing friends such as Pete Seeger, combining it with archival recordings of music greats Woody Guthrie and Leadbelly, and gathering footage of the cotton fields, rock quarries and prisons where Alan Lomax captured America’s quintessential music. Finally, Kappers followed the route that Lomax took so many years ago and traveled to remote villages in Spain and Italy, hearing memories and music from the farmers, shepherds and weavers whose songs Lomax recorded decades earlier.

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TAGS: 1930s, 1940s, alan lomax, ethnography, ethnomusicology, europe, european history, folk music, journey, music, pete seeger

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Film Information

Lomax the Songhunter (90 min.)

Premiere Date: August 22, 2006

Encore Broadcast Date: Sept. 2, 2008

Photos: Download Here

Trailer: Link | Embed

Filmmaker: Rogier Kappers Bio | Interview | Statement

Press: Press Release | Critical Acclaim


Rogier Kappers
Rogier Kappers

Lomax is my hero, a Robin Hood-like figure who stood up for the music of poor people and passed it on to the world through radio programs and LPs.”

— Rogier Kappers, Filmmaker


Film Update

Critical Acclaim

Mr. Kappers, in an inspired stroke, travels to places Mr. Lomax visited during a long career of collecting the world's folk music on tape. He finds some of the people Mr. Lomax captured and plays the old recordings for them. Watching their faces light up is beautiful.”

&mdash Neil Genzlinger, The New York Times

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