Part 1 A note on transcription: the singer and the song; phonographic recording of the song; transcription of the song from phonographic recording; the reader and the song; music notation as a bridge; three basic types of transcription illustrated; song-norm; majority usage; underlimits of amount of detail shown in notation, especially with regard to the simpler singing styles; the mode tune as representative of the song as a whole; the initial tune as model tune; the composite tune; the transcriber and a changing oral tradition. Part 2 Notes on the songs and on manners of singing: adherence to a dynamic level throughout the song as a whole; adherence to a dramatic level throughout the song as a whole; adherence to the tempo set at the beginning of the song; strict time and free singing styles; pulse and count; anticipation and delay of beat; simple and compound meter; metrical irregularities - prolongation and contraction of measure; metrical irregularities - divisions of beat and measure; rest; phrase pattern; interstanzaic variation; manners of accommodating extra syllables of succeeding stanzas; tone attack and release; intonation; scale and mode; accompaniment; appendices.
This volume should find a place in every serious folk music fan's library. It's certainly a fitting legacy from so gifted and encompassing an intelligence as Ruth Crawford Seeger's. SING OUT, Winter 2004