Folkstreams free archive of folk/roots culture documentaries

January 10, 2013 11:36pm
Source: Boing Boing

Folkstreams is an incredible online archive of documentary films about American folk and roots music and culture. Above, an excerpt from "Born For Hard Luck," a 1976 film by Tom Davenport about harmonica player and comedian Arthur "Peg Leg Sam" Jackson." (A clip of this film appears in the French movie Amelie.) Below are just a few of the hundreds of films you can watch for free, right now.

• “Adirondack Minstrel.” Hudson, N.Y.: Bowling Green Films, 1977. (19 min.) [Jack Ofield film on woodsman/musician Lawrence Older]

• “Land Where the Blues Began.” New York: Cultural Equity, 1990. (58 min.) [Alan Lomax film on Mississippi blues, from his “American Patchwork Series”; parallels his book of the same title]

• “The Amish, A People of Preservation.” Harleysville, Pa.: Heritage Productions. (52 min.) [John Ruth film on Amish life, with Hostettler as consultant—and some surreptitiously shot footage]

• “The Sacred Vision of Howard Finster.” New York: Museum of American Folk Art, 1995. (30 min.)

[Interviews with Finster talking about his art, visions, and religious beliefs, with scenes of his creations, his preaching, and his home]