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folk music

music, usually of simple character and anonymous authorship, handed down among the common people by oral tradition.
music by known composers that has become part of the folk tradition of a country or region.
Origin of folk music
1885-90 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for folk-music
Historical Examples
  • Therefore, in folk-music is possibly made permanent simple states of feeling.

    Browning's England Helen Archibald Clarke
  • The work, which does not appear to have become a repertory opera, is worth the study of those who are interested in folk-music.

    The Russian Opera Rosa Newmarch
  • The question of folk-music has recently received much attention (see Song).

  • You're finding out much quicker than I. It's all folk-music to you still; to me Strauss and the rest of the tired stuff.

    The Freelands John Galsworthy
  • When we pass into Somersetshire the folk-music assumes quite a different character.

  • The folk-music of the negro slaves is most frequently mentioned as the right foundation for a strictly American school.

  • This tendency is prevalent in folk-music, especially that of the Russians and Scandinavians.

    Music: An Art and a Language Walter Raymond Spalding
  • The growing interest in folk-music in America is a tendency concerning which the progressive student should inform himself.

    Music: An Art and a Language Walter Raymond Spalding
  • Saved from the multitudinous distractions of town life, the love of the folk-music took root in his heart and grew undisturbed.

    The Russian Opera Rosa Newmarch
  • This gives an effect of great concentration and intensity and is a prevalent feature in Scottish and Hungarian folk-music, e.g.

    Music: An Art and a Language Walter Raymond Spalding
British Dictionary definitions for folk-music

folk music

music that is passed on from generation to generation by oral tradition Compare art music
any music composed in the idiom of this oral tradition
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for folk-music

folk music

1889, from folk (also cf. folklore). In reference to the branch of modern popular music (originally associated with Greenwich Village in New York City) it dates from 1958.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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folk-music in Culture

folk music definition

A kind of music originating from the ordinary people of a region or nation and continued by oral tradition. The ballad is a typical form of folk music. Music is also called “folk” when it is made by artists and composers who are inspired by, or imitate, true folk music. Composers such as Bob Dylan and Woody Guthrie are folk musicians of the second kind.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Difficulty index for folk music

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