Jimmie Rodgers (1897–1933), the first performer elected to the Country Music Hall of Fame, was a folk hero in his own lifetime, and has been idolized and emulated ever since. A native of Meridian, Mississippi, Rodgers’s life was marked by humble origins, sudden success and fame, and an untimely death from tuberculosis at age thirty-five.
Jimmie Rodgers: The Life and Times of America’s Blue Yodeler (University Press of Mississippi) is the definitive account of Rodgers’s life and career. Author Nolan Porterfield draws from extensive research into original sources, including private letters, personal interviews, court records, and newspaper accounts.
This biography dispels the many rumors and myths that have confused Rodgers’s history for many years. Fans may be surprised to learn that Rodgers’s early years were considerably less austere than previously reported and that the railroad, although important, was not a dominant force in his life. Music specialists will welcome the abundance of information on Rodgers’s recording sessions, including newly discovered facts regarding the circumstances of the original session in Bristol.
Jimmie Rodgers: The Life and Times of America’s Blue Yodeler significantly expands and alters our knowledge of the entertainer’s life and career and explains the nature of his role in American culture of the Depression era and provides pages of insightful background on the surroundings in which he worked.
This volume includes a new introduction by the author, an extensive discography, an itinerary of Rodgers’s personal appearances, a chronology of the famous “Blue Yodels” and over 60 black and white illustrations.
Nolan Porterfield’s other books include Last Cavalier: The Life and Times of John A. Lomax and an award-winning novel, A Way of Knowing. A native of Texas, he now lives near Bowling Green, Kentucky.
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