Barry Pearson

Professor

Contact:
3115 Tawes Hall
301-405-3780
bpearson@umd.edu

Biography

Dr. Barry Pearson has written two books and over 40 other publications on traditional and popular African-American music - the bulk of his work deriving from well over 100 taped interviews with blues performers. He has written the books Sounds Good to Me: The Bluesman's Story, Virginia Piedmont Blues: The Lives and Art of Two Virgina Blues Men (covering the relationship between life-story and repertoire), and (forthcoming) Blues and African-American Community Life (covering the relationship between blues artists and other African-American institutions and community events). He is an English professor at the University of Maryland, works with the Smithsonian Folklife Festival and the Library of Congress Folklife Center, is president of the National Council for the Traditional Arts, and as a musician has toured for the Arts America Program in Africa and South and Central America.

Education

Ph.D., Indiana University, 1976

Area Groups

African American/African Diaspora; American; Film Studies and Cultural Studies; Mythology and Folklore

Recent Publications

Jook Right On: Blues Stories and Blues Storytellers (Tennessee, 2005)

Virginia Piedmont Blues: The Lives and Art of Two Virginia Bluesmen (Pennsylvania, 1990)

Sounds So Good to Me: The Bluesman's Story (Pennsylvania, 1984)

Blues Storytellers (forthcoming, 1998).

Books

  • Book Image

Service

Black Arts Festival Steering Committee, University of Maryland, 1993-1996

Equity Officer, English Department, 1989-present

National Council for the Traditional Arts, President 1992-present, Vice-President 1982-1992, Secretary 1979-1982

President, Maryland Folklore Society, 1980-1985

Chairman of the Board, D.C. Blues Society, 1987-1988

Co-producer of National Folk Festival, 1979-present

Presenter- Consultant- Participant, Smithsonian Folklife Festival, 1983-1991

Workshop leader, Washington Folk Festival, 1978-1988

Chairman, Maryland Heritage Panel, Maryland Arts Council, 1983-1984.

Spring 2015

ENGL368B Blues and African American Folksong
ENGL462 Folksong and Ballad

Winter 2014

ENGL462 Folksong and Ballad

Fall 2014

ENGL368D Special Topics in the Literature of Africa and the African Diaspora: African American Folklore in Film and Literature
ENGL462 Folksong and Ballad

Summer 2014

ENGL462 Folksong and Ballad

Spring 2014

ENGL368B Special Topics in the Literature of Africa and the African Diaspora: Blues and African American Folksong
ENGL462 Folksong and Ballad

Fall 2013

ENGL368B Special Topics in the Literature of Africa and the African Diaspora: Blues and African American Folksong
ENGL479M Selected Topics in English and American Literature after 1800: Roots Music and Film

Summer 2013

ENGL462 Folksong and Ballad

Spring 2013

ENGL368B Special Topics in the Literature of Africa and the African Diaspora: Blues and African American Folksong
ENGL462 Folksong and Ballad

Winter 2012

ENGL462 Folksong and Ballad

Fall 2012

ENGL368B Special Topics in the Literature of Africa and the African Diaspora: Blues and African American Folksong
ENGL479M Selected Topics in English and American Literature after 1800: Roots Music and Film

Summer 2012

ENGL462 Folksong and Ballad

Spring 2012

ENGL368D Special Topics in the Literature of Africa and the African Diaspora: African American Folklore in Film and Literature

Winter 2011

ENGL462 Folksong and Ballad

Fall 2011

ENGL368B Blues and African American Folksong
ENGL479M Selected Topics in English and American Literature after 1800: Roots, Music, and Film

Summer 2011

ENGL462 Folksong and Ballad

Spring 2011

ENGL368B Blues and American Folksong
ENGL462 Folksong and Ballad

Fall 2010

ENGL368B Blues and African American Folksong
ENGL479M Roots, Music, and Film

Summer 2010

ENGL462 Folksong and Ballad
ENGL629 Readings in Folklore and Folklife: Folksong and Ballad

Spring 2010

ENGL462 Folksong and Ballad

Fall 2009

ENGL368B Blues and African American Folksong
ENGL479M Roots Music and Film

Spring 2009

ENGL462 Folksong and Ballad
ENGL479F Roots Music and Film

Fall 2008

ENGL368B Blues and African American Folksong
ENGL629 Readings in Folklore and Folklife

Summer 2008

ENGL462 Folksong and Ballad

Spring 2008

ENGL260 Introduction to Folklore
ENGL462 Folksong and Ballad

Fall 2007

ENGL368B Blues and African American Folksong
ENGL428C American Roots Music in Film and Literature

Summer 2007

ENGL462 Folksong and Ballad