The Super Fun Kids' Graphic Novel Sale

Special Offers see all

Enter to WIN a $100 Credit

Subscribe to
for a chance to win.
Privacy Policy

Visit our stores

    Recently Viewed clear list

    Original Essays | September 21, 2015

    Annie Jacobsen: IMG Mirrors on the Moon: A Reporter's Story about Sources and Secrets in the Modern World

    As a national security reporter, I write about war, weapons, security, and secrets. The question most commonly asked of me is, "How do you get... Continue »
    1. $21.00 Sale Hardcover add to wish list

Qualifying orders ship free.
Used Trade Paper
Ships in 1 to 3 days
Add to Wishlist
Qty Store Section
1 Burnside Music- Country

This title in other editions

Real Country: Music and Language in Working-Class Culture


Real Country: Music and Language in Working-Class Culture Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In Lockhart, Texas, a rural working-class town just south of Austin, country music is a way of life. Conversation slips easily into song, and the songs are full of conversation. Anthropologist and musician Aaron A. Fox spent years in Lockhart making research notes, music, and friends. In Real Country, he provides an intimate, in-depth ethnography of the community and its music. Showing that country music is deeply embedded in the textures of working-class life, Fox argues that it is the cultural and intellectual property of working-class people and not only of the Nashville-based music industry or the stars whose lives figure so prominently in popular and scholarly writing about the genre.

Fox spent hundreds of hours observing, recording, and participating in talk and music-making in homes, beer joints, and garage jam sessions. He renders the everyday life of Lockhartandrsquo;s working-class community in detail, right down to the ice cold beer, the battered guitars, and the technical skills of such local musical legends as Randy Meyer and Larry andldquo;Hoppyandrdquo; Hopkins. Throughout, Fox focuses on the human voice. His analyses of conversations, interviews, songs, and vocal techniques show how feeling and experience are expressed, and how local understandings of place, memory, musical aesthetics, working-class social history, race, and gender are shared. In Real Country, working-class Texans re-imagine their past and give voice to the struggles and satisfactions of their lives in the present through music.


An ethnographic study of country music, and the bars, life, and everyday speech of its rural fans.


An intimate, in-depth examination of making and listening to country music in a small Texas town.

About the Author

Real Country is by far the best book on Texas country music and working-class culture since Manuel Peña’s The Texas-Mexican Conjunto: History of a Working-Class Music was published in 1985. As opened to us by Aaron A. Fox, the working-class world of Lockhart, Texas, is complex and richly textured, and country music is its most characteristic and expressive voice. Grounded both in the most sophisticated recent scholarship and in Fox’s longtime involvement as performer and observer, Real Country extends to the music the full measure of respect it deserves. In so doing, it carries country music scholarship to a new level that will challenge and guide all subsequent commentators.”—David E. Whisnant, author of Rascally Signs in Sacred Places and All That Is Native and Fine
“Aaron A. Fox’s Real Country gets to the heart and drama that fuels the cigarette smoke, music, talk, and beer of a honky tonk Saturday night.”—Peter Wolf, musician
“Aaron A. Fox’s Real Country is a powerful and moving study of Texas working class culture (including an articulate defense of the now heavily criticized notion of ‘culture’ itself). Combining the tools of linguistic anthropology, ethnomusicology, and sensitive ethnography, Fox performs a series of brilliant interpretations of ‘vocal practices’—country music and all kinds of talk, mostly in bars—as these actively shape personal subjectivities and interpersonal relationships. The chapter on ‘The Fool in the Mirror’ alone is worth the price of the book.”—Sherry B. Ortner, author of New Jersey Dreaming: Capital, Culture, and the Class of ‘58

Product Details

Fox, Aaron
Duke University Press
Fox, Aaron A.
Country music
Working class
Music and language.
Genres & Styles - Country & Bluegrass - General
MUSIC / Country
Edition Description:
Trade Paper
Series Volume:
Publication Date:
40 b&w photos, 1 figure
8.88 x 6.13 in

Other books you might like

  1. Altered state :the story of ecstasy... Used Trade Paper $6.95
  2. Electric Ladyland: Women and Rock... Used Trade Paper $7.50
  3. Deep Gossip New Trade Paper $24.25
  4. Comparative Studies on Muslim... New Trade Paper $43.25
  5. Stigmas of the Tamil Stage Used Trade Paper $6.95
  6. Suitably Modern: Making Middle-Class... Used Trade Paper $32.00

Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Music » Genres and Styles » Country » General
Arts and Entertainment » Music » Genres and Styles » Country and Bluegrass
Arts and Entertainment » Music » History and Criticism
History and Social Science » Anthropology » General

Real Country: Music and Language in Working-Class Culture Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$15.95 In Stock
Product details 384 pages Duke University Press - English 9780822333487 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,
An ethnographic study of country music, and the bars, life, and everyday speech of its rural fans.
"Synopsis" by , An intimate, in-depth examination of making and listening to country music in a small Texas town.

  • back to top


Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at