Ralph Rinzler is the Smithsonian Institutions Assistant Secretary
for Public Service and the Founding Director of its Office of Folklife
Programs. For over thirty years he has helped gain widespread
recognition of traditional music of the South-- through his role as
Director of Field Research Programs for the Newport Folk Foundation in
the mid-1960s and as Founding Director of the Smithsonians annual
Festival of American Folklife in 1967. He has worked with bluegrass
pioneer Bill Monroe and brilliant North Carolina guitarist Doc Watson and
been a major force in the revival of Cajun music and culture. He edited
influential recordings, including Old Time Music at Clarence Ashleys
and Louisiana Cajun Music from the Southwest Prairie.
The above is quoted directly from the index of participants listed in
Patterson, Daniel, ed. Sounds of the South. Southern Folklife
Collection. Occasional Papers, Number 1. Chapel Hill: University of
North Carolina Press, 1991.
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