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  • Remembering Hazel Dickens: Country and Bluegrass Musician

    This photograph, from the Ralph Rinzler Papers, was taken around 1960 while on a trip to record Clarence Ashley and Doc Watson. Hazel is seen here on the porch of Sophronie Miller Greer, a neighbor of Watson's.

    This photograph, from the Ralph Rinzler Papers, was taken around 1960 while on a trip to record Clarence Ashley and Doc Watson. Hazel is seen here on the porch of Sophronie Miller Greer, a neighbor of Watson's.

    The Smithsonian Folklife Festival team, along with the entire Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage, mourns the April 2011 passing of Hazel Dickens, a revered songwriter and singer in country and bluegrass music, who sang with emotion about the everyday hardships of poverty and labor in West Virginia. Ms. Dickens was born in West Virginia’s coal country in 1935, and she often participated in union rallies for mineworkers. She has sung in numerous venues in her lifetime, and she can be heard in the Oscar-winning documentary “Harlan County USA” (1976) and “Matewan” (1987). Ms. Dickens is fondly remembered for her powerful performances at past Smithsonian Folklife Festivals.

    Listen to an excerpt of “Rebel Girl” by Hazel Dickens below:

    Audio
    Hazel Dicken's Rebel Girll

    Related Content:

    "Remembering Hazel Dickens," Smithsonian Folkways Magazine, Spring 2011.

    "In Her Own Words," Smithsonian Collections Blog, Cecilia Peterson, May 19, 2011.


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