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Friday, February 5, 2010


One of our most overlooked and underused resources here at MLC is MAGNOLIA. I love MAGNOLIA. I mean, I really love MAGNOLIA because you can find an article on almost any topic. I don’t mean just a brief, poorly written article you can find through a basic online search. I mean an in-depth, scholarly piece of writing.

Let’s take an example: I love old music and I especially love Jimmie Rodgers. The other day I was on MAGNOLIA and decided to do a quick search on Jimmie Rodgers in Academic Search Premier and found about seven good articles on The Yodeling Brakeman. Then I started to think about two of my favorite Jimmie Rodgers songs: "T for Texas" and "Frankie and Johnny." I love both of these songs because they’re about the two great themes in early music: cheating and murder. (I know that doesn’t sound too nice, but it is true.) Anyway, I searched MAGNOLIA for “murder ballads” and, yep, you guessed it, found several articles on murder in early music.

I was especially impressed by Kenneth Tunnell’s article “99 Years is Almost for Life: Punishment for Violent Crime in Bluegrass Music,” (Journal of Popular Culture) a beautifully written 17-page article on murder in bluegrass music. And that’s the beauty of MAGNOLIA; you can find an article on almost any topic you can imagine. Why don’t you come in to MLC or go to your local library and see what you can find?

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