|Publisher:||Da Capo Press||ISBN:||0306808528|
The Atlantic Monthly, Phoebe-Lou Adams
As everyone surely knows, Stephen Foster (1826-1864) was a prolific composer of American popular songs that spread around the world. Bayard Taylor (1825-1878) heard "Oh! Susanna" sung in Hindi in Delhi. Foster's songs were irresistible. Foster himself was a feckless drunk who managed to be paid very poorly for his music at a time when other popular composers prospered. Mr. Emerson covers the rise of American popular culture as well as Foster's sad career, and does it well.