James Revell Carr

Revell Carr


PhD Ethnomusicology, Fall 2006


James Revell Carr, Associate Professor of Ethnomusicology at the University of North Carolina, Greensboro, holds a BA (creative writing) from Hamilton College, an MA (folklore) from the University of Oregon, and a PhD (ethnomusicology) from the University of California, Santa Barbara. He teaches courses in American vernacular music and non-Western music cultures, and he directs the UNCG Old Time Ensemble. Carr's research focuses on the importance of travel and commerce in the development of hybrid music and dance cultures around the world. His major interests include sea chanteys, Hawaiian music, Anglo-American balladry, folk music revivals, and improvisational rock.

Carr's first book, Hawaiian Music in Motion: Mariners, Missionaries, and Minstrels (University of Illinois Press, 2014), about the influence of American sailors on Hawaiian music in the nineteenth century, was awarded the Society for Ethnomusicology’s Alan P. Merriam Prize for outstanding book in ethnomusicology for 2015. Carr has also published essays in numerous books about the legendary rock band, The Grateful Dead, and he has articles and reviews in the Journal of American Folklore, The Yearbook for Traditional Music, The Oxford Encyclopedia of Maritime History, The Journal of British Studies, American Historical Review, Voices: The Journal of New York Folklore, and others.

Dr. Carr is Director of Undergraduate Studies for the UNCG Department of Music Studies. He served as the president of the Southeastern and Caribbean Chapter of the Society for Ethnomusicology in 2010-2011, and is currently the chair of the Historical Ethnomusicology Section of the Society for Ethnomusicology. He was an educator at Mystic Seaport Museum, the Columbia River Maritime Museum, and the San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park, and has held research fellowships at Brown University, the Massachusetts Historical Society, the Boston Athenaeum, the Peabody Essex Museum, the New Bedford Whaling Museum and the Interdisciplinary Humanities Center at the University of California at Santa Barbara. He was the original music supervisor for the English Broadside Ballad Archive, an online database of seventeenth century British ballads funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities, where he can be heard singing the ballads to their historically accurate melodies. He presents his work at the conferences of the Society for Ethnomusicology, the Society for American Music, the Southwest Popular Culture Association, and the International Council for Traditional Music, and other national and international symposia.

Spotlight: UCSB Department of Music Alumnus, James Revell Carr, wins Society for Ethnomusicology's prestigious Alan P. Merriam Prize for Outstanding Book

Spotlight: James Revell Carr featured in the Winter 2015 edition of the UCSB Alumni Association's Coastlines magazine as an Alumni Author