Videos by American Songwriter
When it comes to music, Americana is a somewhat nebulous term. As a genre, it encompasses everyone from John Mellencamp and Secret Sisters (if T Bone Burnett produced your album, you’re in) to hyperactive British folk outfit Mumford & Sons. Critics and music lovers have been arguing about the correct usage of the term for some time now.
Today, Merriam-Webster announced that they’ve included “Americana” in their Collegiate Dictionary, alongside other new words like “Tweet” and “m-commerce.” Merriam-Webster defines Americana music as “a genre of American music having roots in early folk and country music.”
There. That wasn’t so hard, now was it?
“I’m thrilled,” says Jed Hilly, Executive Director of the Americana Music Association, about the word’s inclusion in Webster’s. “It’s affirmation of what we have been saying for over a decade. To have an authority like Merriam Webster do the research and determine that our society recognizes the Americana genre is really great.”
The 12th annual Americana Music Festival & Conference will take place October 12-15 in Nashville, and will feature artists like Robert Plant, Gregg Allman, Emmylou Harris, Hayes Carll, Justin Townes Earle, and The Civil Wars.
Read our review of last year’s star-studded Awards show here.