INTERVIEW: "Interview with Bruce Jackson" (2009)


Bruce Jackson was first drawn to work in prisons during the folk revival of the 1960s. Inspired by folk music collectors like the Lomaxes, he set out to capture work songs sung by African-American convicts, going first to Midwestern prisons when he was a graduate student in Indiana, and later to Texas state prisons while a fellow at Harvard. Over many years and in many prisons, he found and recorded the songs he was looking for, conversations with inmates, guards, and wardens, and thousands upon thousands of photographs.