New Folkways Artist Jerron Paxton
Smithsonian Folkways is proud to announce that Jerron Paxton has signed with the label for his next, long-awaited full-length release, due out in 2024. Paxton joins Folkways contemporaries such as Dom Flemons, Jake Blount, Our Native Daughters and others exploring the diverse roots of Black folk music in America and highlighting its continued importance and influence.
Paxton is a skilled interpreter of Black traditional music, having spent his life learning the multifaceted musical dialects of blues, old-time, ragtime, and Cajun music and playfully dressing them up in their brightest hues. He is an accomplished multi-instrumentalist, playing guitar, banjo, piano, fiddle and other instruments with deep histories and ties to Black American music — each with a master’s touch.
Born in South Central Los Angeles into a family steeped in Southern music and culture, he has been based in New York City for nearly his entire adult life. He has appeared on the covers of The Village Voice and Living Blues and has earned praise from numerous other publications. The Bluegrass Situation captures Paxton’s holistic approach to his craft: “He is not merely a preservationist mining bygone decades for esoteric material or works that fit a certain aesthetic or brand. He simply takes music that is significant to his identity, his culture, and his experience and showcases it for a broader audience.”
Paxton has performed at Lincoln Center in NYC and Kings Place in London. On November 11, he will perform at the Brooklyn Folk Festival (in St. Ann’s Church) as a part of the festival’s celebration of Folkways’ 75th anniversary. Tickets are available here.