In the Studio: Ralph Peer and the Making of Popular Roots Music

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We’re so excited about this upcoming book! Barry Mazor has written the first biography of Ralph Peer, the revolutionary A&R man and music publisher who changed the breadth and flavor of popular music around the world. The audiobook features narration by two world-class musicians, Dom Flemons and Ketch Secor, plus an introduction read by the legendary Marty Stuart.

Keep reading for a behind-the-scenes look at the studio sessions, recorded earlier this month outside Nashville.


Narrator Dom Flemons Photo © 2015

Dom Flemons, narrator and founding member of the Carolina Chocolate Drops


Dom Flemons in the Studio  Photo © 2015

Dom Flemons, on the importance of Ralph Peer: “Ralph Peer’s story is the Genesis of the Music Industry. As one of the first real Artist and Relations (A&R) men, he created a formula for producing and selling records that everyone, and I mean everyone, follows to this day.

Though he was a shrewd businessman without any notion to preserve or document regional music on a folkloric level, Peer knowingly created a legacy of recordings that have stood the test of time while unknowingly creating the greatest legacy of roots music that we have in this country.

Barry Mazor’s book lays it all out. The business plan and also the man, who was just as fascinating as the music he recorded and published. There is much to be learned as we move into the post digital revolution and this book is one the step-stones for anyone interested in the business of music making.”


Narrtor Ketch SecorPhoto © 2015

 Ketch Secor, narrator and founding member of the band Old Crow Medicine Show


Ketch Secor in the StudioPhoto © 2015

Ketch Secor, on the book: “Musicians think of music journalists like ad-men. We just want to sell our soap. But when you do an article with Barry at the dictaphone it makes you want to sell his soap. He’s the music journalist we’re all hoping is going to call, cause Barry Mazor’s got the scoop. When I heard about Barry’s new book I knew right away it would be a great one. The story of Ralph Peer, arguably the music industry’s first great pioneer after Edison, is a tale for every music lover, no matter what bin you’re shopping in, no matter what station is on your dial. I’ve been listening to audiobooks since childhood, and I’m proud that Ralph Peer and the Making of Popular Roots Music will be the first I read.”—Ketch Secor


Author Barry Mazor with the NarratorsPhoto © 2015

 Author Barry Mazor with the narrators


The Production CrewPhoto © 2015

The production crew: author Barry Mazor, narrator Dom Flemons, narrator Ketch Secor, engineer Thomm Jutz, and producer Andi Arndt

Ralph Peer and the Making of Popular Roots Music by Barry Mazor, read by Dom Flemons and Ketch Secor, will be available in audio July 7, 2015.

All photos © 2015 Paul Schatzkin/Cohesion Arts

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