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Bradley A. Hanson, PhD

Director of Folklife

Dr. Bradley Hanson joined the Tennessee Arts Commission in January 2015. An ethnomusicologist and folklorist, he previously worked as a cultural interpreter for the Tennessee State Parks and the Friends of the Cumberland Trail. As part of the Cumberland Trail Music and Heritage project, his efforts included field research, archival management, interpretive writing, and record and radio production centered on regional culture and folklife.

He has also collaborated on programming, preservation, and documentary projects with Humanities Tennessee, Campbell Cultural Coalition, Jubilee Community Arts and the Tennessee Archive of Moving Image and Sound. In 2011, he was given the Blanton Owen Fund Award from the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress to support his fieldwork with bluegrass, country and gospel musicians in East Tennessee.

He graduated from Brown University with a Ph.D. in Ethnomusicology in May 2014. His dissertation, Tuned Our Way: Music, Memory, and Heritage in East Tennessee, is currently being revised for publication by the University of Illinois Press.

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