Folk guitar is a guitar style that is usually used to support songwriters. The open chords used in Folk guitar are fairly easy to learn. Which makes Folk guitar a popular for weekend getaways, camping trips, or anywhere that people gather to talk, sign and play some guitar.
While it’s difficult to say when Folk guitar began, many authoritative sources suggest that an American Folk Guitar revival began in the 1950’s with the 1949 recording of “Goodnight, Irene” by The Weavers. The song Goodnight Irene was first written by Blues/ Folk musician old Lead Belly (Huddie Ledbetter). Lead Belly was born in 1888 and ironically passed away in 1949. It’s quite possible the song Goodnight Irene recorded by the Weavers in 1949 was dedicated to old Lead Belly! It is interesting to note that old Lead Belly was considered a virtuoso on the 12 string guitar.
During the 1960’s change was in the air and with the change came protests and marches. The Folk guitar and Folk music in general was a great platform for people to get there message across. Bob Dillon was one of the leading forces behind the American Folk Revival due to his brilliant songwriting and musical composition.
Later in the 1960’s song by bands such as the Animals (House of the Rising Sun), the Beach Boys (Sloop John B) were heavily influenced by folk guitar and the use of open chords.