This stimulating Very Short Introduction throws open the doors on a remarkably diverse musical genre, with a world-wide reach that goes far beyond America's shores to discuss folk music of every possible kind and in every corner of the globe. Written by award-winning ethnomusicologist Mark Slobin this is the first compact introduction to folk music that offers a truly global perspective. Slobin offers an extraordinarily generous portrait of folk music, one that embraces a Russian wedding near the Arctic Circle, a group song in a small rainforest village in Brazil, and an Uzbek dance tune in Afghanistan. He looks in detail at three poignant songs from three widely separated regions―northern Afghanistan, Jewish Eastern Europe, and the Anglo-American world―with musical notation and lyrics included. He goes on to sketch out the turbulent times of folk music today and tomorrow, confronting new possibilities, frameworks, and challenges.