Haack [Haacke, Haak, Haake], Friedrich Wilhelm

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Hourglass drum.

A directly struck drum (membranophone) in hourglass shape. See Drum, §I, 2(ii)(c). Some hourglass-shaped drums are rattle drums. See Drum, §I, 3.

Hours, Little.

See Little Hours.

Hours, Liturgy of the.

See Liturgy of the Hours.


A style of 20th-century club dance music. It originated at the Warehouse club in Chicago, from which it takes its name, and is the style out of which most dance music since the mid-1980s has developed. It evolved naturally from disco, although in the beginning its sound was much sparser: while many disco records were song-based, centred on a vocal melody and a wide array of instruments (including a string section, guitar and bass guitar), early house records featured little more than a repetitive 4/4 rhythm track from a drum machine, built around a relentless bass drum on the beat and a hi-hat cymbal on the off-beats. House also used a similarly simplistic synthesized and often monochordal bass line, and frequently included a vocal line along with primitive, synthesized orchestration that echoed the string arrangements found on disco records. Some or all of these elements have been maintained in all of house music’s many sub-genres. Such developments include the fleeting ‘acid house’ (defined by its use of filter-modified frequencies produced by the Roland TB-303 Bass Line machine), which nonetheless was responsible for the huge growth in popularity of dance music in the UK in 1988–9, and ‘handbag house’, a song-based and largely predictable style popular in the mid- to late 1990s.


House, Son [Eddie James, jr]

(b Lyon, nr Clarksdale, MS, 21 March 1902). American blues singer and guitarist. As a child he sang in church choirs in Louisiana and Mississippi and at the age of 15 began to preach. When he was 20 he moved to St Louis to work in a steel plant. On his return to Mississippi he heard the blues singers Willie Wilson and Reuben Lacy; under their influence, and reinforced by an association in 1928 with Charley Patton and the guitarist Willie Brown, he began to play guitar and sing blues. In 1930 he recorded three two-part blues of remarkable strength, including the influential Preachin’ the Blues (Para.) and an account of a farming crisis in Mississippi, Dry Spell Blues (Para.), in which the vocal line was bellowed against repetitive phrases on a guitar played with a bottleneck slide. In 1941 he made some recordings for the Library of Congress in Lake Cormorant, Mississippi. His Depot Blues (1942), with its half-moaned, half-shouted stanzas and occasional use of falsetto offset by trembling figures on the guitar, showed his full maturity as a singer. He had a powerful voice, and his use of hummed phrases was probably a result of his experiences in church.

In 1942 House moved to Rochester, New York, and ceased to be active in music. More than 20 years later he was rediscovered and began to play again, performing for festival, club, and college audiences as well as making recordings, including Death Letter and a new version of Preachin’ Blues (both 1965, Col.). He visited Europe in 1967 and 1970, but failing health forced him to cease performing after the mid-1970s. He is regarded by some blues authorities as the epitome of the Delta blues tradition.



L. Cohn: ‘Son House’, Sounds and Fury, no.3 (1965), 18–21

S. House: ‘I Can Make my own Songs’, Sing Out, xv/3 (1965), 38–45

S.B. Charters: The Bluesmen (New York, 1967)

‘Son House’, Living Blues, no. 31 (1977), 14–22 [interview]

J. Cowley: ‘Really the Walking Blues’, Popular Music I (Cambridge, England, 1981)


Housman, A(lfred) E(dward)

(b Bromsgrove, Worcs., 26 March 1859; d Cambridge, 30 April 1936). English poet. His collection A Shropshire Lad (London, 1896) attracted an enormous following among composers of the English musical revival – largely because the discovery of folksong had served to foster awareness of the English landscape, and these poems were imbued with the spirit of the countryside of the west of England. There were various contributory factors: the preoccupations with the transience of beauty and with death, the one a favourite theme of Delius, the other associated with the Romantic movement and with the emotional aftermath of World War I. Composers were also drawn by Housman’s frankness, his homoeroticism, and the folksong simplicity of his language and metre, a formula of nonchalance generally masking a desperate agony. Few settings have been altogether successful in combining these elements. Many of Butterworth’s are too studiedly simple whereas Vaughan Williams, in On Wenlock Edge, is often melodramatically emphatic. Orr sometimes nears a solution, as does Butterworth’s orchestral rhapsody A Shropshire Lad and Berkeley’s Five Housman Songs (1940). Other composers who have used poems from this book or from Last Poems (London, 1922) include Bax, Gurney, Holloway, Ireland, Moeran, Peel and Somervell, plus Barber in the USA. Nearly 400 settings were catalogued by Gooch and Thatcher. In 1995 all 53 Shropshire Lad poems were issued on CD (Hyperion), half of them in settings by various composers, the others read.


B. Gooch and D.S. Thatcher: Musical Settings of Late Victorian and Modern British Literature: a Catalogue (New York, 1976)

S. Banfield: ‘A Shropshire Lad in the Making: a Note on the Composition of George Butterworth's Songs’, MR, xlii (1981), 261–7

S. Banfield: Sensibility and English Song (Cambridge, 1985)

S. Banfield: ‘Housman and the Composers’ Housman Society Journal, xiii (1987), 14–22

P. Leitch: ‘Lad Culture: Butterworth's Housman re-assessed’, MT, cxl (1999), 18–28


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