The Carter Family by David Lasky and Frank Young

David Lasky and Frank M. Young, The Carter Family p. 171, 2012

David Lasky (born 1967) partnered with writer Frank Young to create a comics biography of country music pioneers the Carter Family, which was published in 2012 (The Carter Family: Don't Forget This Song). Lasky first started publishing mini-comics in 1993 in Seattle, where he was part of a young group of cartoonists that included Megan Kelso and Jason Lutes. Frank Young was then editor of The Comics Journal as well as a talented cartoonist himself. In the collaboration, Young wrote the text, Lasky created the black and white artwork, and Young colored it electronically.

Lasky's drawing style has deliberate echoes of such pre-war comic strip artists as Harold Gray and Roy Crane. This makes his work unusually well-suited for telling the story of the Carter Family, a country group that operated mostly between 1927 and 1944. As a casual fan of old country music, it was a project that appealed to me. But what also appealed to me is the idea of delving back to discover forgotten roots--which is what folk music scholars and fans have been doing for many decades. This is something one sees currently in the world of comics--many amateur scholars and artists are rediscovering the roots of comics in America and doing vital work bringing this work back into the public eye.