Oldies music — as in centuries-old music — is the forte of Roger Lee Hall of Stoughton. The musician and music historian has created a variety of CDs honoring American music from as far back as the Revolution.
“I do it for people interested in learning about music and the connection with New England history,” said Hall, 71, a longtime music teacher and composer who has more than 100 compositions and arrangements to his credit. “It’s very rich, but a lot of people, even musicians, don’t know about that history.”
Hall, who has taught at Stonehill College in Easton and Brookline’s adult-education program, has lived in Stoughton for 35 years. One reason he went there was to work with the Old Stoughton Musical Society, which he said “welcomed me, and I was very active in it for a long time.”
He is also an authority on Shaker music, drawn to it after doing a college thesis on the topic.
“The Shakers are the oldest communal group in the country,” Hall said. “They have a rich musical tradition, mostly folk music, and their most famous song is ‘Simple Gifts.’ ”
He did a book on the work earlier this year, calling it a “great American song,” one featured at three presidential inaugurations.
His many projects can be found on his website, www.americanmusicpreservation.com. A recent one was a CD, “Gentle Peace,” on which is found the song “Peace,” based on a poem written in 1814 by 10-year-old Esther Talbot of Stoughton.
Hall, a frequent radio guest in the Boston area who has also been producer and host of two cable television series, has written books, does music reviews, and continues to teach.
“Most of these things generate from my curiosity,” he said. “I tend to have a lot of different interests, which keeps me busy.”