One of America's most beloved and accomplished composers, Aaron Copland played a crucial role in American music's coming of age. Indeed, Copland masterworks like Appalachian Spring and A Lincoln Portrait only begin to tell the epic story of a career spent composing a wealth of music for opera, ballet, chorus, orchestra, chamber ensemble, band, radio, and film.
Howard Pollack's expansive biography examines Copland's long list of accomplishments while also telling the story of the composer's musical development, political sympathies, personal life, relationships as an openly gay man, and tireless encouragement of younger composers. A winner of the Pulitzer Prize and an Academy Award, Copland played a vital role in the Yaddo Festival and as a beloved teacher at Tanglewood, Harvard, and the New School for Social Research. He turned to conducting later in life and via tours promoted American classical music overseas while taking it to appreciative audiences across the United States.
Aaron Jay Kernis
Leta E. Miller University of Illinois Press, 2014 Library of Congress ML410.K386M55 2014 | Dewey Decimal 780.92
Winner of both the Pulitzer Prize and the Grawemeyer Award, Aaron Jay Kernis achieved recognition as one of the leading composers of his generation while still in his thirties. Since then his eloquent yet accessible style, emphasis on melody, and willingness to engage popular as well as classical forms has brought him widespread acclaim and admiring audiences.
Leta Miller's biography offers the first survey of the composer's life and work. Immersed in music by middle school, and later training under Theodore Antoniou, John Adams, Jacob Druckman, and others, Kernis rejected the idea of distancing his work from worldly concerns and dared to compose on political themes. His Second Symphony, from 1991, engaged with the first Gulf War; 1993's Still Moment with Hymn was a reaction to the Bosnian Genocide; and the next year's Colored Field and 1995's Lament and Prayer dealt with the Holocaust. Yet Kernis also used sources as disparate as futurist agitprop and children's games to display humor in his work. Miller's analysis addresses not only Kernis's wide range of subjects but also the eclecticism that has baffled critics, analyzing his dedication to synthesis and the themes consistent in his work.
Informed and engaging, Aaron Jay Kernis gives a rare mid-career portrait of a major American cultural figure.
Edited by Gregory Butler, George Stauffer, and Mary Dalton Greer University of Illinois Press, 2007 Library of Congress ML410.B13A36 2008 | Dewey Decimal 780.92
That Johann Sebastian Bach is a pivotal figure in the history of Western music is hardly news, and the magnitude of his achievement is so immense that it can be difficult to grasp. In About Bach, fifteen scholars show that Bach's importance extends from choral to orchestral music, from sacred music to musical parodies, and also to his scribes and students, his predecessors and successors. Further, the contributors demonstrate a diversity of musicological approaches, ranging from close studies of Bach's choices of musical form and libretto to wider analyses of the historical and cultural backgrounds that impinged upon his creations and their lasting influence. This volume makes significant contributions to Bach biography, interpretation, pedagogy, and performance.
Contributors are Gregory G. Butler, Jen-Yen Chen, Alexander J. Fisher, Mary Dalton Greer, Robert Hill, Ton Koopman, Daniel R. Melamed, Michael Ochs, Mark Risinger, William H. Scheide, Hans-Joachim Schulze, Douglass Seaton, George B. Stauffer, Andrew Talle, and Kathryn Welter.
An invention of the Industrial Revolution, the accordion provided the less affluent with an inexpensive, loud, portable, and durable "one-man-orchestra" capable of producing melody, harmony, and bass all at once. Imported from Europe into the Americas, the accordion with its distinctive sound became a part of the aural landscape for millions of people but proved to be divisive: while the accordion formed an integral part of working-class musical expression, bourgeois commentators often derided it as vulgar and tasteless.
This rich collection considers the accordion and its myriad forms, from the concertina, button accordion, and piano accordion familiar in European and North American music to the exotic-sounding South American bandoneón and the sanfoninha. Capturing the instrument's spread and adaptation to many different cultures in North and South America, contributors illuminate how the accordion factored into power struggles over aesthetic values between elites and working-class people who often were members of immigrant and/or marginalized ethnic communities. Specific histories and cultural contexts discussed include the accordion in Brazil, Argentine tango, accordion traditions in Colombia, cross-border accordion culture between Mexico and Texas, Cajun and Creole identity, working-class culture near Lake Superior, the virtuoso Italian-American and Klezmer accordions, Native American dance music, and American avant-garde.
Contributors are María Susana Azzi, Egberto Bermúdez, Mark DeWitt, Joshua Horowitz, Sydney Hutchinson, Marion Jacobson, James P. Leary, Megwen Loveless, Richard March, Cathy Ragland, Helena Simonett, Jared Snyder, Janet L. Sturman, and Christine F. Zinni.
In this lively account of politics and popular music, Mark Mattern develops the concept of "acting in concert," a metaphor for community-based political action through music. Through three detailed case studies of Chilean, Cajun, and American Indian popular music, Mattern explores the way popular muisicians forge community and lead members of their communities in several distinct kinds of political action that would be difficult or impossible among individuals who are not linked by communal ties.
More than just entertainment, Mattern argues that popular music can serve as a social glue for bringing together a multitude of voices that might otherwise remain silent, and that political action through music can increase the potential for relatively marginalized people to choose and determine their own fate.
Among Rossini's operas Adina has perhaps the most mysterious origins. Commissioned by an unknown Portuguese admirer as a gift for an unknown soprano, composed in 1818 yet not performed until 1826, the opera develops the popular theme of the "abduction from the serraglio." Rossini, pressed by the contract to complete the work quickly, composed anew only four of the work's nine numbers: the Introduction, the disarming Cavatina Adina "Fragolette fortunate" (Lucky little strawberries), the Quartet, and the Finale; for three others he turned to his own Sigismondo of 1814; the remaining two were written by a collaborator.
The critical edition, the first publication in full score, draws on the autograph of Sigismondo and Rossini's drafts for setting the new texts as well as the autograph of Adina. In his preface discussing Adina's uncertain genesis and successive history, Fabrizio Della Seta examines the documents extant in Portugal and Italy and considers hypotheses about the identity of the commissioner, the dedicatee, and the collaborator.
Zalampas applies the psychological model of Alfred Adler to Adolf Hitler through the examination of his views on architecture, art, and music. This study was made possible by the publication of Billy F. Price’s volume of over seven hundred of Hitler’s watercolors, oils, and sketches.
The posthumous publication of Theodor W. Adorno’s works on music continues to reveal the special relationship between music and philosophy in his thinking. These important works have not, however, received as much scholarly attention as they deserve. Contributors to this issue seek to provide insight into some of the key themes raised in these works, including the sociology of musical genre, the historical transformation of music from the "heroic" or high-bourgeois era to late modernity, the meaning of both performance and listening in the era of mass communication, and the specific challenges or deformations of the radio on musical form, a theme that implicates many of the digital practices of our own age. There is much left to discover in these new publications, and they pose again, with renewed vigor, the question of Adorno’s Aktualität—his polyvalent, untranslatable term for, among other things, the intellectual relationship between the present and the past.
Contributors Daniel K. L. Chua, Lydia Goehr, Peter E. Gordon, Martin Jay, Brian Kane, Max Paddison, Alexander Rehding, Fred Rush, Martin Scherzinger
Whether in the private parlor, public hall, commercial "dance palace,"
or sleazy dive, dance has long been opposed by those who viewed it as
immoral--more precisely as being a danger to the purity of those who practiced
it, particularly women. In Adversaries of Dance, Ann Wagner presents
a major study of opposition to dance over a period of four centuries in
what is now the United States.
Wagner bases her work on the thesis that the tradition of opposition
to dance "derived from white, male, Protestant clergy and evangelists
who argued from a narrow and selective interpretation of biblical passages,"
and that the opposition thrived when denominational dogma held greater
power over people's lives and when women's social roles were strictly
Central to Wagner's work, which will be welcomed by scholars of both
religion and dance, are issues of gender, race, and socioeconomic status.
"There are no other works that even begin to approach this definitive
accomplishment." --Amanda Porterfield, author of Female Piety in Puritan New England
Architecture is often thought to be a diary of a society, filled with symbolic representations of specific cultural moments. However, as Craig L. Wilkins observes, that diary includes far too few narratives of the diverse cultures in U.S. society. Wilkins states that the discipline of architecture has a resistance to African Americans at every level, from the startlingly small number of architecture students to the paltry number of registered architects in the United States today.
Working to understand how ideologies are formed, transmitted, and embedded in the built environment, Wilkins deconstructs how the marginalization of African Americans is authorized within the field of architecture. He then outlines how activist forms of expression shape and sustain communities, fashioning an architectural theory around the site of environmental conflict constructed by hip-hop culture.
Wilkins places his concerns in a historical context, and also offers practical solutions to address them. In doing so, he reveals new possibilities for an architecture that acknowledges its current shortcomings and replies to the needs of multicultural constituencies.
Craig L. Wilkins, a registered architect, teaches architecture and urban planning at the University of Michigan.
A revised paperback edition of composer George Rochberg's landmark essays
"Rochberg presents the rare spectacle of a composer who has made his peace with tradition while maintaining a strikingly individual profile. . . . [H]e succeeds in transforming the sublime concepts of traditional music into contemporary language."
"An indispensable book for anyone who wishes to understand the sad and curious fate of music in the twentieth century."
"The writings of George Rochberg stand as a pinnacle from which our past and future can be viewed."
---Kansas City Star
As a composer, George Rochberg has played a leading role in bringing about a transformation of contemporary music through a reassessment of its relation to tonality, melody, and harmony. In The Aesthetics of Survival, the author addresses the legacy of modernism in music and its related effect on the cultural milieu, particularly its overemphasis on the abstract, rationalist thinking embraced by contemporary science, technology, and philosophy. Rochberg argues for the renewal of holistic values in order to ensure the survival of music as a humanly expressive art.
A renowned composer, thinker, and teacher, George Rochberg has been honored with innumerable awards, including, most recently, an Alfred I. du Pont Award for Outstanding Conductors and Composers, and an André and Clara Mertens Contemporary Composer Award. He lives in Pennsylvania.
This collective biography of four jazz musicians from Brooklyn, Ghana, and South Africa demonstrates how modern Africa reshaped jazz, how modern jazz helped form a new African identity, and how musical convergences and crossings altered the politics and culture of both continents.
Throughout the Upland South, the banjo has become an emblem of white mountain folk, who are generally credited with creating the short-thumb-string banjo, developing its downstroking playing styles and repertory, and spreading its influence to the national consciousness. In this groundbreaking study, however, Cecelia Conway demonstrates that these European Americans borrowed the banjo from African Americans and adapted it to their own musical culture. Like many aspects of the African-American tradition, the influence of black banjo music has been largely unrecorded and nearly forgotten—until now.
Drawing in part on interviews with elderly African-American banjo players from the Piedmont—among the last American representatives of an African banjo-playing tradition that spans several centuries—Conway reaches beyond the written records to reveal the similarity of pre-blues black banjo lyric patterns, improvisational playing styles, and the accompanying singing and dance movements to traditional West African music performances. The author then shows how Africans had, by the mid-eighteenth century, transformed the lyrical music of the gourd banjo as they dealt with the experience of slavery in America.
By the mid-nineteenth century, white southern musicians were learning the banjo playing styles of their African-American mentors and had soon created or popularized a five-string, wooden-rim banjo. Some of these white banjo players remained in the mountain hollows, but others dispersed banjo music to distant musicians and the American public through popular minstrel shows.
By the turn of the century, traditional black and white musicians still shared banjo playing, and Conway shows that this exchange gave rise to a distinct and complex new genre—the banjo song. Soon, however, black banjo players put down their banjos, set their songs with increasingly assertive commentary to the guitar, and left the banjo and its story to white musicians. But the banjo still echoed at the crossroads between the West African griots, the traveling country guitar bluesmen, the banjo players of the old-time southern string bands, and eventually the bluegrass bands.
The Author: Cecelia Conway is associate professor of English at Appalachian State University. She is a folklorist who teaches twentieth-century literature, including cultural perspectives, southern literature, and film.
Containing details of 390 L.P. and E.P. recordings, African Music on LP: An Annotated Discography contributed to the scholarship of African music at a time when very little had been written. Organized by record label and arranged in alphabetical order, Allen P. Merriam assesses the stylistic characteristics of each recording, providing new insights on the subject and the recording industry at the time of publication. African Music on LP also contains 18 indexes cross-referencing each of the records.
"We have in this book a Rosetta stone for mediating, or translating, African musical behavior and aesthetics."—Andrew Tracey, African Music
"John Miller Chernoff, who spent 10 years studying African drumming, has a flair for descriptive writing, and his first-person narratives should be easily understood by any reader, while ringing unmistakably true for the reader who has also been to West Africa."—Roderick Knight, Washington Post Book World
"Ethnomusicologists must be proud that their discipline has produced a book that will, beyond doubt, rank as a classic of African studies."—Peter Fryer, Research in Literatures
"A marvelous book. . . . Not many scholars will ever be able to achieve the kind of synthesis of 'doing' and 'writing about' their subject matter that Chernoff has achieved, but he has given us an excellent illustration of what is possible."—Chet Creider, Culture
"Chernoff develops a brilliant and penetrating musicological essay that is, at the same time, an intensely personal and even touching account of musical and cultural discovery that anyone with an interest in Africa can and should read. . . . No other writing comes close to approaching Chernoff's ability to convey a feeling of how African music 'works'"—James Koetting, Africana Journal
"Four stars. One of the few books I know of that talks of the political, social, and spiritual meanings of music. I was moved. It was so nice I read it twice."—David Byrne of "Talking Heads"
The companion cassette tape has 44 examples of the music discussed in the book. It consists of field recordings illustrating cross-rhythms, multiple meters, call and response forms, etc.
African Rhythms is the autobiography of the important jazz pianist, composer and band leader Randy Weston. He tells of his childhood in Brooklyn, his six decades long musical career, his time living in Morocco, and his lifelong quest to learn about the musical and cultural traditions of Africa.
In recent years black South African music and dance have
become ever more popular in the West, where they are now
widely celebrated as expressions of opposition to
discrimination and repression. Less well known is the
rich history of these arts, which were shaped by several
generations of black artists and performers whose
struggles, visions, and aspirations did not differ fundamentally
from those of their present-day counterparts.
In five detailed case studies Veit Erlmann digs deep to expose the roots of the most important of these performance traditions. He relates the early history of isicathamiya, the a cappella vocal style made famous by Ladysmith Black Mambazo.
In two chapters on Durban between the World Wars he charts the evolution of Zulu music and dance, studying in depth the transformation of ingoma, a dance form popular among migrant workers since the 1930s. He goes on to
record the colorful life and influential work of Reuben T. Caluza,
South Africa's first black ragtime composer. And Erlmann's reconstruction of the 1890s concert tours of an Afro-American vocal group, Orpheus M. McAdoo and the Virginia Jubilee Singers, documents the earliest link between the African and American performance traditions.
Numerous eyewitness reports, musicians' personal testimonies, and song texts enrich Erlmann's narratives and demonstrate that black performance evolved in response to the growing economic and racial segmentation of South African
society. Early ragtime, ingoma, and isicathamiya enabled the black urban population to comment on their precarious social position and to symbolically construct a secure space within a rapidly changing political world.
Today, South African workers, artists, and youth continue to build upon this performance tradition in their struggle for freedom and democracy. The early performers portrayed by Erlmann were guiding lights—African stars—by which the present and future course of South Africa is being determined.
How did French musicians and critics interpret jazz—that quintessentially American music—in the mid-twentieth century? How far did players reshape what they learned from records and visitors into more local jazz forms, and how did the music figure in those angry debates that so often suffused French cultural and political life? After Django begins with the famous interwar triumphs of Josephine Baker and Django Reinhardt, but, for the first time, the focus here falls on the French jazz practices of the postwar era. The work of important but neglected French musicians such as André Hodeir and Barney Wilen is examined in depth, as are native responses to Americans such as Miles Davis and Thelonious Monk. The book provides an original intertwining of musical and historical narrative, supported by extensive archival work; in clear and compelling prose, Perchard describes the problematic efforts towards aesthetic assimilation and transformation made by those concerned with jazz in fact and in idea, listening to the music as it sounded in discourses around local identity, art, 1968 radicalism, social democracy, and post colonial politics.
Started by the National Life and Accident Insurance Company in 1925, WSM became one of the most influential and exceptional radio stations in the history of broadcasting and country music. WSM gave Nashville the moniker “Music City USA” as well as a rich tradition of music, news, and broad-based entertainment. With the rise of country music broadcasting and recording between the 1920s and ‘50s, WSM, Nashville, and country music became inseparable, stemming from WSM’s launch of the Grand Ole Opry, popular daily shows like Noontime Neighbors, and early morning artist-driven shows such as Hank Williams on Mother’s Best Flour.
Sparked by public outcry following a proposal to pull country music and the Opry from WSM-AM in 2002, Craig Havighurst scoured new and existing sources to document the station’s profound effect on the character and self-image of Nashville. Introducing the reader to colorful artists and businessmen from the station’s history, including Owen Bradley, Minnie Pearl, Jim Denny, Edwin Craig, and Dinah Shore, the volume invites the reader to reflect on the status of Nashville, radio, and country music in American culture.
A lavish presentation of 208 folksongs collected throughout Alabama in the 1940s
Alabama is a state rich in folksong tradition, from old English ballads sung along the Tennessee River to children’s game songs played in Mobile, from the rhythmic work songs of the railroad gandy dancers of Gadsden to the spirituals of the Black Belt. The musical heritage of blacks and whites, rich and poor, hill folk and cotton farmers, these songs endure as a living part of the state’s varied past.
In the mid 1940s Byron Arnold, an eager young music professor from The University of Alabama, set out to find and record as many of these songs as he could and was rewarded by unstinting cooperation from many informants. Mrs. Julia Greer Marechal of Mobile, for example, was 90 years old, blind, and a semi-invalid, but she sang for Arnold for three hours, allowing the recording of 33 songs and exhausting Arnold and his technician. Helped by such living repositories as Mrs. Marechal, the Arnold collection grew to well over 500 songs, augmented by field notes and remarkable biographical information on the singers.
An Alabama Songbook is the result of Arnold’s efforts and those of his informants across the state and has been shaped by Robert W. Halli Jr. into a narrative enriched by more than 200 significant songs-lullabies, Civil War anthems, African-American gospel and secular songs, fiddle tunes, temperance songs, love ballads, play-party rhymes, and work songs. In the tradition of Alan Lomax’s The Folk Songs of North America and Vance Randolph’s Ozark Folksongs, this volume will appeal to general audiences, folklorists, ethnomusicologists, preservationists, traditional musicians, and historians.
During the last decade of his life Rossini wrote numerous vocal and instrumental pieces which, with his usual irony, he entitled Pèchés de vieillesse. He then organized them in various albums that reflect neither the date of composition (very often not indicated) nor the performing medium. Two of these collections are published in the present volume: Album français and Morceaux réservés. For the most part they consist of pieces intended for performance in the composer's drawing room by one or more solo voices with piano accompaniment, but there are also choral movements. Some items have never heretofore unknown versions which are issued here for the first time.
Philip Lambert University of Illinois Press, 2013 Library of Congress ML410.W6975L36 2013 | Dewey Decimal 780.92
The music of Alec Wilder (1907-1980) blends several American musical traditions, such as jazz and the American popular song, with classical European forms and techniques. Stylish and accessible, Wilder's musical oeuvre ranged from sonatas, suites, concertos, operas, ballets, and art songs to woodwind quintets, brass quintets, jazz suites, and hundreds of popular songs. In this biography and critical investigation of Wilder's music, Philip Lambert chronicles Wilder's early work as a part-time student at the Eastman School of Music, his ascent through the ranks of the commercial recording industry in New York City in the 1930s and 1940s, his turn toward concert music from the 1950s onward, and his devotion late in his life to the study of American popular songs of the first half of the twentieth century. The book discusses some of his best-known music, such as the revolutionary octets and songs such as "I'll Be Around," "While We're Young," and "Blackberry Winter," and explains the unique blend of cultivated and vernacular traditions in his singular musical language.
Composers have used formalized procedures to create music throughout history. With the advent of the computer, algorithmic composition allows composers not only to create and experiment with different formalisms, but to hear and evaluate results quickly. Often in algorithmic composition, the composer has only a vague idea how the output will sound, but because the input is highly automated, the composer can make adjustments to take advantage of happy accidents, program bugs, and other creative sources of sound.
Algorithmic Composition: A Guide to Composing Music with Nyquistprovides an overview of procedural approaches to music generation. It introduces programming concepts through many examples written using the Nyquist system for music composition and sound synthesis. Nyquist is freely available software, and over 100 program examples from this book are available in electronic form. Readers will be well equipped to develop their own algorithms for composition.
Music students who are learning about computer music and electronic music will all be interested in this innovative book, as generative music becomes an important part of the future of the discipline. Students and scholars in computer science will also find much to interest them, in a straightforward and fun way.
Denise LaSalle's journey took her from rural Mississippi to an unquestioned reign as the queen of soul-blues. From her early R&B classics to bold and bawdy demands for satisfaction, LaSalle updated the classic blueswoman's stance of powerful independence while her earthy lyrics about relationships connected with generations of female fans. Off-stage, she enjoyed ongoing success as a record label owner, entrepreneur, and genre-crossing songwriter.
As honest and no-nonsense as the artist herself, Always the Queen is LaSalle's in-her-own-words story of a lifetime in music. Moving to Chicago as a teen, LaSalle launched a career in gospel and blues that eventually led to the chart-topping 1971 smash ”Trapped by a Thing Called Love” and a string of R&B hits. She reinvented herself as a soul-blues artist as tastes changed and became a headliner on the revitalized southern soul circuit and at festivals nationwide and overseas. Revered for a tireless dedication to her music and fans, LaSalle continued to tour and record until shortly before her death.
Alzira is the seventh work and the sixth opera to be published in the critical edition of The Works of Giuseppe Verdi. Composed during the middle of the very productive period of Verdi's first large-scale successes, Alzira premiered at Naples on August 12, 1845. Cammarano's libretto is based on a play of Voltaire, who used a real incident in sixteenth-century Peru during the Spanish conquest to shape a critique of the morality of the noble savage as against Christian values. The inherent conflicts and exotic setting appealed to Verdi's dramatic sense, and in its best moments the music of Alzira fully realizes his potential as a masterful composer for the theater.
Because the success of the premiere was not repeated, Alzira fell out of the repertory and no orchestral score was ever published. The critical edition, based on Verdi's autograph score and important secondary sources, provides the first reliable full score of the work. It is complemented by an introduction tracing the opera's genesis, sources and performance history and practices. Together with the detailed critical commentary, discussing problems and ambiguities in the sources, the edition provides scholars and performers alike with unequalled means for interpretation and study of this poorly known work.
Ambient Sufism is a study of the intertwined musical lives of several ritual communities in Tunisia that invoke the healing powers of long-deceased Muslim saints through music-driven trance rituals. Richard C. Jankowsky illuminates the virtually undocumented role of women and minorities in shaping the ritual musical landscape of the region, with case studies on men’s and women’s Sufi orders, Jewish and black Tunisian healing musical troupes, and the popular music of hard-drinking laborers, as well as the cohorts involved in mass-mediated staged spectacles of ritual that continue to inject ritual sounds into the public sphere. He uses the term “ambient Sufism” to illuminate these adjacent ritual practices, each serving as a musical, social, and devotional-therapeutic niche while contributing to a larger, shared ecology of practices surrounding and invoking the figures of saints. And he argues that ritual musical form—that is, the large-scale structuring of ritual through musical organization—has agency; that is, form is revealing and constitutive of experience and encourages particular subjectivities. Ambient Sufism promises many useful ideas for ethnomusicology, anthropology, Islamic and religious studies, and North African studies.
American folk music has long presented a problematic conception of authenticity, but the reality of the folk scene, and its relationship to media, is far more complicated. This book draws on the fields of media archaeology, performance studies, and sound studies to explore the various modes of communication that can be uncovered from the long American folk revival. From Alan Lomax's cybernetic visions to Bob Dylan's noisy writing machines, this book retrieves a subterranean discourse on the concept of media that might help us to reimagine the potential of the networks in which we work, play, and sing.
Gamelan and American academic institutions have maintained their close association for more than sixty years. Elizabeth A. Clendinning illuminates what it means to devote one’s life to world music ensemble education by examining the career and community surrounding the Balinese-American performer and teacher I Made Lasmawan. Weaving together stories of Indonesian and American practitioners, colleagues, and friends, Clendinning shows the impact of academic world music ensembles on the local and transnational communities devoted to education and the performing arts. While arguing for the importance of such ensembles, Clendinning also spotlights how performers and educators use them to create stable and rewarding artistic communities. Cross-cultural ensemble education emerges as a worthy goal for students and teachers alike, particularly at a time when people around the world express more enthusiasm about raising walls to keep others out rather than building bridges to invite them in.
From the time of Stradivari, the mysterious craft of violinmaking has been a closely guarded, lucrative, and entirely masculine preserve. In the 1950s Carleen Maley Hutchins was a grade school science teacher, amateur trumpet player, and New Jersey housewife. When musical friends asked her to trade a trumpet for a $75 viola, she decided to try making one, thus setting in motion a surprising career. A self-taught genius who went head to head with a closed and ancient guild, Hutchins carved nearly 500 stringed instruments over the course of half a century and collaborated on more than 100 experiments in violin acoustics. In answer to a challenge from a composer, she built the first violin octet—a family of eight violins ranging in size from an eleven-inch treble to a seven-foot contrabass, and in register across the gamut of the piano keyboard. She wrote more than 100 technical papers—including two benchmark Scientific American cover articles—founded an international society devoted to violin acoustics, and became the only American and the only woman to be honored in Cremona, Italy, the birthplace of Stradivari. Hutchins died in 2009 at the age of ninety-eight. The most innovative violinmaker of the modern age, she set out to explore two worlds she knew virtually nothing about—violins and acoustical physics. American Luthier chronicles the life of this unsung woman who altered everything in a world that had changed little in three centuries.
Elise K. Kirk University of Illinois Press, 2001 Library of Congress ML1711.K56 2001 | Dewey Decimal 782.10973
Tired of Tannhäuser? Bored with Bohème? Open your imagination to boundless creativity and wide-ranging repertory of American opera. Elise K. Kirk provides a treasure trove of information that fills in the long-neglected history of opera in the United States. Looking at more than 100 works, Kirk sketches the musical traits, provides plot summaries, describes sets and stagings, and offers in-depth profiles of performers, composers, and librettists.
Beginning with the English-influenced harle-quinade of the revolutionary period, Kirk follows the development of comic opera, the rise of melodramatic romanticism, the emergence of American grand opera and verismo, and the explosion of eclectic forms that characterized American opera in the twentieth century. Devoting particular attention to women and African American composers and librettists, Kirk explores how American operas incorporated indigenous elements such as jazz, popular song, folk music, Native American motifs, and Hollywood's cinematic techniques. She also discusses radio and television's impact, the advent of opera workshops in universities, the integration of multimedia effects into productions, and the ways innovations such as co-commissioning and joint staging have helped sustain the genre in the face of declining federal support.
Studies of concert life in nineteenth-century America have generally been limited to large orchestras and the programs we are familiar with today. But as this book reveals, audiences of that era enjoyed far more diverse musical experiences than this focus would suggest. To hear an orchestra, people were more likely to head to a beer garden, restaurant, or summer resort than to a concert hall. And what they heard weren’t just symphonic works—programs also included opera excerpts and arrangements, instrumental showpieces, comic numbers, and medleys of patriotic tunes.
This book brings together musicologists and historians to investigate the many orchestras and programs that developed in nineteenth-century America. In addition to reflecting on the music that orchestras played and the socioeconomic aspects of building and maintaining orchestras, the book considers a wide range of topics, including audiences, entrepreneurs, concert arrangements, tours, and musicians’ unions. The authors also show that the period saw a massive influx of immigrant performers, the increasing ability of orchestras to travel across the nation, and the rising influence of women as listeners, patrons, and players. Painting a rich and detailed picture of nineteenth-century concert life, this collection will greatly broaden our understanding of America’s musical history.
Designed as a broad introductory survey, and written by experts in the field, this book examines the rise of American music over the past hundred years — the period in which that music came into its own and achieved unprecedented popularity. Beginning with a look at music as a business, eleven essays explore a variety of popular musical genres, including Tin Pan Alley, blues, jazz, country, gospel, rhythm and blues, rock and roll, folk, rap, and Mexican American corridos. Reading these essays, we come to see that the forms created by one group often appeal to, and are in turn influenced by, other groups — across lines of race, ethnicity, class, gender, region, and age. The chapters speak to one another, arguing for the primacy of such concepts as minstrelsy, urbanization, hybridity, and crossover as the most powerful tools for understanding American popular music. Moving beyond outdated music-industry categories and misleading genre labels, while acknowledging the complexities of the market, the book recovers and reinforces the essential blackness of much popular music—even a presumably white form like country and western. In addition to Rachel Rubin and Jeffrey Melnick, contributors include Reebee Garofalo, Geoffrey Jacques, Kip Lornell, Mark Anthony Neal, Millie Rahn, David Sanjek, James Smethurst, Elijah Wald, and Gail Hilson Woldu.
One of the country's most enduringly successful composers, Aaron Copland created a distinctively American style and aesthetic in works for a diversity of genres and mediums, including ballet, opera, and film. Also active as a critic, mentor, advocate, and concert organizer, he played a decisive role in the growth of serious music in the Americas in the twentieth century.
In The American Stravinsky, Gayle Murchison closely analyzes selected works to discern the specific compositional techniques Copland used, and to understand the degree to which they derived from European models, particularly the influence of Igor Stravinsky. Murchison examines how Copland both Americanized these models and made them his own, thereby finding his own compositional voice. Murchison also discusses Copland's aesthetics of music and his ideas about its purpose and social function.
With a claim on artists from Jimmie Rodgers to Jason Isbell, Americana can be hard to define, but you know it when you hear it. John Milward’s Americanaland is filled with the enduring performers and vivid stories that are at the heart of Americana. At base a hybrid of rock and country, Americana is also infused with folk, blues, R&B, bluegrass, and other types of roots music. Performers like Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, Ray Charles, and Gram Parsons used these ingredients to create influential music that took well-established genres down exciting new roads. The name Americana was coined in the 1990s to describe similarly inclined artists like Emmylou Harris, Steve Earle, and Wilco. Today, Brandi Carlile and I’m With Her are among the musicians carrying the genre into the twenty-first century.
Essential and engaging, Americanaland chronicles the evolution and resonance of this ever-changing amalgam of American music. Margie Greve’s hand-embroidered color portraits offer a portfolio of the pioneers and contemporary practitioners of Americana.
"For me, a truly compelling, fact-packed read all about how guitars are made, look, sound, and play. Atkinson admirably recounts a century of history, invention, and experimentation by experts and amateurs of a revolutionary instrument. Highly recommended for anyone who has a guitar, and for anyone who wants one."—KT Tunstall, singer-songwriter and guitarist
"Atkinson has put a fantastically exhaustive amount of work into this book for all of us global guitar nerds to enjoy. It’s so much fun to dive into it full immersion, and glean everything from details on iconic artist guitars to strange inventions from creatives on the fringe!"—Jennifer Batten, guitarist (Michael Jackson, Jeff Beck)
“A great resource for all guitar players, tinkerers, and enthusiasts. Atkinson’s well-researched book provides essential and fascinating facts of this unique instrument’s development over the course of more than a century.”—Paul Brett, rock guitarist, journalist, guitar designer
“Atkinson has dug deep into the history of the electric guitar to create a detailed view of the ways in which makers and musicians have tried—and in many cases succeeded—to move its design forward. This engaging new book will be required reading for anyone interested in the development of one of the most popular and revolutionary instruments ever created.”—Tony Bacon, guitar historian and author
An in-depth look at the invention and development of the electric guitar, this book explores how the electric guitar’s design has changed and what its design over the years has meant for its sound. A heavily illustrated history with amps turned up to eleven, Amplified celebrates this beloved instrument and reveals how it has evolved through the experiments of amateur makers and part-time tinkerers. Digging deep into archives and featuring new interviews with makers and players, it will find admirers in all shredders, luthiers, and fans of electric sound.
T. J PINCH Harvard University Press, 2002 Library of Congress ML1092.P56 2002 | Dewey Decimal 786.7419
Though ubiquitous today, available as a single microchip and found in any electronic device requiring sound, the synthesizer when it first appeared was truly revolutionary. Something radically new--an extraordinary rarity in musical culture--it was an instrument that used a genuinely new source of sound: electronics. How this came to be--how an engineering student at Cornell and an avant-garde musician working out of a storefront in California set this revolution in motion--is the story told for the first time in Analog Days, a book that explores the invention of the synthesizer and its impact on popular culture.
The authors take us back to the heady days of the 1960s and early 1970s, when the technology was analog, the synthesizer was an experimental instrument, and synthesizer concerts could and did turn into happenings. Interviews with the pioneers who determined what the synthesizer would be and how it would be used--from inventors Robert Moog and Don Buchla to musicians like Brian Eno, Pete Townshend, and Keith Emerson--recapture their visions of the future of electronic music and a new world of sound.
Tracing the development of the Moog synthesizer from its initial conception to its ascension to stardom in Switched-On Bach, from its contribution to the San Francisco psychedelic sound, to its wholesale adoption by the worlds of film and advertising, Analog Days conveys the excitement, uncertainties, and unexpected consequences of a new technology that would provide the soundtrack for a critical chapter of our cultural history.
Eugene Narmour formulates a comprehensive theory of melodic syntax to explain cognitive relations between melodic tones at their most basic level. Expanding on the theories of Leonard B. Meyer, the author develops one parsimonious, scaled set of rules modeling implication and realization in all the primary parameters of music. Through an elaborate and original analytic symbology, he shows that a kind of "genetic code" governs the perception and cognition of melody. One is an automatic, "brute" system operating on stylistic primitives from the bottom up. The other constitutes a learned system of schemata impinging on style structures from the top down.
The theoretical constants Narmour uses are context-free and, therefore, applicable to all styles of melody. He places considerable emphasis on the listener's cognitive performance (that is, fundamental melodic perception as opposed to acquired musical competence). He concentrates almost exclusively on low-level, note-to-note relations. The result is a highly generalized theory useful in researching all manner of psychological and music-theoretic problems concerned with the analysis and cognition of melody.
"In this innovative, landmark book, a distinguished music theorist draws extensively from a variety of disciplines, in particular from cognitive psychology and music theory, to develop an elegant and persuasive framework for the understanding of melody. This book should be read by all scholars with a serious interest in music."—Diana Deutsch, Editor, Music Perception
In this work, Eugene Narmour continues to develop the unique theories of musical perception and cognition first set forth in The Analysis and Cognition of Basic Melodic Structures. The two books together constitute the first comprehensive theory of melody founded on psychological research.
Narmour explains the cognitive operations by which listeners assimilate and ultimately encode complex melodic structures, and goes on to show how sixteen melodic archetypes can combine to form some 200 complex structures that, in turn, can chain together in a theoretically infinite number of ways.
Of particular importance to music theorists and music historians is Narmour's argument that melodic analysis and formal analysis, though often treated separately, are in fact indissolubly linked. Illustrated with over 250 musical examples, The Analysis and Cognition of Melodic Complexity will also appeal to ethnomusicologists, psychologists, and cognitive scientists.
The eighteenth century saw the creation of a number of remarkable mechanical androids: at least ten prominent automata were built between 1735 and 1810 by clockmakers, court mechanics, and other artisans from France, Switzerland, Austria, and the German lands. Designed to perform sophisticated activities such as writing, drawing, or music making, these “Enlightenment automata” have attracted continuous critical attention from the time they were made to the present, often as harbingers of the modern industrial age, an era during which human bodies and souls supposedly became mechanized.
In Androids in the Enlightenment, Adelheid Voskuhl investigates two such automata—both depicting piano-playing women. These automata not only play music, but also move their heads, eyes, and torsos to mimic a sentimental body technique of the eighteenth century: musicians were expected to generate sentiments in themselves while playing, then communicate them to the audience through bodily motions. Voskuhl argues, contrary to much of the subsequent scholarly conversation, that these automata were unique masterpieces that illustrated the sentimental culture of a civil society rather than expressions of anxiety about the mechanization of humans by industrial technology. She demonstrates that only in a later age of industrial factory production did mechanical androids instill the fear that modern selves and societies had become indistinguishable from machines.
Angela Gheorghiu is one of the most passionate and talented artists working in opera today, a larger-than-life figure whose intensity and drive, on stage and off, have commanded the attention of the opera world. Largely composed of exclusive interviews with the artist, this authorized biography of the internationally acclaimed soprano, covers Gheorghiu’s life and career from her childhood in Communist Romania to her spectacular Covent Garden debut in 1992 and up to the present day. In it, Gheorghiu shares new insights into the performance of many of her iconic stage roles and her collaborations with opera’s leading lights. Also featured are commentaries and reminiscences by such celebrated figures in the music and art worlds as Grace Bumbry, José Carreras, Plácido Domingo, Marilyn Horne, Bryn Terfel, and Franco Zeffirelli.
Music was at once one of the most idealized and one of the most contested art forms of the Victorian period. Yet this vitally important nineteenth-century cultural form has been studied by literary critics mainly as a system of thematic motifs. Angelic Airs, Subversive Songs positions music as a charged site of cultural struggle, promoted concurrently as a transcendent corrective to social ills and as a subversive cause of those ills. Alisa Clapp-Itnyre examines Victorian constructions of music to advance patriotism, Christianity, culture, and domestic harmony, and suggests that often these goals were undermined by political tensions in song texts or “immoral sensuality” in the “spectacle” of live music-making.
Professor Clapp-Itnyre turns her focus to the novels of Elizabeth Gaskell, George Eliot, and Thomas Hardy, who present complex engagements with those musical genres most privileged by Victorian society: folk songs, religious hymns, and concert music.
Angelic Airs, Subversive Songs recovers the pervasive ambiguities of the Victorian musical period, ambiguities typically overlooked by both literary scholars and musicologists. To the literary critic and cultural historian, Professor Clapp-Itnyre demonstrates the necessity of further exploring the complete aesthetic climate behind some of the Victorian period’s most powerful literary works. And to the feminist scholar and the musicologist, Clapp-Itnyre reveals the complexities of music as both an oppressive cultural force and an expressive, creative outlet for women.
In this highly praised and seminal work, Alan Merriam demonstrates that music is a social behavior—one worthy and available to study through the methods of anthropology. In it, he convincingly argues that ethnomusicology, by definition, cannot separate the sound-analysis of music from its cultural context of people thinking, acting, and creating.
The study begins with a review of the various approaches in ethnomusicology. He then suggests a useful and simple research model: ideas about music lead to behavior related to music and this behavior results in musical sound. He explains many aspects and outcomes of this model, and the methods and techniques he suggests are useful to anyone doing field work. Further chapters provide a cross-cultural round-up of concepts about music, physical and verbal behavior related to music, the role of the musician, and the learning and composing of music.
The Anthropology of Music illuminates much of interest to musicologists but to social scientists in general as well.
Many know Antonio Salieri only as Mozart's envious nemesis from the film Amadeus. In this well-illustrated work, John A. Rice shows us what a rich musical and personal history this popular stereotype has missed.
Bringing Salieri, his operas, and eighteenth-century Viennese theater vividly to life, Rice places Salieri where he belongs: no longer lurking in Mozart's shadow, but standing proudly among the leading opera composers of his age. Rice's research in the archives of Vienna and close study of his scores reveal Salieri to have been a prolific, versatile, and adventurous composer for the stage. Within the extraordinary variety of Salieri's approaches to musical dramaturgy, Rice identifies certain habits of orchestration, melodic style, and form as distinctively "Salierian"; others are typical of Viennese opera in general. A generous selection of excerpts from Salieri's works, most previously unpublished, will give readers a fuller appreciation for his musical style—and its influence on Mozart—than was previously possible.
‘I think my music deserves to be considered as a whole’, Igor Stravinsky remarked at the end of a long and restless career, and that is exactly what the authors of The Apollonian Clockwork do. In 1982, convinced that there is no essential difference between ‘early’ and ‘late’ Stravinsky, Louis Andriessen and Elmer Schönberger were the first to write a monograph on the composer which radically breaks with the habit of dividing his works into ‘Russian’, ‘neoclassical’ and ‘serial’. In an essay which continually shifts in its approach, style and perspective, the authors elaborate on their insight that a single, immutable compositional attitude underlies the whole of Stravinsky’s oeuvre. By this token the book not only offers an analysis of the composer’s protean work and artistry but takes example by it as well.
This book is a compilation of current research that investigates various aspects of musical experience and stresses the practical applications and implications of investigating music behavior in a systematic, objective manner. Specifically, the book focuses on factors influencing the teaching of children; efficient methods for instructing future teachers; elements affecting musical perception, likes, and dislikes; and innovative efforts to investigate new areas of study. Recent studies by twenty-six nationally known educators that use objective strategies associated with experimental and behavioral research are presented to illustrate how people learn about music and how people are taught to make music. The research studies are introduced by an article emphasizing the usefulness of research literature in devising a teaching strategy and are grouped into four sections: Teaching Music to Children, Teaching Future Teachers, Preference and Perception, and New Horizons. The concluding article is an allegorical proposal for balance and perspective in the consideration of music education.
“Are We Not New Wave? is destined to become the definitive study of new wave music.”
—Mark Spicer, coeditor of Sounding Out Pop
New wave emerged at the turn of the 1980s as a pop music movement cast in the image of punk rock’s sneering demeanor, yet rendered more accessible and sophisticated. Artists such as the Cars, Devo, the Talking Heads, and the Human League leapt into the Top 40 with a novel sound that broke with the staid rock clichés of the 1970s and pointed the way to a more modern pop style.
In Are We Not New Wave? Theo Cateforis provides the first musical and cultural history of the new wave movement, charting its rise out of mid-1970s punk to its ubiquitous early 1980s MTV presence and downfall in the mid-1980s. The book also explores the meanings behind the music’s distinctive traits—its characteristic whiteness and nervousness; its playful irony, electronic melodies, and crossover experimentations. Cateforis traces new wave’s modern sensibilities back to the space-age consumer culture of the late 1950s/early 1960s.
Three decades after its rise and fall, new wave’s influence looms large over the contemporary pop scene, recycled and celebrated not only in reunion tours, VH1 nostalgia specials, and “80s night” dance clubs but in the music of artists as diverse as Rihanna, Lady Gaga, Miley Cyrus, and the Killers.
Tuning is the secret lens through which the history of music falls into focus, says Kyle Gann. Yet in Western circles, no other musical issue is so ignored, so taken for granted, so shoved into the corners of musical discourse. A classroom essential and an invaluable reference, The Arithmetic of Listening offers beginners the grounding in music theory necessary to find their own way into microtonality and the places it may take them. Moving from ancient Greece to the present, Kyle Gann delves into the infinite tunings available to any musician who feels straitjacketed by obedience to standardized Western European tuning. He introduces the concept of the harmonic series and demonstrates its relationship to equal-tempered and well-tempered tuning. He also explores recent experimental tuning models that exploit smaller intervals between pitches to create new sounds and harmonies. Systematic and accessible, The Arithmetic of Music provides a much-needed primer for the wide range of tuning systems that have informed Western music.
Owney Madden lived a seemingly quiet life for decades in the resort town of Hot Springs, Arkansas, while he was actually helping some of America's most notorious gangsters rule a vast criminal empire. In 1987, Graham Nown first told Madden's story in his book The English Godfather, in which he traced Madden's boyhood in England, his immigration to New York City, and his rise to mob boss. Nown also uncovered a love story involving Madden and the daughter of the Hot Springs postmaster. Before his arrival in Hot Springs, Madden was one of the most powerful gangsters in New York City and former owner of the famous Cotton Club in Harlem. The story of his life shows us a world where people can break the law without ever getting caught, and where criminality is so entwined in government and society that one might wonder what is legality and what isn't.
Rossini's third opera seria for Naples, Armida, first performed November 9, 1817 and among his most unusual and beautiful stage works, is based on Tasso's epic poem Gerusalemme liberata. From the performer playing Armida, Rossini demands singing of both spectacular virtuosity and great dramatic power. Some of his most sensual music occurs in Armida's duets, two of which feature prominent introductions for solo violin and solo violoncello. Included in the large cast are six tenor roles (although they can be taken by four tenors, as they were at Naples). A highlight of Act III is the stirring trio for three tenors. Armida also requires two basses and gives conspicuous parts to men's and women's choruses. Unique among Rossini's Italian operas is a large ballet, which occupies much of Act II, and the magical scenic effects called for in the staging.
The critical edition presents Armida in its original form, reintegrating passages missing from the autograph score and restoring cuts made in printed editions.
The most radical and divisive composer of the twentieth century, Arnold Schoenberg remains a hero to many, and a villain to many others. In this refreshingly balanced biography, Mark Berry tells the story of Schoenberg’s remarkable life and work, situating his tale within the wider symphony of nineteenth- and twentieth-century history.
Born in the Jewish quarter of his beloved Vienna, Schoenberg left Austria for his early career in Berlin as a leading light of Weimar culture, before being forced to flee in the dead of night from Hitler’s Third Reich. He found himself in the United States, settling in Los Angeles, where he would inspire composers from George Gershwin to John Cage. Introducing all of Schoenberg’s major musical works, from his very first compositions, such as the String Quartet in D Major, to his invention of the twelve-tone method, Berry explores how Schoenberg’s revolutionary approach to musical composition incorporated Wagnerian late Romanticism and the brave new worlds of atonality and serialism. Essential reading for anyone interested in the music and history of the twentieth century, this book makes clear Schoenberg changed the history of music forever.
Charles Rosen University of Chicago Press, 1996 Library of Congress ML410.S283R65 1996 | Dewey Decimal 780.92
In this lucid, revealing book, award-winning pianist and scholar Charles Rosen sheds light on the elusive music of Arnold Schoenberg and his challenge to conventional musical forms. Rosen argues that Schoenberg's music, with its atonality and dissonance, possesses a rare balance of form and emotion, making it, according to Rosen, "the most expressive music ever written." Concise and accessible, this book will appeal to fans, non-fans, and scholars of Schoenberg, and to those who have yet to be introduced to the works of one of the greatest composers of the twentieth century.
"Arnold Schoenberg is one of the most brilliant monographs ever to be published on any composer, let alone the most difficult master of the present age. . . . Indispensable to anyone seeking to understand the crucial musical ideas of the first three decades."—Robert Craft, New York Review of Books
"What Mr. Rosen does far better than one could reasonably expect in so concise a book is not only elucidate Schoenberg's composing techniques and artistic philosophy but to place them in history."—Donal Henahan, New York Times Book Review
"For the novice and the knowledgeable, Mr. Rosen's book is very important reading, either as an introduction to the master or as a stimulus to rethinking our opinions of him. Mr. Rosen's accomplishment is enviable."—Joel Sachs, Musical Quarterly
Arsenio Rodríguez was one of the most important Cuban musicians of the twentieth century. In this first scholarly study, ethnomusicologist David F. García examines Rodríguez's life, including the conjunto musical combo he led and the highly influential son montuno style of music he created in the 1940s. García recounts Rodríguez's battle for recognition at the height of "mambo mania" in New York City and the significance of his music in the development of salsa. With firsthand accounts from relatives and fellow musicians, Arsenio Rodríguez and the Transnational Flows of Latin Popular Music follows Rodríguez's fortunes on several continents, speculating on why he never enjoyed wide commercial success despite the importance of his music. García focuses on the roles that race, identity, and politics played in shaping Rodríguez's music and the trajectory of his musical career. His transnational perspective has important implications for Latin American and popular music studies.
“In Naples, there are more singers than there are unemployed people.” These words echo through the neomelodica music scene, a vast undocumented economy animated by wedding singers, pirate TV, and tens of thousands of fans throughout southern Italy and beyond. In a city with chronic unemployment, this setting has attracted hundreds of aspiring singers trying to make a living—or even a fortune. In the process, they brush up against affiliates of the region’s violent organized crime networks, the camorra. In The Art of Making Do in Naples, Jason Pine explores the murky neomelodica music scene and finds himself on uncertain ground.
The “art of making do” refers to the informal and sometimes illicit entrepreneurial tactics of some Neapolitans who are pursuing a better life for themselves and their families. In the neomelodica music scene, the art of making do involves operating do-it-yourself recording studios and performing at the private parties of crime bosses. It can also require associating with crime boss-impresarios who guarantee their success by underwriting it with extortion, drug trafficking, and territorial influence. Pine, likewise “making do,” gradually realized that the completion of his ethnographic work also depended on the aid of forbidding figures.
The Art of Making Do in Naples offers a riveting ethnography of the lives of men who seek personal sovereignty in a shadow economy dominated, in incalculable ways, by the camorra. Pine navigates situations suffused with secrecy, moral ambiguity, and fears of ruin that undermine the anthropologist’s sense of autonomy. Making his way through Naples’s spectacular historic center and outer slums, on the trail of charmingly evasive neomelodici singers and unsettlingly elusive camorristi, Pine himself becomes a music video director and falls into the orbit of a shadowy music promoter who may or may not be a camorra affiliate.
Pine’s trenchant observations and his own improvised attempts at “making do” provide a fascinating look into the lives of people in the gray zones where organized crime blends into ordinary life.
Growing out of the collaborative research of an American ethnomusicologist and Zimbabwean musician, Paul F. Berliner’s The Art of Mbira documents the repertory for a keyboard instrument known generally as mbira. At the heart of this work lies the analysis of the improvisatory processes that propel mbira music’s magnificent creativity.
In this book, Berliner provides insight into the communities of study, performance, and worship that surround mbira. He chronicles how master player Cosmas Magaya and his associates have developed their repertory and practices over more than four decades, shaped by musical interaction, social and political dynamics in Zimbabwe, and the global economy of the music industry. At once a detailed exposition of the music’s forms and practices, it is also an indispensable historical and cultural guide to mbira in a changing world.
Together with Berliner and Magaya's compendium of mbira compositions, Mbira’s Restless Dance, The Art of Mbira breaks new ground in the depth and specificity of its exploration of an African musical tradition, and in the entwining of the authors’ collaborative voices. It is a testament to the powerful relationship between music and social life—and the rewards of lifelong musical study, performance, and friendship.
This stunning book charts the rich history of the blues, through the dazzling array of posters, album covers, and advertisements that have shaped its identity over the past hundred years. The blues have been one of the most ubiquitous but diverse elements of American popular music at large, and the visual art associated with this unique sound has been just as varied and dynamic. There is no better guide to this fascinating graphical world than Bill Dahl—a longtime music journalist and historian who has written liner notes for countless reissues of classic blues, soul, R&B, and rock albums. With his deep knowledge and incisive commentary—complementing more than three hundred and fifty lavishly reproduced images—the history of the blues comes musically and visually to life.
What will astonish readers who thumb through these pages is the amazing range of ways that the blues have been represented—whether via album covers, posters, flyers, 78 rpm labels, advertising, or other promotional materials. We see the blues as it was first visually captured in the highly colorful sheet music covers of the early twentieth century. We see striking and hard-to-find label designs from labels big (Columbia) and small (Rhumboogie). We see William Alexander’s humorous artwork on postwar Miltone Records; the cherished ephemera of concert and movie posters; and Chess Records’ iconic early albums designed by Don Bronstein, which would set a new standard for modern album cover design.
What these images collectively portray is the evolution of a distinctively American art form. And they do so in the richest way imaginable. The result is a sumptuous book, a visual treasury as alive in spirit as the music it so vibrantly captures.
The Art of the Violin
Pierre Marie Francois de Sales Baillot Northwestern University Press, 1991 Library of Congress MT262.B15313 1991 | Dewey Decimal 787.2143
Never before available in English, this classic work is a major contribution to the art and technique of violin playing and an important document in the history of performance practice. A contemporary of Kreutzer and Rode, Pierre Marie Francois de Sales Baillot provides in his treatise many insights into the style of nineteenth-century fingering, bowing, ornamentation, and expressiveness that are not apparent from the directions and markings found in scores of that time. Such information will be invaluable for performers interested in understanding the intentions of composers such as Viotti, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, and Mendelssohn.
This complete, unabridged translation, which includes an extensive introduction by the translator, Louise Goldberg, and a foreword by Zvi Zeitlin, will be indispensable for musicologists, performers, and lovers of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century classical music.
Twentieth-century composers created thousands of original works for solo percussion and percussion ensemble. Concise and ideal for the classroom, Artful Noise offers an essential and much-needed survey of this unique literature.
Percussionist Thomas Siwe organizes and analyzes the groundbreaking musical literature that arose during the twentieth century. Focusing on innovations in style and the evolution of the percussion ensemble, Siwe offers a historical overview that connects the music to scoring techniques, new instrumentation and evolving technologies as well as world events. Discussions of representative pieces by seminal composers examines the resources a work requires, its construction, and how it relates to other styles that developed during the same period. In addition, Siwe details the form and purpose of many of the compositions while providing background information on noteworthy artists. Each chapter is supported with musical examples and concludes with a short list of related works specifically designed to steer musicians and instructors alike toward profitable explorations of composers, styles, and eras.
In these eloquent and intensely personal writings, Franz Liszt sketches the cities, people, and scenes of his travels in the 1830s and explores ideas about art and its ideal place in the world. During six years of wandering through Switzerland, France, Italy, Austria, and Germany (four of them together with Countess Marie d'Agoult), the composer saw the greatest art and most fabulous landscapes of Europe and crossed paths with celebrated singers and artists, renowned intellectuals, infamous socialites, and both reigning and deposed aristocracy. The article/essays that emerged from this period are both public and private: though written for the Paris press, they are the closest that Liszt came to autobiography. Some of these writings are travel articles; some are essentially reports of a music correspondent; still others are personal and confessional; and some are really essays on the nature of art. All offer precious insight into the musical, social, and intellectual life in the major European capitals seen through the eyes of one of the most well-read and influential musical personalities of the period.
Verdi’s Attila, his ninth opera, had its premiere at Venice’s Teatro La Fenice in March 1846. Based on the German play Attila, King of the Huns, the libretto has its own storied history: as Verdi fell seriously ill before the work’s completion, the main librettist moved permanently to Madrid, leaving the last act of Attila only a sketch. It was then that Verdi called upon Francesco Maria Piave, the librettist for two of his earlier works, who at the composer’s behest scratched plans for a large choral finale and decided instead to concentrate on the dramatic roles of the protagonists.
In years since, Attila has become one of Verdi’s most popular and oft-staged early works. The composer's inimitable vitality, soaring arcs of melody, grand choruses, and passion are here amply apparent. This critical edition, based on Verdi’s autograph full score preserved at the British Library, restores the opera’s original text and accurately reflects the composer's colorful and elaborate musical setting, while Helen M. Greenwald’s masterful introduction discusses the opera’s origins, sources, and performance questions, and her critical commentary details editorial problems and their solutions.
Audible Empire rethinks the processes and mechanisms of empire and shows how musical practice has been crucial to its spread around the globe. Music is a means of comprehending empire as an audible formation, and the contributors highlight how it has been circulated, consumed, and understood through imperial logics. These fifteen interdisciplinary essays cover large swaths of genre, time, politics, and geography, and include topics such as the affective relationship between jazz and cigarettes in interwar China; the sonic landscape of the U.S.– Mexico border; the critiques of post-9/11 U.S. empire by desi rappers; and the role of tonality in the colonization of Africa. Whether focusing on Argentine tango, theorizing anticolonialist sound, or examining the music industry of postapartheid South Africa, the contributors show how the audible has been a central component in the creation of imperialist notions of reason, modernity, and culture. In doing so, they allow us to hear how empire is both made and challenged.
Contributors: Kofi Agawu, Philip V. Bohlman. Michael Denning, Brent Hayes Edwards, Nan Enstad, Andrew Jones, Josh Kun, Morgan Luker, Jairo Moreno, Tejumola Olaniyan, Marc Perry, Ronald Radano, Nitasha Sharma, Micol Seigel, Gavin Steingo, Penny Von Eschen, Amanda Weidman.
In this audacious book, Ana María Ochoa Gautier explores how listening has been central to the production of notions of language, music, voice, and sound that determine the politics of life. Drawing primarily from nineteenth-century Colombian sources, Ochoa Gautier locates sounds produced by different living entities at the juncture of the human and nonhuman. Her "acoustically tuned" analysis of a wide array of texts reveals multiple debates on the nature of the aural. These discussions were central to a politics of the voice harnessed in the service of the production of different notions of personhood and belonging. In Ochoa Gautier's groundbreaking work, Latin America and the Caribbean emerge as a historical site where the politics of life and the politics of expression inextricably entangle the musical and the linguistic, knowledge and the sensorial.
In Austronesia—the region that stretches from Madagascar in the west to Easter Island in the east—music plays a vital role in both the construction and expression of social and cultural identities. Yet research into the music of Austronesia has hitherto been sparse. Drawing together contemporary cultural studies and musical analysis, Austronesian Soundscapes will fill this research gap, offering a comprehensive analysis of traditional and contemporary Austronesian music and, at the same time, investigating how music reflects the challenges that Austronesian cultures face in this age of globalization.
Avant-Garde Jazz Musicians focuses on performers whose out styles, by definition, transcend traditional boundaries of jazz and most Western forms of music; some of these performers are well known, such as John Coltrane, Ornette Coleman, and Cecil Taylor, and others are not, including Daniel Carter, Billy Bang, and Jemeel Moondoc. David Such uses an interdisciplinary approach, ranging from philosophy to ethnomusicology to psychobiology, to examine how both cultural and personal factors have influenced the out musicians and their music and what the music symbolizes to listeners and to the musicians themselves.
Such strikes a balance between out music itself and the cultural domain as he explores the social contexts and economic pressures that affect out musical performance. Using material from extensive personal interviews, Such evaluates the impact of civil rights, postindustrialization, and urbanization on the beliefs and attitudes of out musicians.
By performing with many of the out musicians he interviews, Such is able to examine out music and the worldviews of out musicians in a uniquely comprehensive manner and to resolve some of the more controversial issues surrounding out jazz. In the process, he makes out music more understandable to jazz fans and scholars alike and clarifies its role in the overall development of jazz.
The fast-paced zouk of Kassav', the romantic biguine of Malavoi, the jazz of Fal Frett, the ballads of Mona, and reggae of Kali and Pôglo are all part of the burgeoning popular music scene in the French Caribbean. In this lively book, Brenda F. Berrian chronicles the rise of this music, which has captivated the minds and bodies of the Francophone world and elsewhere.
Based on personal interviews and discussions of song texts, Berrian shows how these musicians express their feelings about current and past events, about themselves, their islands, and the French. Through their lyrical themes, these songs create metaphorical "spaces" that evoke narratives of desire, exile, subversion, and Creole identity and experiences. Berrian opens up these spaces to reveal how the artists not only engage their listeners and effect social change, but also empower and identify themselves. She also explores the music as it relates to the art of drumming, and to genres such as African American and Latin jazz and reggae. With Awakening Spaces, Berrian adds fresh insight into the historical struggles and arts of the French Caribbean.