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Interpreting Popular Music

ISBN-10: 0520225414
ISBN-13: 9780520225411
Edition: 2000
Authors: David Brackett
List price: $31.95
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Description: There is a well-developed vocabulary for discussing classical music, but when it comes to popular music, how do we analyze its effects and its meaning? David Brackett draws from the disciplines of cultural studies and music theory to demonstrate how  More...

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Book details

List price: $31.95
Copyright year: 2000
Publisher: University of California Press
Publication date: 10/25/2000
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 276
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.00" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.550
Language: English

There is a well-developed vocabulary for discussing classical music, but when it comes to popular music, how do we analyze its effects and its meaning? David Brackett draws from the disciplines of cultural studies and music theory to demonstrate how listeners form opinions about popular songs, and how they come to attribute a rich variety of meanings to them. Exploring several genres of popular music through recordings made by Billie Holiday, Bing Crosby, Hank Williams, James Brown, and Elvis Costello, Brackett develops a set of tools for looking at both the formal and cultural dimensions of popular music of all kinds.

Preface
Introduction
Prelude
Codes and competences
Who is the author?
Musicology and popular music
Postlude
Family values in music? Billie Holiday's and Bing Crosby's "I'll Be Seeing You"
A tale of two (or three) recordings
Critical discourse
Biographical discourse
Style and history
Performance, effect, and affect
When you're lookin' at Hank (you're looking at country)
Lyrics, metanarratives, and the great authenticity debate
Sound, performance, gender, and the honky-tonk
"A feeling called the blues"
The emergence of "country-western"
James Brown's "Superbad" and the double-voiced utterance
The discursive space of black music
Signifyin(g)--words and performance
Musical signifyin(g)
Writing, music, dancing, and architecture in Elvis Costello's "Pills and Soap"
The "popular aesthetic"
Style and aesthetics
Interpretation and (post)modern pop
A question of influence
Afterword: the citizens of Simpleton
Appendix
Reading the spectrum photos
Registral terminology
Notes
Bibliography
Select discography
Index

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