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Your search for 'American Music' in subject found 12 book(s).
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1. cover
Title: American Klezmer: its roots and offshoots
Author: Slobin, Mark
Published: University of California Press,  2002
Subjects: Music | Jewish Studies | American  Music | Contemporary Music | Ethnomusicology
Publisher's Description: Klezmer, the Yiddish word for a folk instrumental musician, has come to mean a person, a style, and a scene. This musical subculture came to the United States with the late-nineteenth-century Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe. Although it had declined in popularity by the middle of the twentieth century, this lively music is now enjoying recognition among music fans of all stripes. Today, klezmer flourishes in the United States and abroad in the world music and accompany Jewish celebrations. The outstanding essays collected in this volume investigate American klezmer: its roots, its evolution, and its spirited revitalization. The contributors to American Klezmer include every kind of authority on the subject--from academics to leading musicians--and they offer a wide range of perspectives on the musical, social, and cultural history of klezmer in American life. The first half of this volume concentrates on the early history of klezmer, using folkloric sources, records of early musicians unions, and interviews with the last of the immigrant musicians. The second part of the collection examines the klezmer "revival" that began in the 1970s. Several of these essays were written by the leaders of this movement, or draw on interviews with them, and give firsthand accounts of how klezmer is transmitted and how its practitioners maintain a balance between preservation and innovation.   [brief]
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2. cover
Title: Driven into paradise: the musical migration from Nazi Germany to the United States
Author: Brinkmann, Reinhold 1934-
Published: University of California Press,  1999
Subjects: Music | American  Music | Composers | Musicology | European History | United States History
Publisher's Description: The forced migration of artists and scholars from Nazi Germany is a compelling and often wrenching story. The story is twofold, of impoverishment for the countries the musicians left behind and enrichment for the United States. The latter is the focus of this eminent collection, which approaches the subject from diverse perspectives, including documentary-style newspaper accounts and an exploration of Walt Whitman's poetry in the work of Paul Hindemith and Kurt Weill.The flood of musical migration from Germany and Austria from 1933 to 1944 had a lasting impact. Hundreds of musicians and musicologists came to the United States and remained here, and the shaping power of their talents is incalculable. Several essays provide firsthand insights into aspects of American cultural history to which these émigrés made essential contributions as conductors, professors, and composers; other essays tell of the traumatic experience of being exiled and the difficulties of finding one's way in a foreign country. While the migration infused the U.S. with a distinctly European musical awareness, at the same time the status and authority of its participants tended to intervene in the development of a genuinely American cultural voice. The story of the unprecedented migration that resulted from Nazism has many dimensions, and Driven Into Paradise illuminates them in deeply human terms.   [brief]
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3. cover
Title: Jazz cultures
Author: Ake, David Andrew 1961-
Published: University of California Press,  2002
Subjects: Music | American  Music | Jazz | Ethnomusicology | American Studies | African American Studies | Jazz
Publisher's Description: From its beginning, jazz has presented a contradictory social world: jazz musicians have worked diligently to erase old boundaries, but they have just as resolutely constructed new ones. David Ake's vibrant and original book considers the diverse musics and related identities that jazz communities have shaped over the course of the twentieth century, exploring the many ways in which jazz musicians and audiences experience and understand themselves, their music, their communities, and the world at large. Writing as a professional pianist and composer, the author looks at evolving meanings, values, and ideals--as well as the sounds--that musicians, audiences, and critics carry to and from the various activities they call jazz. Among the compelling topics he discusses is the "visuality" of music: the relationship between performance demeanor and musical meaning. Focusing on pianists Bill Evans and Keith Jarrett, Ake investigates the ways in which musicians' postures and attitudes influence perceptions of them as profound and serious artists. In another essay, Ake examines the musical values and ideals promulgated by college jazz education programs through a consideration of saxophonist John Coltrane. He also discusses the concept of the jazz "standard" in the 1990s and the differing sense of tradition implied in recent recordings by Wynton Marsalis and Bill Frisell. Jazz Cultures shows how jazz history has not consisted simply of a smoothly evolving series of musical styles, but rather an array of individuals and communities engaging with disparate--and oftentimes conflicting--actions, ideals, and attitudes.   [brief]
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4. cover
Title: Jazz, rock, and rebels: cold war politics and American culture in a divided Germany
Author: Poiger, Uta G 1965-
Published: University of California Press,  2000
Subjects: German Studies | Cultural Anthropology | European History | United States History | American  Music | Jazz | Gender Studies | American Studies
Publisher's Description: In the two decades after World War II, Germans on both sides of the iron curtain fought vehemently over American cultural imports. Uta G. Poiger traces how westerns, jeans, jazz, rock 'n' roll, and stars like Marlon Brando or Elvis Presley reached adolescents in both Germanies, who eagerly adopted the new styles. Poiger reveals that East and West German authorities deployed gender and racial norms to contain Americanized youth cultures in their own territories and to carry on the ideological Cold War battle with each other. Poiger's lively account is based on an impressive array of sources, ranging from films, newspapers, and contemporary sociological studies, to German and U.S. archival materials. Jazz, Rock, and Rebels examines diverging responses to American culture in East and West Germany by linking these to changes in social science research, political cultures, state institutions, and international alliance systems. In the first two decades of the Cold War, consumer culture became a way to delineate the boundaries between East and West. This pathbreaking study, the first comparative cultural history of the two Germanies, sheds new light on the legacy of Weimar and National Socialism, on gender and race relations in Europe, and on Americanization and the Cold War.   [brief]
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5. cover
Title: Paul Bowles on music
Author: Bowles, Paul 1910-
Published: University of California Press,  2003
Subjects: Music | American  Music | Composers | Contemporary Music | American Literature | Film
Publisher's Description: "It's an easy enough job if one has something to say," Paul Bowles remarked in a letter to his mother about his first foray into music criticism. And Paul Bowles, indeed, had plenty to say about music. Though known chiefly as a writer of novels and stories, Paul Bowles (1910-99) thought of himself first and foremost as a composer. Drawing together the work he did at the intersection of his two passions and professions, writing and music, this volume collects the music criticism Bowles published between 1935 and 1946 as well as an interview conducted by Irene Herrmann shortly before his death. An intimate of Aaron Copland and protégé of Virgil Thomson, Bowles was a musical sophisticate acquainted with an enormous range of music. His criticism collected here brilliantly illuminates not only the whole range of modernist composition but also film music, jazz, Mexican and Moroccan music, and many other genres. As a reviewer he reports on established artists and young hopefuls, symphonic concerts indoors and out, and important premieres of works by Copland, Thomson, Cage, Shostakovich, and Stravinsky, among others. Written with the austere grace of his better-known literary works, Bowles's criticism enhances our picture of an important era in American music history as well as our sense of his accomplishments and extraordinary contribution to twentieth-century culture.   [brief]
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6. cover
Title: The poetics of rock: cutting tracks, making records
Author: Zak, Albin
Published: University of California Press,  2001
Subjects: Music | Popular Music | American  Music | Musicology | Contemporary Music | American Studies | Media Studies | Popular Music
Publisher's Description: After a hundred years of recording, the process of making records is still mysterious to most people who listen to them. Records hold a fundamental place in the dynamics of modern musical life, but what do they represent? Are they documents? Snapshots? Artworks? Fetishes? Commodities? Conveniences? The Poetics of Rock is a fascinating exploration of recording consciousness and compositional process from the perspective of those who make records. In it, Albin Zak examines the crucial roles played by recording technologies in the construction of rock music and shows how songwriters, musicians, engineers, and producers contribute to the creative project, and how they all leave their mark on the finished work. Zak shapes an image of the compositional milieu by exploring its elements and discussing the issues and concerns faced by artists. Using their testimony to illuminate the nature of record making and of records themselves, he shows that the art of making rock records is a collaborative compositional process that includes many skills and sensibilities not traditionally associated with musical composition. Zak connects all the topics--whether technical, conceptual, aesthetic, or historical--with specific artists and recordings and illustrates them with citations from artists and with musical examples. In lively and engaging prose, The Poetics of Rock brilliantly illustrates how the musical energy from a moment of human expression translates into a musical work wrought in sound.   [brief]
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7. cover
Title: Proof through the night: music and the great war
Author: Watkins, Glenn 1927-
Published: University of California Press,  2002
Subjects: Music | Musicology | American  Music | European History | United States History
Publisher's Description: Carols floating across no-man's-land on Christmas Eve 1914; solemn choruses, marches, and popular songs responding to the call of propaganda ministries and war charities; opera, keyboard suites, ragtime, and concertos for the left hand - all provided testimony to the unique power of music to chronicle the Great War and to memorialize its battles and fallen heroes in the first post-Armistice decade. In this striking book, Glenn Watkins investigates these variable roles of music primarily from the angle of the Entente nations' perceived threat of German hegemony in matters of intellectual and artistic accomplishment - a principal concern not only for Europe but also for the United States, whose late entrance into the fray prompted a renewed interest in defining America as an emergent world power as well as a fledgling musical culture. He shows that each nation gave "proof through the night" - ringing evidence during the dark hours of the war - not only of its nationalist resolve in the singing of national airs but also of its power to recall home and hearth on distant battlefields and to reflect upon loss long after the guns had been silenced. Watkins's eloquent narrative argues that twentieth-century Modernism was not launched full force with the advent of the Great War but rather was challenged by a new set of alternatives to the prewar avant-garde. His central focus on music as a cultural marker during the First World War of necessity exposes its relationship to the other arts, national institutions, and international politics. From wartime scores by Debussy and Stravinsky to telling retrospective works by Berg, Ravel, and Britten; from "La Marseillaise" to "The Star-Spangled Banner," from "It's a Long Way to Tipperary" to "Over There," music reflected society's profoundest doubts and aspirations. By turns it challenged or supported the legitimacy of war, chronicled misgivings in miniature and grandiose formats alike, and inevitably expressed its sorrow at the final price exacted by the Great War. Proof through the Night concludes with a consideration of the post-Armistice period when, on the classical music front, memory and distance forged a musical response that was frequently more powerful than in wartime.   [brief]
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8. cover
Title: Race music: black cultures from bebop to hip-hop
Author: Ramsey, Guthrie P
Published: University of California Press,  2003
Subjects: Music | American  Music | American Studies | Popular Music | United States History | Ethnomusicology | African American Studies
Publisher's Description: This powerful book covers the vast and various terrain of African American music, from bebop to hip-hop. Guthrie P. Ramsey, Jr., begins with an absorbing account of his own musical experiences with family and friends on the South Side of Chicago, evoking Sunday-morning worship services, family gatherings with food and dancing, and jam sessions at local nightclubs. This lays the foundation for a brilliant discussion of how musical meaning emerges in the private and communal realms of lived experience and how African American music has shaped and reflected identities in the black community. Deeply informed by Ramsey's experience as an accomplished musician, a sophisticated cultural theorist, and an enthusiast brought up in the community he discusses, Race Music explores the global influence and popularity of African American music, its social relevance, and key questions regarding its interpretation and criticism. Beginning with jazz, rhythm and blues, and gospel, this book demonstrates that while each genre of music is distinct - possessing its own conventions, performance practices, and formal qualities - each is also grounded in similar techniques and conceptual frameworks identified with African American musical traditions. Ramsey provides vivid glimpses of the careers of Dinah Washington, Louis Jordan, Dizzy Gillespie, Cootie Williams, and Mahalia Jackson, among others, to show how the social changes of the 1940s elicited an Afro-modernism that inspired much of the music and culture that followed. Race Music illustrates how, by transcending the boundaries between genres, black communities bridged generational divides and passed down knowledge of musical forms and styles. It also considers how the discourse of soul music contributed to the vibrant social climate of the Black Power Era. Multilayered and masterfully written, Race Music provides a dynamic framework for rethinking the many facets of African American music and the ethnocentric energy that infused its creation.   [brief]
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9. cover
Title: Reflections of an American composer online access is available to everyone
Author: Berger, Arthur 1912-
Published: University of California Press,  2002
Subjects: Music | American  Music | Classical Music | Contemporary Music | Composers | Musicology
Publisher's Description: In this engrossing collection of essays, distinguished composer, theorist, journalist, and educator Arthur Berger invites us into the vibrant and ever-changing American music scene that has been his home for most of the twentieth century. Witty, urbane, and always entertaining, Berger describes the music scene in New York and Boston since the 1930s, discussing the heady days when he was a member of a tight-knit circle of avant-garde young composers mentored by Aaron Copland as well as his participation in a group at Harvard University dedicated to Stravinsky. As Virgil Thomson's associate on the New York Herald Tribune and founding editor of the prestigious Perspectives of New Music, Berger became one of the preeminent observers and critics of American music. His reflections on the role of music in contemporary life, his journalism career, and how changes in academia influence the composition and teaching of music offer a unique perspective informed by Berger's abundant intelligence and experience.   [brief]
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10. cover
Title: Revealing masks: exotic influences and ritualized performance in modernist music theater
Author: Sheppard, William Anthony 1969-
Published: University of California Press,  2001
Subjects: Music | American  Music | Contemporary Music | Ethnomusicology | Opera | Musicology | Intellectual History
Publisher's Description: W. Anthony Sheppard considers a wide-ranging constellation of important musical works in this fascinating exploration of ritualized performance in twentieth-century music. Revealing Masks uncovers the range of political, didactic, and aesthetic intents that inspired the creators of modernist music theater. Sheppard is especially interested in the use of the "exotic" in techniques of masking and stylization, identifying Japanese Noh, medieval Christian drama, and ancient Greek theater as the most prominent exotic models for the creation of "total theater." Drawing on an extraordinarily diverse - and in some instances, little-known - range of music theater pieces, Sheppard cites the work of Igor Stravinsky, Benjamin Britten, Arthur Honegger, Peter Maxwell Davies, Harry Partch, and Leonard Bernstein, as well as Andrew Lloyd Webber and Madonna. Artists in literature, theater, and dance - such as William Butler Yeats, Paul Claudel, Bertolt Brecht, Isadora Duncan, Ida Rubenstein, and Edward Gordon Craig--also play a significant role in this study. Sheppard poses challenging questions that will interest readers beyond those in the field of music scholarship. For example, what is the effect on the audience and the performers of depersonalizing ritual elements? Does borrowing from foreign cultures inevitably amount to a kind of predatory appropriation? Revealing Masks shows that compositional concerns and cultural themes manifested in music theater are central to the history of twentieth-century Euro-American music, drama, and dance.   [brief]
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11. cover
Title: What is this thing called jazz?: African American musicians as artists, critics, and activists
Author: Porter, Eric (Eric C.)
Published: University of California Press,  2002
Subjects: Music | History | United States History | American Studies | African American Studies | American  Music | Contemporary Music | Jazz
Publisher's Description: Despite the plethora of writing about jazz, little attention has been paid to what musicians themselves wrote and said about their practice. An implicit division of labor has emerged where, for the most part, black artists invent and play music while white writers provide the commentary. Eric Porter overturns this tendency in his creative intellectual history of African American musicians. He foregrounds the often-ignored ideas of these artists, analyzing them in the context of meanings circulating around jazz, as well as in relationship to broader currents in African American thought. Porter examines several crucial moments in the history of jazz: the formative years of the 1920s and 1930s; the emergence of bebop; the political and experimental projects of the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s; and the debates surrounding Jazz at Lincoln Center under the direction of Wynton Marsalis. Louis Armstrong, Anthony Braxton, Marion Brown, Duke Ellington, W.C. Handy, Yusef Lateef, Abbey Lincoln, Charles Mingus, Archie Shepp, Wadada Leo Smith, Mary Lou Williams, and Reggie Workman also feature prominently in this book. The wealth of information Porter uncovers shows how these musicians have expressed themselves in print; actively shaped the institutional structures through which the music is created, distributed, and consumed, and how they aligned themselves with other artists and activists, and how they were influenced by forces of class and gender. What Is This Thing Called Jazz? challenges interpretive orthodoxies by showing how much black jazz musicians have struggled against both the racism of the dominant culture and the prescriptive definitions of racial authenticity propagated by the music's supporters, both white and black.   [brief]
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12. cover
Title: Workin' man blues: country music in California
Author: Haslam, Gerald W
Published: University of California Press,  1999
Subjects: Music | American  Music | California and the West
Publisher's Description: California has been fertile ground for country music since the 1920s, nurturing a multitude of talents from Gene Autry to Glen Campbell, Rose Maddox to Barbara Mandrell, Buck Owens to Merle Haggard. In this affectionate homage to California's place in country music's history, Gerald Haslam surveys the Golden State's contributions to what is today the most popular music in America. At the same time he illuminates the lives of the white, working-class men and women who migrated to California from the Dust Bowl, the Hoovervilles, and all the other locales where they had been turned out, shut down, or otherwise told to move on.Haslam's roots go back to Oildale, in California's central valley, where he first discovered the passion for country music that infuses Workin' Man Blues . As he traces the Hollywood singing cowboys, Bakersfield honky-tonks, western-swing dance halls, "hillbilly" radio shows, and crossover styles from blues and folk music that also have California roots, he shows how country music offered a kind of cultural comfort to its listeners, whether they were oil field roustabouts or hash slingers.Haslam analyzes the effects on country music of population shifts, wartime prosperity, the changes in gender roles, music industry economics, and television. He also challenges the assumption that Nashville has always been country music's hometown and Grand Ole Opry its principal venue. The soul of traditional country remains romantically rural, southern, and white, he says, but it is also the anthem of the underdog, which may explain why California plays so vital a part in its heritage: California is where people reinvent themselves, just as country music has reinvented itself since the first Dust Bowl migrants arrived, bringing their songs and heartaches with them.   [brief]
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