Rush, Rock Music, and the Middle Class: Dreaming in Middletown

Rush, Rock Music, and the Middle Class: Dreaming in Middletown

by Christopher J. McDonald
     
 

Canadian progressive rock band Rush was the voice of the suburban middle class. In this book, Chris McDonald assesses the band’s impact on popular music and its legacy for legions of fans. McDonald explores the ways in which Rush’s critique of suburban life—and its strategies for escape—reflected middle-class aspirations and anxieties, while

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Overview

Canadian progressive rock band Rush was the voice of the suburban middle class. In this book, Chris McDonald assesses the band’s impact on popular music and its legacy for legions of fans. McDonald explores the ways in which Rush’s critique of suburban life—and its strategies for escape—reflected middle-class aspirations and anxieties, while its performances manifested the dialectic in prog rock between discipline and austerity, and the desire for spectacle and excess. The band’s reception reflected the internal struggles of the middle class over cultural status. Critics cavalierly dismissed, or apologetically praised, Rush’s music for its middlebrow leanings. McDonald's wide-ranging musical and cultural analysis sheds light on one of the most successful and enduring rock bands of the 1970s and 1980s.

Indiana University Press

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780253221490
Publisher:
Indiana University Press
Publication date:
11/04/2009
Series:
Profiles in Popular Music Series
Pages:
272
Sales rank:
1,392,786
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.80(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments

Introduction
1. "Anywhere But Here": Rush and Suburban Desires for Escape
2. "Swimming Against the Stream": Individualism and Middle-Class Subjectivity in Rush
3. "The Work of Gifted Hands": Professionalism and Virtuosity in Rush's Style
4. "Experience to Extremes": Discipline, Detachment, and Excess in Rush
5. "Reflected in Another Pair of Eyes": Representations of Rush Fandom
6. "Scoffing at the Wise?": Rush, Rock Criticism, and the Middlebrow

Notes
Works Cited
Selected Discography
Index

Indiana University Press

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