Stars Don't Stand Still in the Sky: Music and Myth

Overview

Our cultural darlings make music; we make them mythic. Every musical genre begets a community of listeners, performers, and critics, and quite often those categories are blurred. From the principled punk refusal of celebrity to hip-hop's celebration of its power, the music world is self-obsessed.

Stars Don't Stand Still in the Sky assembles scholars, music writers, industry workers, and musicians, who offer a range of opinions and experience of the nature of fame. The collection...

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1999 Paperback Brand new books, maps and cd's available immediately from a reputable and well rated UK bookseller; despatched promptly and reliably worldwide. *****PLEASE NOTE: ... This item is shipping from an authorized seller in Europe. In the event that a return is necessary, you will be able to return your item within the US. To learn more about our European sellers and policies see the BookQuest FAQ section***** Read more Show Less

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Overview

Our cultural darlings make music; we make them mythic. Every musical genre begets a community of listeners, performers, and critics, and quite often those categories are blurred. From the principled punk refusal of celebrity to hip-hop's celebration of its power, the music world is self-obsessed.

Stars Don't Stand Still in the Sky assembles scholars, music writers, industry workers, and musicians, who offer a range of opinions and experience of the nature of fame. The collection focuses on commerce, the crowd, performance and image, history and memory, and romance. Contributors discuss black women icons, love-songs, the legacy of the blues, the image of the tortured rock star, MTV, the politics of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the joy of line-dancing, and more.

The contributors are James Bernard, Anthony DeCurtis, Katherine Dieckmann, Chuck Eddy, Paul Gilroy, Daniel Glass, Lawrence Grossberg, Jessica Hagedorn, Kathleen Hanna, James Hannaham, Dave Hickey, Jon Langford, Greil Marcus, Angela McRobbie, Paul D. Miller (a.k.a. DJ Spooky), Barbara O'Dair, Ann Powers, Toshi Reagon, Simon Reynolds, Robert Santelli, Jon Savage, Danyel Smith, Arlene Stein, Deena Weinstein, and Ellen Willis.

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Editorial Reviews

David Toop
With so many vengeful and disillusioned music critics riding the ranges on high horses, one might expect a book to emerge out of the desperation. This is probably it, the most dispiriting music read since Ronin Ro's chronicle of Death Row Records.... Despite entertaining pieces by Jon Savage, Chuck Eddy, and a few others, I can't imagine what purpose this volume serves except as a massive overdose of downers.
Bookforum
Library Journal
Most of the papers in this collection were presented at a February 1997 conference in New York, arranged by editors Kelly and McDonnell as a forum to explore how and why myths evolve around today's popular music. Kelly, director of publications and special projects at the Dia Center for the Arts, and McDonnell, until recently the music editor of the Village Voice, assembled a diverse group that included university professors, makers of music videos, punk rockers, magazine editors, and critics. The selections, chiefly focused on rock music, reflect this mix. Not altogether scholarly in tone, particularly because some of the contributors can be rather blunt in their choice of descriptive language, this exploration of the myths of popular music is a worthy endeavor. A comprehensive bibliography at the end, which includes works by several of the contributors, should prove a useful tool for more in-depth study. Recommended for academic and large music collections.--Kathleen Sparkman, Baylor Univ., Waco, TX
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780415198707
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 5/1/1999
  • Pages: 288

Meet the Author

Karen Kelly is Director of Publications and Special Projects at Dia Center for the Arts.

Until recently the music editor at the Village Voice, Evelyn McDonnell is the coeditor of Rock She Wrote, and author of a history of the musical Rent.

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Table of Contents

A Note on the Series 8
Preface 10
Introduction: All This Useless Beauty 16
Commerce
Lost in the Supermarket: Myth and Commerce in the Music Business 30
Thinking with Music 36
Concealing the Hunger 50
Art Versus Commerce: Deconstructing a (Useful) Romantic Illusion 56
Performance and Image
Re: Creation 72
Bela Lugosi's Dead and I Don't Feel So Good Either: Goth and the Glorification of Suffering in Rock Music 78
MTV Killed the Music Video Star 88
Same As It Ever Was? Rock Culture. Same As It Ever Was! Rock Theory. 98
On Not Playing Dead 122
The Crowd
Cinderella at the Headbanger's Ball 134
The Sound of the Crowd 144
Crowds and Freedom 152
Dark Carnival 160
Romance
Love Only Known 176
I'll Have to Say I Love You in a Song 182
Freedom Songs, Love Songs 192
Ecstasy Is a Science: Techno-Romanticism 198
Between a Hard Rock and a Velvet Elvis: Fatal Attractions in Rock Iconography 206
Rock Against Romance: Gender, Rock 'n' Roll, and Resistance 214
History and Memory
Keeping Time 230
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum: Myth, Memory, and History 236
Across the Great Divide: Rock Critics, Rock Women 244
Music for Gangsters and (Other) Chameleons 252
Analogues of Mourning, Mourning the Analog 260
Bibliography 272
List of Contributors 279
Photo Credits and Permissions 284
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