The popularity of the motion picture soundtrack O Brother, Where Art Thou? brought an extraordinary amount of attention to bluegrass, but it also drew its share of criticism from some aficionados who felt the album’s inclusion of more modern tracks misrepresented the genre. This soundtrack, these purists argued, wasn’t bluegrass, but “roots music,” a new and, indeed, more overarching category concocted by journalists and marketers. Why is it that popular music genres like these and others are so passionately contested? And how is it that these genres emerge, coalesce, change, and die out?
In Genre in Popular Music, Fabian Holt provides new understanding as to why we debate music categories, and why those terms are unstable and always shifting. To tackle the full complexity of genres in popular music, Holt embarks on a wide-ranging and ambitious collection of case studies. Here he examines not only the different reactions to O Brother, but also the impact of rock and roll’s explosion in the 1950s and 1960s on country music and jazz, and how the jazz and indie music scenes in Chicago have intermingled to expand the borders of their respective genres. Throughout, Holt finds that genres are an integral part of musical culture—fundamental both to musical practice and experience and to the social organization of musical life.
|Publisher:||University of Chicago Press|
|Edition description:||New Edition|
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.80(d)|
About the Author
Fabian Holt is associate professor of music and performance at the University of Roskilde.
Table of Contents
2. Roots and Refigurations
Double Session I: Reactions to Rock
A Model of Genre Transformation
3. Country Music and the Nashville Sound
4. Jazz and Jazz-Rock Fusion
Double Session II: Urban Boundaries
5. Jeff Parker and the Chicago Jazz Scene
6. A Closer Look at Jeff Parker and His Music
7. Music at American Borders
Appendix: The Jeff Parker Discography
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Fascinating read. Skipped large portions, as my interest is mainly in jazz. But the approach and analysis makes for a good thought-starter. Helped me clarify my own place in the music world.