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IASPMPopular Music Today: 
Objects, Practices, Approaches
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Dr. Philip Tagg High and Low, Cool and Uncool:
aesthetic and historical falsifications about music in Europe
Kirsten Kearney Playing Monopoly with the Academics
Dr. Franz Krieger One more Grammy for Whitney Houston:
annotations to musical roots and musical identity in the era of globalization
Dr. John K.Novak The Depiction of Hope in Three Christian Popular Songs
Dr. Rosemary Statelova Romany participation in the production of local popmusic in Bulgaria today: the ethomusicological approach
Dr. Lubomir Kavaldjiev The Third Wave  in Popular Music
(four cognitive models observed in the musical culture development)
Dr. Yetkin Ozer Modern Sounds and Traditional Images:
a video analysis and new trends in Turkish folk music
David Lloyd Mercury Models:
Distortion of Language and Identity in New Heavy Metal
Dr. Ulrich Dieter Einbrodt The Internet Musician. From Trackers, Sequencers, Software-Synthesizers,
Virtual Sessions and MP3 Files: Changes in music production and distribution
Yosef Goldenberg Recordings of Hebrew Folk Songs in Israel
Dr. Feza Tansug Cross-Border Flow of Popular Culture: Redefining Cultural
Boundaries and Traditions in Bulgaria and Turkey
Dr. Claire Levy Playing on Repetitive: 
Creativity in Popular Music/Culture
Barnard Turner America's Band [again]': 
the mid-seventies Beach Boys and pop music as repositioning


Dr. Philip Tagg
Institute of Popular Music, Liverpool, UK

High and Low, Cool and Uncool:
aesthetic and historical falsifications about music in Europe

The intellectual and musical canons of popular music studies often
seem to function as the reverse of the canons associated with
conventional approaches to the European art music tradition. If
the latter did not exist, popular music studies would in this
sense be unnecessary and, conversely, if no identifiable
aesthetics or practices existed within the popular sphere, the
conventional study of 'classical' music would have lost its own
raison d'etre. In short, each sphere of musical practice and
thought about music relies on the other for substantial parts of
its own perceived legitimacy. The only problem with this
'tit-for-tat' situation is that its negative interdependence of
stances is based on a series of historical falsehoods. In other
words, since conventional music studies in Europe and North
America have in many ways painted a false image of this
continent's musical practices throughout the last few centuries,
the negative print of that same image will be equally inaccurate.

My talk will firstly attempt to identify some of these historical
falsehoods in the form of widely held notions of polarity between
the two spheres. 'High and low', 'cool and uncool' are two popular
opposites, but some attention will be also paid to the question of
media ('notation v. recording'), approach ('musicological v.
sociological'), as well as to some 'commonsense' polarities
perceived in terms of 'mind v. body' and 'white v. black', etc.
Having questioned the validity of these polarities, I will discuss
the historical reasons for their construction and finish by
suggesting other, hopefully less inaccurate, ways of
conceptualising differences between musical practices.
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Kirsten Kearney
PhD student, University of Stirling, UK

Playing Monopoly with the Academics

The academics wanted a monopoly on it…they want it safe, so they draw a line
Van Morrison

This paper proposes to examine the effect of broadening the scope of ‘poetry’ to include lyrics drawn from different musical genres.  It questions the notions of hierarchy within literature and argues for an acceptance of oral poetry as a valid and integral part of the literary canon.  It deals with the concept of the crossover between poetry and song, examining the roots of the two genres and questioning the duality reflected in the two terms.  It examines the notions of orality and the privileging of text over the spoken word, drawing on material by Havelock, Ong and the useful research of Ruth Finnegan.

As a focus for the paper, I have chosen the work of Van Morrison, a singer-songwriter from Northern Ireland whose work can be considered with poets such as Bob Dylan and Leonard Cohen who have been accepted by most literary establishments.  The paper looks at the concept of popular music and how the approach of considering the popular song as literature affects our view of literature itself.  The paper argues for the acceptance of Morrison as an aural poet and concerns itself with the interaction of word, music, sound and silence within his work.

It addresses the issues of the methods involved in studying song as poetry and hopes to redress some of them.
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Dr. Franz Krieger
Institute for Jazz Research, University of Music And Dramatic Arts, Graz, Austria

One more Grammy for Whitney Houston:
annotations to musical roots and musical identity in the era of globalization

Whitney Houston is one of the most successful singers of popular music
worldwide. Already her first album of 1985 went on to sell over 23
million copies; it became the biggest selling debut and Rhythm & Blues
album by a female artist. Since then Houston published three more
albums and three soundtracks ("Bodyguard", among others) and amassed
countless awards (Grammy awards, Billboard Awards, American Music
Awards, World Music Awards and others). Till today Whitney Houston has
sold over 160 millions sound carriers.

In the course of the last Grammy Awards Houston won a grammy in the
category "Female R&B Vocal Performance" for her song "It´s Not Right
But It's Okay". This tune is an exceptional example for a worldwide
recognizable kind of music that seems to lack of an individual
musical language. A more exact investigation shows, however, that
Houston is part of a musical tradition that has its American origin in
the preachers of the black population. On that base the present
lecture demonstrates the techniques of Whitney Houston's vocal style
and compares them with the historic forerunners. Especially the
changes in musical identity and the musical consequences of the
globalization of popular music are shown.
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Dr. John K. Novak
School of Music
Northern Illinois University, DeKalb

The Depiction of Hope in Three Christian Popular Songs

During two millennia of polemics concerning music's ability or
inability  to convey or represent emotion, the emotion of hope has often

been cited in connotation with both  instrumental and texted music. This

study begins with arguments of  Mattheson, Hanslick and Meyer, and then
brings the more current debates concerning affect in music to the field
of popular music analysis. It defines hope as a thought, a  thought
process, an emotion and a virtue, and therewith, a  broader notion that
most philosophers, theologians and music theorists have usually assigned

it to be. Then,  the paper presents analyses of aspects of  three songs
from Christian popular music, all of which were made popular by the
"crossover" vocalist Amy Grant. The texts of these songs deal with
different types of hopelessness (frustration, despair and
disillusionment) which then proceed to different objects of hope.
Moreover, the paper examines the ways in which the text and form of  the

songs differ progressively as Grant successfully attempted to reach a
larger and more secular audience.
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Dr. Rosemary Statelova
BAS - IAS, Dept. of  Ethnomusicology

Romany participation in the production of local popmusic in Bulgaria today: the ethomusicological approach

There “weren’t” Gypsies in Bulgaria till 1990 at  all: there were the so called “swarthy people”, who lived in the “neighborhood” -  the  ghetto of the Roma. Now a part of them do not live in the “neighborhood” any more. They are acting vigorously on the new Bulgarian ethnopop music scene. This is one of the very rare offers on behalf of the Bulgarian Roma to take part in the cultural life of the society.  The offer was accepted, thanks God. You can’t study Gypsy music without studying the Gypsy musicians because  “substantially” there is not Gypsy music “as such”. The Gypsyness in the music is not a question of “what” but of “how”. You can’t study Roma music without studying its client, too: what matters here is the effort to make the client soft and generous. So you have to go only one way: to try to make ethnomusicology and anthropology of the recent Roma popmusic activity, that connects so easily all Balkan ethnopop musics.
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Dr. Lubomir Kavaldjiev
BAS - IAS, Information Systems in Musical Culture

The Third Wave  in Popular Music
(four cognitive models observed in the musical culture development)

Popular music emerged still at the down of the civilizations and I relate to the term in its broadest sense. As a subject of specialized scholar research it has been introduced only after the mid-20th century. Drawing on the complementary categories of the popular and the elite, I am trying to describe, explain, and prognosticate the changes in the musical development from the perspectives of different, competitive cognitive models. A starting point here is the A. Toffler’s metaphor of the three civilization waves – a model I have related to in my research work over the last three decades. I interpret this model in its liberal and optimistic aspect, preferred by its author himself. In addition, I introduce four cognitive models: three of them relate to the development (DI, GIER, SDS) and one relating to the cultural functionality (TIEM). I interpret them as complimentary in the whole field of contemporary musical culture. Here these models are discussed briefly and in the context of the status and the developments of popular music at the border between 20th and 21st centuries.
The extrapolation of all these models leads to a common conclusion which I conceptualize in the hypothesis according to which we are contemporaries of unseen in the last five centuries fundamental transition in the musical and cultural development. The history knows only two other shifts of similar significance: the emergence and the spreading in Europe of the Christian civilization and the emergence of the industrial (civic) society. From this point of view we can distinguish today at least two types of co-existing popular musics: the one of the nationally or regionally oriented industrial society and the one of the global information society. The first type is popular among audiences having attitudes to local, national, ethnic, and religious genre values, established under the power of the tradition and the market. Usually it belongs to the affirmative cultural practices and the establishment in the industrial society. The second type is popular among the “population” of the Global village and is understandable only in the context of the attitudes to the globalization.
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Dr. Yetkin Ozer
Dokuz Eylul University,Turkey

Modern Sounds and Traditional Images:
a video analysis and new trends in Turkish folk music

The concept of communication in which the idea of message occurring
between a sender and a receiver prevails has developed a framework for
the study of music video, focusing on its impact on marketing audio
production. This paper is to suggests that music video is not only a
communicative means, but also a visual expression of music that provides
musicians with another opportunity for performance. Thus, the concept of
expression  denotes here that thoughts and serntiments are put in a kind of
medium regardless whether they are communicated. The ways musicians
place themselves in their own video productions and the roles they play in
the process of production may also be considered as behaviors resulting
from their ideation and imagination related to their own musics. The paper
is to base the analysis of a single music video on the following remarks.
A survey of Turkish folk music videos in this respect helps one distinguish
two opposing trends of performance:
1. Neo-traditionalism, fostered by musicians with experience of
rural-to-urban migration, involving preservation of certain features of
traditional folk music while recognizing changes in others. In videos of
trend one can notice that video images are to illustrate their orientation
towards tradition.
2. Deauthentification, exercised by native urban musicians who perform
folk songs in a manner in which authenticity is not concerned. The trend
finds its expression in videos with images and settings mainly used by pop
singers of western orientation. Note that music video in both groups serves
to visualize discourse on performance, but, on the other hand, allow
individual musicians to develop their own strategies in the process of
Based on this framework the paper focuses on a musician from the first
group, examining his behaviors during the production of his first video
with reference to the concepts of modern and tradition. It demonstrates the
interplay between his musical and visual renderings on a traditional folk
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David Lloyd
Department of Comparative Literature, Religion,
and Film/Media Studies, University of Alberta, Canada

Mercury Models:
Distortion of Language and Identity in New Heavy Metal

In my paper I will demonstrate that contemporary heavy metal rock groups
are displaying and giving voice to postmodern qualities which are similar
to those described in critical works such as Jean Baudrillard's "Simulacra
and Simulation". The ubiquitous presence of today's communications media
has caused popular culture to be permeated and defined by
simulacra-reproductions of reproductions-and I will use the music of heavy
metal groups Korn and Deftones to show that new heavy metal points to the
paradoxes inherent in the condition of postmodernity. Among the several
facets of this music which demonstrate the pervasiveness of the postmodern
phenomena identified by critics such as Baudrillard, I will focus on the
disintegration of language and identity. The abstract/incoherent lyrics and
the intense repetition present in the music of Deftones and the non-lingual
utterances present in the music of Korn are manifestations of the vocalists
coping with a perceived drainage of meaning in their language. The semantic
coding of the lyrics/words has lost meaning due to the accelerated
circulation of words, images, and information in North American
hyper-capitalist, advertising/sign exchange, and my paper will address the
heightened emotional and corporeal texture of their vocal utterance which
reinserts meaning and indentity.
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Dr. Ulrich Dieter Einbrodt
Justus-Liebig-Universitaet Giessen
Institut fuer Musikwissenschaften, Giessen

The Internet Musician. From Trackers, Sequencers, Software-Synthesizers,
Virtual Sessions and MP3 Files: Changes in music production and distribution

Earlier (10 or more years ago), musicians who wanted to make recordings of
their music had to invest in instruments and in expensive technology such as
tape recorders, mixing consoles and effect devices. Nowadays a personal
computer with internet connexion offers exciting – and cheaper –
    The Internet contains innumerable addresses that have free or shareware
programs for download. Ranging from recording programs to trackers and
synthesizers for interactive music-making, musicians can work with these
programs and produce their own ideas. Moreover, the internet provides the
new mp3-format for audio-files which is about to revolutionize the
production and distribution market.
    So how does the typical internet musician work? He might start with
searching the software he needs. If he is a techno-freak, he will look for
trackers, if he wants to record his guitar or voice, he will look for
recording applications. Sequencers and software-synthesizers are useful for
musicians of all styles, same as audio-editing tools. Some of the shareware
programs are limited, so they can be used for about 30 days or some
functions will work only in the registered (and paid) full version, but that
does not change their usefulness.
    Having downloaded his programs, the internet musician sets to work
creating recordings or files. In case of tracking files, or sound files for
drum machines or synthesizers, he can exchange his files with those from
others musicians on the net to get further inspiration.
    When the internet musician has completed his work, he can publish it
worlwide in the net, using an mp3 audio file. No question he can offer
additional works that have to be paid for, using the free mp3 files as
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Yosef Goldenberg
PhD student, Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Librarian, Rubin Academy of Music & Dance, Jerusalem

Recordings of Hebrew Folk Songs in Israel

The so-called Hebrew folk song repertoire in Israel consists largely of
songs by known composers. It was established well before the foundation of
the state of Israel and continued to flourish after 1948. Only some of the
repertoire had already received commercial performances when it was new,
and little has survived through contemporary recordings. Most recordings of
the repertoire date from 1970s and 1980s; their release coincided with the
spread of pop and rock in Israel.
An examination of the corpus of recordings reveals an acute consciousness
of the gap between old and new. This awareness is manifested in various
ways, ranging from ironic quotations to attempts to resuscitate older
performance practices. Between these extremes, many recordings update the
atmosphere of old songs in order to make them more accessible to
contemporary audiences e.g. by making instrumentation, rhythm and harmony
more Western.
Other driving forces behind the creation of new recordings include the need
to preserve neglected songs (e.g. of pioneers' songs), legitimization of
popular culture (e.g. "street songs"), commercial potential (since the
repertoire is perceived as being culturally highbrow), and orders from
state media.
Recordings of this repertoire remained abundant until the early 1990s, but
have gradually diminished in recent years. The basic trends in the corpus
remained constant throughout the last generation. The body of work has
strong parallels in cover versions of Western classics, but nevertheless
exhibits a strong local flavor.
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Dr. Feza Tansug
College of Arts & Sciences, ARTS - Department
Koc Universitesi, Istanbul

Cross-Border Flow of Popular Culture: Redefining Cultural
Boundaries and Traditions in Bulgaria and Turkey

Aiming at integration with the world economy compels developing
countries like Bulgaria and Turkey to rely on reinterpreting and
reconstructing meanings of "imported" cultural artifacts, traditions
and symbols to cultivate national identity, and redefine cultural
boundaries. One example of this is the diffusion of American and
British influenced popular music into Turkey after World-War II.
Previous popular music in Turkey evolved from three nineteenth century
traditions: 1.) urban popular music influenced by Turkish folk songs
known as "turku," 2.) a synthetically stylized, commercial type of light
music called "piyasa musikisi," and 3.) entertainment music consisting
solely of popular songs (sharki) and dance tunes (oyun havasi, kocekce).
Modernized international traditions, on the other hand, incorporate a wide
variety of electronically-produced styles and genres produced and
distributed by the American and British recording industry, including
blues, folk, rock and roll, and punk, which have become transplanted into
     This paper examines the impact of the dissemination of popular music
transmitted into the country by the international recording industry. The
data for this paper was compiled in Istanbul and other Turkish cities in
1995 and 1996. Findings from my own, as well as previous reseach bu others
indicate that social acceptance of innovative popular music diffused into
Turkey was initiated by youth subcultures on the basis of symbolic meaning
constituted through the mass media. My most recent research has led to the
conclusion that the diffusion underwent four stages of development:
1.) consumption in the fifties, 2.) imitation in the sixties and early
seventies, 3.) deanglicization in the seventies, and 4.) reethnification
in the eighties and nineties.
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Dr. Claire Levy
BAS - IAS, History of Music

Playing on Repetitive:
Creativity in Popular Music/Culture

Though already acknowledged in modern humanities as ‘music that matters’, contemporary popular music is often studied mostly on the ground of its extra-musical rather than on its intra-musical qualities. Usually, such a neglecting is a result of the still prevailing attitude among scholars (especially in musicology) who - even ready to appreciate popular music’s social significance - note the inferiority of the ‘music itself’ and re-produce in fact a mis/wrong-understanding of the specific logic, tools, priorities, meanings and values, articulated in popular music practices. This paper aims to identify a concept, hopefully applicable in distinguishing and understanding popular music ‘as both music and culture’, which I name metaphorically playing on repetitive. Employing the concept of the ‘changing same’ (Gilroy 1993), I am going further to outline specific, priority aesthetic attitudes shifting the ideas of artistic complexity and creativity in major 20th century music practices which favor - in general and in one by no means historically accelerated way - the repetition. In addition to the obvious impact of African and African-American derived practices giving priority to the category of repetition, I consider as well the parallel fuel for such aesthetic shifts coming both from other ‘marginal’, traditional or ethnic music practices and from innovative technological flow, bringing, after all, an Alternative to Modernity, rooted in the ‘great individuality’ associated with the European Enlightenment. This alternative stimulate folk-like cultural forms, that is the repetitive rather than the shocking innovation, the playing rather than the fixed opus, the conventional rather than the autonomous, the circular rather than the linear, the dialogical rather than the monological, the shared performing and participation rather than the alienated music making, the intertextuality rather than the single textuality, the passing temporality rather than the idea of eternal universality, etc.  While being aware of the limitations of one only concept in distinguishing the peculiarities in the variety of popular music styles, the discussion on the playing on repetitive  would give possible insights into basic artistic approaches shaping the specific creativity observed in dominant styles including jazz, blues, country, rock, rap, world music, or techno, and their pop offsprings.
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Barnard Turner
National University of Singapore ,UK

'America's Band [again]':
the mid-seventies Beach Boys and pop music as repositioning

Since its modernist inception, popular music commentary has concerned
itself with aspects of reception (Adorno's "Theory about the listener,"
a clear contradiction in terms) and of repetition (Richard Middleton's
work, for example).  Even if neither of these categories has found its
definite presence and application in the form of a basal terminology for
the discipline, their intersection forms that combination of the
phenomenological and the structural that is indispensable in any
analysis. Trying to keep this juxtaposition close to my concerns,
therefore, I investigate in this paper the abiding significance for a
consideration of the globalization of American music of the rebirth of
the Beach Boys in themid-seventies, a time when they first began to be known
as "America's band", a label  which, as I hope to show, may be seen ironically,
given the international outreach and positioning of the band at this time, the
relative inactivity then of pivotal member Brian Wilson, and the band's
choice of repertoire in general and musical structures in particular.
Songs discussed will include "Sail On, Sailor" (from Holland, 1973), and
"It's O.K." (from 15 Big Ones, 1976), as well as two Brian Wilson songs
unreleased at the time "It's Over Now" and "Still I Dream of It."  Along
the way, I hope to tackle certain abiding preconceptions about the
packaging of the band and of the period's American popular music, and to
perhaps replace them with others.
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