Music - Journal Articles

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    Trapping ecosystems: Apeshit’s fugitive politics of post/coloniality
    (University of California Press, 2023-03-01) Garrido Castellano, Carlos; Rollefson, J. Griffith
    On June 16, 2018, Beyoncé and Jay-Z released “Apeshit”—a trap-styled hip hop track featuring a chorus of “I can’t believe we made it / Have you ever seen the crowd going apeshit?” The much-commented-on music video for the track was framed as a hip hop takeover of the world’s most visited museum—Paris’s Louvre—featuring pop’s reigning power couple, marketed as “The Carters,” making themselves at home with a collection of dancers in flesh-colored black, brown, and beige bodysuits. While the video was generally received through the split-screen frame of either a cutting decolonial takedown of this monument to Western civilization or the ultimate in money-flaunting bling spectacle, a more subtle and complex set of issues is at play. This article examines the deep historical ambivalences at play in this pop cultural artifact. Employing multi-modal methodologies that combine visual and musical arts perspectives articulated via the frames of postcolonial studies, this analysis theorizes the cultural “traps” in effect. Ranging from the track’s “trap” sonic production and lyrical rhetoric of escape (“we made it”), to the historical trap of musealized colonial plunder and the Louvre’s labyrinthine, oft-subterranean floor plan, to the “trappings” of consumption, bourgeois self-making, and aesthetic contemplation, we seek to illustrate how this socio-cultural text destabilizes Enlightenment universalism and its public/private split.
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    Networking global hip hop knowledges: The CIPHER method
    (University of Illinois Press, 2023) Rollefson, J. Griffith; Moses, Warrick; Ng, Jason; Marks, Patrick; Gamble, Steven; McCabe, Ophelia
    CIPHER: Hip Hop Interpellation is a global hip hop knowledge mapping project using ethnographic, digital, and arts practice research methods to better understand the emergences and flows of the culture’s deeply local yet immanently global intertextualities. In this collaborative article, we network and develop ideas from six of CIPHER’s global hip hop researchers, elaborating the project in method as well as theory. In so doing, we model our community-engaged CIPHER method of tracking thematic, conceptual, and archetypal relationships, presenting preliminary findings in four interrelated case studies: examples of hip hop knowledge transfer that evidence hip hop’s generative glocal dialogue.
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    People and sounds: Filming African music between visual anthropology and television documentary
    (SIBE Sociedad de Etnomusicología, 2007) D'Amico, Leonardo
    Watching music, and not only listening to or writing about it, is a priority to deepen in the knowledge of traditional music both in Europe and elsewhere. Since visual anthropology was born, there have been different ways to convey this idea. Through a review of the documentary films produced from the fifties until the present time, the paper shows the historical changes on the film industry priorities with regard to world music portrayals. The dialectal tension between fictional and ethnographic approaches has been a constant. This paper supports the premise that auteur films can reach ethnomusicological level, although not being scientific, and have an added poetical value of great help in this field.
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    La culture musicale traditionelle des Garifuna
    (Ateliers d'ethnomusicologie, 2000-01-01) Penedo, Ismael; D'Amico, Leonardo
    The Garifuna are the descendants of Caribe Rojos Indians who occupied certain islands of the Lesser Antilles before the arrival of Christopher Columbus, as well as runaway and shipwrecked African slaves. Also known as Black Caribbeans, they represent one of the most unique fusions between African groups and indigenous cultures of Latin America. Music plays a fundamental role in Garifuna culture. The traditional musical system bears witness to this dual African and Amerindian heritage, the product of a cultural recreation resulting from a tortuous historical process and ethnic and cultural hybridization. Despite the pressures of numerous forced exoduses and the insidious process of modernization and emigration which threatens the bases of their culture and their ethnic identity, the Garifuna have managed to keep their music and their religion alive within a political reality and often unstable economy. Through them it is still possible to collect the most "authentic" part of their culture.
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    Scoring Alien Worlds: World music mashups in 21st-Century tv, film and video games
    (Pejabat Karang Mengarang (UPSI Press), 2021-08-21) Stock, Jonathan P. J.
    This article provides three case studies of the use of world music resources to build alien worlds in mainstream screen media with Sci-Fi or Fantasy settings. The case studies—the TV series Battlestar Galactica: Blood and Chrome, the film Avatar and the Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game (MMORPG) video game World of Warcraft— show how composers and associated music professionals in the early twenty-first century increasingly draw on such sonic materials to generate a rich sense of sonic otherness and note the means they employ to sidestep such music’s existing geographical and cultural references. Each case study explores a contrasting subject position—composer, music consultant and consumer—to better trace not only the creation of such soundtracks but also what senses disparate groups of ordinary listeners subsequently make of them. The examples suggest that outside the sphere of big-budget cinema there is a growing confidence in both the creation and reception of such sonic projections, and that, when sufficiently attracted by what they hear, listeners may actively seek out ways to follow-up on the expressive characterisations put forward in such soundtracks. Three broad types of mashup are uncovered, those that work with world music ingredients by insinuation, integration and creolisation.