The IASPM-US Membership & Communications Committee is asking all IASPM-US members, as well as former and lapsed members, to complete this survey on the organization and its future. The survey should take about 15-20 minutes to complete. In exchange, we will be holding a drawing for 3 participating scholars to win free one-year IASPM-US membership renewals. To enter in the drawing, you will enter your email address and employment status following the completion of the survey. 3 drawings will take place to determine the 3 recipients. One of the 3 drawings will be reserved solely for students, contingent faculty, and underemployed scholars. Email addresses will not be linked to survey answers, and will only be used for drawing purposes. IASPM-US Executive Committee and Membership Committee members are not eligible for the drawings.
Please follow this link to take the survey. The survey will be open until Tuesday, September 5. Your participation will be essential to growing and improving our organization for the years to come. Thank you!
Victor Szabo, Tim Anderson, Pippin Bongiovanni, Rebekah Farrugia, and Esther Morgan-Ellis (The IASPM-US Membership & Communications Committee)
In When Genres Collide: Down Beat, Rolling Stone, and the Struggle Between Jazz and Rock (Bloomsbury, 2017), Matt Brennan (University of Edinburgh) offers a deceptively simple contention: “we cannot take for granted the fact that jazz and rock would ultimately become separate musical cultures” (p. 2). Through an in-depth analysis of the popular music press—focused primarily on Down Beat and Rolling Stone—Brennan argues that the seemingly separate genres of jazz and rock formed in relation to one another. Along the way, Brennan takes readers on an engaging journey through the history of genre discourse, convincingly demonstrating the importance of both live performance and music criticism in shaping the boundaries of genres and popular music more generally. Recently, Brennan and Monique Bourdage (Finlandia University) discussed When Genres Collide over email, focusing on the development of Brennan’s project, the broader field of popular music studies, and the music critic misfits who celebrated the blurring of jazz and rock. [Read the full post…]
In Bernstein Meets Broadway: Collaborative Art in the Time of War (Oxford University Press, 2014), Carol J. Oja explores the 1944 original Broadway production of On the Town through a number of overlapping stories: the creators’ previous influential works (including Leonard Bernstein and Jerome Robbins’ Fancy Free and Betty Comden and Adolph Green’s work in the Revuers), the careers of Japanese American ballerina Sono Osato and the African American members of the cast and orchestra, and Bernstein’s compositional process. Along the way, Oja chronicles the quick and successful collaborative efforts of the young group and their project to combine commercial and “high” arts. Elsa Marshall sat down with Oja to discuss the challenges of weaving together diverse historical narratives, the politics of race and gender in film and theater, and the importance of efforts to digitize historical black newspapers. [Read the full post…]
The current president of IASPM-US, Steve Waksman, has released this statement regarding its relationship to Wiley and the Journal of Popular Music Studies, signed by a number of former members of the JPMS editorial board:
For years now the relationship between Wiley, IASPM-US, and the editors of Journal of Popular Music Studies has been strained. As a result, we are in the process of terminating our relationship with Wiley and finding a new publisher. Unfortunately, because of the stipulations of the contract we have with Wiley, this will mean that we have to leave JPMS behind and begin a new journal more or less from scratch.
Several weeks ago, the full editorial board of JPMS, including its two current editors, Diane Pecknold and Oliver Wang, agreed to resign en masse. We did so with the understanding that this would put us in a position of strength as we conduct a search for a new publisher and work to establish a new journal dedicated to popular music studies that will better serve the membership of the organization and better reflect its intellectual mission.
Wiley has now begun to contact former editorial board members who have already given notice of their resignation, trying to invite them back into service with the journal. We are posting this announcement to make sure that all IASPM-US members and members of the broader popular music studies community understand the circumstances surrounding the status of JPMS. Any inquiries can be directed to the current IASPM-US president, Steve Waksman, or the two journal editors, Diane Pecknold and Oliver Wang.
Christine Bacareza Balance
Anthony Kwame Harrison
Deborah Pacini Hernandez
Ellie M. Hisama
Mark Anthony Neal
Robert Walser, president of IASPM-US from 2003-2005, has with Susan McClary established a major new fellowship to support scholarly work on music. The Susan McClary and Robert Walser Fellowship in Musical Study was announced by the American Council of Learned Societies on June 15, 2017. The fellowship will be awarded annually through the ACLS, and is designed to support scholars working on major research projects. Walser and McClary are both currently on the faculty at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, OH. More information about the fellowship and the application process can be found on the ACLS website: https://www.acls.org/news/06-15-2017.
In Everything in its Right Place: Analyzing Radiohead (Oxford, 2016), Brad Osborn explores how musical analysis can help reveal the processes through which listeners construct meaning. Drawing from music cognition, sound studies, and music theory, Osborn synthesizes a variety of approaches to illuminate Radiohead’s often enigmatic songs. Everything in its Right Place navigates Radiohead’s oeuvre with the familiarity of a true fan and the rigorous attention to detail expected of a music theorist. This past April, Sean Davis sat down with Osborn to discuss the challenges that accompany writing a book about Radiohead’s music, as well as the impact of Osborn’s theories on popular music discourse. [Read the full post…]
In Loft Jazz: Improvising New York in the 1970s (UC Press, 2016), Michael Heller explores the complex history of the loft jazz scene. This past March, John Petrucelli conducted an expansive interview with Heller, examining the entangled archival, social, and historical dynamics explored in the book. Loft Jazz weaves a narrative arc that relies upon the shifting socio-economic, cultural, and racial discourses within New York City as well as the spirit of self-determination and experimentalism that drove transformations in the jazz scene. [Read the full post…]
IASPM-US has released CFP for the 2018 conference. It will be held March 8-11, 2018 at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. The theme will be “Going To The Country: Pastoral-National-Musical.” Proposals will be due by Midnight by Sunday, October 1. For the full CFP, visit our conference page here; the call is also available as a flyer for circulation in PDF form.
Welcome to April! This is the first installment of the IASPM-US Website Newsletter, which will come out at the beginning of each month with announcements, updates to the website, and calls for material. [Read the full post…]
In March, Amy Coddington sat down with Jack Hamilton for a spirited and wide-ranging conversation about Jack’s recent book, Just Around Midnight: Rock and Roll and the Racial Imagination (Harvard, 2016). The book explores how rock and roll became coded as a “white” genre during the 1960s, challenging the conventional narrative that the racially inclusive style of rock and roll transformed into serious rock music through the musical breakthroughs of white individual geniuses. [Read the full post…]