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Subject: Music Studies

Blues in the 21st Century: Myth, Self-Expression and Trans-Culturalism

Edited by Douglas Mark Ponton, University of Catania, Italy and Uwe Zagratzki, University of Szczecin, Poland

March 2020 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-634-8
Availability: In stock
226pp. ¦ $49 £37 €42

The book is the fruit of Douglas Mark Ponton’s and co-editor Uwe Zagratzki’s enduring interest in the Blues as a musical and cultural phenomenon and source of personal inspiration. Continuing in the tradition of Blues studies established by the likes of Samuel Charters and Paul Oliver, the authors hope to contribute to the revitalisation of the field through a multi-disciplinary approach designed to explore this constantly evolving social phenomenon in all its heterogeneity. Focusing either on particular artists (Lightnin’ Hopkins, Robert Johnson), or specific texts (Langston Hughes’ Weary Blues and Backlash Blues, Jimi Hendrix’s Machine Gun), the book tackles issues ranging from authenticity and musicology in Blues performance to the Blues in diaspora, while also applying techniques of linguistic analysis to the corpora of Blues texts. While some chapters focus on the Blues as a quintessentially American phenomenon, linked to a specific social context, others see it in its current evolutions, as the bearer of vital cultural attitudes into the digital age. This multidisciplinary volume will appeal to a broad range of scholars operating in a number of different academic disciplines, including Musicology, Linguistics, Sociology, History, Ethnomusicology, Literature, Economics and Cultural Studies. It will also interest educators across the Humanities, and could be used to exemplify the application to data of specific analytical methodologies, and as a general introduction to the field of Blues studies.

Forms of Performance: From J.S. Bach to M. Alunno (1972-)

Edited by Michael Maul, Bach Archive Leipzig, Germany and Alberto Nones, Conservatory of Music of Gallarate; Associazione Europea di Musica e Comunicazione (AEMC), Italy

October 2019 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-824-3
Availability: In stock
85pp. ¦ $36 £27 €31

Today, Bach is one of the most revered and studied figures of classical music, despite there being a time in which he was almost forgotten. Divided into two sections, this volume explores research on J.S. Bach and more broadly examines the topics of music and performance studies; with the latter focusing on composers active today, such as Marco Alunno, or those from the recent past who are lesser-known and performed, such as Pietro Cimara and Leo Ornstein. Following from Nones’s (ed.) previous publication Music as Communication: Perspectives on Music, Image and Performance (ABE, 2018), this work provides a rather unique contribution as a choral attempt at exploring performance today. The intention of this book and the downloadable audio content, with live recordings of the music explored at the conference from which the volume originated, is to inspire fresh approaches to the study of a monument like Bach, while also encouraging original research of modern composition and performance. Recordings of the performances given over the two days of the conference serve either to clarify arguments made in the papers or to attest to the music explored more generally. This volume is founded on the belief that the history of music is comprised of many figures, some of whom are undeservedly forgotten, and that our understanding of and approach to music is simultaneously shaped by the past and directed by the continual evolution of sounds and attitudes of the present. Examining music styles from baroque (Bach) to contemporary (Alunno), Forms of Performance will be of particular interest to Bach and performance studies scholars, as well as advanced researchers and PhD students in this field.

Forms of Performance: From J.S. Bach to M. Alunno (1972-) (Audio CD Edition)

Edited by Michael Maul, Bach Archive Leipzig, Germany and Alberto Nones, Conservatory of Music of Gallarate; Associazione Europea di Musica e Comunicazione (AEMC), Italy

October 2019 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-857-1
Availability: In stock
85pp. ¦ $48 £36 €41

Today, Bach is one of the most revered and studied figures of classical music, despite there being a time in which he was almost forgotten. Divided into two sections, this volume explores research on J.S. Bach and more broadly examines the topics of music and performance studies; with the latter focusing on composers active today, such as Marco Alunno, or those from the recent past who are lesser-known and performed, such as Pietro Cimara and Leo Ornstein. Following from Nones’s (ed.) previous publication Music as Communication: Perspectives on Music, Image and Performance (ABE, 2018), this work provides a rather unique contribution as a choral attempt at exploring performance today. The intention of this book and the downloadable audio content, with live recordings of the music explored at the conference from which the volume originated, is to inspire fresh approaches to the study of a monument like Bach, while also encouraging original research of modern composition and performance. Recordings of the performances given over the two days of the conference serve either to clarify arguments made in the papers or to attest to the music explored more generally. This volume is founded on the belief that the history of music is comprised of many figures, some of whom are undeservedly forgotten, and that our understanding of and approach to music is simultaneously shaped by the past and directed by the continual evolution of sounds and attitudes of the present. Examining music styles from baroque (Bach) to contemporary (Alunno), Forms of Performance will be of particular interest to Bach and performance studies scholars, as well as advanced researchers and PhD students in this field.

Critique of Authenticity

Edited by Thomas Claviez, University of Bern, Switzerland et al.

September 2019 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-754-3
Availability: In stock
329pp. ¦ $67 £50 €57

The volume provides a critical assessment of the concept of authenticity and gauges its role, significance and shortcomings in a variety of disciplinary contexts. Many of the contributions communicate with each other and thus acknowledge the enormous significance of this politically, morally, philosophically and economically-charged concept that at the same time harbors dangerous implications and has been critically deconstructed. The volume shows that the alleged need or desire for authenticity is alive and kicking but oftentimes comes at a high price, connected to a culture of experts, authority and exclusionary strategies.

Exploring Xenakis: Performance, Practice, Philosophy

Edited by Alfia Nakipbekova, University of Leeds, UK

March 2019 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-323-1
Availability: In stock
146pp. ¦ $41 £31 €35

Considered to be one of the most revolutionary composers of the twentieth century, Iannis Xenakis pushed the boundaries of classical music. As a largely self-taught composer, Xenakis drew from his technical training in engineering and architecture to produce music that had the ability to both unnerve and enrapture his audiences. Motivated by his intense study of many scientific disciplines, he employed the mathematical rules of the natural world to test the traditional rules of counterpoint and harmony, and to explore the spatial texture of sound, colour and architecture. The Romanian-born Greek-French composer transformed twentieth century classical music for decades to come, leaving behind an undeniable legacy that continues to inspire and even shock listeners to this day. By approaching Xenakis’s creative output from a variety of perspectives, the contributors to this edited volume seek not only to situate Xenakis’s music within a larger cultural, social and political context but also to shed light on contemporary issues surrounding his work. Each chapter focuses on a different aspect of Xenakis’s music (in the context of particular works) and musical philosophy: mathematical, structural, performative, as well as the genesis of his compositional style and distinctive sound. Xenakis’s artistic presence on the contemporary music scene, his political influence during the tumultuous protests in Paris ’68, and his first piano composition, Herma, are also explored in-depth providing new insights into the life and work of this avant-garde figure. This book will appeal to contemporary music researchers, students and scholars and may also be of interest to artists, performers and composers, alike.

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