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My Music: Explorations of Music in Daily Life (Music/Culture) Paperback – May 15, 1993
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From Library Journal
This book could serve as a Rorschach test for the reader; many will applaud it as a celebration of diversity, while some may see it as further evidence of the decline of Western civilization. People of all ages from Buffalo, New York were asked, in essence, "What is music about for you?" The book offers 41 of their answers. While it is impossible to categorize the responses, a few generalizations can be drawn. "Classical" music is generally marginal to people's lives. Instead, people identify with different popular styles, depending on age, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status. The Grateful Dead, New Age, Country and Western, and Rap music are all diverse, highly symbolic styles worn as badges by their devotees. This book makes an important, stimulating contribution to an exciting area of study: the sociobiology of music. Recommended for academic lib raries.
- E. Gaub, Villa Maria Coll., Buffalo,
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
The trick is that you, the reader, are left free to wander among these interviews and then construct your own hypotheses, make your own connections, draw your own conclusions. You may find a fundamental unity in the variety of human experiences described here. Or you may be struck by the ways in which the influences of age, gender, race, or historical context (the study was done several years ago) manifest themselves here.
I often recommend this book to college students struggling to find a focus for their introductory fieldwork in ethnomusicology. Will this reading help them narrow their focus? Will it provide them with ready-made theoretical models? No and no. It does enable them to see the value in NOT putting on one's analytical blinders too early in the process. It does remind them NOT to ask leading questions, NOT to stifle their garrulous or digressive respondents, and NOT to hesitate in changing their approach if the situation suggests it. And those are good lessons for any student, of almost any subject, to absorb.