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XXI. Edge of the World

Vince Bell University of North Texas Press PDF

  XXI 

Edge of the World

“I

don’t know the physiology of traumatic brain injury,” Stephen Jarrard says, “but the difficulty seemed to be not that Vince was not the same person but that he couldn’t remember who he had been, what he liked or didn’t like, wanted or didn’t want. If he’d done something, or thought something, or felt something, he didn’t remember it. In other words, he was himself, but he didn’t remember himself.”

Bob Sturtevant says, “Vince talked for a long time like there were two of him. He would refer to himself as ‘we.’ ‘This is what “we’re” doing today.’ There was Vince, and there was Vince the watcher. I’d ask him, ‘What have you been doing today?’ He’d say, ‘Well, we’ve been working in Music School.’”

The early part of 1984 found me feeling battle-fatigued and solemn.

Memories were filtering in piecemeal, while it remained beyond me in large part to master my emotions. Lost abilities to taste, walk, talk, balance, and recall, coupled with the pain in my arm, taunted me. But the animals were there with plenty of love to go around between old

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V The Role of Silence

Kenneth O. Drake Indiana University Press ePub

Speech after long silence; it is right.

WILLIAM BUTLER YEATS

Whether a jazz band playing sempre fortissimo, or electronic nothings piped into our ear when phoning or swathing our consciousness when shopping or dining, we become accustomed to decibels and white noise and become uneasy when we have to listen to silence. Silence is the sound of aloneness, when we become conscious of unhappiness or boredom. For the musician, silence is the sound of the inner self, the sound of concentration. As shown by the following table, Beethoven frequently notated an extended silence at the conclusion of a movement, creating a frame for the listening experience. The sonatas listed are those in which one or more movements end with a fermata over a final rest (marked *) or with a fermata over a complete measure of rest (marked **).

 

Tempo

Meter

Dynamic Level

Op. 2/1

*Allegro

ff

 

*Adagio

3/4

pp

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14. FLYIN’ SHOES

Robert Earl Hardy University of North Texas Press ePub

14

Flyin’shoes

AT A HOTEL IN DUBLIN, while on tour at the end of October 1990, Townes printed on a sheet of wrapping paper, in his usual all-capital-letter style, the lyrics to a song he titled “Ruester’s Blues,” then he signed it, wrapped a package with the paper, and sent it to his friend Danny “Ruester” Rowland in Kentucky. Ruester was always glad to hear from Townes, who was fairly good about keeping in touch as he traveled, but these lyrics were somewhat disturbing. “Don’t want to be here when the reaper comes,” the song begins; “Don’t want to hear his machine no more/Don’t care where he’s goin’/where he’s from/I just gotta be away from here.” The second verse—illustrated with Townes’ drawing of a moon with a face—is equally dark: “Tired of the rising/tired of the felling [sic]/Forgotten the moon/the sunshine too.” He goes on with a personal message offering at least some grim hope: “Seems all my friends be ripe for plantin’/Listen my friend, good luck to you.”1

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17. Back to Balboa (1957-1958)

Michael Sparke University of North Texas Press PDF

17.

Back to Balboa

(1957–1958)

Standard songs composed by Duke, like “Solitude,” “Mood

Indigo,” and “Sophisticated Lady,” performed and recorded daily by artists world-wide, assured Ellington a steady income to supplement his band earnings. Kenton had no such fall-back, and knew he had to trim his sails. French horns and guitar were out. A fifth trombone replaced the tuba, but saxes remained at four, making life no easier for Niehaus and Perkins, while the bass and drums literally comprised the regular rhythm section.

A top-selling LP would help depleted revenues, and Stan decided on a group-vocal album along the lines of the highly successful Four Freshmen (whom Kenton had helped propel to popularity). However, Stan preferred not to call in favors and use the Freshmen themselves, as that would have incurred split royalties, but instead to groom a similar group himself, which was his first big mistake of 1957. Stan’s manager, Margaret Sharpe, was a member of the famous Roger Wagner Chorale, and she knew that four men from the choir had been rehearsing after-hours as a Freshmen-styled pop quartet termed the Modern Men, and suggested them to Kenton.

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Medium 9780253015013

3 Forest and Feast: The Music Book as Metaphor

Paul Schleuse Indiana University Press ePub

Beginning with Selva di varia ricreatione (1590), Vecchi began publishing his music in large collections of pieces in a variety of genres, an approach not taken up by other composers until the rise of the concertato style in print after 1600. In the prefatory texts to Selva and to Convito musicale (1597), Vecchi explains the books’ metaphorical titles in learned and witty terms, and although these collections include a few large-scale works clearly written for performance at courtly festivities, most of the music serves the same recreational function as Vecchi’s publications in the 1580s. Both books offer a variety of genres, Vecchi explains, because variety is a source of pleasure. This argument resonates with contemporary literary debates about generic hybridity, particularly regarding the status of the pastoral tragicomedy, though Vecchi’s books crossed different sets of genre boundaries. Furthermore, both books are organized internally to reflect the principles set out in the prefaces: Selva includes groups of pieces that exemplify the categories of grave, faceto, and danzevole, which he describes in the dedication, while Convito musicale’s more complex alternation of grave and piacevole genres seeks to balance a range of affects—a goal reflected in the titular metaphor of a banquet and in the anti-Epicurean philosophy to which Vecchi alludes in the preface. Although these large and somewhat unwieldy books did not enjoy the multiple reprints of Vecchi’s successful canzonetta books, they reveal his continuing desire to cater for the contexts of recreational singing, articulating a poetic of imitation, variety, and pleasure by presenting a music book as a coherent aesthetic statement.

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19. The Restless Searcher (1960)

Michael Sparke University of North Texas Press PDF

19.

The Restless Searcher

(1960)

It must be coincidental, but Kenton greeted the start of every new decade with a fresh initiative. In 1950 it had been strings and concert music. By 1960 Stan needed the dance halls to survive, and anyway he couldn’t begin to afford the luxury of a large string section. French horns had already been found wanting, changes had already been made to both saxophone and trombone sections, and Stan loved his high trumpets too much to meddle with them. He needed a whole new sound, but was at a loss to know how to proceed. Old friends Gene Roland and

Johnny Richards were recruited to offer advice.

Meanwhile the band kept working, as did Stan’s sense of humor.

After “Love for Sale” on January 25, 1960, Kenton acknowledges the prolonged ovation from what sounds like a large crowd at Cal-Poly State

University, and observes: “It’s very nice of you to react that way. I do however want to advise you that jazz musicians are different than musicians of other forms of music. When they hear a lot of applause they immediately start thinking in terms of money and all sorts of things that are unbecoming to a non-profit organization such as this!”

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13 The Full Illusion of Reality: Repentance, Polystylism, and the Late Soviet Soundscape

Edited by Lilya Kaganovsky and Masha Sal Indiana University Press ePub

Peter Schmelz

“Both film and contemporary music are united by the idea of a super-polyphony [superpolifoniia] of space and meaning.”

—Alfred Schnittke to Elena Petrushanskaya, “Iz besed o rabote v kino”1

“Which do you think is more important in film, noises or music? For me they play an equally important role. In film, noises and music know their place.”

—Tengiz Abuladze in Margarita Kvasnetskaya, Tengiz Abuladze:

Put’ k ‘Pokaianiiu’ 2

IN A PERESTROIKA-ERA manifesto from 1988 called “Cinema without Cinema,” Russian cultural historian and critic Mikhail Yampolsky decried the focus on language in Soviet film, noting that the “Soviet film mentality” was “essentially logocentric.”3 Yampolsky argued instead for greater recognition of the total film experience, drawing attention to both sight and sound. “No less important,” he wrote, “is the sensual contact with the world on screen created by the richness of sight and sound, the rhythmic structures, and so on.”4 Yampolsky acknowledged that the technological backwardness of the Soviet film industry often led filmmakers to overlook these aspects, especially the synchronization of sight and sound, whose “inadequacy . . . also affects the plausibility of the screen world.” After the breakthrough signaled by Dolby stereo at the end of the 1970s, the mono sound of Soviet films left much to be desired. Yampolsky further excoriated Soviet filmmakers:

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9. Progressive Jazz (1947)

Michael Sparke University of North Texas Press PDF

9.

Progressive Jazz

(1947)

Several leading members of the Artistry band failed to respond to Stan’s open invitation to rejoin. Christy was very uncertain, but was persuaded by Carlos Gastel she needed more band experience in order to succeed as a single. Vido Musso’s rejection was initially seen as a blow, but soon came to be recognized as a blessing. Woody Herman’s new Herd was opening frontiers with the Four Brothers saxophone sound led by Stan Getz, and the Musso/Mussulli duo would have seemed decidedly old-fashioned by comparison. Instead, the partnership of Bob Cooper and Art Pepper heralded the modernity of West

Coast cool, while the piercing tone of George Weidler’s lead alto more than compensated for any loss of volume.

As Pete Rugolo told it, “Vido was more or less the old school, Coleman Hawkins, that type of thing. When Coop took over the solos, he was just the opposite, he was from the Stan Getz school, and that’s what those guys liked. Previously it had been pretty much the older school of playing, trumpets from the Roy Eldridge school and people like that, but after Gillespie came in all the guys started trying to play like Dizzy. But we always had high trumpet players; they could all play up to high Fs and Gs, that’s why I was able to write everybody screaming with unisons up there. I was very lucky that the guys were so good!”1

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Medium 9780253021342

4. Ma Red’s Maneuvers: Popular Theater and “Progressive” Culture

David Afriyie Donkor Indiana University Press ePub

IN 1994, THE GHANA NATIONAL THEATRE embarked upon a project to revive the concert party, then a moribund, near-century-old form of popular theater rooted in Anansesεm. Concert party theater historically drew much of its patronage from the rural peasant classes and the urban underclass. The revival of this form, conducted in collaboration with the Ghana Concert Party Union, was therefore initially conceived as a means of stimulating the country’s populist traditions, consistent with the Nkrumahist ideal of African cultural revival and with the National Theatre’s public service mission as a state-owned enterprise. However, during the following year, the National Theatre underwent a significant reorganization as part of J. J. Rawlings’s neoliberal policy shifts. In a move that was strongly criticized as a vulgar commodification of Ghanaian heritage, the funding of the Theatre was partly divested to private commercial interests. The result was a growing sentiment that the government was abandoning its responsibility to develop and protect Ghana’s native culture. This dissatisfaction created a threat against the political legitimacy of the Rawlings-led regime—and specifically, against its co-option of Nkrumah’s community-oriented cultural vision.

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6 Singing and Political Allegiance

Merih Erol Indiana University Press ePub

6    Singing and Political Allegiance

STATE SURVEILLANCE and censorship of music and popular entertainment in late Ottoman Istanbul affected a multitude of the citizens of the empire. However, conjecturally, this control sometimes particularly targeted suspect “minority” populations. Pursuing a delicate foreign policy toward the Great Powers, Abdülhamid II was careful to keep seditious and provocative public discourse under control, especially in regard to precarious regions such as eastern Rumelia, Macedonia, Crete, and so on. Thus, in the Hamidian era, concomitantly with the increased institutionalization of surveillance methods, parks, streets, entertainment places, and private houses came under the strict gaze of the state authorities. As a result, Istanbulite Greeks’ fund-raising concerts, their theatrical and musical venues, and places of entertainment came to be strictly watched over and censored. Simultaneous developments were new uses of urban space and the emerging hierarchies, growth of the public sphere, the legitimation crisis of the state, and the problem of managing rival national symbols.

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Medium 9780253357069

9. Percussion Instruments and their Usage

Jeffery Kite-Powell Indiana University Press ePub

9

Percussion Instruments and Their Usage

JOHN MICHAEL COOPER

The seventeenth century marks a curious period in the history of percussion instruments. On the one hand, the usage and performance techniques of most percussion instruments apparently remained quite stable during these years. By contrast, the kettledrums or timpani, virulently condemned by Sebastian Virdung in 1511 as “the ruination of all sweet melodies and of all music,”1 were transformed from strictly outdoor, military instruments into an important component of concerted-music ensembles, particularly in sacred music. Because of these disparate evolutions, we will consider the performance practices and musical styles associated with percussion instruments outside the kettledrum family only in general terms,2 concentrating on the developments in musical style that shaped the literature and performance practices of the timpani.

PERCUSSION

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Medium 9780253012463

5 “The Worst of Music”: Listening and Narrative in Night and Day and “The String Quartet”

Adriana L. Varga Indiana University Press ePub

Vanessa Manhire

VIRGINIA WOOLFS ACKNOWLEDGED INTEREST IN INTERDISciplinary approaches to literature, her love of music, and her assumed position as “common listener” rather than musical expert offer fruitful angles into her early fiction: her groundbreaking reworking of narrative conventions depends heavily upon her explorations of the ways in which music works, especially for its listeners.1 Woolf engages directly and critically with the social and literary norms of late nineteenth-century society, placing explicit emphasis on musical scenes as subject matter from which to build this critique, and using music to problematize the relationship between the external world and the world of the mind. This essay discusses Woolf’s treatment of music in her second novel, Night and Day (1919), and the short story “The String Quartet” (1921), focusing on scenes of musical performance as well as Woolf’s questioning of music’s representational capacities. Stylistically, these texts are polar opposites: one heavy, conventional, and Victorian, the other light, experimental, and modernist. Yet in very different ways they both explore music as a potential model for the representation of interiority. Following Pater’s idea of music as embodying the perfect relationship between form and content, Woolf draws on music as a vehicle for the exploration of language. Woolf’s development of stream-of-consciousness narrative techniques, I suggest, owes much to her thinking about the effects of listening to music, a shared social experience but one that simultaneously allows for the individual movement of the imagination.

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4 The Beginning of the National Style: 1900–the 1930s

Aida Huseynova Indiana University Press ePub

It is fairly impossible to find in the history of music any other precedent of such a smooth progression from folklore to a composed tradition.

VIKTOR VINOGRADOV, Uzeir Gadzhibekov [Uzeyir Hajibeyli] and Azerbaijani Music

The Azerbaijani composed music tradition witnessed the same historical sequence of musical styles – baroque, classical, romantic, atonal, and so forth – as Western music did, although at an accelerated pace, and in the context of East-West synthesis. These Western musical styles’ emergence in Azerbaijan resembled stretta in polyphonic music, as every new style began to evolve before the previous one had come to full fruition. Eighteenth-century European music served as the first stylistic model for Azerbaijani composers. Classical styles in particular dominated the first several decades of Azerbaijani composition, although traces of baroque styles appeared simultaneously.1 Mugham opera, created by Uzeyir Hajibeyli in the 1900s and continued by other composers, is the Azerbaijani tradition’s most significant historical parallel to baroque music. Considering that baroque was the era that saw the invention of Western opera, Azerbaijani composers’ mirroring of baroque styles and aesthetics through their own operas was a natural and appropriate, though not a consciously planned, response. Azerbaijani mugham was the genre that organically facilitated the fusion of operatic and Azerbaijani traditions, allowing native musicians to create their first pieces of composed music.

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Medium 9780253003072

12. Urban Drumming: Traditional Jembe Celebration Music in a West African City (Bamako)

ERIC CHARRY Indiana University Press ePub

RAINER POLAK

Jembe music today represents a global cultural good. Over the past half a century, thousands of professional players have proved innovative and successful in urban and transnational music markets. Contrary to common categorizations of African drum and dance performance genres as essentially rural and pre-modern (“neo-traditional” at best), jembe music has been urbanized and become part of the urban popular culture in West African cities, such as Bamako, capital of the Republic of Mali. Drummers have contributed substantially to make urban space, social relations and culture what it is in Bamako today.

The jembe drum originates from the Manden [French: Manding], a mostly rural region in southwestern Mali and northeastern Guinea (Charry 1996, 2000: 193–241). There, people have traditionally performed jembe music to animate local dance events on social, agricultural, and religious occasions. Since the early 1960s, the drum has entered the programs of state-sponsored folkloric ensembles in Guinea and Mali. It has also been part of the popular celebration culture in the greater region’s cities. The metropolitan centers of present-day jembe playing, Abidjan, Dakar, Conakry, Bobo Dioulasso, and Bamako, all are outside the instrument’s older core area of distribution (with Bamako just at the border; see map 12.1).

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III. Sweat Like a Boxer

Vince Bell University of North Texas Press PDF

  III 

Sweat Like a Boxer

T

he Old Quarter was a rundown, twostory stucco-over-brick blockhouse of a building with iron bars across broken, cloudy windows. If you played in Houston, this was the gig everyone wanted. The entrance was ten-foot-high barn doors that could not be locked without a chain and a stout two-by-four. They hung below a rusting, wrought-iron signboard swinging in the sticky humidity from the Gulf of Mexico.

The joint on the forgotten corner of Austin and Congress streets looked like an abandoned building. It was within earshot of the nightly howling that issued from behind the bars of the Harris County Jail for

Women. Across a block of broken cement making a patchwork wasteland of parking lots was what you would certainly call several floors of

America’s most pissed-off gentlewomen.

Dale Sofar, one of the owners of the Old Quarter, drove a Jeep to the club every night with a pooch named Pup next to him and a keg of beer in the back. With a water bowl behind the bar, the little dog confidently roamed the block around the club like a policeman taking names. Inside, the dog would promenade on top of the bar before falling asleep in the middle of our sets. Ownership of this four-footed

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