Arguing that music not only affects our identities but shapes them, this work explores the interpretation of popular music within a broad, interdisciplinary framework of musicology. It examines the functions of pop music within a constantly shifting social plane from the 1980s onwards, suggesting various approaches for the analysis of pop music. The author examines selected case-studies, and asks what these "pop texts" have signified for him in his particular social context, leading him to considerhow musical meaning resides in social values. He focuses on the authorial identity and the problems associated with musicological practice,
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Stan Hawkins is Associate Professor of Musicology at the University of Oslo, Norway. He is noted for his contribution to the development of popular music studies especially in the UK and Scandinavia, and is the author of analytical articles on the Pet Shop Boys, Prince, Bjork, Annie Lennox, Peter Gabriel, Arrested Development, Kraftwerk, and Madonna. In addition, he is Editor-in-Chief for Popular Musicology Online and the Norwegian chair for the International Association for the Study of Popular Music (IASPM). As a musician, he has been professionally active as a composer and performer in the fields of contemporary music and jazz.Review:
'The range of case studies provided by Hawkins offers a very real opportunity to engage with the complex array of debates surrounding identity and representation.' Dr Sheila Whiteley, University of Salford, UK 'Settling the Pop Score should prove a useful tool for the further study of musicians like Morrissey, Annie Lennox and the Pet Shop Boys. For those whose cultural memory does not reach back to the mid-1980s, this is a good introduction to questions of identity raised in videos by Madonna and Prince, whose sexual masquerades continue both to provoke and to proclaim.' Popular Music '... the book offers a set of interpretive approaches to popular music and is a welcome addition to current scholarship on the subject.' Notes '... the author's emphasis on interpreting particular pop musicians and their 'identities' is a valuable and engaging exercise.' Context
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