MUSIC AND TIME, OR: THE INESCAPABLE PRESENT (?)

In case you missed it, my essay on the popular music of the great recession was published on Sounding Out! a couple of weeks ago. I’m really happy with how it turned out, and really grateful for everyone who’s taken some time to read it. As you may be able to tell from that piece, … Continue reading MUSIC AND TIME, OR: THE INESCAPABLE PRESENT (?)

ONTOLOGY AND MUSIC

Ever since I first read it in the spring of last year, I have returned time and again to Marie Thompson’s brilliant essay, “Whiteness and the Ontological Turn in Sound Studies” (2017), not only because it lays out an incisive argument against a certain strain of thinking in sound studies, but also because of its … Continue reading ONTOLOGY AND MUSIC

BRIEF THOUGHT ON THE HIGH/LOW DISTINCTION

Brief thought: most cultural studies scholars, perhaps excepting those coming from a more rigid, Frankfurt-school perspective, accept that the modernist distinction between high and low art has completely collapsed. Question: is this collapse so forceful as to have inverted the equation? Follow up: particularly with the question of radical politics, it now seems that the … Continue reading BRIEF THOUGHT ON THE HIGH/LOW DISTINCTION

SMALL MUSIC (?)

Right now I’m thinking a lot about music that doesn’t reach many people. For many music scholars, one of the key reasons that music is important to study is in how it contributes to the battle over hegemony or the contestation over meaning. Music articulates what we might call its “meanings” (but which are complex … Continue reading SMALL MUSIC (?)

M/Bake Yourself

People say that baking is scientific, but I don’t think that’s an accurate way to describe baking bread. Baking bread is improvisatory, in that it requires knowing the process well enough to be able to respond when circumstances change. The state of your starter, the temperature outdoors and in, the time you have available, and … Continue reading M/Bake Yourself