The Pop, Rock, and Soul Reader: Histories and Debates
Publish Date: 2004-11-04
Tracing the diverse streams of American popular music from the 1920s to the present, The Pop, Rock, and Soul Reader: Histories and Debates addresses such questions as: How did the musicians who made the music explain it? Who listened to popular music and why? What was the major impression made by it on society at large? Why do some types of popular music still matter today? In this richly textured and chronologically organized anthology, well-known scholar David Brackett brings together more than 100 readings from a diverse range of sources and by writers who have played an integral part in the development of popular music criticism. He includes articles from mainstream and specialized magazines, scholarly journals, and newspapers, as well as interviews and autobiographies of musicians and other music industry insiders. Representing a wide variety of time periods, styles, and genres--and including groundbreaking criticism on disco, hip-hop, rap, and techno--the selections introduce students to important social and cultural issues raised by the study of popular music. Topics covered include the role of race, class conflict, gender roles, regional differences in the reception of popular music, and the relative value of artistry versus commerce. Extensive editorial introductions and headnotes supply context for the selections, provide links between different eras and genres, clarify the issues raised by the documents, and explain their historical significance. An ideal text for courses in popular music history, The Pop, Rock, and SoulReader: Histories and Debates will also be of interest in courses on American music, American studies, media studies, history, and sociology.