Beyond the Dance

Study Day on the subject of Electronic Dance Music

Keele University
22 May 2008

Keynote Speakers:

  • Dr Hillegonda Rietveld (London South Bank University)
  • Dr Rupert Till (University of Huddersfield)

Research students from the UK and abroad are invited to submit proposals for papers and compositions related to Electronic Dance Music/Electronica.

Calls are also to be found on the Study Day website

If you have any questions regarding the Calls or the Study Day, please contact Rupert Till

Musicology in the contemporary societies

Meeting for students in musicology and young musicologists
ESMUC, Barcelona, 8-10 May 2008

The students in musicology of the Escola Superior de Música de Catalunya (ESMUC) organize a meeting for students and young musicologists, in the School. The aim is to share questions and interests about our discipline and to create a web of communication that allows for the collaboration and interchange between us. Among other things we will discuss subjects like musicologists’ labor market and current curriculums of the discipline.

You will find more information in the School’s website. If you have any doubt contact info.jornades@esmuc.net.

Bad Vibes

The hunt for the worst sound in the world

Fingernails scraping down a blackboard… the scream of a baby… your neighbour’s dog barking: what is the worst sound in the world? This is what this website has been trying to find out:
Vote for the worst sound

Acoustic science is concerned with the production, transmission, manipulation and reception of sound, from unwanted traffic noise to beautiful music. Acoustics is about both the physical properties of sound waves and the reaction of humans. This website is interested in the often complex ways in which people perceive and interpret sounds. The aim is to increase awareness of sound psychology by examining what makes a sound unpleasant to hear. Your votes on the site will also give us an insight into what is the worst sound in the world, and maybe why it is the worst sound.

The project is being led by Prof. Trevor Cox of Salford University’s Acoustic Research Centre.

Improvisation, Community and Social Practice

Call for papers

Paper proposals are invited for an international, interdisciplinary conference on Text, Media and Improvisation, to be held at McGill University in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, on June 21 and 22, 2008. This conference is organized by members of an inter-university research project entitled Improvisation, Community and Social Practice.

While papers may touch on a wide range of themes related to the conference title, areas of concern might include the following:

  • problems in the notation and description of improvisatory practice;
  • cross-media, multimedia or intermedial improvisatory practices;
  • the status of improvised practice as text or discourse;
  • the relationship of sonic and graphic forms in improvisation;
  • improvised practice and cultural memory;
  • social and technological issues in the transmission and reception of improvisational practice.
  • While musical improvisation will be a core theme of the conference, papers on improvisation in relation to other cultural and social practices are welcome. Proposals for papers should include a title, the name and affiliation of the author and an abstract of 300-400 words. Please send proposals by January 31, 2008 to Will Straw

    Popular Music and place in contemporary Latin America

    SLAS Conference
    March 28-30
    University of Liverpool

    Call for papers

    Music is a present element in the life of individuals living as part of communities and nations. Music in Latin America holds a rich variety of expressions originated within and outside the region. In an expansive trend of cultural globalisation, the study of music in its relationship to place and identity becomes a tricky task. This panel invites paper proposals by researchers working in the field of popular music in contemporary Latin America. Special interest is drawn to topics which relate to the complexities of the relationship between music and nation, identity, and memory.

    Deadline for proposal submission 10th of February (Please not that you need to register to the conference no later than the 15 th of February).

    If you would like to present on this panel please send an abstract to Violeta Mayer

    Information on www.slas.org.uk/events.htm#conf08

    Music and the idea of the North

    Call for papers

    Music and the idea of the North

    6-7 September 2008
    Venue: Sullivan Room, Leeds Town Hall

    A conference to mark the 150th anniversary of the opening of Leeds TownHall, hosted by: The Institute of Northern Studies, Leeds Metropolitan University Leeds University Centre for English Music (LUCEM), University of Leeds Leeds International Concert Season Opera North

    On 6 September 1858, Queen Victoria travelled to Leeds by rail to open the new town hall, built to an ambitious prize-winning design by the young Hull architect Cuthbert Brodrick. In the festivities which unfolded over her two-day visit, music played a prominent role, from the 32,000 Sunday-school children who sang hymns as the procession passed, to the massed choral forces which delivered the Hallelujah Chorus at the climax of the ceremony itself. In the decades that followed, Leeds Town Hall became one of the most widely recognised emblems of civic pride in the north of England, and a prestigious venue for the festival premières of works such as Edward Elgar’s Caractacus, William Walton’s Belshazzar’s Feast, and Ralph Vaughan Williams’s Sea Symphony.

    To celebrate the 150th anniversary of the opening of the town hall, LUCEM and the Institute of Northern Studies present a two-day conference addressing connections between music and global northern identities: how does music express ideas of ‘the north’ and ‘northerliness’, and how have musical cultures been shaped by the dynamics of north vs south?

    Papers are invited on any aspect of music and the north, but are particularly encouraged on the following themes:

  • music and northern landscapes;
  • northern venues and institutions for music;
  • regional variation in audiences, markets, and consumption of music;
  • musical tensions between north and south (within nations, regions, cities, etc.);
  • cultural policy and regeneration;
  • comparative studies of music in northern centres;
  • music and ethnic-minority communities;
  • popular, folk, and traditional musics;
  • northern styles and genres;
  • music, industrialisation, and civic identity;
  • music, politics, and radicalism.
  • Proposals (up to 200 words) for papers of c. 20 minutes’ duration should be sent by 31 March 2008 to the programme committee:
    Professor Tony Collins, Leeds Metropolitan University
    Dr Rachel Cowgill, University of Leeds
    Professor Dave Russell, Leeds Metropolitan University
    Professor Derek Scott, University of Leeds

    Our keynote speakers will be:
    Professor Sherrill E. Grace, University of British Columbia, author of Canada and the Idea of North (McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2001)
    Professor Peter Davidson, University of Aberdeen, author of The Idea of North (Reaktion, 2005)

    Further details will be posted on the LUCEM and Institute of Northern Studies websites in due course.

    Psytrance: Local Scenes and Global Culture

    Call for contributors for an edited collection

    Psytrance: Local Scenes and Global Culture
    Edited by Graham St John

    This volume seeks contributions to the study of psytrance (psychedelic trance) culture. In particular, it will feature research attending to psytrance as a product of intersecting local and global trajectories. International and interdisciplinary, the collection will host contributions from scholars researching psytrance in worldwide locations, employing various methods, within multiple disciplines: including anthropology, sociology, cultural studies, media studies, ethnomusicology and studies in religion.
    Rooted in Full Moon parties held on the beaches of Goa, India, in the 1970s and 1980s and incubated within “Goa Trance” scenes flourishing around the world in the mid-1990s, psytrance culture mushroomed globally over the past ten years. Inheriting from ecstatic and visionary pursuits of 1960s psychedelia, sharing music production technologies, DJ techniques and the culture of electronic dance music scenes, and harnessing the communication capabilities of the internet, psytrance would develop distinctive sonic and visual aesthetics, organizations and events, discourse and practice. This cultural proliferation would depend upon the growth of exotic sites of travel, exchange and performance (from Goa to Koh Phangan, Thailand, Bahia to Bali, Ibiza to Nevada’s Burning Man and so on). With events attracting enthusiasts from dozens of nations, in the early 2000s psytrance festivals would become what are likely the most culturally diverse music and dance events on the planet. By 2008, psytrance music, style, and texile fashions are evident in scenes the world over, with the music and culture translated among populations across Europe, in Israel, North America, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, South America, Mexico, Japan, and elsewhere.

    Possible themes to be explored in the collection:

  • The roots of psytrance and the development of electronic trance music.
  • The hybridization of aesthetics, genres, and subcultures in psytrance culture.
  • The role of new communications media and music technologies in production, performance and culture.
  • Globalization and psytrance music and culture.
  • The cultural economy of psytrance.
  • Gender, race, class and psytrance.
  • Psytrance and counterculture.
  • Psychedelics, entheogens, and the trance experience.
  • The trance dance “experience” illuminated performance and/or trance theory.
  • Sonic/visual appropriation/sampling.
  • Trance carnivals and transgression.
  • Pilgrimage and festivals.
  • Fandom, and trance enthusiasts.
  • New spirituality, visionary culture, and psytrance.
  • Distinctions between “travellers” and “tourists”.
  • Theories of subculture, neotribalism, scenes, and psytrance.
  • Contradictions and hypocrisy within psytrance countercultures.
  • While the volume will address these and other themes, contributors should keep in mind the principal objective of the collection: to investigate the local, regional, or national translations of psytrance, on the one hand, and its global character on the other. Chapters will at the very least attend to either the local or global dimensions of psytrance music and culture. Submissions focusing on the interfacing of local/global dimensions will be especially appreciated.

    Interested contributors should send a 250-300 word abstract to Graham St John by May 1 2008. Please send abstract and direct questions to Graham

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    British Library Lectures in Musicology 2007/8

    Royal Holloway
    British Library Lectures in Musicology 2007/8

    The 2007-8 lectures, ‘Rock and British Musical Culture 1955-2005’, will be delivered by Prof. Simon Frith (University of Edinburgh).

    Sponsored by the Department of Music, Royal Holloway, University of London and supported by the British Library.

    Lectures take place on the following Wednesdays from 6 pm to 7 pm at the British Library Conference Centre.
    Admission is free, without ticket.

    23 and 30 January, 6, 13, and 27 February, and 5 March 2008
    Lectures

    History of Stardom Reconsidered Vol 1

    New Publication Series on Popular Culture

    Vol 1. History of Stardom Reconsidered

    The International Institute for Popular Culture (IIPC) is happy to announce the launching of a new refereed online series on popular culture. It publishes monographs, edited collections and conference proceedings, and it is open for all scholars of the field.

    The first volume History of Stardom Reconsidered can be downloaded as pdf files at http://iipc.utu.fi/publications.html