ERIC Number: ED312709
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1989-May
Reference Count: N/A
Technology, Sound and Popular Music.
The ability to record sound is power over sound. Musicians, producers, recording engineers, and the popular music audience often refer to the sound of a recording as something distinct from the music it contains. Popular music is primarily mediated via electronics, via sound, and not by means of written notes. The ability to preserve or modify organized sound is a means of controlling sound independent of its creation or creator. Recording enables the fixation of music based on improvisation, one of popular music's most important characteristics. Recording technology has greatly affected the recreation of studio sound in a performance setting--it is now common for a group to make a digital sample of the sounds created in the studio and use those in performance. Popular music production has traditionally been concerned with finding new sounds and reconfiguring old ones. This search for new sounds is at the heart of modern musical instrument technology. Authenticity is again at stake, for there is a rift between those who create their own sounds and those who buy others' sounds. Record producers as well as the identity of a group or artist can be associated with sound. Recording technology, as the means by which sound is manipulated and reproduced, is the site of control over sound, and therefore the site of musical and political power in popular music. (Thirty-six notes are included.) (MG)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the International Communication Association (39th, San Francisco, CA, May 25-29, 1989).