42nd Annual Conference | Boston, MA | 9–13 March 2016


“Welcome to Boston!” The last time SAM conference-goers heard those words was in 1984 when SAM celebrated its 10th conference. We’re delighted to welcome SAM back, although technically we’ll be welcoming you to Cambridge (only a stone’s throw from Boston if you’ve got a good arm). We have two conference hosts this year: Northeastern University and Babson College. We are extremely grateful for their support. Our conference hotel is the recently remodeled Hyatt Regency. Located right on the Charles River across from Boston University, it boasts stellar views of the city, fantastic food, and ballrooms with character.

In addition to a varied program of high quality papers, poster sessions, and lecture-recitals (a preliminary draft of which is posted on the conference website), there will be a banquet of “extra-scholarly” delights throughout the conference. The opening reception will launch the festivities on Wednesday evening from 6 to 8 p.m. in the Empress Ballroom on the fourteenth floor. Note that this is earlier than usual, to accommodate hungry travellers and those who prefer late-night dining. In addition to the usual happy reunions and formal welcomes, we’ll be celebrating the close of SAM’s Capital Campaign and honoring the inaugural winner of the Paul Charosh Independent Scholar Award.

On Thursday evening from 5:15 to 6:15 p.m. we’ll be conferring honorary membership on Terri Lyne Carrington, Grammy Award-winning drummer, composer, and band leader (check out “herstory,” videos, and biography at www.terrilynecarrington.com). The ceremony will be followed by a light reception featuring music by students from the Berklee College of Music, in the beautiful Charles View Ballroom on the 16th floor.

Gordon Chapel
Gordon Chapel at Old South Church, site of this year’s Sacred Harp gathering

When you’re done celebrating, come revel at a pub sing with George Emlen, music director of the Boston Revels. Revels was founded in Cambridge in 1971, just a few years before SAM’s first conference; since then it has spread to nine additional cities across the country. It stages seasonal celebrations that combine music, storytelling, dance, and costume from a variety of cultural traditions; tours of the Boston Harbor featuring sea shanties; and pub sings. So join us in the Aquarium Room off the bar in the Hyatt and order some bar food, a beer (stronger spirits) and raise your glass and voice in song.

Friday afternoon is Excursion Time (1:30–5:00 p.m.), and we’re making your life difficult by offering four tantalizing choices:

Museum of Fine Arts
A Friday excursion will take you to the Museum of Fine Arts, with its renovated Art of the Americas and Musical Instrument Collection, among other treasures.

Please see the conference registration for prices, and register early, since some of these events have caps on attendance.

Later on Friday, at 5:30, the sounds of marches and popular airs will waft their way through the halls of the Hyatt as the SAM Brass Band rehearses for its annual Saturday evening accompaniment to post-business meeting conviviality at the reception.

Way Down Under
Peter Krasinksi will provide organ accompaniment to Way Down East.

Friday night is the inaugural Vivian Perlis Concert in the Charles View Ballroom. The Florestan Recital Project, featuring artistic co-founder and pianist Alison D’Amato and acclaimed soprano Tony Arnold, will honor the work of Vivian Perlis with songs by some of her earliest interviewees, Charles Ives and Virgil Thomson. The rest of the recital will explore the wealth of styles that shape American song repertoire, featuring composers in the Oral History of American Music archives, as well as new voices that are expanding the canon.

Later in the evening at 9:00, you can participate in the SAM Jam. Bring an instrument, and voice, or just come to appreciate the music. A great way to end the day!

Seasoned SAM attendees know the drill for Saturday afternoon, but if you’re new to the conference, we hold our annual business meeting at 4:30, followed by conviviality and brass band music at 6 p.m., and a dinner-dance from 6:30 to 11. Our musicians for the evening are Fiddler Frank Ferrell, pianist Janine Randall, and caller Mary McGillivray, who will teach and lead us in Cape Breton dance. (If you haven’t made new friends yet by this point in the conference, you definitely will by the end of the evening!)

And now...for the weather. It’s tempting to just apologize for it and be done. But then again...who knows? Forecasters are being very cagey about their Boston winter predictions, so your best bet is to check Weather Underground (www.wunderground.com) a few days before your trip. No matter the temperature, sturdy walking shoes will keep you upright on brick sidewalks and protected from rain / melting snow / ice (hopefully not all three at once!).

Vivian Perlis
Vivian Perlis’s Oral History of American Music Project will be honored Friday night with a recital by the Florestan Recital Project. Pictured here with Aaron Copland and Leonard Bernstein.

The Hyatt is located in a somewhat desolate but perfectly safe neighborhood, home to big buildings and lots. Bustling Kendall Square is 1.5 miles away, and the heart of MIT is just under a half mile. The hotel will have shuttles available to take you to these nearby destinations. But you won’t be able to walk out the door of the Hyatt and find a Starbucks or deli. The hotel is preparing a buffet for convenient and quick lunching, but just be aware that if you want to go off-site you should factor in the time.

We would like to extend profound thanks to the educational institutions that have made generous donations to help fund this conference. In alphabetical order these are: Babson College (co-host), Berklee College of Music, Harvard University, Merrimack College, Northeastern University (co-host), and Wheaton College. And if you see a member of the Local Arrangements Committee, please give them a word of thanks: Paula Bishop (Boston University), Carolyn Brunelle (SUNY Buffalo), Rebecca Marchand (Boston Conservatory), Laura Moore Pruett (Merrimack College), Emmett Price (Northeastern University), Ann Sears (Wheaton College), and Paul Wells (who arranged for our Saturday night musicians). We gratefully acknowledge the guidance of Executive Director Mariana Whitmer, SAM President Charles Garrett, and Conference Planner Joice Waterhouse Gibson.

And just in case this isn’t enough information for you, check out our “unofficial” conference website: samboston2016.com, where you can find the answer to trivia like, “Who was the first American-born conductor to direct the Boston Symphony Orchestra?”

Sandra Graham, Chair
Chair, Local Arrangements Committee

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SAM/2.0 at $989,207: $1-Million Goal in Sight!

The Society’s first-ever endowment campaign, SAM/2.0, has reached $989,207, and we are perilously close to our $1-million goal! The SAM/2.0 Campaign has been a four-year endeavor to enhance the Society’s ability to fund, promote, and reward new scholarship in all the music of the Americas. To date six new fellowships have been endowed, and there will be much to celebrate in March.

But before we can shout “huzzah” and quaff our draughts of shrub in Beantown, we need to close the $10,793 gap and fully endow funds that still need your attention. With just three months left in the campaign, time is running out—like sands through the hourglass—to become a part of this exciting chapter in the Society’s history.

To date 333 of the Society’s 922 members have stepped up to the plate and donated to SAM/2.0. Just imagine what the Society could do if every member joined the team! Pledge payments with a monthly charge on a credit or debit card can extend beyond the campaign’s official end date. We hope that by the end of the Campaign, the donor list for SAM/2.0 (www.sam2point0.net) will include every member of the Society.

The SAM/2.0 Campaign To Date:
Total bequests, donations, and pledges: $989,207
Members who are donors: 333
Total membership: 922
Percentage of total represented: 36%

Society Teams Up with Case Western Reserve University Center for Popular Music Studies for Charles Hamm Fund
At its September meeting, the Board of Trustees approved a partnership between the Society and Case Western Reserve University’s Center for Popular Music Studies for the Charles Hamm Fund. When endowed, the Hamm Fellowship will support scholarship in popular music through an annual short-term research residency at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s Library & Archives in Cleveland, Ohio. Case Western’s Center for Popular Music Studies will be matching donations dollar-for-dollar!

One of the first musicologists to study popular music, Hamm published several books that have become standards in the field, including Yesterdays: Popular Song in America (1979) and Putting Popular Music in Its Place (1995). His one-volume history of American music, Music in the New World (1983), won the Society’s Irving Lowens Prize. Members are encouraged to help endow the Charles Hamm Fellowship and create a research residency “at the Rock.”

Society Receives Third Installment of NEH Challenge Campaign
In October Mariana Whitmer, the Society’s Executive Director, submitted a list of $75,000 in contributions to the National Endowment for the Humanities for the third year of the Challenge Grant. Once the donations were validated, the NEH matched them at a rate of one-to-three and mailed the Society a check for $25,000. The Society has now received $125,000 of the $175,000 NEH Challenge Grant. With the assistance this grant, we are well on the way to completing the Campaign. But we are not there yet! We still need to raise an additional $10,793, and your help is vital.

Anne Dhu McLucas Fund Just $751 Shy of Being Endowed
Members and friends of the Society have nearly endowed a fund in memory of Anne Dhu McLucas. When endowed at $25,000, the McLucas Fellowship will support graduate students pursuing research for fieldwork in traditional or Native American/First Nation music—two areas of scholarship that were close to Anne’s heart; the fellowship also recognizes her incomparable gifts as a mentor to young scholars.

We hope to be able to announce the completion of this fund at our annual conference in Boston because Anne spent so many years of her life in that city. She was a Harvard graduate and faculty member, a scholar who delved into the Harvard Theatre Collection for her research on melodrama, and was also a member of Boston College’s faculty. If you could help complete the McLucas Fund, go to bit.ly/1drQiAU.

Student Matching Fund Seeks Additional Guarantors
Former Board Member Mark Clague organized a Student Matching Fund for the Campaign. Twenty members have pledged to make an additional donation of $1 for every student member who makes a donation or pledge to SAM/2.0. If you could make an additional donation yourself, please e-mail Development Committee member Maribeth Clark at mclark@ncf.edu. Thus far, forty-four student members have participated in the Campaign!

Eileen Southern Matching Funds Still Available
An anonymous donor is matching donations or pledges to the Eileen Southern Fund dollar-for-dollar and still has $1,620 to give. As a result of this match and the NEH Challenge Grant, a contribution of $100 to the Southern Fund will result in a total donation of $267; a $200 contribution would net $534! When endowed the Eileen Southern Fellowship will support research on music of the African diaspora.

This fund recognizes Eileen’s pioneering career and groundbreaking scholarship. The first black female professor to be awarded tenure at Harvard University, she published several seminal publications on African American music, and cofounded The Black Perspective in Music, the first journal devoted to African and African American music. In 2001 Southern received a National Humanities Medal for having “helped transform the study and understanding of American music.”

SAM/2.0 Campaign Races Towards Finish Line
Despite nearing our $1-million goal, we still have funds—such as those for Hamm, McLucas, and Southern—that need your love and attention. If you have yet to donate or pledge—or would like to top off a previous gift—go to www.SAM2point0.net in haste. Act now and do your part to bring SAM/2.0 across the finish line. To paraphrase William Billings, “Oh, ecstatic! Rush on, ye sons and daughters of harmony!”

bruce d. mcclung
Chair, Development Committee

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The Bulletin has a New Editorial Team

I’d like to thank Laura Moore Pruett (SAM Bulletin Editor), Ryan Bañagale (Book Review Editor), and Ryan Ebright (Layout Editor) for all their hard work on the Bulletin the last four years. Furthermore, the Society is thankful that the editors were willing to stay on an extra year, beyond their three-year term, to ensure a smooth transition for the new editorial team. The new editorial team will shadow the current editors for the Spring 2016 issue and will take over in the Fall 2016 issue. The new editors are:

JSAM and SAM Bulletin Reviewers Needed

The Journal of the Society for American Music and the SAM Bulletin are always seeking reviewers for books, recordings, and multimedia publications. If you are interested in serving as a reviewer for either publication, please send your name, email address, and areas of expertise to the review editors, Christina Baade (JSAM, baadec@mcmaster.ca) and/or Ryan Bañagale (Bulletin, rrb@coloradocollege.edu).

Calling All Multi-Media Reviewers!
Do you use any scholarly databases, websites, DVDs or other multi-media items in your research or teaching that would be of interest to our SAM community? Please share your findings in a multi-media review for JSAM! Also, if you are interested in writing a review, but do not have a particular multi-media item in mind, we have opportunities for you too! Please contact JSAM’s multi-media editor, Trudi Wright, at twright@regis.edu for more information.

Elizabeth Ann Lindau, General Editor
Dr. Lindau is Visiting Assistant Professor of Music at Earlham College, where she teaches courses in theory and popular music. Her research explores intersections between rock music and avant-gardism in the work of the Velvet Underground, Yoko Ono, Brian Eno, and Sonic Youth. Lindau earned her PhD in Critical and Comparative Studies in Music from the University of Virginia in 2012.

Esther Morgan-Ellis, Book Review Editor
Dr. Morgan-Ellis is Assistant Professor of Music History and World Music at the University of North Georgia, where she also teaches cello and serves as Associate Director of the women's vocal jazz ensemble. Morgan-Ellis is currently completing a monograph for the University of Georgia Press on the topic of community singing in the motion picture palaces of the 1920s and '30s. Her writing has appeared in the journal American Music.

Elizabeth Ozment, Media Editor
Dr. Ozment is Assistant Professor of Music at Georgia Gwinnett College. She received her Ph.D. in Musicology/Ethnomusicology from The University of Georgia, with graduate certificates in Women’s Studies and Interdisciplinary University Teaching. Her research specializes in the production of raced, classed, and gendered performances of southern cultural memory. Her most recent publications explore commemorative music during the Civil War sesquicentennial, and her latest research project is a study of music in American history museum exhibits.

John McCluskey, Layout Editor
Mr. McCluskey is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Kentucky. He is currently completing his dissertation, “Music as Narrative in American College Football,” under the direction of Ron Pen, which he expects to defend this April. Outside of his current research, John has broad interests that center on music as a facilitator of social experience, whether in concert halls, clubs, worship spaces, living rooms, or stadiums.

Judy Tsou, Chair, Publication Council

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From the President

Charles Hiroshi Garrett, President of SAM
Charles Hiroshi Garrett, SAM President

Dear Colleagues:

The four-year SAM/2.0 Campaign is right on the cusp of our $1-million goal, and together we can reach that milestone by the time we meet for our 42nd Annual Conference in Boston (9–13 March 2016). The success of the Campaign to date has enhanced the Society’s ability to fund, promote, and reward new scholarship in all music of the Americas. Six new fellowships have already been endowed, and more can be completed with your help. As documented in the column by bruce mcclung, the tireless chair of our Development Committee, we are on the brink of completing the Anne Dhu McLucas Fund, which will support graduate students pursuing research for fieldwork in traditional or Native American/First Nation music. Pledges to the Eileen Southern Fund will help to endow a fellowship for research on music of the African diaspora. We also wish to complete the Charles Hamm Fund, which will support a popular music research residency at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s Library & Archives in Cleveland, Ohio. The Society is teaming up with Case Western Reserve University’s Center for Popular Music (which will match donations dollar-for-dollar) to sponsor the Hamm Fellowship. If you have yet to make a donation or pledge, please take a moment and visit www.SAM2point0.net, where you will be able to help complete these vital research funds and complete the SAM/2.0 Campaign!

Our Boston 2016 conference, hosted by Northeastern University and Babson College, showcases a wide range of topics, from Appalachian music to Algonquin psalms, from Irish music in Boston to ragtime in Bombay, from reassessments of Theodore Thomas to fresh takes on Macklemore and Madonna. The lively program also features three separate seminars devoted to film music, early animation, and women composers. In addition, research posters—more than two dozen!—will make a grand return to the conference. Thanks to our terrific Boston program committee: Lydia Hamessley (chair), Dale Chapman, James Deaville, Stephanie Jensen-Moulton, Nancy Newman, and Steve Swayne. Please note the scheduling of a particularly significant event for the society moving forward: the Saturday morning roundtable on “Diversity and the Future of SAM,” organized by the Cultural Diversity Committee.

Special events enrich the entire conference. At our opening reception on Wednesday night, we will celebrate the SAM/2.0 campaign and honor the inaugural awardee of the Paul Charosh Independent Scholar Fellowship. Early Thursday evening, the Honorary Member Ceremony will recognize the achievements of drummer, composer, and teacher Terri Lyne Carrington. An ensemble of her Berklee College jazz students will perform at the reception. A Thursday pub sing; Friday afternoon excursions to destinations ranging from the Museum of Fine Arts to Harvard University to Back Bay; a Friday night performance by the Florestan Recital Project at the inaugural Vivian Perlis Concert; and Saturday night festivities starting with the SAM brass band and continuing with a performance by fiddler Frank Ferrell, pianist Janine Randall and caller Mary McGillivray—all will enliven our time in Boston through music. Thanks to the Boston Local Arrangements Committee—Sandra Graham (chair), Paula Bishop, Carla Brunelle, Rebecca Marchand, Laura Moore Pruett, Emmett Price, Ann Sears, and Paul Wells—and all of the contributions from Joice Gibson (Associate Conference Manager), and Mariana Whitmer (Executive Director). We are also grateful to the educational institutions that have offered generous support for our conference: Babson College, Berklee College of Music, Harvard University, Merrimack College, Northeastern University, and Wheaton College.

Looking further ahead, I am pleased to announce that the 43rd Annual Conference will be held in Montreal, Québec (22–26 March 2017). The Call for Seminar Topics has been issued with a deadline of 20 February 2016, and the Call for Papers will be announced by Steve Swayne, 2017 Program Chair, at our meeting in Boston. McGill University will be hosting the Montreal conference, with Lisa Barg serving as chair of local arrangements. This will be the third time our annual conference will be held in Canada, and we hope that our meeting location will encourage submissions that resonate with our society’s dedication to studying all musics in the Americas.

Finally, I am delighted to announce the results of the 2015 SAM election. Sandra Graham will join SAM as our new President-elect, Neil Lerner has been re-elected as Treasurer, and our new Members-at-Large are Danielle Fosler-Lussier and Cecilia Sun. Many thanks to all of the candidates who ran for office and to everyone who voted in the election.

See you in Boston!

Charles Hiroshi Garrett

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Forum for Early Career Professionals (FECP)

Ed. Note: This article inaugurates a regular column for the Society run by the Forum for Early Career Professionals, curating a variety of perspectives on important issues facing members in the early stage of their careers. Any readers who would like to continue the conversation begun by Mark's essay are welcome to post comments, share stories, or ask questions at the FECP Facebook page at www.facebook.com/groups/232261360312089/. Non-Facebook users may send their feedback to the editor at lmpruett@bellsouth.net and/or FECP co-chairs Dan Blim, Sarah Gerk, and Dana Gorzelany-Mostak at sam.fecp@gmail.com.

“Work-Life Balance: How’s One out of Three?”
Mark Katz

The plan was simple enough: combine a work trip and a family vacation. I was in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, accompanying a group of American hip-hop artists for Next Level, the musical diplomacy program that I direct for the U.S. Department of State. Rather than head off alone as usual, however, I brought my wife and 11-year-old daughter along. I wanted them to witness a part of my work that I find deeply meaningful, and then go with them on a once-in-lifetime safari in the Serengeti. But I have to admit that this wasn’t just about spending quality time with my family—I was also trying to absolve some well-earned guilt, built up over the years in which I devoted too much time to work and too little time to them.

The urgent, late-night knock at our hotel room door wasn’t part of the plan. It was Paul, my Next Level colleague who manages the artists during our residencies. There had been an incident. Suffice it to say that it involved two of our artists and a great deal of blood. Unfortunately, Paul didn’t wait for me to step outside before blurting out details of the horrifying incident; my daughter, who had been sleeping next to the door, bolted upright in bed, repeating Paul’s words with incredulity. Moments later I was in Paul’s room, rinsing out the artists’ blood-soaked shirts while we awaited transport to the hospital. Their bags were stranded in Amsterdam, so they had nothing else to wear. So there I was, wringing out clothes under a shower in an East African hotel room, watching red water circle the drain as if in a loop from Psycho. On the other side of the wall, my wife comforted our daughter in the darkness.

This was, without a doubt, the most spectacular failure in my years-long project of achieving a happy work-life balance.

It’s hard to remember when I wasn’t consumed by either my studies or my work. As an undergraduate, I recall looking disdainfully upon a student who had stopped to tie his shoelaces as I hurried to my next class. “Slacker,” I thought to myself. My graduate school years were a blur of writing and rewriting, skimming articles and studying for high-stakes exams—much of it done between the hours of 9 p.m. and 3 a.m. This frenzied pace continued, and intensified, during my time as an adjunct and into my first permanent position. And it continues today. I once had high hopes that the pace would slacken, but that was in 2011. In the three years prior, I had been juggling three book projects, and I promised myself—and my wife—that once I finished all of them I would have a saner schedule. I did manage to finish everything, in part by getting up at 4 a.m. every day for months and working after dinner and through the weekend. I called my office the Den of Despair.

But then I got really busy. After finishing my books, I became editor of the Journal of the Society for American Music, a role that I had aspired to and was honored to accept. I had a rare semester of leave, and was looking forward to a gentle onboarding. Then I got the news: my Chair was moving into the dean’s office, stepping down two years before the end of her term. I was asked to replace her, and I couldn’t really refuse. My semester of leave was suddenly swamped by all that is necessary to prepare for the formidable task of chairing a department with dozens of faculty and hundreds of students. The day I was announced as chair, I received a message that gave me a hint of things to come. A colleague wanted to tell me about an issue I had now inherited. I ended up spending hundreds of hours working to resolve a problem that, because of its sensitivity, very few of my colleagues ever knew about. This is the lot of the administrator: the visible tip of the iceberg is daunting enough, but what really takes its toll is largely out of sight.

During the time I was chairing, editing, and teaching, I often thought of my existence as one of keeping the wolves at bay. There was no hope of completing anything to anyone’s satisfaction and no hope of rest. At any given moment I was disappointing multiple people who were awaiting word or action from me. I sighed a lot. But I did what I could to maintain my equanimity. I took a mindfulness class and learned two very useful coping mechanisms: focusing on my breathing when the pressure mounted, and experiencing stressful incidents as clouds floating into and then out of my awareness. (I’m surprised no one ever caught me inanely waving goodbye to the stress-filled clouds only I could see.) I tried to enjoy the increasingly rare moments I could spend with my family. I made breakfast for my daughter every day and read to her every other night; I had an almost, kind-of weekly date night with my wife.

But this was no way to live. My family and my peace of mind nearly always took a back seat, neither of them well integrated into my life. Like a sinner buying indulgences or a corporate polluter paying for carbon offsets, I was only compensating for bad behavior, not addressing the underlying problem. I could do the dishes, watch TV with my wife, read to my daughter, even take my family to Tanzania, but none of it would matter if I remained consumed by work. I had a successful career, but success came at a cost—both to me and my family—and the damage is not easily undone.

So, are you now ready for the answer, the remedy to an unbalanced life? Well, I’m going to disappoint you, too, because I don’t have the solution. I’m still consumed by work, though things are better now that I’m no longer chair and have finished my term as editor. What follows, then, are not solutions, but rather some ways of thinking—just two, in fact—that I have found useful in guiding my decisions.

First, think about what you want out of your career, and more importantly, out of your life in general. Not long ago I finally stopped to think about what I actually want, other than just a nap. I decided I wanted two things: to have interesting, meaningful experiences and to help others. Ideally, these interesting experiences would be directly connected to helping others and ideally, music would be involved in both. Of course, this is an ideal, but keeping these goals in mind has turned out to be both illuminating and useful. I can see now that some of the commitments I have taken on over the years did nothing to serve my larger goals. And looking ahead, these goals will help me decide what opportunities I might take and how I want to use the relative freedom and power that I enjoy in my current and future roles. Of course, I realize that it’s easy for me to say this given my position of privilege. But I would maintain that it is always valuable to have larger goals against which to check your daily activities, whether they are optional or not. Even if you are obligated to carry something out, you should be able to discharge your duties in a way that is consistent with your values.

Second, have some non-negotiables in your life. There must be a limit to what you will sacrifice for the sake of your career. As I’ve gotten ever busier in my career, I’ve realized that I have to hold on to a few things in my life to keep me sane and grounded. One of them is walking. I walk about five miles a day, mostly to and from work, but with some midday and weekend rambles. These walks clear my head, help me stay in shape, and allow me to think through problems and opportunities. Your non-negotiables could be practicing your instrument, calling your grandmother twice a week, meditating, reading fiction every day, or praying, but they should not be directly tied to your job, and they must be exempt from the calculus by which you plan your time. When all else goes wrong, when the stress seems unbearable, they must be there for you.

Finally, I have a few words for my peers and senior colleagues and anyone who has power over or an impact on those in various states of precarity. We have to stop celebrating workaholicism as a praiseworthy way of life. Although it’s useful to share our struggles, we do real harm when we send the message that suffering and personal sacrifice are necessary for a successful career. We should avoid creating commitments and scheduling events that require colleagues (junior or otherwise) to neglect their families or other valuable parts of their lives. We must be more explicit about the ways in which we judge their success, and stop promoting the “just in case” mentality that leads them to take on ever more commitments just in case it might help them get ahead. We need to advise them when it’s time to slow down and give them cover so they can say no to some of the endless requests that come their way. And we can at least try to get our own lives in order, in the hope of modeling good behavior.

I have more to say, but my daughter just burst into my home office. “Ha! I knew you’d be here,” she exclaimed, reminding me that I had promised to read with her. It’s Saturday, and yes, I see the irony of writing about work-life balance on the weekend. So I’m going to step away from my computer. If I don’t pick up where I left off, well, there may be some hope for me.

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Student Forum

It’s that time of year again, and we need your help! Time to begin thinking about what you can donate to the 2016 Silent Auction. New or used, any items of interest to the SAM membership will be accepted. Books, which tend to increase revenue substantially, are especially welcome. All donations and proceeds benefit the Student Travel Endowment. Items should be brought with you to the conference in March. Contact Jamie Blake (jamietblake@gmail.com) or SAM Executive Director Mariana Whitmer for more information.

The annual meeting in Boston is fast approaching! The Student Forum organizes several events, and we are always looking for volunteers to help. At the conference, we will hold a Student Forum Business Meeting to elect a new co-chair and discuss student ideas and issues. Check the program for the time and location. After the meeting, we will all relax at an informal Student Forum dinner. We hope to see you all there! If you have questions or would like to get involved with any of these happenings, contact co-chairs Megan Murph (megan.murph@uky.edu) or Jamie Blake (jamietblake@gmail.com).

Students who will be presenting a paper at the conference are eligible to compete for the 2016 Mark Tucker Award. For information on where and when to submit applications, please check the society website: www.american-music.org. 2016 submissions are due January 15, 2016.

You can also help stretch your travel budget and get to know a fellow SAM student member by participating in the Student Forum roommate search. If you need help finding a roommate for Boston, check the Student Forum Facebook page (www.facebook.com/groups/161260137262989) or email the Student Forum co-chairs.

We look forward to seeing you in March!

Megan Murph and Jamie Blake, Student Forum Co-Chairs

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Journal of the Society for American Music

Volume 10, Number 1 (February 2016)


The (Mis)Representation of African American Music: The Role of the Fiddle
   Jacqueline Cogdell DjeDje

Neoliberalism and the Musical Entrepreneur
   Andrea Moore

Azealia Banks’s “212”: Black Female Identity and the White Gaze in Contemporary Hip-Hop
   James McNally


The Oxford Handbook of Film Music Studies. Edited by David Neumeyer
   Colin Roust

Listening to Stanley Kubrick: The Music in His Films. By Christine Lee Gengaro
We’ll Meet Again: Musical Design in the Films of Stanley Kubrick. By Kate McQuiston
   Brian C. Thompson

Making the March King: John Philip Sousa’s Washington Years, 1854–1893. By Patrick Warfield
   Kenneth Kreitner

Representing the Good Neighbor: Music, Difference, and the Pan American Dream. By Carol A. Hess
Sounds of War: Music in the United States during World War II. By Annegret Fauser
   Eduardo Herrera

George Whitefield Chadwick, Two Overtures: Rip Van Winkle (1878) and Adonais (1899). Edited by Bill F. Faucett
George Whitefield Chadwick, String Quartets Nos. 1–3. Edited by Marianne Betz George Whitefield Chadwick, String Quartets Nos. 4–5. Edited by Marianne Betz
   Maxine Fawcett-Yeske

Weill’s Musical Theatre: Stages of Reform. By Stephen Hinton
Johnny Johnson: A Play with Music. Libretto by Paul Green and music by Kurt Weill. Edited by Tim Carter    Naomi Graber

An Introduction to America’s Music, 2nd ed. By Richard Crawford and Larry Hamberlin
   Maxine Fawcett-Yeske

The Avid Listener, www.theavidlistener.com
   Rachel Chacko

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New Members

The Society for American Music is pleased to welcome these new members:

Helen Orita, Carrboro, NC

Carl Bolleia, Township of Washington, NJ

Jose Vicente Neglia, HONG KONG

Juan Velasquez, Pittsburgh, PA

Aldona Dye, Charlottesville, VA

Olivia Cacchione, Seattle, WA

David Lawson, Oak Park, MI

Paul Archibald, Prestonpans, East Lothian, UNITED KINGDOM

Susan Weiss, Lutherville, MD

Bobby Wahl, Long Beach, CA

Charles Priest, Bluefield, VA

Anna Kijas, Newton, MA

Terri Brinegar, Lake Mary, FL

Robert Winans, Hampstead, MD

Joseph Thompson, Charlottesville, VA

Phoebe Hunt, Austin, TX

Katherine Pukinskis, Chicago, IL

Dana Dalton, Brookline, MA

Robert Cunningham, Boston, MA

Claire Fontijn, Wellesley, MA

Nathan Myrick, Waco, TX

Bret McCandless, Bloomington, IN

Charlotte Bentley, Market Harborough, UNITED KINGDOM

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Are you a graduate advisor with the perfect student (or group of students) to review selections from our list of currently available titles? The “mentored” book review process offers an opportunity for faculty to incorporate the book review experience into coursework for graduate students, transforming a typical book-review assignment into an authentic publishing opportunity. Interested advisor/advisee duos, as well as those with an interest but without a pairing (such as faculty at undergraduate-only institutions), are encouraged to contact the Bulletin Reviews Editor Ryan Bañagale (rrb@coloradocollege.edu) for a list of currently available books.

Duke Ellington’s America, Harvey G. Cohen, The University of Chicago Press, 2010. 688pp. ISBN-978-0-226-11263-3, Cloth.
The Ellington Century, David Schiff, University of California Press, 2012. 319pp. ISBN 878-0-520-24587-7, Cloth.
   Sarah Suhadolnik
, University of Michigan

Edward Kennedy “Duke” Ellington (1899–1974) is a complex historical figure whose life story presents music scholars with a unique cross-section of American life. “At the moment of his greatest exposure on the pop charts during World War II,” cultural historian Harvey G. Cohen explains, “one could simultaneously hear Ellington’s compositions on jukeboxes across the country and at Carnegie Hall” (5). Those who conduct biographical research on Ellington are confronted with many choices. Where does the story start and where does it end? What music should be included? How do we negotiate the question of pivotal moments, and at what scale do we investigate their implications? Ellington’s wide-ranging compositional output includes popular songs, instrumental “tone parallels,” jazz concertos, extended suites, ballet music, film music, and sacred music. Following the artist into the club, the concert hall, and the movie theater highlights intersections of race, identity, and hierarchical notions of style that have historically complicated the reception of his music, and exposed precarious cultural divides between popular conceptions of American art and entertainment. Tracing connections across Ellington’s varied compositional forms delineates a dynamic, twentieth-century musical presence that resists easy categorization. His extensive career as an African American pianist, composer, and bandleader illuminates the history of a multifaceted musical icon.

Two recent books offer a glimpse of current directions in Ellington scholarship, reasserting the importance of these methodological questions: Duke Ellington’s America by Harvey G. Cohen (2010) and The Ellington Century by David Schiff (2012). Increased attention in Cohen’s book to the latter years of Ellington’s career reintroduces the storied jazz composer to the reader midstream as an artist faced with his own memorialization while he was still alive and creating. A recurring fight against nostalgia, discussed at length in Chapter 14, frames a complicated relationship between Ellington and his musical legacy, changing the dynamics of the overall portrayal. In comparison, Schiff examines yet another Ellington, exploring the overlapping sound worlds that constitute the composer’s place in the history of twentieth-century music. Schiff responds to Ellington’s modernist musical language as a means of engaging with larger historiographical questions about the artist’s relationship to jazz. While best understood as biographies, these works also demonstrate the ways in which one might take up the complexity of Ellington’s story as a means of reframing dominant conceptions of our modern musical world.

Duke Ellington’s America is premised on the notion that Ellington’s example offers important insights into “the transformative years of the twentieth century” (2). Key milestones in Ellington’s life and work are aligned with pivotal moments of social and societal unrest in the history of the United States. Cohen seeks to understand the artist’s contributions in the context of “the pragmatic realities he faced and skillfully manipulated while sustaining a long, varied, and rare career in the fickle world of popular music” (2). In practice, this means grappling with the economic constraints of the swing era, and the star-making machinery of the entertainment world, in terms of sweeping cultural change. Cohen asks: “How do black artists write about the history, character, and problems connected with race, and create great art and understanding without it devolving into polemic? And how do such minority artists develop a large enough audience to support their art, while staying true to their ideals?” (3). In response, the author delivers an immersive cultural history of Ellington’s America. Experiences at home in New York City’s Cotton Club during the late 1920s and abroad as part of the U.S. State Department Tours of the 1960s and 1970s bookend a life in music informed by close proximity to the Harlem Renaissance Movement, the rise of the Civil Rights Movement, and the emergence of the Cold War that is explored in great depth and detail.

Ideas about agency serve as a framework for Cohen’s formulation of place (i.e. “Ellington’s America”), alternately engaging with Ellington as a “race leader” and “culture hero.” This is where the cultural historian tests the limits of conventional biography, investigating the carefully calibrated presence of a musical figure that “mediates public tensions” (2, 3). Interested in issues of marketing and the power dynamics of public personae, Cohen intertwines his analysis of Ellington’s professional activities with an investigation of his larger than life cultural mythology. Beginning in earnest with Irving Mills—manager and initial publisher of Ellington’s music—the author spends a considerable amount of time tracing the construction and maintenance of Ellington’s personal brand. “In the decades that followed the creation of Ellington’s mass-media image,” Cohen explains, “Ellington himself as well as the record companies, the media, and the United States government took these references and used them to their own advantage” (3–4). At the nexus of competing social, economic, and artistic concerns, the author proposes a concept of political expression that supports observed attempts to influence listener’s perceptions of African American history and identity. Along these lines, Cohen argues that music served as “a form of activism that reflected Ellington’s long-term priorities of infiltration and circumvention, rather than confrontation” (2–3).

This approach is not without its drawbacks, but it gives shape and direction to the sophisticated treatment of rich, new archival sources. Duke Ellington’s America is the first biography to make extensive use of a collection of Ellington’s personal and professional records housed at the Smithsonian Institution. Alongside this material, the author assembled resources from the Library of Congress, the National Archives, and the Institute for Jazz Studies at Rutgers University—as well as supplemental materials gathered elsewhere—building an immense archive for this project. Additionally, the book draws on a series of new oral histories collected by Cohen from a number of Ellington’s associates. In this respect, the author approaches the storied jazz composer as a cultural institution of sorts, more so than a singular person. Details culled from rare recordings, news media, promotional materials, scrapbooks, interviews, business records, state department files, Ellington films, and taped television appearances involve a diverse array of outside voices and interests in Cohen’s biographical account, situating Ellington’s life story in relation to the scrutinizing tastes of Ellington’s America.

Pushing outside the strictly American, twentieth-century context, composer and public intellectual David Schiff turns to Ellington as an opportunity to shed some unexpected light on the “more category-bound, or similarly unbounded” music around him (8). In The Ellington Century, Ellington’s extensive body of work acts as a conceptual spine—holding together a global consideration of its varied forms based in the belief that Ellington’s music “exemplified expressive and technical pursuits shared with many composers” (xi). Schiff argues that “no single oeuvre spans the full cross-categorical range of mid-twentieth-century music better than the vast repertory of the Duke Ellington Orchestra, most of it composed by Ellington and Strayhorn” (6). This central claim frames the author’s musical portrait of the twentieth century in terms of a singular abundance of compositional material. Schiff characterizes the book as a “nonhistory” in this respect. A series of identified musical parameters serve as subject and analytical tool, organizing a series of nested, historiographical arguments about Ellington and his relationships to jazz and musical modernism writ large. In Schiff’s estimation, “the rhythms of jazz and modernist music share more common ground than either Stravinsky or [Gene] Krupa suspected” (75).

The structure of The Ellington Century is particularly compelling in this regard. Each chapter relies on a piece by Ellington as a point of musical departure, employing a combination of canonical and lesser-known works. A slow blues tune titled “Blue Light” (1938) guides the chapter on color. “Cotton Tail,” a historically significant swing tune, dictates the parameters of the rhythm discussion. “Prelude to a Kiss” (1938) creeps into a surprising survey of chromatic melodies, after which “Satin Doll” (1953) propels the reader into what Schiff characterizes as “Jazz Piano 101.” After a playful take on these rhetorical fundamentals—pairing color, rhythm, melody, and harmony with core arguments regarding Ellington’s musical language—Schiff lingers over the Shakespearian Suite Such Sweet Thunder (1957), the “tone parallel” Black, Brown and Beige (1943), and the three Sacred Concerts (1965, 1968, and 1973) as a means of more directly engaging questions about historical narrative. An “Entr’acte” inspired by the radio theme “Sepia Panorama” situates Ellington’s intention to compose “an authentic record of my race written by a member of it” at the center of Schiff’s larger project (153, emphasis original), foregrounding questions of context and interpretation.

Interested in what he describes as different realms of sacred and profane forms of musical representation, Schiff’s distinctive approach draws attention to the ways in which our understanding of music history can become inflected by different creative and cultural agendas. Individual analyses present musical observations as a means of problematizing their bounded constructions. For instance, the chapter on color fixates on the blue in “Blue Light,” probing the sonic and symbolic properties of this suggestive musical hue. “Blues as form,” “Blues as process,” “klangfarbenmelodie blues,” and a series of other impressionistic formulations of blue build to a thesis about Ellington’s color palette that also underscores the representational powers of color in music: “Ellington’s palette of many colors signified: blue of whatever shade referred to the musical form, expressive vocabulary, and social function of the blues; the gradations leading from tan to black announced the central subject of his creative work, the history, experience, and culture of African Americans” (12, emphasis original). In this way, the highly innovative juxtapositions that make up the chapter demonstrate “how small changes in instrumental combinations or their ordering can transform musical signification” (21). The use of Schoenberg’s klangfarbenmelodie is noteworthy here, pointing to the ways in which The Ellington Century is a study of the ways in which Ellington’s music and Ellington himself serve as signifiers of social and aesthetic values in the discourses of twentieth century music. While anchored by the historical moment that gives shape to each highlighted composition, individual case studies benefit from the type of rhizomatic connections Schiff makes across time. Comparisons as far reaching as Beethoven, Aaron Copland, and Sun Ra make this provocative book an invaluable classroom resource.

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Body Knowledge: Performance, Intermediality, and American Entertainment at the Turn of the Twentieth Century, Mary Simonson. New York: Oxford University Press, 2013. 304pp. ISBN 978-0199898015. Hardback.
   Leah G. Weinberg
, University of Michigan

In Body Knowledge: Performance, Intermediality, and American Entertainment at the Turn of the Twentieth Century, Mary Simonson invites readers to peer through the scholarly mutoscope. On display are urban American dance spectacles conceived and executed by women between 1905 and 1920 that defy easy disciplinary classification. Performance culture during the first two decades of the twentieth century, she asserts, is a notoriously recalcitrant narrative subject, often portrayed by historians as “a glorious, wholly heterogeneous, and ultimately impenetrable cacophony,” lacking a dominant aesthetic and “caught between the decline of Romanticism and the codification of modernism” (1). Simonson makes music of this cultural cacophony by reading its heterogeneous practices through the lens of intermediality, a theoretical framework borrowed from media studies that is indicative of both the book’s interdisciplinary impulse and its attendant methodological and analytical accessibility. Indeed, the author’s emphasis on cultural studies and multimodal performances produces close readings that speak as engagingly to dance, theater, cinema, and women’s studies scholars as they do to musicologists.

As a descriptor, “intermediality” signals the appearance of one medium in some way within another. As a theoretical tool, the term emphasizes intersections and relationships between disciplines, the media they were developed to examine, and the genres associated with those media. Intermediality enables scholars to engage productively with performances that lie between or outside grand historical narratives of the arts. Within an intermedial complex, Simonson includes revealing analyses of such music as J. Leubrie Hill’s 1913 black Broadway revue My Friend from Kentucky (introduction), Chopin’s 1841 Tarantella in A-flat Major, op. 43 (chapter 4), and a duet from D. F. E. Auber’s 1828 opera La Muette de Portici (chapter 6). Music never appears on its own, however, but rather contributes one particularly vibrant thread to a narrative tapestry interweaving archival research and descriptions of key performances within a broader context of production, reception, and cultural history. Simonson’s analysis of Chopin, for instance, supports a reading of European danseuse Rita Sacchetto’s Tanzbilder [dance pictures], or pantomimic dances inspired by paintings, as potent sites of artistic agency that critiqued a public fascination with tableaux vivants. Indeed, all of the performers that the author discusses share a pronounced tendency toward the mimicry, borrowing, and referencing of extant works, performance styles, and aesthetic modes across genre and medial boundaries. Because intermediality’s relational bent is amenable to the various discipline-specific approaches needed to navigate these boundaries, it also facilitates multiple perspectives from which to access the ever-elusive subject of performance. In this way, Simonson expands productively on the scholarship of Lydia Goehr and Carolyn Abbate in recovering the voices of female artists by consciously privileging evidence outside the work concept.1

Simonson constructs Body Knowledge to imitate one of the subjects it examines: the revue. She emphasizes this meta-performance by featuring case studies of significant Broadway shows in her introduction and conclusion, which she aptly titles “prologue” and “finale.” The six body chapters function as the separate acts of her “book-as-revue,” introducing a cast of characters that includes Salome dancers Bianca Froelich, Gertrude Hoffmann, Mlle. Dazie, Aida Overton Walker, and the soprano Mary Garden, modern dance icons Ruth St. Denis and Isadora Duncan, German danseuse Rita Sacchetto, Belgian ballet and American toe dancers Adeline Genée and Bessie Clayton, and Russian prima ballerina Anna Pavlova. Each of these chapters stages a different meeting of dance, music, theater, and cinema, and by restricting the temporal scope of her study, Simonson exposes the degree to which these artists were influenced by and came into contact with one another. It was a 1902 performance by Duncan, for instance, that inspired Sacchetto to begin taking dance lessons (106). Additionally, it was the American press, rather than Simonson herself, who first drew a parallel between Genée’s and Clayton’s performances in an attempt to promote professional rivalry between the women (153).

Chapter 1, titled “Choreographing Salome,” considers the ways in which a number of female dancers appropriated the Salome character from Strauss’s opera to their own creative ends. Similarly, “Acting Ancient” (chapter 2) reveals how some American women used Greek classicism to negotiate the vicissitudes of American modernity and their own changing social and political roles. Chapters 3 and 4, “Dancing Music” and “Dancing Pictures,” investigate two dancers’ intermedial dialogues with music and visual art. The former considers Isadora Duncan’s complex relationship to Richard Wagner’s writing, reputation, and music, and the latter investigates Sacchetto’s Tanzbilder as moving tableaux vivants that incorporate painting, music, literature, art scholarship, and the expressive strategies of cinema. Sacchetto’s transition from stage to screen in the 1913 film The Ghost of the White Lady serves as a transition to the last pair of chapters, “Moving Images” (chapter 5) and “Filming Opera” (chapter 6), whose performers engage with cinematic aesthetics to blur the medial boundaries between film and dance. In chapter 5, Simonson applies Henri Bergson’s theories of ancient and modern movement to Adeline Genée’s and Bessie Clayton’s dances, compellingly suggesting that their bodies depict the histories of ballet and social dance as live analogues of cinematic documentation. Finally, in chapter 6, she examines Anna Pavlova’s simultaneous appearances in ballet and film versions of Auber’s nineteenth-century opera La Muette de Portici in order to reveal the influence of each performance on the other’s production and reception history.

A recurring theme throughout Simonson’s study is the engagement of dance with the past to negotiate its creator’s experience of the rapidly modernizing present. Isadora Duncan’s theoretical and artistic dialogue with Wagner, for instance, juxtaposed sensibilities from adjacent periods, while Hellenic pageants invoked ancient Greece as “an imagined space through which early twentieth-century Americans, especially white middle- and upper-class American women, could access particular experiences and claim particular rights—the right to education, to bodily liberation, to full political engagement” (79). Also, as the photograph of the impressively posed female dancer on cover of Body Knowledge suggests, while this monograph aims to “offer a new vision of American artistic culture at the turn of the twentieth century,” a culture “defined by and oriented around intermedial experimentation,” the experimenters on whom Simonson focuses are almost entirely women (198–99). Her discussion of Salome dancers in chapter 1 makes a particularly compelling case for this gender-specific approach. Simonson offers a novel feminist perspective on the character by investigating performances outside of Strauss’s opera as a site of resistance and female authorship. The resulting analysis conveys not only the ubiquity of Salomania following the opera’s 1908 American premiere, but also the ways in which dancing Salome provided women a medium and a mask through which to explore versions of the “New Woman.” This progressive-era identity emerged from contemporary social and political developments ranging from temperance and consumerism to divorce, advanced education, and birth control. A standout moment in this first chapter is Simonson’s discussion of the African American dancer Aida Overton Walker, whose unusually modest interpretation of Salome’s provocative dance as part of her husband George Walker’s musical Bandanna Land illuminates the role that race played in her interpretive decisions. Unlike her white counterparts, Walker was obliged to contend with associations of black women with sexual display and deviance; thus her inclusion reminds readers that identity parameters other than sex or gender played vital roles the performances Simonson examines.

By providing an effective tool for speaking to many disciplines and their readers at once, Simonson’s intermedial framework compels her to speak to each of these disciplines accessibly. The result is that the whole book is intelligible to non-specialists in any one area, yet particular chapters—specially 1, 3, and 6, whose main topics revolve around musical works or composers—may be of the most interest to musicologists. By avoiding discipline-specific jargon and exclusive analytical approaches, Simonson crafts a narrative that is both a pleasure to read and an excellent resource for educators looking for models of interdisciplinary scholarship for their students. Isadora Duncan’s engagement with Richard Wagner’s “Artwork of the Future,” for example, offers a fresh perspective on the well-trodden topic, while Anna Pavlova’s simultaneous performance of Fenella in the opera La Muette de Portici and the film The Dumb Girl of Portici presents scholars working at the heavily-trafficked intersection of opera and cinema with a case study that complicates the boundaries between music, dance, and film, as well as between live and mediatized performances and their reception. By focusing her intermedial lens on female dancers on stage and screen, Simonson makes a crucial historical intervention that valorizes performance as a site of authorship. Her valuable gestures toward issues of race, class, and nationality—while not the focus of this project—hold considerable future potential for musicological research. For example, from the perspective of identity and performance, what new insight might intermediality offer into the endemic history of expressive exchange and appropriation across racial boundaries in American music? Remaining within the temporal confines of the early twentieth century, how might an expansion of Simonson’s work to include her female performers’ male counterparts, the turn-of-the-century swell in immigration to the United States, or the impact of the First World War further enrich the intermedial performance milieu she constructs?

In sum, Body Knowledge offers an exciting entry to the field of performance studies, one in which Mary Simonson recovers and articulates instances of female authorship as multifaceted and heterogeneous as the cultural milieu in which its creative agents thrived. The intersectional nature of her subject, which speaks most directly to historians of dance and of the early twentieth-century United States, offers equally productive insights into music, theater, and cinema of the period. However, this study’s most significant contribution to the disciplines with which it engages is Simonson’s application of intermediality to subject matter previously considered outside that theory’s purview—more typically, digital media and the postmodern. Viewed through an intermedial lens, this seemingly impenetrable (if glorious) cacophony instead begins to resolve into a diverse but ultimately coherent revue, irreducible to a single narrative, but symptomatic of the profound cultural changes that accompanied the first two decades of the twentieth century. By employing intermediality to describe not only specific performances, but also the nature of the economy in which they circulated, Simonson demonstrates the theory’s capacity to illuminate relationships between fields, genres, media, and the people who make and use them at the level of both text and context. This book, then, is not just a useful addition to early twentieth-century American cultural history. It is also an invitation to scholars in from a variety of disciplines to consider intermediality as a tool for revealing resonances within and between performances in their own fields. Finally, her study encourages scholars to perform their own acts of intermediality, or as Simonson explains, to “trade, borrow, and share both our aesthetics and our practices, performing our own intermedial exchanges” in the pursuit of ever more nuanced and interdisciplinary scholarship (200).

1 Carolyn Abbate, In Search of Opera (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2001); Lydia Goehr, The Imaginary Museum of Musical Works (New York: Oxford University Press, 1992).

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Bernard Herrmann’s The Ghost and Mrs. Muir: A Film Score Guide, David Cooper. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2005. 192pp. ISBN 978-0810856790. Paper.
Alex North’s A Streetcar Named Desire: A Film Score Guide, Annette Davison. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2009. 250pp. ISBN 978-0810863936. Paper.
Nino Rota’s The Godfather Trilogy: A Film Score Guide., Franco Sciannameo. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2010. 212pp. ISBN 978-0810877115. Paper.
Louis and Bebe Barron’s Forbidden Planet: A Film Score Guide, James Wierzbicki. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2005. 200pp. ISBN 978-0810856707. Paper.
Erich Wolfgang Korngold’s The Adventures of Robin Hood: A Film Score Guide, Ben Winters. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2007. 200pp. ISBN 978-0810858886. Paper.
   Gregory Newbold
, University of Iowa

In Bernard Herrmann’s The Ghost and Mrs. Muir: A Film Score Guide, author David Cooper writes:

It is a fundamental tenet of this book, and of the series of which it forms a part, that film music is fully deserving of scholarly attention. Although ‘enjoyment’ may be the primary mode of aesthetic pleasure for the majority of a film’s audience, it is proposed here that the score can be a complex and powerful element of the narrative and that its deciphering can enrich the experience of the film as a whole (Cooper 19).

Cooper’s observation underlines the guiding rationale for the Film Score Guide series, which began fifteen years ago with Kate Daubney’s Max Steiner’s Now, Voyager: A Film Score Guide (Greenwood Press, 2000). After her inaugural volume, Daubney served as series editor, leading new volumes through Scarecrow Press since 2004. At seventeen volumes and counting, the series continues to affirm Cooper’s words. Indeed, the growth of the Film Score Guide series has both contributed to and benefitted from increased interest in film music among musicologists, film scholars and enthusiasts. Not limited to any one cinematic era, this series addresses both Hollywood films of the studio era as well as more recent offerings such as The Godfather Trilogy, Tim Burton’s Batman, and The Good, the Bad and the Ugly. Of particular value to specialists of American music, the volumes under review explore canonic Hollywood films, such as The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938) and The Godfather (1972). Also included in this series are musically distinctive but less widely known titles like The Ghost and Mrs. Muir (1947) and Forbidden Planet (1956).

Most volumes in the series adhere to a five-chapter framework comprising:

  1. The composer’s background
  2. The composer’s scoring techniques
  3. Critical and historical context
  4. Production and general overview of the film’s soundscape
  5. An analysis of the music

Within this prescribed framework, the approach of each author varies, as does the amount of available materials (sketches, notes, correspondence, etc.) to which the author had access. In each volume, the first chapter surveys the composer’s career and details the professional circumstances leading to his or her involvement in the featured film. James Wierzbicki recounts in his volume on Forbidden Planet the struggles of Bebe and Louis Barron, whose experimental electronic music led to an unlikely and bumpy partnership with MGM. In his volume on The Adventures of Robin Hood, Ben Winters presents an illuminating overview of Erich Korngold’s life as a Viennese prodigy whose operas and ballets were well-regarded by Giacomo Puccini and Richard Strauss. Furthermore, Winters also discusses Korngold’s musical collaborations in Hollywood preceding Robin Hood. Indeed, a notable highlight of the Film Score Guide series is its refreshingly frank glimpse into the collaborative process of film music, which is an indispensable component to understanding film, but one that is often suppressed in favor of the more romantic ideal of a sole creator. In his introduction, Winters directly confronts and rejects this romanticized view, while seeking to uphold the film score as a much more complicated object resulting from the “interplay between numerous authorial voices” (Winters 3).

The second chapter of each volume explores the composer’s compositional techniques by reviewing musical traits across multiple films or works. Such traits are then contextualized within the central film of the volume. David Cooper’s volume dedicated to The Ghost and Mrs. Muir (Cooper also wrote a volume on Herrmann’s Vertigo) investigates how Herrmann’s compositional approach for this film features heavy use of leitmotifs, some of which are visually isomorphic. For example, the “sea” motive that is associated with the film’s ghostly captain, prominently features a melodic contour that mimics a “wave rising to a crest” (Cooper 25). Ben Winters reflects upon Korngold’s working relationship with his orchestrator Hugo Friedhofer as well as his frequent practice of self-borrowing. In The Adventures of Robin Hood, Korngold’s 1919 concert overture Sursum Corda “pervades virtually the entire score,” including Robin’s theme and the Love theme (Winters 98). Annette Davison, in her volume on A Streetcar Named Desire, introduces Alex North as a successful composer of concert works and incidental music for dance and theater. Streetcar was North’s first film score and Davison explores ways in which his compositional practices became more collaborative when the time constraints of the studio system forced him to work with an orchestrator. Davison reveals that North provided orchestrator Maurice de Packh with sketch material bearing highly detailed instructions on instrumentation. North claimed that de Packh “more of less” followed his instructions, but Davison balances this assertion with North’s subsequent admission that if the orchestrator “has an idea and if it’s a good idea, you give him the satisfaction of using it” (Davison 29). In his volume on Forbidden Planet, James Wierzbicki acknowledges the previous electronic compositions of Bebe and Louis Barrons and work with John Cage (including, most famously, Williams Mix [1952]). Wierzbicki gives greater emphasis, however, to the relationship between the electronic music in sci-fi films of the 1950s and Forbidden Planet’s so-called “electronic tonalities,” a substitute term for “electronic music” devised by the studio to avoid anticipated interference from the musicians’ union (Wierzbicki 10). He further contextualizes the Barron’s work within early electronic music trends unfolding beyond Hollywood in studios funded by universities, state governments, and private individuals.

The third chapter of each volume steps outside the otherwise intense focus on music, providing historical context for the film apart from its score. Wierzbicki, in this chapter explores Hollywood’s attempts to capitalize on a burgeoning interest in space travel. Citing scholarship on 1950s cinema, Wierzbicki outlines three standard narrative prototypes of the science fiction genre—“invasion,” “mutant,” and “outsider”—before arguing that the appeal of Forbidden Planet depends in part on its resistance to these familiar categories and its elaborate reflection on technology as bound with identity. In the third chapter of his volume on The Adventures of Robin Hood, Winters explores the evolution of the Robin Hood tale from the fifteenth century forward, the relationship of the film to the “swashbuckler” genre, and the film’s indebtedness to earlier “Robin Hoods,” including the 1922 silent movie by Douglas Fairbanks and its specially prepared score by Victor Schertzinger. He further considers the film’s political resonances—especially the principled resistance of Robin Hood to Prince John’s corrupt and cruel reign—to growing antifascist sentiments in Hollywood.

Franco Sciannameo’s third chapter, titled “Ethnicity and Literary Adaptation in The Godfather Trilogy,” briefly explores representations of the Mafia on film as well as the American audience’s concept of an “authentic” Italian ethnicity. Sciannameo traces the undertones of the Mafia as a place of refuge and comfort, first from Mario Puzo’s novel to Coppola’s Godfather films and then ultimately showing how Rota composed music informed by traditional Mediterranean folk songs, ballads, and dances, which reinforced the familial identity of the Mafia. This was in contrast to what Sciannameo calls Rota’s “icy” chromatic sequence of parallel fifths, which instead of a more conventional love theme, serves to underscore the leading couple’s tragic relationship (Sciannameo 65).

A recurring strength among these volumes is their discussion of films’ literary sources, which in turn affects musical opportunities and decisions made at pre- and post-production stages. James Wierzbicki, for example, reflects upon Forbidden Planet’s indebtedness to Shakespeare’s Tempest and the writings of Sigmund Freud, both of which informed an earlier version of the film. It would be this earlier workprint, full of “all the psychological stuff about dreams” as Louis Barron described it, to which the Barrons’ composed their haunting electronic music (Wierzbicki 9). Later, however, MGM removed much of this Freudian material, for fear of confusing moviegoers. In fact, regarding the released version of the film, Wierzbicki argues that even MGM executives poorly comprehended the film its employees had created.

Many of the volumes also deliver valuable reception history that surveys newspaper reviews and scholarship assessing the film and its music. In the Robin Hood, Forbidden Planet and Godfather Trilogy volumes, portions of reception history are addressed in the third chapter, but additional references to reception enter other chapters as well. Cooper devotes an entire section at the end of his third chapter to early studio reviews of The Ghost and Mrs. Muir’s music and the consequences of these criticisms in the film’s production. Davison investigates Streetcar’s “reception” at the hands of censors, noting that North was contractually required to compose replacement cues for scenes that suffered cuts. Even though the composer fulfilled his professional obligation by providing new music, North admitted preference for the original cues.

The fourth chapter in each volume deals more intently with production aspects of film and the soundscape created as a result. For instance, Winters weaves together cue sheets, studio correspondence, and commentary on The Adventures of Robin Hood to form an account of the entire scoring process from preproduction through the recording of the film’s score. His volume also includes images of original documents, enhancing the reader’s connection with the source materials. Davison spends a good portion of her fourth chapter on A Streetcar Named Desire discussing North’s use of jazz standards as well as his unexpected musical “interjections” of the Varsouviana, a traditional polka tune that North used to represent a character’s fragile mental state (Davison 91). In The Godfather Trilogy volume, Sciannameo uses Rota’s personal notebooks and spotting notes (timing sheets) to explore the music from the family scenes of the film, which are compared to choral scenes from the Italian operas of Bellini, Donizetti, and Verdi. He further argues that Rota interpreted the Godfather films as a series of “scenes about family and the mythologies of love and death,” which resulted in a compositional approach favoring these familial themes (Sciannameo 43). Sciannameo’s consideration gives readers a glimpse into how the composer interpreted these Coppola films, thereby illuminating the diegetic and non-diegetic handling of the characters’ complicated cultural and familial identities as both Mafiosi and Italian-Americans.

As Wierzbicki acknowledges, the 1956 electronic score for Forbidden Planet presents unusual challenges for traditional analysis, since music was neither notated for the film itself, nor “in the literal sense of the term, was actually composed for the film” (Wierzbicki 41). Wierzbicki nonetheless parses out perceptible harmonic and tonal relationships present in the commercially released soundtrack for the film (1977) and the Barrons’ music as presented in the original film. Noting that the album and film represent distinct musical entities in content and structure, Wierzbicki analyzes the soundtrack (released more than twenty years after the film) in chapter 4 and discusses the music’s presentation in the film in chapter 5.

Each volume concludes with a chapter of musical analysis, the form and presentation of which depends upon each author’s approach to the materials at hand. These analytical sections are organized in a reader-friendly fashion, with many musical passages provided in reduced score. Winters and Davison both analyze the main themes in a predominantly chronological order according to each theme’s first appearance. However, in order to more fully consider how these themes function within the films, both authors deviate at times from this chronology to follow a single theme’s development throughout the film. Cooper’s analysis of The Ghost and Mrs. Muir’s musical cues remains strictly sequential with the purpose of revealing structural relationships between the music and its connection to the overarching narrative of the film. Sciannameo’s Godfather volume presents the important motivic material of the trilogy along with descriptions of the scenes in which the themes first appear. The author goes on to explore the background of each important theme and its underlying meanings. For instance, Michael Corleone’s theme was previously used by Rota as a funeral march in Federico Fellini’s The Clowns (1970). Any character with a theme based on a funeral march is fated to suffer tribulations, to say the least. By providing significant information such as this, Sciannameo offers further insight into Rota’s thematic approach to composing for the characters within the Trilogy. This volume focuses on thematic relations across the three films, including a substantial appendix spanning almost a third of the book’s total length that contains timings, instrumentations, scene descriptions, and motivic content for all of the Trilogy’s musical cues.

North’s score for A Streetcar Named Desire survives in multiple versions due to the “self-censorship” of the filmmakers and subsequent re-editing of the movie. Davison’s analysis engages with this challenge by examining each scene separately, considering the music that exists among the differing versions of the film. Similarly, Wierzbicki considers different versions of Forbidden Planet’s music, both the soundtrack album and the film score. He approaches his analysis by giving detailed charts and timelines outlining appearances of thematic material, tonal relations and melodic content. This helps the reader understand how Bebe and Louis Barron originally conceived and recorded their music and how it was subsequently adapted for release on two differing mediums. All of these volumes offer engaging analyses that certainly can enrich the film’s viewing experience.

Each of the five volumes reviewed model interdisciplinary film music research simultaneously steeped in the traditional methods of archival exploration and score analysis. Each book could stand on its own if assigned in a music or film course; they could also serve as musical companions alongside other multi-volume series devoted to individual films, including BFI Film Classics volumes published by Palgrave Macmillan. Individual chapters could also serve effectively in both classrooms devoted to music or film. The third chapter of each volume offers significant cultural context for students seeking to better understand the scholarly dialogues surrounding individual films. Instructors of film music courses could also use a select volume alongside a textbook to present a more in-depth study of a given score or composer. In her foreword for the Film Score Guide series, Kate Daubney explains that the series is “dedicated to drawing together the variety of analytical practices and ideological approaches in film musicology for the purpose of studying individual scores” (Davison xiv). The strength of this series lies in the abilities of its authors to do just that.

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African American Folksong and American Cultural Politics: The Lawrence Gellert Story, Bruce M. Conforth, Scarecrow Press, 2013. 298 pp. ISBN 978-0-8108-8488-5. Hardback.
   Jesse P. Karlsberg
, Emory University

Bruce M. Conforth’s long-awaited African American Folksong and American Cultural Politics: The Lawrence Gellert Story offers a much needed reassessment of the life and work of controversial folksong collector Lawrence Gellert and provides a more complete picture of the collection of African American songs and stories Gellert recorded during the 1920s and 1930s. The book also offers valuable insights on how ideas about African Americans, left-wing politics, and folk music collided in 1930s New York. Drawing on decades worth of research and unprecedented access to the entirety of Gellert’s archive as well as to friends, family, and colleagues, Conforth sweeps aside distortions by Gellert and others, concluding that Gellert did participate in the creation of certain songs he represented as authentic “Negro Songs of Protest.” Conforth also details how small a portion “protest songs” with political themes are of the vast collection of songs and tales Gellert largely hid from public view. Conforth’s text articulates how American race relations and left-wing political movements combined with Gellert’s particular anxieties and desires to affect the reframings and distortions that obscured his work.

Although the bulk of African American Folksong and American Cultural Politics is a chronologically organized biography, two chapters adopt a more theoretical or historical frame. They examine the interaction between race relations, folksong collection, and left-wing politics that motivate the book’s title. Chapter 1 reviews the history of the cultural front’s fractious development in early twentieth-century America and the parallel rise of a robust socialist press. Drawing on accounts of Gellert and the American left’s relation to folk music by Richard Reuss, Steven Garabedian, and Dick Weissman, Conforth sketches a fractious landscape in which left-wing political organizations and publications frequently split, disbanded, and reorganized.1 These entities’ opinions on the value of recruiting among black populations or acknowledging racial prejudice likewise varied widely. Conforth argues that this halting movement to acknowledge and appropriate black struggle provided a framework for reimagining black music-making as protest against class and racial inequality.

Chapter 6 examines the content of Gellert’s most celebrated and debated publication, Negro Songs of Protest (1936), and surveys scholarly treatments of protest in black vernacular music. Conforth argues that Gellert himself largely eschewed the word protest in his writing, adopting his book’s title at the suggestion of his brother Hugo, a successful left-wing editor, and a colleague, who hoped to connect black vernacular songs to the left’s articulation of proletarian struggle. Happy to find an audience for his work but relatively disinterested in left-wing politics, Gellert never defined “protest.” His book largely consisted of variants of widely recorded songs in well-known genres (123). Conforth searches for a definition of protest that fits the songs Gellert collected, drawing on the work of Angela Y. Davis and Henry Louis Gates on “signifyin(g)” to construct a definition in which “African American protest...through music, was neither apolitical nor overtly outer-directed. Rather, it was a form of aesthetic functioning designed to serve as a survival skill” (135). Conforth argues that lyrics such as “They see me laughing / laughing just to keep from crying” feature rhetorical power, “precisely because of their ambiguity” (139). Conforth’s argument that Gellert’s songs advance a strategy different from the “organized political perspective” implied by the protest label, or some scholarly accounts of the text, is compelling (132). Yet his attempt to encapsulate all African American music of the time as adopting the “signifyin(g)” stance leaves little room for an understanding of black music in which individuals adopted different strategies in reaction to similarly varied social circumstances.

Conforth’s account of Gellert’s biography carefully disentangles the various conflicting and exaggerated narratives Gellert himself articulated in interviews and writings. The result is a picture of a troubled, talented, and ambitious man who relentlessly reinvented himself in search of success and approval that nonetheless frequently proved inaccessible. Gellert was born in Hungary as Laslo Grunbaum on September 14, 1898. Chapter 2 follows his move with his family to New York City in 1906, his childhood, and his relationship with his older brothers Hugo, Ted, Ernest, and Otto. As a teen, Laslo—renamed Louis Gellert by immigration authorities but going by Larry or Lawrence—lived in his siblings’ shadows as they participated in antiwar and socialist campaigns, gaining renown for their writing, activism, and business success. They shared their connections with Lawrence to help him pursue interests in drama and journalism.

Chapter 3 details how on a trip South perhaps to recuperate from ill health, Lawrence Gellert (now going by Lawrence Goelet) settled in Tryon, North Carolina, and focused on ingratiating himself with the white population; he had no particular interest in the area’s racial politics, or in folksong. As he gradually became more interested in black music he remained apolitical and “found himself enamored of the vocal qualities of the singers, not the lyrical content of their songs” (36). His brother Hugo, eager for his periodical New Masses to appeal to black audiences, appraised the songs Lawrence described in letters as “the perfect vehicle for speaking about, if not reaching, the African American proletariat” (42). At Hugo’s urging Lawrence began recording black music in 1923 or 1924 and made additional recordings of everything “from blues to spirituals” on trips south between the mid 1920s and the mid 1930s (46).

In Chapter 4 Conforth recounts Gellert’s enjoyment of the connections and acclaim publication of his “negro songs of protest” in New Masses brought about in the early 1930s. Yet despite this embrace of the left, Gellert continued to rely on powerful whites for access to black singers and avoid political organizing during his collecting trips. Conforth takes pains to demonstrate the gap between the interpretive framework in which his music appeared as evidence of class-based black protest in print and the more omnivorous approach he took when collecting. In chapter 5, Conforth contrasts Gellert’s omnivorousness and the leftist interpretive frame he adopted with the approach of John and Alan Lomax. He quotes Gellert’s criticism of the Lomaxes for excluding music that “reflects unmistakably the contemporary environment...[in which] members of their [African American] race...participate in the day to day struggle against their oppressors.” (107). The “clear battle line” such critiques helped draw between Gellert and the “legitimate” folklorists emerges as a theme in the book’s second half (112).

In chapters 7–10, Conforth emphasizes three themes in Gellert’s life after the publication of Negro Songs of Protest and, in 1939, a related collection titled “Me and My Captain.”2 First, he continues to argue that Gellert’s interest in black protest was limited and opportunistic, interrupted by a return in the 1930s to drama and journalism through the Federal Theater and Federal Writers Projects of the Works Progress Administration. Second, Conforth notes an increasing opportunism Gellert adopted in relation to his collection. Gellert “believed that if he collected a song, then he owned it” (173). During sustained periods of financial distress up until his mysterious disappearance in 1979 he sought to obtain money by urging the republication and reuse of songs in his collection, seeking licensing fees from artists and publishers.

Finally, Conforth argues for the significance of Gellert’s collection and sheds new light on a long-running dispute over the veracity of several of its most overtly political protest songs. Gellert’s collection is significant, Conforth contends, because of its status as perhaps the first featuring mechanical recordings of black vernacular southern music and because of its considerable size, numbering perhaps a thousand songs in total and featuring the largest collections of genres of lore such as African American tales about immigrant Irish workers in the South (44, 220, 163–71). Conforth also praises Gellert’s collection because of its inclusion of songs describing contemporary occasions and songs featured on recent commercial recordings at a time when some explicitly coached informants to perform only old genres such as spirituals or work songs.

Conforth finds that Gellert did invent some of the material he recorded and published. He quotes music scholar Herbert Halpert relating Gellert’s account of prompting black singers to write and perform songs for Gellert on political themes (160). Conforth draws on this admission, which he could not publish during Halpert’s life, and evidence of coaching in Gellert’s field recordings (160) to conclude that “Lawrence did coax some informants into creating these songs for him, and he did embellish or help create certain songs he presented as true folksongs,” sometimes to advance specific political goals of the white American left (217). Conforth’s case is thoroughly convincing. Yet a more thorough accounting of what methods of fabrication Gellert engaged in and what questions remain unanswered would build on this new evidence to provide a fuller and clearer picture of this long-debated question.

Conforth argues that Gellert’s participation in folk music’s “brokerage channels” was not unique, comparing it to similar instances of creation, selection, and embellishment such as by Lead Belly and the Lomaxes (160–61). Gellert’s liberties with collecting led to suspicion of his work while that of the Lomaxes did not, Conforth argues, because of the “radical and overtly political” content of Gellert’s songs and “his affiliation with the most radical elements (even communist) of the left” (162). Conforth’s argument here could be strengthened through the consideration of other potential reasons for the reaction to Gellert’s fabrications, such as his lack of training and seeming unwillingness to engage with the emerging professional standards of folksong collecting. Conforth concludes that this suspicion, along with Gellert’s safeguarding over many decades of the vast majority of his collection, limited public and scholarly awareness of the “tremendous repository of actual folklore and folksong” Gellert had accumulated (217).

Conforth uncritically adopts the folklore discipline’s vocabulary and conventions, arguing for the validity of Gellert’s collection by asserting that it was for the most part “authentic,” a record of actual “folksong and folklore” in “oral circulation.” Conforth acknowledges that folksong collectors are “mediators,” but otherwise his work lacks engagement with the sustained critique of folklore studies’ implicit separation of “the folk” from other contemporaneous subjects and “folksong” from other forms of cultural production.3 Future research could profitably build on Conforth’s work by assessing Gellert’s collection and its construction as “folksong.” A critical assessment of folklore’s disciplinary framework might enable deeper analysis of its collision in Gellert’s writing and collecting activities with left-wing politics and race relations, the intersection at the core of this book.

Conforth succeeds in recovering Gellert and his work from relative obscurity, and effectively makes the case for the importance of his collection. His comparisons of songs Gellert collected to each other, to commercial recordings, and to songs found in other collections exemplify the rich potential for further analysis of the songs and stories the many recordings of Gellert’s interactions with African Americans preserve. African American Folksong and American Cultural Politics deserves to be hailed for its contribution to the study of the American left’s investment in African American folksong and call to reexamine the life and work of Lawrence Gellert.

1 Richard A. Reuss, “American Folklore and Left-Wing Politics: 1927–1957” (Ph.D., Indiana University, 1971); Richard A. Reuss and JoAnne C. Reuss, American Folk Music and Left-Wing Politics, 1927–1957 (Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2000); Steven Garabedian, “Reds, Whites, and the Blues: Lawrence Gellert, ‘Negro Songs of Protest,’ and the Left-Wing Folk-Song Revival of the 1930s and 1940s,” American Quarterly 57, no. 1 (March 1, 2005): 179–206; Dick Weissman, Which Side Are You On?: An Inside History of the Folk Music Revival in America (New York: Continuum, 2005).
2 Lawrence Gellert, Negro Songs of Protest (New York: American Music League, 1936); Lawrence Gellert and Lan Adomián, “Me and My Captain”: Negro Songs of Protest from the Collection of Lawrence Gellert, Arranged for Voice and Piano by Lan Adomián (New York: Hours Press, 1939)
3 See, for example, David E. Whisnant, All That Is Native and Fine: The Politics of Culture in an American Region (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1995); Barbara Kirshenblatt-Gimblett, “Folklore’s Crisis,” The Journal of American Folklore 111, no. 441 (July 1, 1998): 281–327, doi:10.2307/541312; Benjamin Filene, Romancing the Folk: Public Memory & American Roots Music (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2000); Karl Hagstrom Miller, Segregating Sound: Inventing Folk and Pop Music in the Age of Jim Crow (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2010).

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Bulletin Board

Peter H. Bloom
Peter H. Bloom

Flutist Peter H. Bloom concertized across the United States in fall 2015, featuring diverse repertoire by American composers. With the Aardvark Jazz Orchestra, he celebrated the band’s 43rd season with premieres of works by director Mark Harvey. Aardvark released its 13th CD (Deep River by Richard Nelson) and marked the 50th anniversary of Duke Ellington’s sacred concerts. In November, Bloom performed at ShapeShifter Lab in Brooklyn with the new ensemble Pursuit, showcasing new music by co-directors Richard Nelson and Tim O’Dell. He also appeared with R&B legend Charles Neville, along with the band RadioExile, in a benefit concert for Action Works Nepal. Bloom’s fall season included chamber music tours in South Carolina, Tennessee, Iowa, Illinois and Massachusetts, featuring works by American composers Elizabeth Vercoe, Thea Musgrave, Karl Henning, Bernadette Speech, David Leone, and Marion Bauer. In November, Noteworthy Sheet Music published Peter H. Bloom’s composition From the Drawer, a setting of a poem by Constantine Cavafy (for tenor or soprano, with flute/piccolo, clarinet, bassoon, and horn). Contact Peter at www.americasmusicworks.com.

Laurie Matheson
Laurie Matheson

Laurie Matheson has been appointed Director of the University of Illinois Press. Since arriving at the Press in 1996 she has served as editor-in-chief, acquisitions editor, and marketing copywriter, among other roles. She will continue as the music acquisitions editor, handling the series Music in American Life as well as ethnomusicology and classical music titles. Books she acquired have won recent best book awards from the Society for American Music (for The Creolization of American Culture: William Sidney Mount and the Roots of Blackface Minstrelsy by Christopher Smith in 2015) and the Society for Ethnomusicology (for Hawaiian Music in Motion: Mariners, Missionaries, and Minstrels by J. Revell Carr in 2015), as well as a best book award from the Appalachian Studies Association (for Appalachian Dance: Creativity and Continuity in Six Communities by Susan Eike Spalding in 2015). UIP also received an H. Earle Johnson publishing subvention from SAM in 2015 for Marian Wilson Kimber’s forthcoming book on women elocutionists. The Press publishes approximately 90 new books and 35 journals per year with a staff of about 40, and has a distinguished record in publishing scholarship in the humanities and social science as well as titles of interest to a regional readership. Particular strengths of the Press include American history and culture, particularly music, sport history, women’s and African American history, as well as film, communication, and media studies.

Congregational Music-Making and Community in a Mediated Age, the second volume in the Congregational Music Studies Series, has just been published by Ashgate. The book examines Christian musical practices and contemporary media. SAM member Anna Nekola is co-editor and authored the introduction; SAM members Joshua Busman, Ellen Lueck, and Andrew Mall contributed chapters. More information available at the publisher's website: https://www.routledge.com/products/isbn/9781472459190.

The Star-Spangled Music Foundation is pleased to announce publication of the Star Spangled Songbook, a companion to our 2014 recording Poets and Patriots. The Songbook includes over seventy songs with full text and performable sheet music. These all-new scholarly editions reveal the remarkable story of ”The Star-Spangled Banner” beginning with the melody’s roots as an 18th-c. English musicians club anthem and vehicle for early American political parodies that predate Francis Scott Key’s lyric. The anthem itself is shown in twenty distinct arrangements revealing its symbolic and musical transformations from song of celebration to national hymn, from its original 1814 arrangement as a solo song with choral refrain, to the World War I “Service Version,” and then to Igor Stravinsky's beautiful (yet infamous) setting and a brand new through-composed version of all four verses by American composer Michael Gandolfi.

We are also pleased to announce that Star Spangled Music Foundation founder Mark Clague has won a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) as part of its newly created Public Scholars Program. Clague’s award supports work on his book, O Say Can You Hear?: A Tuneful Cultural History of “The Star-Spangled Banner.” The book shares the forgotten and misunderstood musical history of Francis Scott Key’s song and reveal how the song’s story presents a surprising social history of the United States.

Conference News
SAM members are encouraged to periodically check the Golden Pages website (goldenpages.jpehs.co.uk/conferences) for updated information about additional forthcoming conferences in musicology.

In the spirit of Billy Joel’s music, a “public musicology” conference titled “‘It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me’: The Music and Lyrics of Billy Joel” (7–8 October 2016) aims to share academically oriented insights on this popular figure and his output in an accessible and approachable manner. Hosted by Colorado College and co-sponsored by the American Musicological Society, we invite scholars from musicology, ethnomusicology, music theory, history, comparative literature, and related fields to reassess and reconsider the music and lyrics of Billy Joel. We welcome a range of methodological and theoretical approaches to the sonic, narrative, visual, and cultural worlds of Joel’s music, including but not limited to expressions of American geography, representations of Cold War anxiety, and the classical and popular styles in which he finds inspiration. All projects should be geared towards an interdisciplinary and intellectually curious audience of faculty, students, and staff from Colorado College, members of the greater Colorado Springs community, and other conference presenters.

Proposals are now being accepted for 20-minute presentations of research on any aspect of Joel’s artistic oeuvre. We also welcome proposals for presentation formats beyond the traditional conference paper. The CFP deadline is 8 Apr 2016. Please visit www.coloradocollege.edu/billyjoel for details on proposal submission. Questions can be directed to: billyjoelconference -at- coloradocollege.edu

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The Bulletin of the Society for American Music

The Bulletin is published in the Winter (January), Spring (May), and Fall (September) by the Society for American Music. Copyright 2016 by the Society for American Music, ISSN 0196-7967.

Editorial Board
Editor: Laura Moore Pruett (lmpruett@bellsouth.net)
Reviews Editor: Ryan Bañagale (Ryan.Banagale@ColoradoCollege.edu)
Design and Layout: Ryan Ebright (eryan@bgsu.edu)

Items for submission should be submitted to Laura Moore Pruett as an attachment to e-mail. Photographs or other graphic materials should be accompanied by captions and desired location in the text. Deadlines for submission of materials are 15 December, 15 April, and 15 August.

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Awards, Fellowships, and Subventions of the Society

Further information is available at the website (american-music.org) or by contacting the SAM office [sam@american-music.org].

Student Travel Grants
Available for student members who wish to attend the annual conference of the Society for American Music and intended to help with the cost of travel. Students receiving funds must be members of the Society and enrolled at a college or university.

Mark Tucker Award
Awarded at the annual SAM conference recognizing a student who has written an outstanding paper for presentation at that conference.

Cambridge University Press Award
This award is presented to an international scholar (not a student) for an outstanding paper presented at the annual conference.

Wiley Housewright Dissertation Award
The Wiley Housewright Dissertation Award annually recognizes a single dissertation on American music for its exceptional depth, clarity, significance, and overall contribution to the field.

H. Earle Johnson Bequest for Book Publication Subvention
The Johnson Subvention is given to support the costs of the publication of a significant monograph on an important topic in American Music. Two subventions of up to $2,500 may be awarded annually.

Sight and Sound Subvention
The Sight and Sound Subvention provides financial assistance to facilitate the publication of non-print material concerning American music. Such material may include film, DVD, CD and other audio/visual formats, radio programs, website development, or other projects that further the Society’s mission and goals. One subvention of up to $900 is awarded annually.

Irving Lowens Memorial Book and Article Awards
The Lowens Award is presented annually for an exceptional book and article that make important contributions to the study of American music or music in America.

Adrienne Fried Block Fellowship
The Block Fellowship supports scholarly research leading to publication on topics that illuminate musical life in large urban communities, focusing on the interconnections and the wide range of genres present in these metropolitan settings.

Paul Charosh Independent Scholar Fellowship
The Paul Charosh Independent Scholar Fellowship is intended to foster research by independent scholars, and to encourage their participation in Society conferences. For purposes of this award, an “independent scholar” is someone who does not teach at an institution of higher learning, or who does so with a non-renewable contract of one year or less.

John and Roberta Graziano Fellowship
This fellowship shall be given to support scholarly research in all genres of music that originated in the United States in the nineteenth century, as well as other music performed in North America during that historical period.

Hampsong Education Fellowship in American Song
The Hampsong Fellowship supports projects developed by educators who wish to explore the repertory of American classic song as a means to understand the broader narrative of American history and culture.

Judith McCulloh Fellowship
The fellowship is given annually to support a short-term research residency at the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage. Awarded competitively to scholars at any phase of their careers, the fellowship may be used to support expenses associated with the residency, such as travel expenses, lodging, and duplication expenses at the center.

Virgil Thomson Fellowship
The Virgil Thomson Fellowship is awarded competitively to scholars at any phase of their careers whose interest is focused on the history, creation, and analysis of American music on stage and screen, including opera.

Judith Tick Fellowship
This fellowship, endowed in honor of Judith Tick, is awarded competitively to scholars at any phase of their careers to support scholarly research leading to publication on topics that have been the focus of Prof. Tick’s distinguished career: women’s music-making across time and musical genres, musical biography, and source studies in American music.

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