Title

Audible Power: the Cultural Impact of American Experimental Music

Presentation Type

Presentation

Abstract

I produce a show called The Print Lab at the university radio station, featuring eclectic music and short stories. The show has allowed me to experiment with the ways a text's meaning can change when read aloud or set to music. As a supplement to my radio show, I conducted research comparing my personal experimentation with the broader cultural impact of musical experimentation. I studied various texts, focusing on the “outsiders” of American music, people who defied societal expectations of how music ought to sound, often without training or commercial support. Outsider music became a force for political change; during the Black Power movement of the late 60s, African Americans used spoken word music and other experimentation to form an identity separate from white society. Other experimental movements developed America's cultural identity; America became an ideal space for creation, as it lacked long-standing cultural traditions. Non-commercial and amateur radio widened the audience for experimental music. Radio shows like mine can exist because of those unconventional producers' and musicians' struggle for creative freedom. By increasing accessibility and experimentation in the music industry, they were able to increase their culture's open-mindedness. After discussing these ideas, I'll describe my personal experimentation with my radio show, The Print Lab. The show often utilizes recorded readings of literary texts complemented by my personal commentary and eclectic pieces of music. I'll play a short segment of my radio show which displays a combination of these elements.

Category

Humanities

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Apr 17th, 10:00 AM Apr 17th, 10:20 AM

Audible Power: the Cultural Impact of American Experimental Music

UC 331

I produce a show called The Print Lab at the university radio station, featuring eclectic music and short stories. The show has allowed me to experiment with the ways a text's meaning can change when read aloud or set to music. As a supplement to my radio show, I conducted research comparing my personal experimentation with the broader cultural impact of musical experimentation. I studied various texts, focusing on the “outsiders” of American music, people who defied societal expectations of how music ought to sound, often without training or commercial support. Outsider music became a force for political change; during the Black Power movement of the late 60s, African Americans used spoken word music and other experimentation to form an identity separate from white society. Other experimental movements developed America's cultural identity; America became an ideal space for creation, as it lacked long-standing cultural traditions. Non-commercial and amateur radio widened the audience for experimental music. Radio shows like mine can exist because of those unconventional producers' and musicians' struggle for creative freedom. By increasing accessibility and experimentation in the music industry, they were able to increase their culture's open-mindedness. After discussing these ideas, I'll describe my personal experimentation with my radio show, The Print Lab. The show often utilizes recorded readings of literary texts complemented by my personal commentary and eclectic pieces of music. I'll play a short segment of my radio show which displays a combination of these elements.