Higher Ground: Stevie Wonder, Aretha Franklin, Curtis by Craig Werner

By Craig Werner

In Higher Ground, considered one of our such a lot insightful song writers brilliantly reinterprets the lives of 3 pop geniuses and the soul revolution they launched.

Soul tune is certainly one of America's maximum cultural achievements, and Stevie ask yourself, Aretha Franklin, and Curtis Mayfield are 3 of its so much encouraged practitioners. In midcentury the United States it was once soul music--particularly the fabulous flow of recordings made through those 3 stars--that helped carry the gospel imaginative and prescient of the black church into the mainstream, energizing the era’s social pursuits and defining a brand new American gospel the place the sacred and the secular met. What made this gospel the entire extra outstanding was once that its such a lot influential articulators have been the little kids of sharecroppers, storefront preachers, and unmarried mom and dad within the initiatives, whose genius gave voice to a brand new imaginative and prescient of yank possibility.

Higher Ground seamlessly weaves the explicit and extremely own narratives of Stevie, Aretha, and Curtis’s lives into the historic cloth in their occasions. the 3 shared many similarities: They have been all little ones of the nice migration and of the black church. however the gospel impulse manifested itself in several methods in the dramas in their person lives and musical creations. In Stevie Wonder’s case, it was once a actually color-blind common experience of spirituality that expressed itself in his lifestyles and song as an urge towards transcendence, fairly within the mid-seventies while albums like Innervisions and Songs within the Key of lifestyles extensively revised what a pop album will be. For Aretha Franklin, the conventional gospel imaginative and prescient of a cherished group anchored within the energy of girls comforted her via a lifestyles plagued by tragedy and located expression in propulsive pop songs like "Respect" in addition to in her mythical gospel albums. And for Curtis Mayfield, the gospel idea of wakeful residing encouraged him to create songs that served the needs of the Civil Rights circulation and the unconventional Black strength stream alike, from the gritty highway drama of Superfly to the transcendent name of "People Get Ready."

Werner doesn't simply offer a story of 3 interesting lives; he ties them including a provocative thesis approximately American heritage and tradition that compels us to re-evaluate either the tune and the days. And apart from the personalities and the heritage, he writes fantastically approximately song itself, the nuts and bolts of its production and function, in a fashion that brings a brand new understanding and realizing to the main time-honored track, forcing readers to hear songs they've heard one thousand instances with clean ears. In Higher Ground, Werner illuminates the lives of 3 extraordinary American artists, reminding us why their tune mattered then and nonetheless resonates with us today.

From the Hardcover edition.

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Extra resources for Higher Ground: Stevie Wonder, Aretha Franklin, Curtis Mayfield, and the Rise and Fall of Americ an Soul

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In search of music education. Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press. , & Ronström, O. (2000). Musik, medier, mångkultur. Förändringar i svenska musiklandskap. [Music, media, multiculture. Changes in Swedish music landscape]. Hedemora: Gidlunds Förlag. Lundström, H. (1993). Världsmusik eller mångkulturalism, eller … [World music or multi culturism, or …]. In E. ), På jakt efter en mångkulturell musiklärarutbildning [In search of a multi cultural music teacher education] (pp. 29–37). Malmö: Malmö Academy of Music.

Ownership: Who ‘owns’ the decisions of the activity; what to do as well as how, where and when? 4. Intentionality: Towards what is the mind directed — towards learning how to play or towards playing (Folkestad, 1998)? Within a pedagogical or a musical framework (Saar, 1999)? One conclusion of the research on formal and informal musical learning is that it is far too simplified, and actually false, to say that formal learning only occurs in institutional settings and that informal learning only occurs outside school.

Any learning expands my ability and opens more doors through musical experience (JD). I very much enjoy playing traditional arrangements and there are aspects of the traditional form I am quite strict about wanting to maintain, mainly because in my experience they simply ‘work’. I think as music migrates it will surely also evolve. I think this is a good thing and in no way insulting to another musical culture. Involvement in a different musical style can surely only help to enhance our understanding (DC).

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