The No-Nonsense Guide to World Music (No-Nonsense Guides) by Louise Gray

By Louise Gray

'World Music' is an ungainly word. Used to explain the highly multifaceted nature of various, generally, non-English language renowned musics from internationally, it's a tag that throws up as many difficulties because it does recommendations. Louise Gray's No-Nonsense consultant to international track makes an attempt to head at the back of the word to discover the explanations for the modern curiosity in international track, who listens to it and why? It seems at genres, reminiscent of fado and rembetika, that emerged from marginalized groups; and engages with trance song, hiphop, nationwide anthems and new folks. It additionally probes the darkish aspect – the function that tune performs in clash from Rwanda to the center East. yet finally, this exact consultant, which mixes the seduction of sound with politics and social concerns, makes the case for song as a robust software to convey humans jointly.

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Literary Awards
Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-Fiction Nominee for Longlist (2010)

Additional info for The No-Nonsense Guide to World Music (No-Nonsense Guides)

Sample text

Lisbon, an energetic port city serving not only Europe, but looking further afield to the Americas and Africa, especially Portugal’s colonies there, was well placed to absorb foreign influences. Napoleon When Napoleon’s armies invaded Portugal in 1807 the royal family and its 15,000-strong court immediately decamped to Rio de Janeiro, capital of its former colony, Brazil, where the fado, a slow Afro-Brazilian dance accompanied by sentimental lyrics, was in evidence. Other claims to fado’s origins are more poetic.

This is not a terrible situation. Sellers need to be pro-active in order to survive; and, as we have seen with regards to the people who met at the Empress of Russia, it’s absolutely necessary for the sellers to negotiate a way to represent their own and their artists’ interests. Neither world domination, nor belittling the musicians who would later fall into the world music category was on their agenda – even though there are many who are uneasy with the tag. ‘Don’t call me “world music”,’ the French-Spanish star Manu Chao told The Guardian writer Garth Cartwright in 2007.

If we have to categorize, maybe one way of beginning would be to ask the musicians themselves and examine the creative frameworks within which they work. Why now? But even if we suspend a well-founded reticence to use the term ‘world music’, there are immediate questions to be asked. Prime amongst them is this: why is world music so interesting to the first world – its main consumers – now? World music is not new. The existence of musics outside the rich West has been known since travelers first traveled.

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