Published on February 5, 2014
Mass Media and Society Chapter 6: Music Feb. 3, 2014
Chapter 6: Music • Popular music’s evolution • Reciprocal nature of music and culture • Current trends in the music industry • Influence of new technology
Evolution of popular music • Phonograph and gramophone • Tin Pan Alley and vaudeville • Electrical recording and the rise of radio
Jazz, blues, country /folk, rock and roll • Jazz emerges in 1930s New Orleans • Country/Western arises from folk traditions in ’20s • Blues spreads north in late 1930s and 1940s • Rock and roll rises in ’50s
Rock and roll • Early pioneers: Little Richard, Chuck Berry • Elvis Presley combines R&B of blues artists with country-western tradition • Elvis is “the first true rock and roll icon”
The Beatles arrive • 1964 “Ed Sullivan Show”: one in three Americans (74 million) tuned in • British Invasion: Rolling Stones, other artists • Beatles’ melodic pop sound contrasts with bluesy Stones
Other musical genres emerge • Folk, soul (Motown), surf, folk, folk rock, glam rock, disco, punk, and on to rap, alternative, grunge • Protest music in 1960s is closely linked with hippie culture
Hip-hop • Emerges in 1970s and 1980s • Urban culture includes graffiti art, breakdancing, rap music (MC and DJ, sampling, scratching, sampling)
Hip-hop’s rise • From underground to mainstream • Starts as voice of disaffected • Spreads among cultures and influences/is influenced by culture • Its rise mirrors that of other genres
Music and culture • Great Migration: Between 1915 and 1920, as many as 1 million African Americans moved north • Migrant blues artists brought music to Chicago, other cities
Music and culture • Following World War II, youth culture coheres • Between 1950 and 1959, music sales rocket from $189 million to nearly $600 million • Morality debates seen in every generation
Music and culture • Civil Rights Movement: Segregation starts to crumble; African American artists gain mainstream popularity: Motown’s Supremes, Temptations, Four Tops, Vandellas
Ethnicity and the music business • White artists “hijack” hits, recording cover versions that gained popularity • African-American artists lost out on royalties • Long history of tension and exploitation
Current music industry trends • Record sales plunge in late 1990s amid filesharing • A few big firms continue to dominate: Sony, EMI, Universal, War ner • Digital sales, streaming
Technology and the music industry • File sharing: RIAA cracks down, sues violators • MP3 players replace CDs • Digital music sales grow from 20% in 2007 to more than 50% in 2012
Total full album sales breakdown • Digital (iTunes, Amazon, etc.): 37 percent • Mass merchants (Walmart, etc.): 29% • Best Buy-type chains: 15% • Mail order, venue: 10% • Independent stories: 7%
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