BETWEEN FOLK AND POPULAR: THE LIMINAL SPACES OF THE VERNACULAR
British Forum for Ethnomusicology Annual Conference International Centre
for Music Studies, Newcastle University, UK
April 18-21, 2007
The International Centre
for Music Studies at Newcastle University is pleased to host a
BFE Conference for the first time.
Salwa El-Shawan Castelo Branco (Universidade Nova de Lisboa)
Philip V. Bohlman
(University of Chicago)
CALL FOR PAPERS
Deadline for receipt of
abstracts: 15th January, 2007
If it is true that the
ethnographic Other is now fully plugged in, and the ethnomusicologist is
no longer the only person in the field with high-tech equipment (Lysloff
and Gay, Jr.); that the differences between world and traditional folk
musicians have collapsed, and for many of them the local marketplace and
the global market are at some level the same (Bohlman); then it is
probably time (again) to think to what extent, on the level of
scholarship within cultural studies, subcultural theory, ethnic
studies, and ethnomusicology the music [still] features within grids
of distinction and political position clearly indebted to older
discourses in folkloristics, anthropology and Romantic Kulturkritik
(Middleton). In the light of this, how does ethnomusicology consider new
vernacular and post-vernacular musics? Is the difference between folk
and popular still valuable, or even necessary? It is probably time
(again) to question the extent to which ethnomusicological theory is now
responding to the always changing process of the stratification of
[musical] codes, each one in a state of constant change and adaptation,
each one recognized and owned by several communities (or
sub-communities) with different degrees of competence, and sometimes in
conflict with each other (Fabbri).
We welcome papers and
panels on the following themes, although these should not be taken as
theories and processes of categorization
- Folk music and popular music revisited: distinctions, overlaps and
- Ethnomusicology of new vernacular and post-vernacular musics
- Folk music performance on the contemporary stage
- Tradition and new authenticities
- Is 'World Music' dead? (After rock, jazz, and punk, is it time for
another kind of 'funeral'?)
- Different histories of/in ethnomusicology
- Genre and/or style studies
The official language of
the conference will be English. Papers should last no longer than 20
minutes, including audio and visual illustrations.
Abstracts (up to 250
words, plus a note of audio-visual requirements) should be sent, by
email (rtf. files), by 15th January 2007 at the latest, to the local
organiser, Dr Goffredo Plastino, to whom other enquiries may also be
addressed. Abstracts should clearly display the knowledge of previous
research, and should indicate both ethnographic and theoretical
Abstracts will be
evaluated anonymously by a small panel, and authors may expect to be
advised of their acceptance or otherwise by 20th February 2007.
To permit blind
evaluation, please type the title of the paper and the body of the
abstract at the top of the page (left alignment), and your name and
institutional affiliation in the bottom left-hand corner. Do not include
your name in the body of the abstract.
NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE is
easily accessible by rail and well served for overseas visitors by
Newcastle International Airport. For delegates requiring overnight
accommodation there is a range of options within easy walking distance.
Booking details and additional information will be available on February
2007 on the conference website
Dr Goffredo Plastino
International Centre for
Newcastle upon Tyne NE1
13th Northern French Media Research
Group one-day conference
Saturday 4 November
2006 (Royal Station Hotel, Newcastle upon Tyne, 5 minutes walk from
Newcastle Central Station)
Registration is £25
(PGs £10). Please send cheques payable to 'Northern media research
group' to H Dauncey at School of Modern Languages, Old Library Building,
Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE17RU.
Programme of the
day, speakers and topics
Mr Franck Michel (Newcastle University): 'The political
communication of Valéry Giscard d'Estaing.
11.10-11.50. Dr Bridget
Knapper (formerly University of Westminster): 'Beur FM: the management
of an inclusive space'.
11.50-12.50. Dr Philippe Le Guern (Université d'Angers / CNRS): 'Les
radios en France : un vecteur de la concentration culturelle?'
(taken quickly and cheaply in an adjacent eatery).
13.50-14.30. Dr Jane
Chapman (Lincoln University): 'George Sand as ‘engaged’ journalist:
pre-commercial ethics and fictional devices'.
Professor Máire Cross (Newcastle University) will lead a 'Workshop'
session on media reactions to Ségolène Royal.
15.20-16.00. Dr Pam
Moores (University of Aston) and Dr Sheila Perry (University of
Nottingham): 'The Media reception of International Women's Day in France
tea and discussion of future plans (FMRG14 in May 2007 and FMRG15 in
FMRG would like to acknowledge continuing financial assistance
afforded by the Association for the Study of Modern and Contemporary
France (ASMCF) to the day-conferences. Thanks are also due to the
Newcastle Institute for the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities
(NIASSH) for funding.
Dr Hugh Dauncey for further details of the conference or the FMRG.
French Recording Industry Seminar
On Thursday November
2nd at 4pm, Philippe Le Guern of the Université d'Angers/CNRS will give
a paper on the French recording industry in the Research Beehive
(Newcastle University), room 2.22:
L'industrie du disque en France : comment repenser la crise de la
Le Guern is currently working on a number of collaborative projects with
Dr Hugh Dauncey, including edited volumes on French popular music
and the study of popular music in France and Great Britain, and a
comparative study of independent record labels.
full series of music research seminars at Newcastle University can found
part of this programme there will be a one-day symposium:
The philosophy of the vernacular: Richard Middleton's Voicing the
People in context
Jodi Dean, Mark Fisher,
Richard Elliott and
Saturday, 25th November 2006, 9:30am, CETL seminar Room, Armstrong
10 October, Channel 5 showed
Kathryn Tickell’s Northumbria, an exploration of the influence
of place on her music, from incredible rural landscapes to the urban
edge and modernity of Newcastle and Gateshead.
exploded onto city streets
From 7th to 16th July 2006, NewcastleGateshead
played home to an explosion of Latin and Lusophone cultures involving
theatre, film, art, photography, literature, cuisine, fashion, dance,
classical, popular and club music.
¡VAMOS! festival involved staff from the Popular Music Research
Network including two of the festival organisers,
Vanessa Knights and
Ian Biddle. Along with festival director, Nik Barrera of
NAME and festival co-ordinator Jill Bennison of
Blue Sky Events, they launched the festival at
Dance City with free dance classes, performances by Flamenco Norte
and Los Que lo Dan, and a peña flamenca.
Sergio & Mariano at
Staff and students linked to the network participated in numerous events
with the backing of the Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning -
Music and Inclusivity. PhD student Sergio Camacho sang at Saltwell Park
as well as having one of his compositions performed at All Saints Church
in a programme which also featured Senior Lecturer in Composition,
Agustín Fernández and a pre-concert talk by Ian Biddle. Students
also performed alongside international Djs at the
World Headquarters club following a competition to compose an
electronica track using Hispanic/Lusophone source materials. They were a
visible presence in their ¡VAMOS! t-shirts as the festival street team
throughout the city!
Paco & Cesco at WHQ
During the festival the University also hosted an
international conference on Popular Musics of the Hispanic and Lusophone
Worlds from 14th to 16th July organised by Dr
Biddle (Head of
Music and director of CETL) and Dr Vanessa Knights (Senior Lecturer
in Hispanic Studies,
School of Modern Languages with support from the
Popular Music Research Group , CETL and
Newcastle Institute for the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities,
Newcastle University in conjunction with the
University of Nottingham and the
Sage Gateshead. Support for speakers was also provided by the
British Academy and
Instituto Camões. The conference brought together scholars from Europe
and the Americas.
There were several papers delivered by Newcastle staff and students
Dr María Fernández-Toro’s innovative research into the use of
Guarani in Paraguayan song and Dr Vanessa Knights and
Dr Paul Attinello’s groundbreaking work on popular music and AIDS.
María also performed with her a cappella group, Voice Quad, at a civic
reception offered for conference delegates by the Lord Mayor, Diane
further information on the festival please visit:
¡VAMOS! was financially supported by: Arts Council North East, Newcastle
City Council, Gateshead Council, The Northern Rock Foundation, CETL
(Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning - Music and
Photography courtesy of
¡VAMOS! 2006 by James
Mr McFall’s Chamber, an ensemble
whose accomplished members play with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra,
gave a rich, enjoyable concert at All Saints Church in Newcastle on a
cool Sunday afternoon [9 July 2006]. The program had a Spanish/Latin
American focus (to be expected, as it was part of a Hispanic music
festival), but with a heavy Parisian accent; the musical choices,
ranging from pleasurable to powerful, all tended to emphasize sensual
sound, or sounds about sensuality. Several of the composers weren’t
familiar to me – I noted the Cuban Fabio Landa, whose Pequeña Suite
Cubana started the concert with a ravishing, Ravelesque quality, and
two lively Cuban piano dances by Ignacio Cervantes. There was some
Piazzolla, of course – extremely well played and enjoyable; but more
noticeable were the local composers, the songs, and the saw.
Locals included Sergio Camacho’s Four Names for the One Moon,
whose fascinating, fragmentary beginning showed a lot of promise; and
Fernández’ Botanic Spider, which was definitely the
‘powerhouse’ work of the afternoon. I’m not just saying this because
he’s a colleague of mine – no, honestly – but it was a truly powerful
piece with a massive impact: the intellectual intricacies of the first
movement set up a seriousness that was fulfilled by a final movement
whose power recalled for me such works as Wolpe’s Passacaglia.
Leavening all that intensity were four cabaret songs, wonderfully
performed by Taylor Wilson; she had chosen dramatic longer songs by
Jobim, Weill and Brel, and delivered them with a dark, throaty quality
that thoroughly sold the tragic, erotic ‘wrist-slashers.’ There was also
an unexpected cameo for musical saw – I was, perhaps pardonably,
distracted by trying to figure out exactly how Su-a Lee (normally the
group’s cellist) was producing those sounds. The result was campy, but
quite wonderful, especially as the first violinist had such a good ear
for playing along with the saw.
strongest final impression was of the easy confidence of these artists;
their flexible approaches to programming, and assured skills at making a
variety of musics sound very good indeed, were carried off without
effort or fanfare. There should be more chamber groups in the world that
are both this dazzling and this intimate; if there were, we’d all
probably enjoy chamber music the way it was enjoyed a century ago.
Paul Attinello (ICMuS)
This concert could not have taken place without the generous support of
Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning - Music and Inclusivity
International Centre for Music Studies
Photography courtesy of
¡VAMOS! 2006 by