More Than Dancing: Essays on Afro-American Music and Musicians (Contributions in Afro-american & African Studies)

 
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More Than Dancing: Essays on Afro-American Music and Musicians (Contributions in Afro-american & African Studies)

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?Like its companion volume More Than Drumming, this is a welcome addition to studies of Afro-American music by African American scholars. The 11 essays emphasize the sacred musical forms of the US. The first two essays, West African influences on black music in the US (Maultsby) and the black conceptual approach to music making (Wilson), provide a solid base for the others. Three essays are principally historical: McGinty documents the musical scene in Washington, DC, in the late 1800s; Jackson surveys both music among black Episcopalians from antebellum to contemporary times and the participation of blacks in the WPA music program. Four essays emphasize musicological/ethnomusicological approaches: Starks explores South Carolina Sea Island songs; Boyer compares and contrasts traditional and contemporary gospel music styles; Burnim details aesthetic, ideological, and behavioral components of gospel performance; and Stewart deftly probes the changing relationships between males and females as expressed in R & B music from the 1960s and 1970s. Two essays deal with poetry but focus on music: Burns attempts to define poetic closure in blues lyrics, using Eric Sackheim's The Blue Line: A Collection of Blues Lyrics (1969) as her corpus, and Henderson provides a dynamic exploration of blues lyricism in Sterling Brown's poetry. On the whole this is a satisfying collection of essays.?-Choice

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