By Ingrid Monson
The African Diaspora offers musical case experiences from a variety of areas of the African diaspora, together with Africa, the Caribbean, Latin the United States, and Europe, that have interaction with broader interdisciplinary discussions approximately race, gender, politics, nationalism, and tune.
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Additional info for African Diaspora: A Musical Perspective (Critical and Cultural Musicology, 3)
Gilroy 1991a:154). For African Americans, working primarily within what he refers to as the “blues idiom,” the element of “play” (cf. Hall 1992) and its potential for making existence meaningful are paramount. ” In any case, when the Negro musician or dancer swings the blues, he is fulfilling the same existential requirement that determines the mission of the poet, the priest, and the medicine man…. Extemporizing in response to the exigencies of the situation in which he finds himself, he is confronting, acknowledging, and contending with the infernal absurdities and ever-impending frustrations inherent in the nature 28 THE AFRICAN DIASPORA of existence by playing with the possibilities that are also there.
Moreover, he posits performance as the central arena in which the blues and African American musics make their impact. Those performances, however, cannot be interpreted solely on the basis of sound: one must be attentive to what is brought to each musical encounter and its relationship to African American culture. The writers just surveyed can be broadly characterized as being concerned with jazz performance as a blues-based, ritual activity. In different ways, they emphasize the roles of cultural background, skill, and training, and individual and group expression.
Sometimes, those sessions involve listening to recordings of their own performances or going over difficulties they have encountered in performing. Joshua Redman (1995) says that his focus at such times is on “trying to learn tunes I don’t know, play through the melodies, play them in different keys. As a general rule, I try to work on things that don’t come naturally. ” Both Antonio Hart (1994) and Sam Newsome (1995) speak of having notebooks full of harmonic concepts that they have not fully incorporated into their playing, concepts that will require extensive practice to internalize and make effective in performing contexts.
African Diaspora: A Musical Perspective (Critical and Cultural Musicology, 3) by Ingrid Monson