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Making music together: An interactionist perspective on small-group performance in jazz
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of Musicology.
1998 (English)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This dissertation investigates and discusses music-making among players in contemporary small-group contexts in the world of jazz performance. It focuses on how jazz performers symbolically create meanings in their consciousnesses sociomusically and sociovisuaily in face-to-face playing situations which continuously flow into one another. These situations involve both self-interaction and interaction with the others. The study addresses the methodological problem of how to do justice to actors multiple viewpoints and their socially constructed realities here and now when interpretatively describing and analysing ensemble performances. Light is also shed on what meanings and values ascribed in the minds of players make for satisfactory and unsatisfactory experiences playing together.

The dissertation advocates an interdisciplinary approach to studying music-making (such as jazz). Thisapproach involves both ideally typified understanding of players' actions and experiences, and actors' view-points relating to particular performance situations. The author attempts to integrate theoretical ideas of the interactionist perspective (symbolic interactionism, social phenomenology, dramaturgy) with jazz analytic, social psychological, ethno- and sociomusicological ideas. Methodological solutions to problem situations and actor-oriented issues are qualitatively created as a bricolage, embracing dialectical interplaying between emics and etics (i.e., player's and analyst's perspectives).

The empirical material used comprises field-recorded music performancea and interviews of a regular quintet and an ad-hoc trio. These groups, which are subjected to a collective case study instrumentally, consist of professional Swedish musicians. Sociomusical accounts, involving players' understandings of themselves and the others, are given. Entire group performances and episodes am investigated. Historical model recordings and music analytic aspects are emically/etically dealt with.

Novel methods of graphically-verbally representing sociomusical and sociovisual interactions, involvingthe awareness of small-group performers, are proposed. Taking emic and etic roles leads to illumination of a number of dialectic relationships (e.g. flow and resistance, self and the other). Possible pedagogic applications, embracing role-play for teachers and students, are hinted at.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis , 1998. , 440, [8] p.
Studia musicologica Upsaliensia, ISSN 0081-6744 ; 14
Keyword [en]
Musicology, small-group contexts, jazz performers, face-to-face relationships, interactionist perspective, bricolage, emics, etics, field-recorded materials, regular quintet, ad-hoc trio
Keyword [sv]
National Category
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-235ISBN: 91-554-4243-9OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-235DiVA: diva2:161845
Public defence
1998-10-17, universitetets lärosal X, Uppsala, Uppsala, 10:00
Available from: 1998-09-26 Created: 1998-09-26 Last updated: 2016-10-18Bibliographically approved

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