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Genre in Popular Music$
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Fabian Holt

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780226350370

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226350400.001.0001

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Music at American Borders

Music at American Borders

(p.151) Chapter Seven Music at American Borders
Genre in Popular Music
University of Chicago Press

This chapter evaluates the work of genre in canons of “American music” and their discursive contexts. The notion of roots enjoyed a revival in the culture of American roots music in the 1990s, which illustrates the lasting effect of the folk song collectors. Then, it uses genre as a tool for understanding aspects of the problem of music and national identity in American cultural history. It demonstrates how poetics can be utilized to design a type of anthology that is more sensitive to diversity than anthologies that follow the big canons. The big ethnic markets eventually had a major effect on defining American popular music in black and white. Flaco Jiménez's rendition of “Inditamia” is in some ways typical of the classic late 1950s conjunto style. Jiménez shows that the relation between ethnic and mainstream American musics is not always one between folk and popular music.

Keywords:   genre, American roots music, national identity, American cultural history, American popular music, Flaco Jiménez, Inditamia

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