Making Music IndigenousPopular Music in the Peruvian Andes

Making Music IndigenousPopular Music in the Peruvian Andes

Joshua Tucker

Print publication date: 2019

ISBN: 9780226607160

Publisher: University of Chicago Press


Making Music Indigenous focuses on indigenous chimaycha music from the Peru’s highland region. It explores the transformation of this Quechua-language song genre over the last half-century, in relation to three central themes: nature, mass mediation, and social politics. The first part of the book explores an era past, when chimaycha was linked to seasonal cycles of animal husbandry and climactic variation, on one hand, and on the other to the human life cycle, particularly via its role in youthful courtship. In this period the genre was an aesthetic means of mediating relations between human actors and their ecological circumstances, and the book shows how such relations became embedded in such musical elements as song lyrics and timbral preferences. The second part explores the genre’s conversion into a self-conscious symbol of cultural identity, first under the influence of development organizations and educators between the 1970s and 1990s, and then under the direction of popular cultural entrepreneurs after 2000. It focuses especially on activities of folkloric promotion associated with the local state university, and the later interventions of indigenous radio broadcasters, whose work was made possible by those folkloric activities. The final part of the book explores the genre from the perspective of an instrument maker and performer whose expertise has been central to its development since the late 1980s. It focuses especially on the relationship between natural knowledge, the manual skills germane to the maker’s trade, and the objects that makers produce, which shape contemporary performers’ relation to the sonorous past.