Bring the Noise: Popular Music Studies

Curated by Pablo Infante-Amate

Sheikh Imam: “A Voice of the People”


For much of his adult life, Sheikh Imam ‘Issa (born Muhammad Ahmad ‘Issa, 1918- 1995) lived as many musicians did in early- to mid-twentieth century Cairo: eking out a living in a dual role as Quran reciter/muezzin, and singer/composer of secular songs for the commercial market.

Thoughts on Convergence and Divergence in Vocaloid Culture (and Beyond)


Since the early 2000s, the concept of convergence has been discussed actively in the fields of media, fan, and popular music studies. Scholars in these fields have developed this concept to explain the fluidity of digital media content across different online platforms, cooperation among media industries, and the active and participatory nature of end users (Galbraith and Karlin, eds.

Entering the Virtual Cipher

For the last seven years I’ve been following the spread of hip hop culture in Egypt. When I visit Cairo, I always look forward to hearing new songs at my friends’ rap shows. And the big annual breakdance battles never fail to impress with new b-boy talent. But usually, I find myself gravitating towards the more informal hip hop “performances” that happen off stage. It’s from these that I learn the most.

Legendary Cyphers: The Pedagogy of Rhyme

Introduction: Ciphers in the Park

It’s Friday night and you’ve just ascended the stairway leading to Union Square Park in New York City from the subway below. Car horns, conversations, dance music, these are some of the many stimuli that try to attract your attention. In one corner of the park, you see a circle of people, nodding their heads in unison. As you get closer, you hear the bassline of J.

CFP: Ethnomusicology Review/Sounding Board, Special Issue on Pulse nightclub

The Sounding Board blog of Ethnomusicology Review, in conjunction with SEM’s Gender and Sexualities Taskforce (GST), invites submissions for a special issue on Pulse nightclub.

Producing Culture from Afar: Equatoguinean Musicians in Spain

Over the past three decades, a number of popular musicians from Equatorial Guinea have settled in Spain. Taking advantage of new infrastructures, better-established record labels, and a variety of contacts within the Spanish and European culture industry, these artists have not only promoted Equatoguinean music in Spain, but also influenced popular music-making in their home country.

Review| Longing for the Past: The 78 rpm Era in Southeast Asia

Longing for the Past: The 78 rpm Era in Southeast Asia, Edited by David Murray with Essays and Annotations by Jason Gibbs, David Harnish, Terry E. Miller, David Murray, Sooi Beng Tan, and Kit Young. Atlanta: Dust-To-Digital, 2013. [272 pp. ISBN-13: 9781938922572, Hardcover: $57.50].


Reviewed by Meghan Hynson / Duquesne University


Niggaz Wit Attitudes (N.W.A) vs. BuKnas de Culiacan: Conceptualizing Otherness through the Imagery Created by the Rap and Narcocorrido Musical Genres

When people become marginalized from the society at large, it is made clear that they do not belong to the dominant discourse. Thus, they are boxed into a category (or categories) that functions to distinguish them from the center.

Rancheras Chilenas en el Alto Bio Bio

El artículo de Crossing Borders de este mes es de la autoría de Pablo Catrileo Aravena (1981), músico, autor y compositor popular y Licenciado en Educación, nacido y criado entre las ciudades de Concepción y Talcahuano en la Octava Región del Bío-bío en Chile. Como Profesor de música (Universidad de Concepción, 2006) ha desarrollado labores de d

Kuvie’s Perspective on Afrobeats and the Future of Ghanaian Popular Music

New popular genres constantly are popping up across the globe. While visiting and conducting research in West Africa I found myself being introduced to the growing Azonto[1] and Afrobeats[2] scenes in their infancy.


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