In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:

  • Editor’s Note: Music Histories
  • Matthew B. Karush

Cultural and social histories of music are experiencing something of a boom these days. Inspired by the emergent fields of sound studies and transnational history, as well as by new histories of capitalism and globalization, scholars have begun to examine both the production and consumption of music in novel ways. This special section brings together seven excellent examples of this new scholarship. The articles cover a broad geographical and chronological range, leveraging histories of music to address an impressive array of topics, including race and gender, immigration, cultural and economic globalization, and technological development, as well as marketing and genre construction. What unites them, among other things, is the careful attention the authors pay to the complex relationship between music and the economic, social, and ideological structures within which it is created and used. James Millward traces the emergence and development of the sitar within the shifting, transimperial, and multicultural terrain of the “silk road.” Michael O’Malley illuminates the racialization of music in the United States through a look at the career of early jazz guitarist Eddie Lang. Pablo Palomino examines the trajectory of a much more obscure artist, whose career played out in Eastern Europe and Buenos Aires, to see what it reveals about the structure of twentieth-century musical globalization. Panagiota Anognostou analyzes the naming and renaming of Greek popular music, revealing the power of genre names to shape “social worlds.” Michael Schmidt’s close look at the 1951 reissue of Louis Armstrong’s early recordings demonstrates the ways LP technology and packaging transformed the meaning of the music. Christina Abreu examines the constraints of race and gender faced by Graciela, Celia Cruz, and La Lupe—the three most successful and influential Afro-Cuban women in Latin music—as well as their agency in the face of these constraints. Jason McGraw reveals how Caribbean migrants in Britain used and transformed Jamaica music in order to build communities in the face of endemic racism. Finally, David Suisman’s “Afterword” situates these diverse articles within the historiography of music and suggests some intriguing ways in which they are in dialogue with the field of sound studies. [End Page 205]



Additional Information

Print ISSN
p. 205
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.