Unformatted text preview: Swing, The Machine Age, and
the Marketplace What is Swing? Defies easy definiti0n A musical phenomenon? A cuttural phenomenon? A more advancedfmodern/organized form of jazz?
Just a marketing term? A stepping stone to "better" music? A harmless outlet for youthful exuberance? An erotic, immoral, primitive, drug-laden music? “Jazz and swing were musically one in the same item, yet
the generational factors that helped to create each of them
made them very different and unique cultural products" “Swing musicians were able to accept the limitations
placed upon them by the machine while at the same time Musical Hjﬂerism? utilizing the machine to create something new - Tthm'OQY An music maligned, misinterpreted, and denigrated through implied
and modernism thus changed the fabric of the artist and andfor overt racism? the audience." I A more “acceptable" moniker for the same thing? I Kenneth Bindas
I “Swing from Verb to Noun" (LeRoi Jones, a. k.a. Amiri Baraka} The impact of Radio? Marketing Swing Enforced standardization of product and consumption I Brand-name association
I Timing .
I Swing arrangements were measured and precise I Standardized product
I Umited improvisation I Seliing newness
I Emotion I creating new markets, notjuat futfiiling demand
I Whine lead in I switch from customer to consumption
- bands animus to sell themselves had to sellprocluctas well _ . .
. Th, “mass“, of "Mn," I Consumption as patriotic duty
- Promotional life PFEﬁﬂlD= 2+ years I Not buyingltiking = social aiienation
I With retﬁo = 3-8 months - - so
I Jukeboxes held 12-24 records I or fear Of “[3”an 'behind
I Industrial production - success not left to chance I SpeCIallZed magaztnes
I short, catchy melodies; romantici‘appealing tyrics; “signature times" I Downbeat, Metronome (virtually no blacks won awards in Guam-Os)
I musicians conform to demands of modem production
- efficiency, speed, and adaptabilty I Endorselments . .
I More non-rhusiciarisinvolved I Modernism through stylization
L035 01' regionalism I trains, machine precision. simple beauty! clean lines,
Modernist dllemma I Only exteriori'packaging needs to change
I Purchasing = status and ability (no need to practice!) I Technology that “enriched" musical experience also made musicians unnecessary The Hegemony of Swing Cultural hegemony I "The Culture industry is unable to completely
manipulate everything that is produced. Instead, it
minimizes risk of failure by making legitimate the
publics' particular taste. If that taste is critical of the
existing social order, by its acceptance as popular it
is validated by the dominant and loses much of its
oppositional force, while still retaining its
countercultural value.” (Bindas, 74) l Jazz went from oppositional to consumable, but
“the swing way of being” was not for sale? ...
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- Spring '08