differentiate, with this last example, between the positions taken by the singer (unrequited approaches, love lost, and so on). The distinction approximates to that between the ‘what’ of the meaning of the song (genre) and the ‘how’ it is articulated (style). 257 255 Ronald Byrnside, “The Formation of a Musical Style: Early Rock,” in Contemporary Music and Music Cultures, ed. Charles Hamm, Bruno Nettl and Ronald Byrnside (New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, 1975), 159-160. 256 The terms “competent” and “incompetent” may appear unduly harsh, but they are terms used in a series of discussions put forth by Gino Stefani. Stefani believes that the communicative dialogue between musicians and listeners is predicated on the listening competence of the audience. Stefani’s theories have been discussed at length by popular music scholars such as Alan Moore, Richard Middleton, and David Brackett. See G. Stefani, “A Theory of Music Competence,” Semiotica 66 (1987), 7-22. Theodor Adorno, in Introduction to the Sociology of Music (New York: Seabury, 1976) also addresses listening competency by categorizing listeners into six types that range from expert to entertainment. 257 Allan F. Moore, Rock: The Primary Text, 2 nd ed. (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2001), 3. 208
I believe that genres do not cut across styles, as Moore puts it, but that styles cut across genres, or styles work within the parameters of genre. In other words, genre is the broad category within which differing styles exist. For instance, within the genre of jazz, bebop is a style exemplified by Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie, who performed within the overall stylistic performance parameters of the bebop tradition. Admittedly, the boundaries between style and genre can blur together, and the common interchangeability of the terms has not helped clarify the situation. For my purposes, I propose that style is a more detailed element that exists within the broader category of genre. This does not mean that style is an inferior musical element; it is one of the central topics addressed in the “Chronological Case Studies” in Chapters Two, Three, and Four. Issues of style and genre are particularly complex in jazz. Bebop, for instance, is a historically accepted style within the jazz genre, but bebop can also mimic many of the features of genre. For example, bebop is defined by canonic performers who utilize specific melodic and harmonic language, repertoire, and timbre. Although some of these features exist in other jazz styles, this distinct combination of performers and musical techniques only occurs in bebop. Bebop can arguably be termed a genre. 258 In other words, bebop can be considered a style of jazz or a genre (with jazz roots) that features many personal styles. To clarify these matters, I believe that bebop is a style of jazz that contains individual sub-styles.
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