A History of Popular Indigenous Music

King, Andrew S. (2013) A History of Popular Indigenous Music. In Wheeler, Belinda (Ed.) A Companion Guide to Australian Aboriginal Literature. Camden House, New York, pp. 187-201.

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SINCE THE INVENTION OF recording technologies like the phonograph in the late 1800s, Indigenous music has been performed and recorded across Australia for a wide range of audiences. In the early twentieth century, for instance, music was recorded by anthropologists keen to capture the sounds of a culture that was believed to be in rapid decline (Thomas). Individual performers were not considered important in these recordings; their music was produced for scientific posterity rather than popular pleasure. And even though Aboriginal participation in local music festivals, touring vaudeville shows, and community gatherings was well documented throughout the twentieth century, it was not until the 1950s that Indigenous “pop stars” began to sell records for mass consumption(Dunbar-Hall and Gibson). Yet, with the persistence of recording artists like Jimmy Little over the past sixty years, Indigenous musicians have steadily gained prominence in Australia’s mainstream. This has been particularly true of the past twenty years, especially since the Sydney Olympics, where promotional strategies have brought about a new popular pride in musical achievements, based upon a celebrated history of diverse sounds and voices.

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 70649
Item Type: Book Chapter
Keywords: Indigenous, Music, Popular Culture
ISBN: 9781571135216
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING (190000) > PERFORMING ARTS AND CREATIVE WRITING (190400) > Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Performing Arts (190401)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > LANGUAGES COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE (200000) > COMMUNICATION AND MEDIA STUDIES (200100)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > HISTORY AND ARCHAEOLOGY (210000) > HISTORICAL STUDIES (210300)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Current > Schools > School of Media, Entertainment & Creative Arts
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 Camden House
Deposited On: 30 Apr 2014 01:01
Last Modified: 08 Jul 2016 06:40

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