Swedish band. Formed in 1926 by the violinist Folke “Göken” Andersson (1902–76), it had from six to nine members at various times. Among those who were members of the band were the trumpeters Gösta “Smyget” Redlig, Gösta “Chicken” Törnblad, and Ragge Läth; the saxophonists Sam Jacobsson, Tony Mason, and Olle Henricson; the pianists Nils Lind and Nils Soderman; the banjoists Curt Ljunggren and Jean Paban; and the drummer Anders Soldén. The Paramountorkestern was the first important jazz band in Sweden; it gave many performances on radio and made about 100 recordings (including ...
Parlor music generally refers to music composed for domestic use from c1820 to World War I, consisting primarily of songs for voice and piano but also including compositions for solo piano as well as transcriptions and arrangements adaptable for a variety of instruments. Both vocal and instrumental music were aimed at an amateur market and intended for performance in the home, primarily but not exclusively by females. Instrumental music for the parlor was most commonly for piano or melodeon but demonstrated flexibility according to circumstances, with interchangeable parts for a variety of popular domestic instruments such as flute, guitar, or violin. The music was published in individual Sheet music editions, often with elaborate engraved covers. All aspects of the genre—music, texts, and the material cultural of sheet music and instruments—both reflected and affected the technology, social mores, and cultural values of this period.
The emergence of parlor music in the 19th century was a result of three interrelated phenomena: technological developments, the growth of the middle class, and changes in domestic architecture. Technical advances in the manufacture and dissemination of sheet music and musical instruments fostered music-making in American homes. In the 18th century, only a few hundred musical titles were published in the United States; the first quarter of the 19th century saw the publication of 10,000 titles, and the industry continued to expand until World War I. The growth of a middle class with more leisure time led to greater opportunities for music lessons and domestic entertainment. The 19th century saw sharp increases in the number and frequency of native-born music teachers who offered music training in school, home, and church settings. Finally, changes in domestic architecture created a room removed from the daily functions of cooking, eating, and sleeping, which served as a marker of social stature for Americans. Derived from the French word ...
Musical ensemble. Founded in 1967 by saxophonist and composer Paul Winter (b Altoona, PA, 31 Aug 1939), the ensemble is one of the earliest exponents of world music. Blending African, Asian, and South American elements with jazz, the self-described “contemporary consort” uses woodwinds, strings, and percussion and also draws on the recorded voices of humpback whales, wolves, and birds. Winter’s professional career began while he was a student at Northwestern University, after his jazz sextet won an international jazz festival and was signed to Columbia Records. He recorded several albums in Brazil in the mid-1960s and formed Living Music Records in 1980 as a platform for his symbiotic music and ecology-driven “Earth Music.” David Darling, Eugene Friesen, Ralph Towner, Paul Halley, Oscar Castro-Neves, Glen Velez, Paul McCandless, and Paul Sullivan are among the musicians to perform with (and compose for) the consort. “Icarus” (1972, written by Towner) is perhaps its best-known individual piece. The group has won multiple Grammy Awards and additional Grammy nominations in the New Age category. In performance settings ranging from cathedrals to the Grand Canyon to impromptu environmental stages, the sound of Winter’s soaring and lyrical soprano sax leads the consort through classical and folk-driven themes, both old and new. Cathedral organs, voices, strings, and world percussion produce an eclectic and inclusive musical palette....
Rock band. Formed as a studio noise experiment by two school friends, the singer and guitarist Stephen Malkmus (b Santa Monica, CA, 30 May 1966) and the guitarist Spiral Stairs (Christopher Scott Kannberg; b Stockton, CA, 30 Aug 1966), the group added the drummer Gary Young (b Mamaroneck, NY, 3 May 1953) and started playing often shambolic shows around northern California in 1989. Young frequently could be seen performing handstands rather than playing the drums or handing out toast to the audience before a show. The trio recorded their seminal debut album, Slanted & Enchanted (Matador, 1992), at Young’s studio. With the addition of the bass player Mark Ibold (b 17 Oct 1962) and the percussionist Bob [Robert] Nastanovich (b Rochester, NY, 27 Aug 1967), a friend of Malkmus from the University of Virginia, the band set out as a more coherent but still sometimes sloppy live outfit. ...
John A. Emerson
revised by Christopher E. Mehrens
[Pasmore, Harriet Horn ]
(b San Francisco, CA, May 12, 1892; d Sonoma, CA, Jan 25, 1986). American Contralto, teacher, and music therapist. After attending the University of California, Berkeley (BA, French, 1914), she taught piano and then voice at Pomona College in Claremont, California (1914–20). After study and concert performances in Europe (1920–25) she returned to the United States and performed and taught privately in New York (1925–35) and Hollywood, California (1936–40). During the 1930s Pazmor was noted for her performances of contemporary American art songs. Her programs regularly included works by Charles Ives, Henry Cowell, Carl Ruggles, John Cage, Ernst Bacon, Ruth Crawford, Roger Sessions, Lou Harrison, Aaron Copland, and William Grant Still. She gave recitals for organizations such as the League of Composers and the Pan American Association of Composers, and at academic institutions including the New School for Social Research, Columbia University, Princeton University, and Harvard University. She studied music therapy at Boston University (MM ...
Close-harmony vocal group active between 1906 and 1928. It was among the most prominent and best-selling close-harmony vocal groups of the acoustic era, recording hundreds of songs for many record labels including Columbia, Victor, and Edison. Formed from members of the Columbia and Invincible quartets, the original group consisted of Frank Stanley (leader), Henry Burr, Albert Campbell, and Steve Porter. The name “Peerless” was adopted so that they could record for other record labels, although they continued to appear as the Columbia Quartet on the Columbia label until 1912. Early hits included “By the Light of the Silvery Moon” and “Let me call you sweetheart.” Sometimes using other names, they also recorded comic sketches and minstrel songs.
In 1910 Stanley died and Burr took over as leader and manager for the remainder of the group’s existence. In the years before and during World War I they recorded “I didn’t raise my son to be a soldier” (...
Patrick K. Freer
[Fred Waring and His Pennsylvanians]
American instrumental ensemble, vocal band, and choral ensemble. Formed in 1918 at Pennsylvania State University, The Pennsylvanians were originally known as the “Waring-McClintock Snap Orchestra” (for co-founding brothers Fred and Tom Waring, and friends Freddy Buck and Poley McClintock). They were later billed as “Waring’s Banjo Orchestra,” and then “Waring’s Pennsylvanians” by the time of their first hit record, Sleep (1923). The initially became popular by performing at college campuses, vaudeville houses, and movie theaters. Over six decades, the ensemble recorded more than 1500 songs on over 100 albums, producing hit recordings and radio/television programs until Waring’s death in 1984.
Over the years, the group changed its emphasis substantially, shifting from an instrumental ensemble to a vocal jazz ensemble, and eventually to a choral ensemble.
The Pennsylvanian’s repertoire was eclectic, encompassing popular, folk, romantic, holiday, patriotic, and Broadway idioms. The group became one of the most popular choral ensembles in America despite not focusing on classical choral repertoire. Waring’s influence on the teaching of choral music paralleled the focus of the ensemble and included a series of choral workshops that introduced his method of employing unique syllables to provide textual emphasis. Fred Waring did not rehearse the ensemble, though he did oversee issues of interpretation and textual phrasing, developing what became known as the “Waring Sound.” Rather, The Pennsylvanians, and its companion studio ensemble called Glee Club, employed some of the most notable choral conductors of the twentieth century, including Robert Shaw (...
Richard D. Driver
American rock group. Pere Ubu was formed in 1975 in Cleveland, Ohio by David Thomas (b 14 June 1953; vocals), Peter Laughner (b 22 August 1952; d 22 June 1977; guitar), Tom Herman (b 19 April 1949; guitar), Tim Wright (b 1952; bass), Allen Ravenstine (b 9 May 1950; synthesizer), and Scott Kraus (b 19 November 1950; drums). Fronted by Thomas, the initial line-up recorded two singles in 1975 and 1976 before disbanding. Laughner died due to alcohol and drug problems in 1976 and the band reformed with Tony Maimone (b 27 September 1952; bass) replacing Wright.
Pere Ubu was named after surrealist Alfred Jarry’s protagonist in the French play Ubu Roi, and helped usher in New Wave with their first single “30 Seconds Over Tokyo.” The band utilized various non-musical sounds and unconventional instrumentation behind Thomas’s “careening vocals” to create a unique experimental garage rock sound. The first two albums released by the band, ...
Jessica L. Brown
(b Springfield, MA, April 15, 1965). American Singer, songwriter, and producer. She was raised in a musical household, which exposed her to a wide variety of music. In 1989, while performing in a variety of small venues in San Francisco’s Bay Area, she was recruited into the band 4 Non Blondes as lead singer. The band released their debut album, Bigger, Better, Faster, More! (Interscope, 1992); it contained the group’s biggest hit, “What’s going on?,” which was written by Perry and brought the band’s pop-rock sound and Perry’s powerful voice to mainstream audiences. Perry has identified herself as a lesbian, and during the Billboard Music Awards in 1994 she attracted attention by performing with the word “dyke” on her guitar. Before 4 Non Blondes could complete a second album, Perry left the band to pursue a solo career. In 1996 she released In Flight to critical praise but poor commercial sales. In ...
Charles K. Wolfe
(b nr West Monroe, LA, Aug 8, 1921; d Nashville, TN, Feb 24, 1991). American country-music singer, guitarist, songwriter, and publisher. He performed as a guitarist on radio station KMLB (Monroe, LA) before 1950, when he joined the “Louisiana hayride ” on KWKH (Shreveport, LA). Recording contracts with the local Pacemaker label (c1950), Four-Star, and Decca (1951) allowed him to resign his part-time job as a clerk at Sears, Roebuck and concentrate on music. After his initial hit, “Wondering” (1952), he gained national attention with “Back Street Affair” (1952), one of the first country songs to deal forthrightly with adultery. An equally important landmark was “There stands the glass” (1953), a classic drinking song and the first country hit to use the pedal steel guitar, played by Bud Isaacs. It became the favorite backup instrument in country music for the next two decades, and Pierce was the first of many country singers whose slurs, octave jumps, and use of dynamics complemented its sound. During his peak years (...
Terry E. Miller
In Cambodia, the primary classical ensemble played at court ceremonies, some Buddhist festivals, to accompany the large shadow theatre, masked drama, and dance drama. Both the ensemble and its name are closely related to similar ensembles in Thailand (piphat) and Laos (sep nyai/piphat). Ensembles vary in size from minimal (five instruments) to large. A basic ensemble consists of ...
revised by Michael Mauskapf
Orchestral programs modeled after European promenade concerts of the 19th century, in which light classical music was played while the audience was served refreshments. The development of pops concerts in America reflected an emerging emphasis on the audience and an explicitly articulated division between so-called serious and light classical music propagated by conductor Theodore Thomas and others. Such concerts were traditionally structured in three parts, in which lively pieces—overtures, marches, and galops—were played in the outer sections while the middle section typically included waltzes and occasionally more serious works; encores were a regular feature. These concerts often took place in outdoor venues during the summer season, and featured audience promenades during the intermissions. Initially, works by European composers such as Rossini, Grieg, Liszt, and J. Strauss dominated the programs of pops concerts, but excerpts from musicals and operettas by De Koven and Herbert, among others, soon became a significant component. In general these concerts were understood as a vehicle to reach new audiences and broaden the appeal of orchestras and orchestral music....
Bruce Boyd Raeburn
Jazz ensembles. Emerging from impromptu sessions at Larry Borenstein’s Associated Artists Gallery on St. Peter Street in the 1950s, Preservation Hall was established in 1961 under the administration of Allan and Sandra Jaffe to ensure a place for New Orleans jazz bands to play free from commercial imperatives. The key to success was recording and touring, which created an international awareness of the Hall and its musicians. A succession of more than 25 bands, often working simultaneously, have operated under the Preservation Hall brand: Kid Thomas Valentine and George Lewis (first US tour 1963), George Lewis with Punch Miller (Japan tours 1963–5), De De Pierce (European tour 1967; Newport Festival 1970), Kid Thomas with Louis Nelson, Albert Burbank, and Emanuel Paul (tours of Australia, Japan, Canada, and Europe 1971; USSR 1972). By the mid-1970s trumpeter Percy Humphrey led the principal touring band, featuring his brother Willie on clarinet. The band continued an active schedule of national and international touring for 20 years, complemented by three LPs for CBS (...
(b Nashville, TN, Aug 27, 1928; d Nashville, June 13, 2012). American music executive and philanthropist. Preston began her career as a messenger for the National Life and Accident Insurance Company. She soon became a receptionist at the company’s radio station, WSM, and was largely responsible for organizing the early WSM Disc Jockey Convention, an event that would become the most important annual gathering for country music professionals. In 1958 she was hired to open a Nashville office for Broadcast music, inc . Under her direction, BMI became the dominant performing rights organization in the region and, by offering advances to new publishers and songwriters, the central economic engine of the country music industry. By 1964 BMI Nashville had expanded from two people working in Preston’s garage to 400 employees, and she reportedly became the first female executive in Tennessee when she was promoted to vice president. In 1985...
revised by David G. Tovey
Private university in Princeton, New Jersey, the fourth oldest university in the United States (chartered as the College of New Jersey in 1746). Although informal music-making was a part of campus activity as early as the 1760s, music entered the undergraduate curriculum only in 1934 with the appointment of Roy Dickinson Welch to the faculty. Student response to Welch’s two initial courses was so strong that the number increased to seven only three years later. By 1937, 10% of all undergraduates were registering for at least one music course, and a BA degree in music was instituted. The MFA degree in music was announced in 1940, and the first PhD was awarded in 1950. In addition to his work in building Princeton’s first music curriculum, Welch is remembered for attracting outstanding musical minds to Princeton’s faculty including Roger Sessions, Milton Babbitt, Edward Cone, and Oliver Strunk.
Currently, study in applied music, while encouraged, does not carry academic credit, although a Certificate in Musical Performance requiring a combination of course work and solo/ensemble study can be earned. Doctoral programs in composition and musicology/ethnomusicology are highly respected, while the Firestone Library’s music collection is a major repository for researchers....
Benjamin J. Harbert
A term that refers to both music made by inmates and media representations of music in prisons. Although almost any genre outside the walls has found its way into prison, overrepresentation of certain groups—especially African Americans and men—has influenced the types of music brought to and cultivated in prison. Furthermore, institutional policies have both limited and directed musical activity. Inmates have created and adapted music for a multitude of uses of their own, be it to temporarily escape, form communities, communicate, or contemplate the carceral experience. These uses have also affected the types of music and lyrical themes found in prison. Outside the walls, movies, television, and popular music have often developed narratives or characters, drawing upon and perpetuating stereotypes of prisoners and music making.
Early American prisons instituted solitary confinement and enforced silence. That silence—at least in the literature—broke after the Civil War. Documentation of music in prisons in newspapers, trade journals, folk-song collections, and scholarly works reveals unconnected musical activities sequestered in countless institutions. The mention of music in prisons, however, confirms that American prisoners have been prolific. Music-making in prisons has fallen into three general categories: religious music, work songs, and music programs....
A person who plans and oversees the execution of recording projects. Producers’ specific roles vary considerably, depending on musical idiom, historical era, and an individual’s qualifications. A useful breakdown of types is offered by Atlantic Records producer Jerry Wexler: “documentarian,” “servant of the project,” and “artist.” While Wexler addressed his analysis to the roles of pop producers, the general concept applies to other idioms as well. The documentarian seeks to capture musical events with as little apparent intrusion as possible. The servant of the project takes a more active role, suggesting repertory, pairing performers, and offering aesthetic opinions on performances, arrangements, tempo, balance, and so forth. The producer as artist describes a person whose creative vision and stylistic inclinations exert a decisive influence on the project, an ultimate authority not unlike a film director. However a producer approaches the role, he or she is responsible for overseeing and judging the work of performers and recording engineers, for managing a project’s budget and schedule, and for serving as a record company’s agent on a given project....
Caroline Polk O’Meara
Rock group. Formed in 1991 in Los Angeles, California, its members are vocalist Zack de la Rocha [Zacarías Manuel de la Rocha] (b Long Beach, CA, 12 Jan 1970), guitarist Tom Morello [Thomas Baptiste Morello] (b New York, NY, 30 May 1964), bassist Tim Commerford [Timothy Robert Commerford] (b Irvine, CA, 26 Feb 1968), and drummer Brad Wilk (b Portland, OR, 5 Sept 1968). Rage Against the Machine has released four platinum albums combining rock guitar and rap-influenced lyrics.
Morello and de la Rocha met in Los Angeles and formed the band along with Wilk and Commerford. After a quick rise to popularity in Los Angeles, the group released its eponymous debut album on Epic Records in 1992. The first single was “Killing in the Name,” which condemns police and military violence. Although de la Rocha’s lyrics originated in his leftist politics, the song ends with 17 blunt repetitions of an obscenity-filled chant common to furious American teenagers. The band built its songs around a dialogue between de la Rocha’s rapping, powerful riffs, and Morello’s command of the electric guitar’s timbral flexibility....
Alex Harris Stein
(b Pittsburgh, PA, Jan 29, 1915; d Paterson, NJ, March 18, 1995). American writer on jazz, record producer, and folklorist. He coedited one of the first scholarly books on jazz with Charles Edward Smith, Jazzmen: the Story of Hot Jazz Told in the Lives of the Men who Created It (New York, 1939). Supported in part by Guggenheim Fellowships (1953, 1955), Ramsey conducted extensive fieldwork throughout the American South, photographing African American life and recording interviews and music. The results of his travels are detailed in his books Been Here and Gone (New Brunswick, NJ, 1960) and Where the Music Started (New Brunswick, NJ, 1970). Many of his field recordings were released by Folkways Records as Music of the South (1954). He produced a historical anthology of recordings for Folkways titled Jazz (1950–53). Later, grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities (...
The study of the patterns of use of rastra. A ‘rastrum’ (from Lat.: ‘rake’) is a multi-nibbed pen – specially designed to rule staves in manuscript music. Rastra were evidently used in some manuscripts at least by the 14th century, both with five nibs for polyphony and with four for chant sources. (There is some evidence for their use in places in both the ‘Worcester Fragments’ and the Machaut manuscripts.) During the 16th century (and perhaps earlier) larger rastra were made for drawing more than one staff at a time. In 1553 the German writer Holtzmüller provided instructions for using a rastrum. Even though printed manuscript paper emerged during the 16th century, in Germany and then in England, much music paper continued to be ruled by hand for many more years. A number of rastra survive from the 18th and 19th centuries, including one for drawing two staves at a time. All of these are made of metal, though the appearance of the staves themselves in surviving manuscripts suggests that earlier rastra were not so rigidly constructed. There were also rastra designed to rule larger numbers of staves, up to ten or 12; the overall depth of the staves on a page (that is, the overall width of the rastrum used) has been used by Tyson and others to distinguish batches of paper that are otherwise identical. Evidence of the use of a rastrum can be seen in manuscripts by Liszt and Wagner, and even in the sketchbook used by Stravinsky at the time of composing his ...