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Lecture 9

MUS211H1 Lecture 9: Music Sound and War

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Gabriela Jiménez

MUS211 Lecture 9 Music, Sound and War: Persian Gulf War and Iraq War • music, sound and war intimately connected historically and presently • intimidation, support, inform and protest • drums, fife and drum corps, lone travelling musicians • use to inform someone what’s happening in war: radio and internet • portable music: cassettes, CDs, MP3s • development in popular music technology sometimes coincides with war • popular music and sound had a long relationship with and to war • Music and patriotism o music shapes strong feelings of loyalty and pride for the nation o unifies populace in support of the government o instills feelings of collective power o expresses, upholds, or shifts what a nation is said to stand for: freedom and equality for example ▪ patriotic songs reference beauty, military or history of nation ▪ tells values, beliefs and attitude of certain places ▪ the meaning of a nation can be shifted if it was formed by someone who you don’t think would perform o composed with intention to be patriotic or become heard as such ▪ but sometimes there are songs that are patriotic but isn’t always intended to express o national anthems powerful tools for and of patriotism o express a nation’s strengths and virtues o public performances a means for a nation to collectively deal with issues like war o public performances at major events can either garner support for or protest against war ▪ sometimes performances can protest the government or support of government Persian Gulf War • August 2, 1990-Feb 28, 1991 • Iraq invades Kuwait • UN-authorized war of 34 nations led by U.S and Canada • Saddam Hussein and George H.W Bush • Ceasefire on Feb 28 • Iraq agrees to regular UN inspections • 1 live news broadcasting from the war front National sports, music and the military • major sporting events showcase a nation’s economic stability and military might (Brazil and soccer) o presents an ideal of what the nation is • sports teams represent the national body o body of one that presents the nation • similarities between NFL and military as standing for the ideals of the U.S o NFL = power, might, strength and thus U.S projects itself as NFL (symbolism) • projected as a spectacle by and through media technologies: radio, television, internet o sporting events such as the NFL o magnify the grandiosity of national power o amplification in terms of sound, power and how people are using it • popular music and popular music performers as embodiments of national strength o who sings the national anthem, who performs at the half time show matters o e.g., Adele said no to the half time show because her music doesn’t reflect the idea of the nation • Super Bowl, XXY o Jan 27, 1991 o Tampa Stadium Miami o Buffalo Bills vs. New York Giants o 10 days after Operation Desert Storm began o land and aerial combat phase o Whitney Houston performs “The Star-Spangled Banner” ▪ the most famous performance of it o Accompanied by Florida Orchestra under the direction of Jahja Ling o mic off but she sang live (lip syncs) ▪ easier to lip sync (temperature) ▪ roaring sounds in audience are too loud they can’t hear the musicians, thus why people might lip sync ▪ she sang live but recording version was playing o casual confidence of dress = causal confidence of USA ▪ she only wore a tracksuit = casual o recording released as a single in 1991 and then again after 9/11 o donated proceeds both times o command of the singing voice (loud, powerful, strong, melisma) o climax of song on the word “Free” ▪ had more room to expand on that word ▪ emphasizes the messiness of US nationalism o includes Black Americans into the nation o performs emotional work for the nation; a history of Black American women managing the feelings of a nation (at war) ▪ voice talks about effective labour ▪ implicating everyone (what are conditions for belonging) • Iraq War o March 30, 2003-Dec 18, 2011 o George W. Bush o 9/11/01 o Bush administration claimed Saddam Hussein was funding terrorists and developing WMDs o GWB gives Saddam Hussein an ultimatum to step down and leave Iraq o shock and Awe campaign and “coalition of the willing” o “global war of terror” (GWOT) Music and military service • enjoyment, remember loved ones, relaxation, religious purposes, stave off boredom, heighten aggressiveness, war preparation, propaganda, crowd control, combat and torture • individual and collective activity o different meanings and way technology sound can be used for good and not so good • many genres are heard • piracy = sharing of music among soldiers o trade music on CDs and gave to each other • Long Range Acoustic Device = sound cannon o used during occupy wall street o sound is very powerful, long range can cause permanent damage o sound can put out fire • recruiters and advertisements • high school and colleges
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