Ellen Harris, PresidentLetter from AMS President Ellen T. Harris: Upcoming Changes at Musicology Now

25 October 2016

Dear Colleagues and Friends,

Although I will be speaking more briefly of this during the Business Meeting at our upcoming Annual Meeting in Vancouver, I couldn’t resist letting the entire membership know about the changes underway at our blog Musicology Now.

Since its inception three years ago, Musicology Now has been overseen by a single Curator: first by Kern Holoman, who established the blog and curated it for two years, and then by Drew Massey for the past year. The AMS blog is the one place where we try as a Society to give a public face to what we do in musicology. The mission is even more critical today, I believe, than it was a few years ago, and the Board of Directors has agreed that to move the blog forward our first priority needed to be the establishment of a curatorial team that would allow us a wider reach in terms of soliciting posts and also a think tank for new approaches. I am delighted today to announce the members of this new curatorial team:

Ryan Bañagale is Assistant Professor at Colorado College. A former recipient of both the AMS-50 and Howard Mayer Brown Fellowships from the AMS, his research focuses on a range of American music.  He is co-host of the monthly radio program Critical Karaoke: A Show About Music and the Ideas it Inspires as well as a regular contributor to Critical Karaoke’s daily two-minute modules: A Day in the Life.  Both programs can be accessed at CriticalKaraoke.Com or as a podcast from iTunes. He has just co-chaired a public musicology conference on Billy Joel at Colorado College, which was written up in the NYTimes. His first book is Arranging Gershwin: Rhapsody in Blue and the Creation of an American Icon (Oxford University Press, 2014)

Bob Fink (Professor) is a past chair of the UCLA Musicology department, and currently Chair of the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music’s Minor in the Music Industry. He also currently serves as President of the US Branch of the International Association for the Study of Popular Music (IASPM-US). His research focus is on music and culture after 1950, with special interests in the history and analysis of African-American popular music and the politics of contemporary art music. His book Repeating Ourselves, a study of American minimal music as a cultural practice appeared in 2005 from the University of California. He is currently teaching a class on Public Musicology (and blogging is on the syllabus).

Drew Massey is an independent scholar whose research interests focus on American and British music since 1900. His book John Kirkpatrick, American Music, and the Printed Page (University of Rochester Press, 2013) received the 2014 ASCAP Deems Taylor / Virgil Thomson award for outstanding music criticism, and his current book project, Thomas Adès: In Seven Essays, is under contract with Oxford University Press. Drew and Ryan co-curated the blog “Amusicology” from 2007-2012.

Andrea Moore is a Chancellor’s Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of California, Riverside. A 20/21st-century specialist, much of her research focuses on new music and concert culture after 1989. Her current work includes a study of post-Cold War music and the globalized politics of identity, and an ongoing investigation into the intersections of classical music, labor, class, and neoliberalism. She is the co-founder of the “Musicology and the Present” conference series, and has co-chaired its two major conferences: “Musicology and the Present” in 2013, and this fall at UMass Amherst on “What We Talk About When We Talk About New Music.”  Andrea is a former percussionist and arts administrator, and is the program book annotator for the River Oaks Chamber Orchestra (Texas) and Camerata Pacifica (California).  

Susan Thomas is Associate Professor of Music and Women's studies at the University of Georgia. Her book Cuban Zarzuela: Performing Race and Gender on Havana's Lyric Stage (University of Illinois Press, 2009) was awarded our own Robert M. Stevenson Prize and the Pauline Alderman Book Award from the International Association of Women in Music.  She has held research fellowships in the David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies at Harvard University and the Stone Center for Latin American Studies at Tulane University and is currently completing her second book, The Musical Mangrove: The Transnationalization of Cuban Alternative Music.

The Board is excited about the prospects this team offers for the future of Musicology Now, and we look forward to seeing the blog prosper under their leadership.

As always, we welcome your submissions. If you have something you would like to post, please contact a member of the team, and please let them know any thoughts you may have on new directions for Musicology Now.

I look forward to seeing many of you next week in Vancouver!

Ellen T. Harris

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