popular music and informal pedagogy in music education

Download Popular Music and Informal Pedagogy in Music Education

Post on 25-Feb-2016




0 download

Embed Size (px)


Popular Music and Informal Pedagogy in Music Education. Joseph Abramo, Ed. D. Assistant Clinical Professor of Music Education Neag School of Education University of Connecticut Storrs, CT joseph.abramo@uconn.edu @joseph_abramo. Colloquium on Assessment, Neag School of Education . - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


Popular Music Ensembles in the Urban Setting

Popular Music and Informal Pedagogy in Music EducationJoseph Abramo, Ed. D.Assistant Clinical Professor of Music EducationNeag School of EducationUniversity of ConnecticutStorrs, CTjoseph.abramo@uconn.edu@joseph_abramoColloquium on Assessment,Neag School of Education OverviewWhy popular music?An educators definition of popular musicComposing and Creating Popular MusicStudent ExamplesGuidelines and suggestions for implementing this into various classroomsListening to, watching, and analyzing popular music.Dilemmas and questions with popular music in schoolsQuestions and Discussion

How do people experience music?

http://www.statista.com/statistics/188910/us-music-album-sales-by-genre-2010/Three questions teachers must ask themselves:What characterizes the world my students inhabit everyday?

Am I educating them to intelligently maneuver the musical aspects of that world?

Am I using that world to the best of my ability to accomplish my curricular goals?


What is the philosophy behind teaching popular musicChristopher SmallMusic is not a noun but a verbMusickingMusic is not a thing at all but an activity, something people do. The apparent thing music is a figment, an abstraction of the action, whose reality vanishes as soon as we examine it at all closely (p. 2).What is the philosophy behind teaching popular musicFrom Christopher Smalls perspective, popular music is not what it sounds like, but how people make music.What is the philosophy behind teaching popular musicLucy Green has documented profound differences between the processes of classical and popular musicians. Popular Musicians:learn music aurally as opposed to through notation, build technique through the practice and performance of songs rather than scales and exercises, understand music through metaphor, the time they devote to practice was malleable and only done if they consider it fun. learn music from copying recordings and being encultured, or immersed in that musical culture and learning from family and peers.10What is the philosophy behind teaching popular musicRandall Allsup studied the practices of classical and popular musicians and how composing in small groups affected process and the formation of community. He found that the style of music the students chose to write in had a direct affect on how they worked together. One group he studied chose to write classical music and ended up working as isolated individuals. After spending large amounts of time through this process, with little to show for it, they switched to writing jazz and rock, worked collaboratively and thus increased their input. 11What do these studies tell us?What defines popular music is the process.The popular music process is different than the processes in classical settings and schools.Students are more productive when they work in groups than when they work as individuals.Genre has an influence on how students work together.Dot, Dot, DotBeginning process of composing the songHow do students communicate with each other?How do students generate ideas?How do students reflect on their music?Whats the role of the teacher? TranscriptThe finished productFormArrangementLyricsForm of Dot, Dot, Dot

Hear the piece and see the scoreDot, Dot, Dot LyricsVerse 1Oh Baby dont botherCause I dont want to knowAnd Honey you are crazyIf you think Ill let you goI just heard Sweetie youre notA-a-a-nything can come after the dot dot dotChorusFlipped the mattress but the sheets werent changedFeels like somethings different but its still all the sameYou think that Im dramatic but I blow you awayThey saw that we wont make it when were really ok.We might be kind of pointless but you sure mean a lotBut when Im in your arms you know that Im all you got.Verse 2and Baby dont botherCause youre making a fussAnd Honey youre crazyIf you think its about trustI just heard Sweetie youre notA-a-a-nything can come after the dot dot dotChorusChorsey breaky thingKeep it Keep itonly to find that when yourSecrets Secretssound just like mine, youll see the Regret Regretin the whole time to show IMean it Mean itthat well be fine

Jam #12Beginning process of composing the songHow do students communicate with each other?How do students generate ideas?How do students reflect on their music?Whats the role of the teacher? TranscriptThe finished productFormLyrics

Form of Jam #12

Hear the piece and watch the score

Jam #12 LyricsPresidential race 2008Civilized culture and still the world is filled with hateCorporate sellouts always promising changeHow much does it cost to buy a candidate?ChorusThis cant go on any longerIts our nation make it strongerThe heart is black and the money is greenFighting wars for profit fueled by greed

Major news stations, always they decideWhos in the spotlight and whos forced to hideThe truest Americans, the honest candidatesThey aint even allowed in the televised debates

Gender and Popular MusicMy research suggests that there are difference between the ways boys and girls create musicGirls compartmentalize their talking and playingBoys work in a constant wash of soundGirls tend to talk more than boysThis mirrors research on playGender and Popular MusicLyricsGirls tend to write about relationshipsBoys write about bigger issues than personal, like politicsBoth ways of creating music are legitimate.The point of this research is not to change students but to be inclusive of different ways students might solve musical tasks. Let it Be RapYo my click bleep now like 12 from the apostles [???]And bust down bottles and bust down tahoes. [???]Jewels, Fros, look like we hit the lottoP89 my clip filled with hallowsStuck in the club we all hit with bottlesDont speak now if your neck dont swallowCause 50 [Cent] pushed Bentleys and [Dr.] Dre pushed DiablosAnd Eminem got cash in my escrow [??? probably not]Ive got G unit dickies, G unit velours, G unit tank top, G unit drawersNow Im moving product at the G unit storesAnd [???] G unit FloorWhen theyre hot they like to screw youRemember this, I got more control over your life than you do.I said, Red heads all up in your [???] everybody aiming for your [???]

What do we do about this?...Were these lyrics inappropriate?Teacher needs to know whats going on.How do we take care of these things without squashing creativity?What can we gather these songs?Writing popular music is extremely personalIt is not fluff: it can deal with issues like politics, and can be poeticIs not cookie-cutter composing; students can explore and use different forms, harmonies, etc.Teachers need to be in the know.How to make this happenAllsup and BaxterAsk open, guided, and closed questionsOpen: what are we going to compose today?Guided: in what ways can we express an emotion?Closed: should we use G major or C major here?How to make this happenDo not compose with overly specific goalsDont specify the number of measuresDont make them focus on one element of musicIf can be avoided, dont give them a chord progressionInstead compose for the reasons composer compose: to create music. From what the students give you, create concepts.Helpful strategies to facilitate a creative popular music composition experience

Questions?Time for a break?Listening to, Watching and Analyzing Popular MusicWhat is popular music good for. Rap teaches the Scottish Snap!Hip Hop HarryDont Bait and SwitchPopular music has merit on its own

Cultural StudiesMusic as TextMusic and other texts are polysemic (have multiple meanings). Cultural StudiesHall, S. (1980 [1973]). Encoding/decoding. Culture, Media, Language: Working Papers in Cultural Studies, 1972-79 Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies (Ed.): London: Hutchinson, pp. 128-38.Readings:DominantOppositionalNegotiatedImagineJohn LennonA Perfect CircleRun The World (Girls), by Beyonce


Dominant Reading: Female EmpowermentI'm reppin' for the girls who taking over the worldHelp me raise a glass for the college gradsThis goes out to all my girlsThat's in the club rocking the latestWho will buy it for themselves and get more money laterI'm reppin' for the girls who taking over the worldHelp me raise a glass for the college grads

Boy I know you love itHow we're smart enough to make these millionsStrong enough to bear the childrenThen get back to businessDominant Reading: Female Empowerment

Oppositional Reading: Women's ObjectificationMy persuasion can build a nationEndless powerWith our love we can devourYou'll do anything for meOppositional Reading: Women's Objectification

Macklemore: WingsIssuesWhat constitutes a dominant reading? How do we know it is dominant? DilemmasThis work is political (but not Political or partisan)You are inviting in controversial issuesBut English teachers do this all the time (i.e. Catcher in the Rye)This is harder than relying on the notes alone

Harlem ShakeHarlem reacts to the Harlem ShakeSummaryDominant, Oppositional, and Negotiated Readings allow students both to critically examine and celebrate popular culture. By reading through lenses, it allows distance between them and the text, and allows them to not take critique of their music personally.

SummaryPopular Music can accomplish traditional and established goals in music education:It can be used to compose and let students be creative. When doing this teachers should start open and close parameters only when needed, using open, guided, and then closed questions.By using dominant, oppositional, and negotiated readings, teachers can ask students to question to interpret music and videos, making connections to sociological questions, and coming to multiple interpretations and conclusions. Questions and discussionWorks CitedAbramo, J. M. (2011). Queering informal pedago


View more >