Theo Cateforis’s 1993 JPMS essay “‘Total Trash’: Analysis and Post Punk Music” used the sound and the critical reception of a Sonic Youth song to envision a new approach to popular music analysis. Just as the present series reconsiders this journal’s early issues, Cateforis opened his piece retrospectively. Its epigraph comes from a moment in a 1983 Popular Music article, where Paul Clarke critiqued the rock analyst’s habit of reducing recordings to written texts. Either transcribed lyrics are subjected to literary analysis, or a transcribed score becomes the object of musical analysis. Such approaches necessarily fixate on aspects of popular song that can be most precisely represented in a text: words and pitch material. As an antidote, Clarke advocated analyses that explore multiple aspects of popular song and their interrelationships. Cateforis’s preamble examined the degree to which academic literature on popular music writing had answered his predecessor’s challenges in the...
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Research Article| December 04 2018
“We Can Bring It Back”: Revisiting Cateforis in 2018
Journal of Popular Music Studies (2018) 30 (4): 113–120.
Elizabeth Ann Lindau; “We Can Bring It Back”: Revisiting Cateforis in 2018. Journal of Popular Music Studies 4 December 2018; 30 (4): 113–120. doi: https://doi.org/10.1525/jpms.2018.300407
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