Psychedelic Popular Music: A History through Musical Topic Theory

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Indiana University Press, May 22, 2017 - Music - 306 pages

Recognized for its distinctive musical features and its connection to periods of social innovation and ferment, the genre of psychedelia has exerted long-term influence in many areas of cultural production, including music, visual art, graphic design, film, and literature. William Echard explores the historical development of psychedelic music and its various stylistic incarnations as a genre unique for its fusion of rock, soul, funk, folk, and electronic music. Through the theory of musical topics—highly conventional musical figures that signify broad cultural concepts—and musical meaning, Echard traces the stylistic evolution of psychedelia from its inception in the early 1960s, with the Beatles’ Rubber Soul and Revolver and the Kinks and Pink Floyd, to the German experimental bands and psychedelic funk of the 1970s, with a special emphasis on Parliament/Funkadelic. He concludes with a look at the 1980s and early 1990s, touching on the free festival scene, rave culture, and neo–jam bands. Set against the cultural backdrop of these decades, Echard's study of psychedelia lays the groundwork and offers lessons for analyzing the topic of popular music in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries.

 

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Contents

Introduction
1
Topic Theory and Popular Music Cultures
5
2 Developments through 1966
29
3 The Later 1960s
104
4 The 1970s
199
5 The 1980s and On
228
Conclusions and Prospects
264
The Sample and Discography
267
The San Francisco Poster Sample
273
Some Notes on the Transcriptions
275
List of References
277
Index
285
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About the author (2017)

William Echard is Associate Professor of Music at Carleton University, Ottawa. He is author of Neil Young and the Poetics of Energy (IUP).

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