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The musical genre of taarab is played for entertainment at weddings and other festive occasions all along the Swahili Coast in East Africa. Taarab contains all the features of a typical 'Indian Ocean' music, combining influences from Egypt, the Arabian Peninsula, India and the West with local musical practices. In Taarab, Music in Zanzibar, Janet Topp Fargion traces the development of the genre in Zanzibar, from the late nineteenth century to the end of the twentieth. Of special interest is the role of women. Although men play the main role in the composition and performance of the genre, Topp Fargion argues that the modernization of the genre owes a debt to the participation of women - as audiences and primary consumers, but also as poets and innovators of musical concepts. The book weaves together the historical, social, economic, religious and political dynamics involved in the development of the genre, and investigates how these are played out in the performance of taarab music on Zanzibar.
Her Timing Couldn't Be Worse...And His Couldn't Be Better
By the mid-1920s, the Harlem Renaissance was underway. As an effort to secure economic, social, and cultural equality with white citizens, the Renaissance years were a proving period for black composers and performers. Black Music in the Harlem Renaissance explores black music in the United States and England during the 1920s and its relationship to other arts of the time. The first collection on the subject, Black Music in the Harlem Renaissance seeks to revise previous assumptions about music during this era. The book features essays on various subjects including musical theatre, Duke Ellington, black music and musicians in England, concert singers and the interrelationships between black painters and music. In addition, the book includes a music bibliography of works composed during the period.
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