Event Title

The Feminine in Singer-songwriter Music: On Agency, Vulnerability, and the Right to Wear Flowers in our Hair

Presenter Information

Autumn Burnett, Oberlin College

Location

Science Center, A142

Document Type

Presentation

Start Date

4-24-2015 2:45 PM

End Date

4-24-2015 3:45 PM

Abstract

By drawing upon techniques from the avant-garde and folk traditions, Joni Mitchell and Joanna Newsom have coincidentally garnered cult-like devotion of a few and the aversion of many. In this study, I examine the use of “difficult” technique in terms of high vocal tessitura, harmonic complexity, polymodality, and lyrical density. I also consider the presence of traditional “folk” tropes and how they interweave with elements of the avant-garde. These performers, I suggest, incorporate the avant-garde features in their work in order to transcend previously established reputations.

Notes

Session 2, Panel 13 - The Grain of the Voice: Feminist Reconsiderations of Fairy Tales, Birthing Practices, and Semi-popular Music
Moderator: Afia Ofori-Mensa, Director of the Office of Undergraduate Research

Major

Musical Studies

Advisor(s)

Charles McGuire, Musicology

Project Mentor(s)

Ian MacMillen, OCREECAS

April 2015

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Apr 24th, 2:45 PM Apr 24th, 3:45 PM

The Feminine in Singer-songwriter Music: On Agency, Vulnerability, and the Right to Wear Flowers in our Hair

Science Center, A142

By drawing upon techniques from the avant-garde and folk traditions, Joni Mitchell and Joanna Newsom have coincidentally garnered cult-like devotion of a few and the aversion of many. In this study, I examine the use of “difficult” technique in terms of high vocal tessitura, harmonic complexity, polymodality, and lyrical density. I also consider the presence of traditional “folk” tropes and how they interweave with elements of the avant-garde. These performers, I suggest, incorporate the avant-garde features in their work in order to transcend previously established reputations.