Uproot: Travels in 21st-Century Music and Digital Culture

Jace Clayton. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, $15 trade paper (288p) ISBN 978-0-374-53342-7
In this exhilarating book, Clayton, aka DJ Rupture, guides readers on an international tour of various forms of music and music-making technologies within many cultures. Clayton travels to Morocco, for example, to find musicians using Auto-Tune, a technology that alters the pitch of recorded music or vocals; he discovers that the one element uniting the disparate uses of Auto-Tune is the voice itself, which “sings out at the heart of the contest between what we’ve inherited and what we may yet become.” Clayton explores the ways that music travels these days and its international accessibility, observing that it’s sometimes easier to buy Jamaican music in Japan than in Jamaica. He examines how corporate sponsorship compromises music, praising the band Fugazi for its resistance to such compromises and pointing to the band’s success with a do-it-yourself approach to recording, distribution, and promotion. Clayton urges readers to embrace the power of music, recognizing its energetic and enduring capacity to capture and express shared emotions and to become a “memory palace with room for everybody inside.” (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 05/16/2016
Release date: 08/16/2016
Ebook - 978-0-374-70884-9
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