• poster of martin daughtry talk

Date: 3:30-4:45 PM, Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Location: Music Room 1145

From the standpoint of music studies, the relationship between voice and air is one of figure to ground or event to medium. In comparison to the voice, in other words, the air appears inert, transparent, and theoretically uninteresting. However, in our current era of global warming, airborne particulates, and rising CO2 emissions, air has become front-page news. What insights can we gain from turning the tables on the voice and taking air seriously? This talk brings music studies into conversation with recent writings on climate change to form a new framework for understanding singing and other vocal emissions in the anthropocene. 

J. Martin Daughtry is an associate professor of ethnomusicology at New York University. He teaches and writes on sound studies; acoustic violence; voice; listening; jazz in New York; air; Russian-language sung poetry; and the auditory imagination. 

This event it sponsored by the Department of Film and Media Studies, the Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Music (CISM), and the Department of Music. 



  1. May 24, 2017 -
    3:30pm to 4:45pm
  • poster of jocelyne guilbault's talk

Date: 3:30-5PM Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Location: Music Room 1145 

This paper addresses new musical formations that are articulated across places, times, and people and that are openly embraced and promoted by musicians as well as fans today. It explores what Guilbault calls the politics and logics of musical bonding as a processual example of worlding. Numerous studies have focused on the musical connections between centers and peripheries, on musical practices that have traveled from the so-called first countries to the global south. Save some notable exceptions, few studies ahve traced the bonding that musics from the global south have created not just in the West, but also among themselves--in various parts of the global south and Asia. This study examines two musicals practices from the sotuh, soca and zouk from the Caribbean region, to highlight the different logics of cosmopolitan musical bonding, the worlding (ways of thinking and being) they put into motion, the affective relations and the "mattering maps" (Lawrence Grossberg's term) that they generate. 

Professor Jocelyne Guilbault specializes in theory and method in popular music studies, politics of aesthetics, and issues deadling with power relations in music production and circulation. Since 1980, she has done extensive fieldwork in the French Creole- and English-speaking islands of the Caribbean on both traditional and popular music. She published several articles on ethnographic writings, aesthetics, the cultural politics of West Indian music industries, and world music. She is the author of Zouk: World Music in the West Indies (1993), Governing Sound: the Cultural Politics of Trinidad's Carnival Musics (2007), and Roy Cape: A Life on the Calypso and Soca Bandstand (with Roy Cape, 2014)

Sponsored by the Music Department's Distinguished Lecturer Series, Ethnomusicology Forum, and the Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Music.

More information: (805) 893-3230 or



  1. May 17, 2017 -
    3:30pm to 5:00pm
  • nomi dave talk poster

Date: March 10, 2017 1 PM

Location: Music Library 2406

In January 2016, a Guinean hip-hop artist, Tamsir Touré, appeared in court for sexually assaulting a young girl. The case had generated intense coverage over several months after a video of the assault was circulated. Tamsir became a local cause célèbre for both feminist activists in Guinea and for his supporters. On the one hand, activists were galvanized by the public display of the crime and the anger that it stirred in Guinea, and took to the streets and airwaves in angry protest. On the other hand, Tamsir’s young supporters and fans made numerous public pleas, including musical ones, for him to be released and for his crime to be forgiven. 

In this talk, I explore the limits of musical activism by considering some of the varied ways in which music has addressed women’s rights and gender-based violence in Guinea. In particular, I consider two songs that are closely connected to the case of Tamsir Touré: one, a UN-commissioned song against sexual violence, and the other, a song calling on Guinean women to forgive Tamsir and his crime. As I argue, rights agencies often assume that music is an empty vessel upon which unequivocal messages can be imposed. Yet as the examples here show, such understanding ignores the ambivalence that musicians and audiences often hold towards women’s rights in Guinea, as well as the local emphasis on forgiveness as a social virtue. In a context in which crimes of sexual violence are to be forgiven, what can music do?

Nomi Dave is Assistant Professor of Music at the University of Virginia. Her research explores the relationship between music, voice, politics, emotion and violence. She is currently completing a book, ‘The Revolution’s Echoes: Music, Politics & Pleasure in Guinea’, which examines the aesthetics and pleasures of authoritarianism. She earned her PhD from Oxford University, and previously taught at Duke University in Music and Cultural Anthropology.
Sponsored by the Ethnomusicology Forum and the IHC's African Studies RFG. 
  1. March 10, 2017 - 1:00pm
  • photo of the presenter

Date: 3:30 PM March 8

Location: UCSB Library Special Research Collections Seminar Room

CISM in the Archive Series: “Curating Sound Stories: Art, Ethnography, and Practice in Special Collections at UCSB”

Ethnomusicologist, sound curator and artist Noel Lobley presents some creative, interactive and performative sound curation, blending examples from his own practice with rare sounds selected from the special collections at UCSB. Noel is an ethnomusicologist and sound curator who works across the disciplines of music, anthropology and sound studies to develop a series of international curatorial residencies. His research and practice in sound curation focuses on ethnographic field recordings and aims to connect local musicians and communities with institutions and audiences. Through extensive fieldwork in sub-Saharan Africa, much of his creative practice takes sound and music recordings out of archives and back among communities. He has collaborated with musicians, sound artists, DJs, composers and performers in South Africa, the UK and throughout Europe and the US to develop creative and responsible ways for recordings to be experienced in spaces ranging from art galleries and museums to schools and township street corners.

  1. March 8, 2017 - 3:30pm
  • poster of the symposium

Date: 6-9PM February 17


An evening of discussion and performance exploring the recent rise of transAsian experimental music networks in an emergent global circulation of new sound art, electronic and improvisational forms, and new media.

If we agree that any creative acts and events are first of all a response to one’s immediate physical and spiritual living environment, China’s sound practice - including experimental music and sound art -- could thus be considered immediate or reflexive responses through the medium of sound to their living contexts. From the late 1990s till today, China’s sound practice has been developing in an increasingly globalized social-economic-aesthetic environment, receiving attentions and investments from the art world, music industry and cultural institutes. However, there has been an ambiguous attitude from the public about its legitimate artistic and academic status.  In this talk, I will discuss the brief history of sound practice in China, its current situations, and its major thematic threads. 

Academically trained in performance studies, Adel Jing Wang received her Ph.D. from the School of Interdisciplinary Art at Ohio University, and is currently an associate professor in the College of Media and International Culture at Zhejiang University.  Her book Sound and Affect: An Anthropology of China’s Sound Practice (Zhejiang University Press, 2015) explores the concepts of freedom, affect and sound through anthropological research on China’s sound culture.   She has published in academic journals including Leonardo, Leonardo Music Journal, Journal of Popular Music Studies, and International Review of Qualitative Research.  Her current research focuses on sound studies, sensory studies, performance studies, and anthropological methods. She works with field-recordings, radio art and recently sound theater, and has organized more than 20 sound events in the city of Hangzhou from 2013 to 2015. From 2013 to 2014, she served as the academic curator of the monthly year–long series “Savaka: Asia Experimental Music Currents” at Rockbund Art Museum, Shanghai.  In January 2015, she founded The Sound Lab at College of Media and International Culture at Zhejiang University.

7 PM

Live Performance: James Fei & Kato Hideki

James Fei (b. Taipei, Taiwan) moved to the US in 1992 to study electrical engineering; he has taught at Mills College in Oakland since 2006, where he is Associate Professor of Electronic Arts. He is active as a composer and performer on saxophones and live electronics. Works by Fei have been performed by the Bang on a Can All-Stars, Orchestra of the S.E.M. Ensemble, MATA Micro Orchestra and Noord-Hollands Philharmonisch Orkest. Recordings can be found on Leo Records, Improvised Music from Japan, CRI, Krabbesholm and Organized Sound. Fei received the Grants for Artists Award from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts in 2014.

Kato Hideki (Kato: family name; Hideki: given) is a musician, composer & producer who lives in Brooklyn, NYC. His music is often based on narrative elements and topical issues, with a wide range of forms and sounds. His own projects are: Death Ambient with Ikue Mori & Fred Frith; Green Zone with Otomo Yoshihide and Uemura Masahiro; Tremolo of Joy with Charles Burnham, Briggan Krauss, Ed Tomney & Calvin Weston; OMNI with Nakamura Toshimaru and Akiyama Tesuji; Plastic Spoon with Karen Mantler, Douglas Wieselman & Shahzad Ismaily; and the solo works Hope & Despair and Turbulent Zone. As a bassist, he has worked with Eyvind Kang, Karen Mantler, Zeena Parkings, Jim Pugliese, Marc Ribot and John Zorn among many others. Collaborators include Nicolas Collins, James Fei, John King, Christian Marclay & Ursula Scherrer.

This event is organized by the Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Music and the East Asia Center, with cosponsorship by Center for Taiwan Studies, L&S, EALCS, English, Film & Media Studies, MAT, and the ISF Shinto Studies Chair.



  1. February 17, 2017 -
    6:00pm to 9:00pm
  • poster of shane greene talk

Date: 3:30PM, February 8, 2017

Location: Music Building Room 1145


This talk elaborates on a theory of punk as a mode of aesthetic/material under-production in a context of extraordinary political risk, namely the Shining Path’s Maoist revolutionary proposal and the mass political violence that engulfed Peru during the 1980s. The emergence of punk in Lima, known locally as rock subterráneo, gave rise to a particular subcultural identity, the subte ("under"), a moniker that also took on a riskily ambiguous relation to the Marxist subversivo (“subversive”) in Peru’s armed conflict.  Ultimately, I discuss how Peruvian punk’s particular modes of under-production confronted a state that conflated punks with with political subversives and Maoist militants that saw punks as possibly allies but actually antagonists.


Shane Greene is Associate Professor of Anthropology at Indiana University.  He writes and publishes on social movements, music, art, subculture, urbanism, race and culture. , His most recent book is titled Punk and Revolution, about the emergence of an underground arts and music scene during Peru’s war with the Maoist Shining Path.  He also plays in a bilingual rock band called El Cuervo Sucio. 

This lecture is sponsored by the Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Music (CISM), the Department of Music, the Latin American and Iberian Studies Program (LAIS), and the Department of Anthropology.  

  1. February 8, 2017 - 3:30pm
  • poster of cathy ragland talk

Date: Wednesday 16 November 2016, 3.30-4.30 PM

Location: McCune Conference, Center, 6020 HSSB

The Rio Grande Valley of Texas, bordering Mexico, is the birthplace of modern Texas-Mexican music. However, migration away from the relatively impoverished and isolated region since the mid-twentieth century greatly diminished a once vibrant local border music scene and independent recording industry.

This talk examines current efforts of activists, cultural brokers and city planners in the town of San Benito in reconstructing narratives of musical heritage and cultural memory.  Their objective is to “reclaim” the border in narratives of Texas-Mexican music history by way of a cultural arts center, music festivals, museums and public monuments that evoke place and recast history and the imaginary.

The legacy of two of the city’s “native sons” – Narciso Martínez, the “father of conjunto music” who died poor and nearly forgotten; and Freddy Fender (aka Baldemar Huerta), who anglicized his name and became a Grammy-winning country-rock musician – have been memorialized in two opposing positions to border music history in a context of globalization and hypermediacy. 

Bio: Dr. Cathy Ragland is Associate Professor of Ethnomusicology, with research interests including music and migration/immigration, culture and politics in the borderlands, music and nationalism, gender studies and applied ethnomusicology. She is author of Música Norteña: Mexican Migrants Creating a Nation Between Nations (Temple, 2009), former music critic for the Seattle Times, San Antonio Express-News and Austin American Statesman and folklorist/program director of several cultural arts organizations.

Co-sponsored by: the Office of the Executive Vice Chancellor and the Office of the Associate Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity and Academic Policy; Program of Latin American & Iberian Studies; Department of Global Studies; Department of Chicana and Chicano Studies; and Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Music (CISM).

Further details: Dr. Ruth Hellier-Tinoco,

  1. November 16, 2016 -
    3:30pm to 4:30pm
  • sources and currents poster

Date: November 2, 2016 / 5:30 PM

Location: 3145 SSMS


This talk addresses YouTube-mediated conflicts over artistic authorship and authority, between artists from the African continent and those in the French Diaspora. Arguments regarding the source of popular movements, and whether variations may be called full-blown “genres” as opposed to mere “currents,” flourish online and offline. They are magnified in YouTube videos in which artists display dance skills alongside assertions of precedence and seniority. These videos generate new proximities, albeit adversarial, between artists dispersed across the globe, and disrupt established hierarchies and geographies of transmission, which tend to rest on constructs of Africa as “source” and diaspora as “copy.”

Laura Steil is an anthropologist interested in urban dance cultures, transnationalism in the digital age, and youth sociabilities. She obtained her PhD in 2015 at the École pratique des hautes études in Paris. Her research, based on fieldwork in the Parisian dance scene, examines how young black people negotiate social mobility and political visibility through cultural practice. She is currently working on her first manuscript, Boucan! Loud Moves Against Invisibility in Postcolonial France. She has contributed to African Critical Studies and to collective volumes on dance, migrating musics, and the African diaspora in France. She is an active member of a French research group of dance ethnographers. She is currently a traveling faculty member at the School for International Training based in Paris.

Cosponsored by the African Studies RFG, the Center for the Interdisciplinary Studies of Music, the Department of Film and Media Studies, the Department of French and Italian, and the Department of Theater and Dance.

  1. November 2, 2016 - 5:30pm