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Let there be rock! Loudness and authenticity at the drum kit

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In this position paper the author presents a perspective on rock drumming and music education. The author is a drummer and university professor who combines an autoethnographic account with consideration of theoretical frameworks including authenticity, flow and the autotelic personality. Through illustrative vignettes of rock drumming and music teaching, the author appeals to the essentially somatic experience of rock drumming. He argues that educators and educational institutions need to allow for rock’s inherent, authentic loudness or else risk misrepresenting the music and treating drummers unjustly. This means that the physical movements and resulting high volumes germane to much rock drumming in performance must be accommodated in rehearsals and practice. This article does not seek to privilege rock drumming over other forms, but argues that to include rock drumming authentically in education contexts means to acknowledge and celebrate its essence.
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Keywords: authenticity; autotelic; drumming; flow; loudness; rock

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 1, 2019

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  • The main aims of Journal of Popular Music Education, especially initially, will be iteratively to define the parameters of the field and disciplines of its readership and contributors (especially with regard to other journals in popular music and music education), this being an emerging field of scholarship and practice. The other principal aim will be to disseminate excellent critique and other forms of scholarship (e.g. phenomenological) in and related to the field. The journal will have an inclusive, global reach. 'Education' and 'popular music' are terms that we expect to be stretched and problematized through rigorous examination from multiple international perspectives.
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