Musical Community on the Internet: An On-Line Ethnography
Author(s): René T. A. Lysloff
Source: Cultural Anthropology, Vol. 18, No. 2 (May, 2003), pp. 233-263
Published by: Blackwell Publishing on behalf of the American Anthropological Association Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3651522 .
Accessed: 05/03/2012 02:20
Very cool article arguing for the internet and internet communities as viable and fertile ground for ethnographic research, particularly in the mod music scene. For one thing, I really dig video game music (mod's granddaddy) and the amazing things early composers did with limited storage and processing power. C64 music still has a vibrant community, creating compositions using "primitive" software as both a creative exercise and a labor of love. It reminds me of tearing down my drum kit every once in a while and keeping only the most basic elements - it forces a reconnection with creativity in the dearth of simple variety. If you're interested, C64 music is all over the internet for free download, and the files are tiny so you can get a huge sampling without spending too much hard drive space. http://www.hvsc.de/ - check it out. 41,250 songs in one 80 meg download. Win.
In a more contemporary and popular vein (not everyone on the internet is into ultimate nerd-dom in the form of Commodore 64 music), websites like this: http://www.breakmysong.com/ assist artists in finding inspiration and partners in crime.
Relevant to my project is the ability of musicians and listeners to use the internet for nearly instant collaboration with people from around the world that they may never see in person. The hip-hop, punk, and electronica scenes do a lot of work on the interwebs, sharing beats and competing for the most hits. I hope to discover a secret pocket of Tibetan musicians or two on the net, but my not speaking Tibetan may slow things a bit... I'll let you know how it goes.