If you came of age in Louisiana, the soulful roots music of zydeco and rhythm and blues and the brassy Dixieland jazz bands of New Orleans may have shaped your musical tastes and memories. For anyone with Appalachian roots, hearing a Celtic folk song or old-time fiddle music can bring you home again.
Deep musical connections can happen anywhere as we travel through the regional soundscapes of America, or discover myriad musical genres in faraway lands. Our world is rich with music, and examining that diversity of musical expression and its cultural traditions is part of what ethnomusicologists do.
It’s what Dan Kruse will do on Wednesday (Sept. 5) when he discusses “Music and Place,” the first in a four-part ethnomusicology series at the Arizona Senior Academy. Each 90-minute program will begin at 3:00 p.m. and end at 4:30 p.m.
Kruse is well known in Tucson for his work on Arizona Public Media and Arizona Illustrated. A popular ASA lecturer who invites audience participation, he has given a dozen or so ethnomusicology talks here. This time, drawing on the “Music in World Cultures” course he taught at the UA last spring, he promises a “deeper dive,” hoping to inspire attendees to join the discussion and share their own connections to meaningful musical places.
That place, Kruse says, could be an unforgettable summer concert under the stars or the rock ‘n’ roll music you heard over the radio in your first car. It could be the mesmerizing song-and-dance spectacle of a Bollywood movie, or a musical moment in Tucson, or in the town where you grew up.
Kruse will discuss the highlights of our local music scene – a musical smorgasbord of operatic, orchestral, chamber, and pop concerts drawing thousands to its indigenous jazz and folk festivals.
In his next installment, on Sept. 12, Kruse will discuss “Music, Movement, and Migration.”
Written by Caroline Bates, Academy Village Volunteer