© 2018 – Routledge
217 pages | 113 B/W Illus.
The garamut is a log idiophone that is found in many of the coastal and island areas of Papua New Guinea. The instrument’s primary use is as a speech surrogate and in some regions the garamut is also used in large ensembles to play complex music for dancing. In Baluan Island, within the Manus Province, this style of garamut playing is comparatively highly developed. This book follows the author’s processes and methods in learning to play the music of the garamut, to the level at which he became accepted as a garamut player by the people of Baluan.
Lewis argues that analysis is essential in learning to play the rapid tempi and complex rhythms of Baluan garamut music, in a cultural context where there is no formal teaching process for the music. The transcription and analysis of the Baluan garamut repertoire is the centrepiece of this study, reflecting the cognitive structures of the learning process, and revealing the inner workings of the music’s complexity as well as a striking beauty of form and structure.
The book concludes with reflections on the process of a ‘cultural outsider’ becoming a garamut player in Baluan and on the role of musical analysis in that process, on the ethnomusicologist’s role in transmission of the music, and on the nature of continuity and change in a musical society such as Baluan.
List of figures
List of tables
List of maps
List of audio material
Chapter One: Baluan Chooses a Researcher
Chapter Two: The Garamut in Baluan
Chapter Three: The Baluan Garamut in Performance
Chapter Four: Musical Analysis of Baluan Garamut
Chapter Five: The Baluan Garamut in Diaspora
Chapter Six: Becoming a Garamut Player
Catalogue of Appendices
SOAS Musicology Series is today one of the world’s leading series in the discipline of ethnomusicology. Our core mission is to produce high-quality, ethnographically rich studies of music-making in the world’s diverse musical cultures. We publish monographs and edited volumes that explore musical repertories and performance practice, critical issues in ethnomusicology, sound studies, historical and analytical approaches to music across the globe. We recognize the value of applied, interdisciplinary and collaborative research, and our authors draw on current approaches in musicology and anthropology, psychology, media and gender studies. We welcome monographs that investigate global contemporary, classical and popular musics, the effects of digital mediation and transnational flows.