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Title: The musicality of C-pop : a study of Chinese popular music from 1985-2010
Author: Zhao, Yue
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2011
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This study examines C-pop (Chinese pop). It contains three parts, Part One describes the changes in C-pop from the 1985 to the present, Part Two deals with how C-pop changed in terms of its musical texts and Part Three elucidates why it changed culturally. As a whole, it also provides a case study that allows us to approach the 'popular'I'pop' dichotomy from perspective of a change in musicality (way of being musical) from a music-maker-centric (MMC) system to a music-receiver-centric (MRC) system. I have drawn on the dual experience base of being a native Chinese and an overseas-based researcher, generating a critical-ethnomusicological perspective throughout. Part One of the thesis considers a selection of soundscapes that delineate changing trends in Chinese popular music from 1985 on. In the first chapter, the emergence of C-pop in the 1980s and early 1990s is identified and assessed. Chapter 2 looks at the reshaping of the industry from 1996 on, analysing also the rise of new media for popular music during this period, most obviously television and the internet. Part Two looks in more depth at the linguistic (Chapter 3) and vocal (Chapter 4) codes embedded in the music. The writing here focuses on the relationship between producers and receivers of C-pop and between the music itself and receivers. Chapter 5 underlines this latter emphasis by critically reflecting on the ways in which songs are structured and produced. Finally, Part Three employs a tripartite model of music, music-maker and music-receiver to attend in tum to fan culture (Chapter 6), the roles of musicians (Chapter 7) and the operation of producers and managers in the music industry (Chapter 8). These analyses show why C-pop has developed in the ways in which it has, the ongoing power struggle between the audience and musician-between those holding a mass concept and those holding an elite concept- determining the musicality of C-pop in present-day mainland China.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available