Article

An Analysis of Virtuality in the Creation and Reception of the Music of Frank Zappa

Paul Carr

in The Oxford Handbook of Music and Virtuality

Published in print March 2016 | ISBN: 9780199321285
Published online March 2016 | | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199321285.013.14

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Music

An Analysis of Virtuality in the Creation and Reception of the Music of Frank Zappa

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The problems associated with the “representational” nature of music has been a feature of musicology and Western thought for many years, with authors such as Eduard Hanslick highlighting how music’s “beauty” lies in its formal structure as opposed to containing or purveying any inherent emotionality. In more recent times, academics such as Davies, Moore, and Zak have all elaborated on how recording technology has added to the complex ways in which music and musicians interact with time, place, and space; to a certain extent all popular music can be considered “virtual.” This chapter discusses the creation and reception of the music of Frank Zappa, who purposively employed techniques to philosophically position his output in a virtual dimension. It draws on Zappa’s own vocabulary, in addition to a range of thinkers (including those highlighted here) to Plato, Paul Weiss, and Schopenhauer.

Keywords: Frank Zappa; virtuality; perdurantism; musicology; ontological; recording technology; time; space; place

Article.  6758 words. 

Subjects: Music ; Music and Media

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