• poster of Cambodian Vintage Music Archive talk


Date: May 18, 2022, 3:30PM
Location: Special Research Collections, UCSB Library (3rd Floor, Mountain Side)
Cambodian Vintage Music Archive (CVMA) founders Rotanak (Oro) Oum and Nate Sovannet Hun will speak about the CVMA and their current project to build relationships with surviving families of pre-Khmer Rouge era performers and restore their claims to reproductions of golden era sound recordings.
This event is presented by the UCSB Library, the East Asia Center (EAC), and the Center for the Interdisciplinary Studies of Music (CISM) as part of the CISM in the Archive event series.  Each year, a music scholar is invited into UCSB Library’s Special Research Collections to explore historic sound collections and offer a public talk incorporating research and recordings. This series is designed to highlight the use of archival resources in the interdisciplinary study of music. 


  1. May 18, 2022 - 3:30pm
  • Event poster for lecture, The Democracy that Society Allows

Date: Wed, May 4, 4:00-6:30PM

Location: Social Sciences and Media Studies Room 2135

Perceived attacks on the foundations of democracy in recent years have sparked large demonstrations, often numbering in the hundreds of thousands, in both Japan and the US. This paper will explore the ways in which democracy is sounded differently in street protests of two densely populated cities—Tokyo and New York—as shaped by urban geography, urban acoustics, participatory practices, and perhaps most importantly, policing. Analyzing protests as an interplay between urban space, cyberspace, police, and activist-musicians, the talk considers the ways in which the sounds of street protests reflect the kind of democracy that society allows.

Noriko Manabe is Associate Professor of Music Theory and Ethnomusicology at Temple University and a visiting Associate Professor in East Asian Languages and Cultures at Stanford (AY2021-22), researching music and social movements as well as Japanese popular music. Her monograph, The Revolution Will Not Be Televised: Protest Music after Fukushima (Oxford University Press) won the John Whitney Hall Book Award from the Association for Asian Studies. She is currently writing a book on the intertextuality of protest music and editing the Oxford Handbook of Protest Music (with Eric Drott) and 33-1/3 Japan, a book series on Japanese popular music.

Takashima Talks in Japanese Cultural Studies feature cutting-edge scholarship that probes the field's methodologies and boundaries. This talk is co-sponsored by the Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Music.

  1. May 4, 2022 - 4:00pm to 6:30pm
  • poster depicting small island big song with text and QR code.

Date: April 26, 2022, 6PM

Location: MCC Theater 

Drawing on a roster of respected first nation islander artists, the concert features musicians performing irresistible oceanic grooves to soulful island ballads engaging audiences from huge festival stages to intimate theaters. Combining music, spoken word and live cinema with AV projections featuring footage collected during a 3-year film trip across 16 countries guided by the artists on their homelands. 

Small Island Big Song explores the cultural connections between the descendants of the seafarers of the Pacific and Indian Oceans through the Austronesian migration. Working with artists who have made a choice to maintain the cultural voice of their people, to sing in the language, and to play the instruments of their land. These unique lineages mixed with their diverse contemporary styles - roots-reggae, beats, grunge, RnB, folk & spoken-word, establishing a contemporary musical dialogue between cultures as far afield as Madagascar, Aotearoa (New Zealand), Taiwan, Mauritius, Marshall Islands, Papua New Guinea, Tahiti and Rapa Nui (Easter Island), creating "One coherent jaw dropping piece" as described by Rob Schwartz - Billboard.

Co-sponsors: The Center for Taiwan Studies, Theater and Dance, and the Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Music

Registration on Shoreline is required.

  1. April 26, 2022 - 6:00pm
  • poster of Les Filles de Illighadad concert

Date: April 22, 2022, 7:30PM

Location: MCC Theater


Fatou Seidi Ghali, lead vocalist and performer of Les Filles de Illighadad is one of the only Tuareg female guitarists in Niger. Sneaking away with her older brother’s guitar, she taught herself to play. While Fatou’s role as the first female Tuareg guitarist is groundbreaking, it is just as interesting for her musical direction. In a place where gender norms have created two divergent musics, Fatou and Les Filles are reasserting the role of tende in Tuareg guitar. In lieu of the djembe or the drum kit, so popular in contemporary Tuareg rock bands, Les Filles de Illighadad incorporates the traditional drum and the pounding calabash, half-buried in water.

Co-sponsored by KCSB-FM and the Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Music (CISM).

  1. April 22, 2022 - 7:30pm
TOTAL STIOB: Comedy, Irony, and Parody in Late Soviet Ukrainian Punk Rock 
Maria Sonevytsky (Bard College)
February 23, 2022
3:30-5 PM
Music Library 2406

In 1989, a curious artifact began to circulate among Kyivan punks: a cassette tape of the first Ukrainian punk band, Vopli Vidopliassova (“Ve-Ve” for short). The songs featured lyrics (mostly) in the Ukrainian language, a novel departure from the Russocentrism of Soviet youth musical subcultures at the time. Circulated through a precarious informal economy that improbably linked the local Komsomol (Communist Youth League) newspaper’s music pages to a newly formed tape-dubbing collective, the album Tantsi (“Dances”) was described as epitomizing “total stiob” by the influential Kyivan music journalist Oleksandr Yevtushenko. “Stiob” refers to a genre of late Soviet parody; and in Tantsi, the band elevated the artform through innovative uses of comedy and irony. Lyrically, they utilized the ironic potentials of the Ukrainian language, the hybrid Ukrainian-Russian form known as surzhyk, and the tropes of Soviet official-ese to concoct densely polysemic, often surrealistic, texts that eluded Soviet censorship regimes. Sonically, they drew inspiration from European and U.S. new wave and post-punk groups, Ukrainian folklore, and Soviet state-sanctioned pop music (estrada), alchemizing a unique form of Ukrainian punk rock. Visually and gesturally, they invoked popular late Soviet archetypes–of the “zhlob” (redneck), the “sovok” (the Homo Sovieticus), and the madman–and filtered them through the absurdist theater of punk performance. In Ve-Ve’s Tantsi, absurdity becomes provocative—according to the original bass player, the album is a musical comment on “the hypocrisy of life in the late Soviet Union.” In this lecture, I offer an analysis of selected songs from Tantsi to observe how musical techniques of stiob circulated in the subcultural spaces of late Soviet Kyiv.  

Sponsored by the Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Music and Ethnomusicology Forum
Maria Sonevytsky is Associate Professor of Anthropology and Music at Bard College. Her first book, Wild Music: Sound and Sovereignty in Ukraine (Music/Culture Series, Wesleyan University Press, 2019) won the 2020 Lewis Lockwood First Book Prize from the American Musicological Society. Her second book, Vopli Vidopliassova’s Tantsi, is forthcoming in Bloomsbury’s 33 1/3: Europe series. She is also developing a digital archive of Soviet children’s music with collaborators in Kyiv and Toronto. She has articles in Public Culture, Ethnomusicology, The Journal of Popular Music Studies, Music & Politics, and other venues. She has developed a number of public-facing ethnomusicology projects, and performs in a variety of styles as a singer and accordionist.


  1. February 23, 2022 - 3:30pm
Marina Peterson (U Texas Austin) 
Visceral abstraction: Noise metrics in motion
January 26 3:30 PM
Noise metrics inscribe experience, objectifying perception in numbers, graphs, and sound pressure meter readings. Through processes of making, circulating, and engaging noise metrics, modes of inscription emerge as forms of lively matter that resonate with sensory-affective qualities, amplifying, thus, the viscerality of abstraction. Using a glitch methodology, I trace annoyance as it attaches to and falls away from noise, excavating the listening subjects whose experience supported the development of PNdB and reading the indeterminacy inherent in noise metric graphs. Metrics widen a gap between inscription and perception that generates a relationship between the two – a dynamic friction in which discussions about the metric, about its relationship to experience, and about experience itself transpire, affording new modes of engagement. Heat maps of airport noise levels – part of LAX’s noise management work – are a palpable instantiation of the viscerality of abstraction even as they refigure the sensory, thermoception destabilizing a divide between sensation and that which is sensed.
Marina Peterson is associate professor of anthropology at the University of Texas at Austin. Her work attends to sensory attunements, fluid materialities, and atmospheric forces in Los Angeles and beyond. She is the author of Atmospheric Noise: The Indefinite Urbanism of Los Angeles (2021, Duke UP) and Sound, Space, and the City: Civic Performance in Downtown Los Angeles (2010, UPenn Press), as well as co-editor of Global Downtowns (with Gary McDonogh, 2012, UPenn Press), Anthropology of the Arts: A Reader (with Gretchen Bakke, 2016, Bloomsbury), and Between Matter and Method: Encounters in Anthropology and Art (with Gretchen Bakke, 2017, Bloomsbury).
  1. January 26, 2022 - 3:30pm to 5:00pm
  • poster of talk by Alex Blue

There’s An Echo: Ghosts, Repetition, and Remix in Detroit Hip-Hop 

Dr. Alex Blue V, Assistant Professor, College of William & Mary
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 | 3:30-5 pm | Music Library Seminar Room 2406

Sponsored by Ethnomusicology Forum, the Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Music (CISM), and the Graduate Division

Alex Blue’s research examines the intersections of race, sound, space and place, with a primary focus on the United States. His work features a Black Studies-centered approach to Ethnomusicology and Sound Studies, employing heavily ethnographic methods to demonstrate ways in which race has influenced sound and sound has influenced race. Additionally, he is interested in narratives of death, dying, and afterlives in relation to African-American music and has published, given talks, and taught classes concerning these narratives.

Currently, Blue is working on two book projects. The first, titled A Matter of Death and Life, is built upon his dissertation, an ethnographic (or “necrographic”) study of the narratives of death and dying and how artists employ various forms of death as praxis in contemporary Detroit hip-hop. The second, which he is co-authoring, is an ethnographic study of country rap, otherwise known as “hick hop,” that examines issues of race, gender, class, nationalism, and identity, primarily (but not entirely) in the southern United States.

Blue will be discussing the ways in which UCSB shaped his career path, his research design, and his current projects.

  1. November 17, 2021 - 3:30pm to 5:00pm