Strange to the structure: A dialogue on "strange music," performance studies, jazz trumpet, and Billie Holiday

Stacy Holman Jones, Chris Mcrae

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Researchpeer-review


I started playing the trumpet almost fifteen years ago. Eleven of those years were spent studying classical music and the appropriate techniques of the style. I learned how to play by studying with band directors in school bands and with private instructors. I was taught to read music, to blend in with other musicians in an ensemble, and to take direction from a conductor. In other words, I am a classically trained musician. This training always included a focus on instruction and on learning the correct way to play. As Michael Bell points out, "the first principle of classical music is that the musicians play what is on the page" (this volume, p. 15). Knowing how to read music is an important skill. The notation not only signifies which sounds to produce but also provides instruction in tempo, dynamics, and phrasing. This instruction, inscribed in the notation, is provided by the composer for the performance. In the playing of classical music, the text takes a primary, if not deterministic, role.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Strange Music of Social Life
Subtitle of host publicationA Dialogue on Dialogic Sociology
EditorsMichael Mayerfield Bell, Ann Goetting
Place of PublicationPhiladelphia PA USA
PublisherTemple University Press
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9781439907252
ISBN (Print)9781439907245, 9781439907238
Publication statusPublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes

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