Amy L. Campbell's Reviews > Pop When the World Falls Apart: Music in the Shadow of Doubt

Pop When the World Falls Apart by Eric Weisbard
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's review
Dec 01, 2011

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bookshelves: netgalley, 2012, advanced-copy, blogged, reviewed
Read from March 08 to 12, 2012

Note: advance reader copy provided for review by Netgalley.

Weisbard has pulled together a relatively interesting collection of articles mainly focused on music and the relationship of race and privilege. There were a few articles that stayed on topic with the presented title (When the World Falls Apart), but the subtitle is more accurate to the volume and only so much as it refers to our formation of identity and perceptions through music. There were quite a few strong articles, and only one that I didn't enjoy at all [Of Wolves and Vibrancy], mostly due to its simultaneous use of self-deprecation and hauteur that oscillated depending on whether the author was talking about a subject he did or did not know about.

Most of the collection is strong though, and readers and listeners of all varieties will especially enjoy ("Over the) Rainbow Warrior" about Israel Kamakawiwo'ole's reimagining of Somewhere Over the Rainbow; "Since the Flood", a sobering and heartening account of the seemingly unwanted return of Jazz musicians and second line funerals to New Orleans; "Black Rockers vs. Blackies Who Rock", an endearing article about the place of rock 'n' roll in the black community and for the formation of the author's identity as a black, self-proclaimed nerd; and "Divided Byline" which manages to be both homage to musicians the author worked with and an explanation of his career choice as a ghostwriter.

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