Your Favorite Song (Battle Stories)Johnny Damm
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“The King of the Delta Blues” plays polka. “The Father of Country Music” crafts slick radio pop. In the early twentieth-century, the racial imagining of northern white music executives invents the categories of “race” and “hillbilly,” initiating a seismic shift that dictates what musicians are allowed to record and transforms how we hear music. A collision of 50s pulp comics and music criticism, Your Favorite Song (Battle Stories) mixes text and comics-collage in an interrogation of the racist foundations of the American music industry.
AN EXCERPT FROM EP 70
“A shorthand crafted not to describe the music but to
whom the music should appeal. Black. White. Rural.
So genre is created not in correspondence with style or
rhythm, not in correspondence with the music itself, but
as a marketing product of the (northern) (white) (male)
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
JOHNNY DAMM is the author of Science of Things Familiar (The Operating System, forthcoming) and two chapbooks, The Domestic World: A Practical Guide (Little Red Leaves, forthcoming) and The Old Man’s Illustrated Library: Issues # 36 & # 5 (No Press). You can see more of his work here.