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The two volumes of The Oxford Handbook of Mobile Music Studies consolidate an area of scholarly inquiry that addresses how mechanical, electrical, and digital technologies and their corresponding economies of scale have rendered music and sound increasingly mobile-portable, fungible, and ubiquitous. At once a marketing term, a common mode of everyday-life performance, and an instigator of experimental aesthetics, "mobile music" opens up a space for studying the momentous transformations in the production, distribution, consumption, and experience of music and sound that took place between the late nineteenth and the early twenty-first centuries. Taken together, the two volumes cover a large swath of the world-the US, the UK, Japan, Brazil, Germany, Turkey, Mexico, France, China, Jamaica, Iraq, the Philippines, India, Sweden-and a similarly broad array of the musical and nonmusical sounds suffusing the soundscapes of mobility.
Volume 1 provides an introduction to the study of mobile music through the examination of its devices, markets, and theories. Conceptualizing a long history of mobile music extending from the late nineteenth century to the present, the volume focuses on the conjunction of human mobility and forms of sound production and reproduction. The volume's chapters investigate the MP3, copyright law and digital downloading, music and cloud computing, the iPod, the transistor radio, the automated call center, sound and text messaging, the mobile phone, the militarization of iPod usage, the cochlear implant, the portable sound recorder, listening practices of schoolchildren and teenagers, the ringtone, mobile music in the urban soundscape, the boombox, mobile music marketing in Mexico and Brazil, music piracy in India, and online radio in Japan and the US.
Sumanth Gopinath is the author of The Ringtone Dialectic: Economy and Cultural Form (2013). His writings on Steve Reich, musical minimalism, Marxism, academic politics, ringtones, Bob Dylan, and Benjamin Britten have appeared in scholarly journals including Music Theory Spectrum, Journal of the Society for American Music, and First Monday, and in the edited collections Sound Commitments, Highway 61 Revisited, and Music and Narrative since 1900.
Jason Stanyek is University Lecturer in Ethnomusicology at the University of Oxford, where he is also Fellow and Tutor in Music at St John's College. His writings on Brazilian music, improvisation, music technology, and jazz have appeared in a range of academic journals and edited collections. Forthcoming books include a monograph on music and dance in the Brazilian diaspora and a volume (co-edited with Frederick Moehn) titled Brazil's Northern Wave: Fifty Years of Bossa Nova in the United States.