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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Lawrence Starr
MUHST 426
Seattle Campus

American Popular Music

An in-depth consideration of American popular music styles and repertory from about 1920 to the present day. Analysis of representative pieces; consideration of critical and aesthetic issues relating to popular music; relationship of popular music to "art" music and to American culture and society. Prerequisite: minimum grade of 2.0 in each of MUHST 210, MUSIC 303, and MUSIC 306.

Class description

The course will survey major styles and developments in the history of American popular music. Major emphasis will be devoted to the 1920s and the 1960s as particularly innovative periods that made lasting contributions to the sound and repertory of American popular music--contributions that endure to the present day. In Winter 2014 the course will include a weekly dance lab, devoted to exploring and understanding (through movement) the essential interrelationships between American popular music and American vernacular dance.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Class discussion.

Recommended preparation

Successful completion of all "core" courses (music history and music theory) for undergraduate music majors, or permission of instructor.

Class assignments and grading

Three brief papers on various topics related to class work; or one short and one longer paper.

Written work and contributions to class discussions; attendance and participation in the dance lab.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Lawrence Starr
Date: 10/31/2013