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Richard Widdess, Dāphā: Sacred Singing in a South Asian City: Music, Meaning and Performance in Bhaktapur, Nepal (Farnham and Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2013). xxviii + 336 pp. $149.95/£75. ISBN 978‐1‐4094‐6601‐7 (hb).

Richard Widdess, Dāphā: Sacred Singing in a South Asian City: Music, Meaning and Performance in... Readers of Music Analysis who know Richard Widdess's penetrating analyses of early notated modal melodies in his first book (Widdess ) will welcome this new study. Focusing this time on a present‐day tradition in Nepal, specifically on a genre of Hindu‐Buddhist devotional singing known as dāphā or dāphā bhajan, Widdess continues his interest in the musical systems and structures of musical genres of South Asia; but now music analysis – immediately familiar visually and discernible methodologically as pursuing concerns manifest in the earlier study – is put to work in tight tandem with analysis of the cultural and historical context of these sacred songs and their transmission and performance, both of which are based in oral tradition. The book's ambitious programme for daāphaā is to address the question posed on its dust jacket of ‘what music means’ in a traditional South Asian society where the performance of these historically significant songs is deeply integrated into the traditional patterns of everyday social and religious life. Widdess's sophisticated but lucid methodology for demonstrating the complex interrelationship between musical structure, performance and cultural meaning that emerges in dāphā singing is eclectic, ‘combining aspects of ethnomusicology, music analysis, cognition, ethnography and history’ (p. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Music Analysis Wiley

Richard Widdess, Dāphā: Sacred Singing in a South Asian City: Music, Meaning and Performance in Bhaktapur, Nepal (Farnham and Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2013). xxviii + 336 pp. $149.95/£75. ISBN 978‐1‐4094‐6601‐7 (hb).

Music Analysis , Volume 36 (2) – Jul 1, 2017

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Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
Music Analysis © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd
ISSN
0262-5245
eISSN
1468-2249
DOI
10.1111/musa.12096
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Readers of Music Analysis who know Richard Widdess's penetrating analyses of early notated modal melodies in his first book (Widdess ) will welcome this new study. Focusing this time on a present‐day tradition in Nepal, specifically on a genre of Hindu‐Buddhist devotional singing known as dāphā or dāphā bhajan, Widdess continues his interest in the musical systems and structures of musical genres of South Asia; but now music analysis – immediately familiar visually and discernible methodologically as pursuing concerns manifest in the earlier study – is put to work in tight tandem with analysis of the cultural and historical context of these sacred songs and their transmission and performance, both of which are based in oral tradition. The book's ambitious programme for daāphaā is to address the question posed on its dust jacket of ‘what music means’ in a traditional South Asian society where the performance of these historically significant songs is deeply integrated into the traditional patterns of everyday social and religious life. Widdess's sophisticated but lucid methodology for demonstrating the complex interrelationship between musical structure, performance and cultural meaning that emerges in dāphā singing is eclectic, ‘combining aspects of ethnomusicology, music analysis, cognition, ethnography and history’ (p.

Journal

Music AnalysisWiley

Published: Jul 1, 2017

References