Fri, Jan 25, 2013 @ 12:30 PM - 10:00 PM
USC Viterbi School of Engineering
Admission is free.
Each generation creates venues where music can be shared. In recent years, music festivals such as Coachella, Outside Lands, Lollapalooza, Bonnaroo and South By Southwest have drawn hundreds of thousands of people to listen to cutting-edge bands from the United States and abroad. Coachella has grown from 25,000 people during two days in 1999 to crowds of 85,000 a day over two three-day weekends in 2012. This growth raises interesting questions about the meaning of these communal spaces in the age of social media, virtual friendships and a decline in the traditional music industry. What do these events say about youth culture and its social and political links to concerts in the 1960s and ’70s? Can the transformative potential of music mobilize a culture?
The music-festival phenomenon will be addressed in a panel featuring Dawes lead singer Taylor Goldsmith, music critic Ann Powers, USC professor Josh Kun and a music festival representative. Documentary screenings throughout the day will further reveal the power and impact of music festivals today and historically.
Schedule of Events:
12:30 p.m.: Screening of Monterey Pop (1968)
Directed by D.A. Pennebaker, 79 minutes.
A concert film from the June 1967 festival held at the county fairgrounds in Monterey, California. Camera operators include famed documentarian Albert Maysles. The film includes incredible performances by Janis Joplin, Jefferson Airplane, Country Joe and the Fish, Simon & Garfunkel, Otis Redding, The Who and Jimi Hendrix, who set his guitar on fire in an unforgettable performance.
2:30 p.m.: Screening of Wattstax (1973)
Directed by Mel Stuart, 98 minutes.
“The Afro-American answer to Woodstock” was held at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum and focused on the community of Watts. Jesse Jackson gave the invocation, and musical performances by Isaac Hayes, The Staple Singers and others are interspersed with notable interviews, including one with Richard Pryor.
4:30 p.m.: Music Festivals: Creating New Communities for a New Generation
Panel discussion with Taylor Goldsmith, Ann Powers and others TBA, moderated by Josh Kun
A panel of experts will discuss the music-festival phenomenon: Taylor Goldsmith, the lead singer/songwriter of the rock group Dawes, which has played numerous festivals in the U.S. and abroad; Ann Powers, an author and critic who covers rock, rap and pop and is a contributor to NPR and the Los Angeles Times; and moderator Josh Kun, a professor at USC Annenberg who directs the Popular Music Project at the Norman Lear Center.
6 p.m.: Reception, Queen’s Courtyard
7 p.m.: Screening of Electric Daisy Carnival Experience (2011)
Directed by Kevin Kerslake, 150 minutes.
Followed by a Q&A with Kevin Kerslake
This techno and house music rave was the last one held at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Featured acts included Deadmau5, will.i.am and Moby.
About the Panelists:
Taylor Goldsmith is the songwriter and lead singer for Dawes, a four-person Los Angeles rock band. The band is embraced by well-known musicians such as Jackson Browne, who has frequently performed with Dawes and who has called Goldsmith “a brilliant songwriter,” and Robbie Robertson, who chose Dawes as his backup band for several television appearances. Esquire magazine calls Goldsmith “the best young songwriter in America,” and says his songs “don’t just speak for themselves but accomplish something far rarer—they speak for us.” The band’s first album, North Hills, included one of Rolling Stone’s top 25 songs of the year. Their latest CD, Nothing Is Wrong (2011) landed on many “best of” lists. Dawes has toured nearly nonstop for the past several years in the U.S., Australia and Europe, performing at music festivals such as Coachella, Lollapalooza, Outside Lands, Bonnaroo, SXSW and the Newport Folk Festival. (Dawes official website)
Josh Kun is a professor in the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism and the Department of American Studies and Ethnicity at USC, director of the Popular Music Project at the Norman Lear Center and a Los Angeles Institute for the Humanities fellow. He is the author of Audiotopia: Music, Race, and America and co-author (with Roger Bennett) of And You Shall Know Us by the Trail of Our Vinyl: The Jewish Past as Told by the Records We Have Loved and Lost. He is a contributor to the New York Times and Los Angeles. He is also a co-founder of the Idelsohn Society for Musical Preservation, a nonprofit Jewish record label and digital archive, and speaks often on topics ranging from cross-border Mexican music to the political and social history of rock music in Los Angeles, about which he curated a recent Pacific Standard Time exhibition at the GRAMMY Museum. (Twitter, bio)
Ann Powers is an author and pop-music critic who has been writing about popular music and society since the early 1980s. She is the author of Weird Like Us: My Bohemian America and co-editor of Rock She Wrote: Women Write About Rock, Pop, and Rap. In 2005, Powers co-wrote the book Piece by Piece with musician Tori Amos. The book discusses the role of women in the modern music industry, and features information about composing, touring, performance and the realities of the music business. Powers’s writing also has appeared in the New York Times, Blender and The Village Voice. She currently writes for NPR Music and is a contributor to the Los Angeles Times. (NPR, Twitter)
Organized by the Los Angeles Institute for the Humanities, USC Libraries and the USC School of Cinematic Arts.
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Audiences: Everyone Is Invited
Posted By: Daria Yudacufski