Popular music is far more than just songs we listen to; its meanings are also in album covers, lyrics, subcultures, voices and video soundscapes. Like language these elements can be used to communicate complex cultural ideas, values, concepts and identities.

Analysing Popular Music is a lively look at the semiotic resources found in the sounds, visuals and words that comprise the ‘code book’ of popular music. It explains exactly how popular music comes to mean so much. Packed with examples, exercises and a glossary, this book provides the reader with the knowledge and skills they need to carry out their own analyses of songs, soundtracks, lyrics and album covers.

Written for students with no prior musical knowledge, Analysing Popular Music is the perfect toolkit for students in sociology, media and communication studies to analyze, understand, and celebrate, popular music.

Semiotic Resources in Sound: Pitch, Melody and Phrasing

Semiotic resources in sound: Pitch, melody and phrasing

In the study of popular music theorists have referred to the way that kinds of music have associated discourses. Hibbett (2005) made this case for ‘indie’ music which he said can be thought of as a set of conventions related to authenticity, purity and non-corporate ideals (p. 55). He studied these discourses through the way that those who identify with indie music speak of it, through the qualities they ascribe to good and bad music. He showed how listeners also use music to talk about themselves, and the importance of being non-mainstream. But Hibbett did not consider the music itself. Are there any kinds of melodies, rhythms and sound qualities ...

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