Document Type

Journal Article

Department/Unit

Department of Sociology

Title

Hybridity, empowerment and subversiveness in Cantopop electronic dance music

Language

English

Abstract

This essay examines "Cantopop electronic dance music," a term that collectively designates the several sub-genres of electronic dance music which originated in Hong Kong. This electronic dance music emerged in 1998 and became the dominating club music in Greater China in the early 2000s. While scholars have positively appraised numerous aspects and subgenres of Cantopop they have never paid attention to local genres of electronic dance music. Popular music critics and professional musicians in Greater China also dismiss Cantopop electronic dance music as insincere or incompetent imitations of global (i.e., European and American) electronic dance music. In this essay I show that Cantopop electronic dance music has valuable sociocultural characteristics and I elaborate on what they are. Although this dance music has not inherited the many desirable sociocultural properties of Western electronic dance music, it has gained new ones through processes of cultural hybridization. I will illustrate, through analyzing a range of clubbing practices that hybridize singing with dancing, how Cantopop electronic dance music empowers local audiences by giving them a central role in music reproduction. Through examining the remixing of electronic dance tracks by local DJs and the rewriting of lyrics of dance tracks by local clubbers, I will explicate how local actors ingeniously hybridize, appropriate and re-articulate local and global musical materials. © Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

Publication Date

2010

Source Publication Title

Visual Anthropology

Volume

24

Issue

2-1

Start Page

139

End Page

151

Publisher

Taylor & Francis

DOI

10.1080/08949468.2011.527805

ISSN (print)

08949468

ISSN (electronic)

15455920

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