African Musicology: A Bibliographical Guide to Nigerian Art Music (1927-2009)

By Sadoh, Godwin | Notes, March 2010 | Go to article overview

African Musicology: A Bibliographical Guide to Nigerian Art Music (1927-2009)


Sadoh, Godwin, Notes


ABSTRACT

This article provides a brief introduction to the history of art music in Nigeria, a concise discussion of three generations of music composition in Nigeria as well as an extensive bibliography of Nigerian art music comprised of articles, books, and discographic materials. The article is primarily set to present a list of sources on Nigerian art music, showcasing the depth and breadth of scholarly activities on this music. As such, this article is not focused on an overarching historical account of art music in Nigeria; this is outside the scope of this study. The bibliography encapsulates the focus of the extensive bibliographies which represent the scholarly contributions on modern Nigerian art music by various musicologists from Africa, Europe, and the United States. Most of the Nigerian authors are composers, ethnomusicologists, performers, and music educators, whose research is largely based on fieldwork, and their personal experiences in composing and performing this music. The bibliography includes articles, both published and unpublished, books, theses, and discographies, as well as papers presented at international conferences and symposia from 1927 to 2009. The topics cover every area pertinent to the study of art music in Nigeria--piano, organ, chamber, orchestra, vocal solo, choral, percussion, music and culture, music and dance, music and politics, music and text, music education, analytical and compositional techniques, theory, history, criticism, sacred and secular music, interculturalism, and composer biographies. The sound recordings of selected works were done by African, European, and American solo artists and orchestras.

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The musical landscape in Nigeria consists of a plethora of diverse and dynamic styles. Conversely, the various social strata are affixed to specific music genres. The discretion of musical taste in each group is influenced by socioeconomic and political factors. Thus, we have music popular in the circles of the rich, poor, elite, Christians, Muslims, as well as diverse ethnic groups. In the light of these factions, all the musical genres in Nigeria today can be broadly categorized into four major types--traditional music, popular dance music, church music, and art music. For the purpose of clarity, this article is divided into three sections: (1) a brief introduction to the history of art music in Nigeria; (2) a concise discussion of three generations of music composition in Nigeria; and (3) an extensive bibliography of Nigerian art music comprised of articles, books, and discographic materials. The article is primarily set to present a list of sources on Nigerian art music, showcasing the depth and breadth of scholarly activities on this music. As such, this article is not focused on an overarching historical account of art music in Nigeria; this is outside the scope of this study. Such comprehensive studies have been done and can be found in the articles and books listed in the bibliography.

The list below succinctly encapsulates the thrusts of the extensive bibliographies which represent the scholarly contributions on modern Nigerian art music by various musicologists from Africa, Europe, and the United States. Most of the Nigerian authors are composers, ethno-musicologists, performers, and music educators. The research is largely based on fieldwork, and their personal experiences in composing and performing this music. The bibliography documents articles, both published and unpublished, books, theses, and discographies, as well as papers presented at international conferences and symposia from 1927 to 2009. The topics cover every area pertinent to the study of art music in Nigeria--piano, organ, chamber, orchestra, vocal solo, choral, percussion, music and culture, music and dance, music and politics, music and text, music education, analytical and compositional techniques, theory, history, criticism, sacred and secular music, interculturalism, and composer biographies. …

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