Thursday, February 6, 2014

More notes on the second edition

The second edition integrates the two halves of Hearing the Movies more closely while maintaining a design that permits flexibility in emphasis.

Part 1 has been updated and streamlined a bit but its focus on careful listening/viewing and analysis of the soundtrack is intact. The scene analyses and style generalizations about music usage in Part 2 have been moved into the current Part 3 (history), which has been divided into two Parts, the first covering early cinema through the end of the studio era, the second covering the period since. Another way to put it is that Part 2 is "pre-Star Wars" and Part 3 is "Star Wars and later." Still another way is "pre-Dolby" and "Dolby to digital."

Not all the material of Part 2 has gone into the second edition, but everything we've removed will either be posted to this blog or placed on the HtM website and thus will remain available for instructors' use.

Among new features, we've added time lines for reference at the head of all the historical chapters, but I am particularly excited about our revamped and expanded writing "interludes," each of which is now a full-fledged chapter embedded in Part 2 or 3, and about a set of close readings that continue to develop the strong audioviewing skills from Part 1 but in the context of the historical chapters. These "essays" within the chapters of Parts 2 & 3 are augmented by a new series of sidebars that augment the historical narrative with historical source material, in part keyed to Mervyn Cooke's The Hollywood Film Music Reader (Oxford).

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Oxford Handbook of Film Music Studies

The Oxford Handbook of Film Music Studies was published in November 2013. Two dozen experts in the field survey everything from opera and film to the early history of music in video games. The book is also available on Oxford Research Online (by subscription). Many of the chapters will certainly be difficult for typical undergraduates, especially those without musical background, but I would recommend the following as quite accessible and potentially useful in connection with Hearing the Movies:

Marcia Citron, “Opera and Film”
Daniel Goldmark, “Drawing a New Narrative for Cartoon Music”
Cari McDonnell, “Genre Theory and the Film Musical"
Neil Lerner, “The Origins of Musical Style in Video Games, 1977-1983"

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Second edition of Hearing the Movies

 David here: I am currently working on the second edition of our textbook. The main goals are two: (1) to integrate the material on types of film scenes and on style topics into the historical section; and (2) to update and to expand the repertorial range of some of the films discussed. In connection with (1) the number of parts will be reduced from 3 to 2, though the volume will still be laid out in 15 chapters. In connection with (2) we will expand the sections on writing—which we labeled "interludes"in the first edition—and integrate them also into the historical section as separate chapters. If all goes as planned, the second edition may (that's *may* of course) be available for spring 2015 adoption.