Feedback

Creativities in popular songwriting curricula: teaching or learning?

Bennett, J (2015) 'Creativities in popular songwriting curricula: teaching or learning?' In: Burnard, P and Haddon, E, eds. Activating diverse musical creativities: teaching and learning in higher education. Bloomsbury, London. ISBN 9781472589132

[img] Other (Plain Text Bibliography)
bibliography.txt - Bibliography

Download (4kB)
[img]
Preview
Text (Creativities in popular songwriting curricula)
Creativities in popular songwriting curricula_combined with cover sheet.pdf
All Rights Reserved.

Download (542kB) | Preview

Abstract

Cognitive psychologist Margaret Boden describes creativity as “the ability to come up with ideas or artefacts that are new, surprising and valuable” . In music, it is easy to create something new - the work needs only to be non-plagiaristic of extant works. But surprise and value cannot exist without an audience; philosophically speaking, one might say that music without a listener is like a falling tree in an empty forest. It follows that a ‘creative’ music curriculum must go beyond students’ self-expression and engage in listener-derived notions of artistic value. Historically, popular songwriting is a highly constrained art form, and too much deviation from cultural norms can prevent the song from being communicated fully. But listeners also require newness – that is, elements that are appealingly different from other songs. This paradox creates upper and lower thresholds of originality within which students must operate if they are to create effective songs. This chapter discusses the teaching and learning of creativity in songwriting with reference to Joe Bennett’s own involvement in designing, teaching and assessing undergraduate and postgraduate curricula. It addresses the implicit tension between learners’ and listeners’ expectations of creativity in songwriting, and evaluates pedagogical approaches and challenges, including peer critique, critical listening, prior learning, repertoire, formative and summative assessment.

Item Type: Book Chapter or Section
Keywords: Songwriting, popular music, music creativity, composition, lyric writing
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher Education
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2361 Curriculum
M Music and Books on Music > M Music
M Music and Books on Music > MT Musical instruction and study
Divisions: College of Liberal Arts
Date Deposited: 28 Apr 2014 14:27
Last Modified: 29 Apr 2016 14:06
References: Bennett, J. (2011), ‘Collaborative songwriting - the ontology of negotiated creativity in popular music studio practice' Journal of the Art of Record Production #5. Leeds, UK: Art of Record Production. Bennett, J. (2012), ‘Constraint, collaboration and creativity in popular songwriting teams' in D. Collins (ed.), The Act of Musical Composition: Studies in the Creative Process, SEMPRE Studies in The Psychology of Music, Farnham: Ashgate, 139- 169. Bennett, J. (2009), ‘SWF 09 - the tasks', UK Songwriting Festival website, <http://www.uksongwritingfestival.com/2009/08/10/swf-09-the-tasks/> [accessed 6 April 2014]. Bennett, J. (2013), ‘”You Won't See Me” - in search of an epistemology of collaborative songwriting', Journal of the Art of Record Production #8, Rewriting the rules of production, Quebec, Canada: Art of Record Production. Boden, M. (2004), The Creative Mind: Myths and Mechanisms, 2nd ed., London; New York: Routledge. Bourdieu, P. (1990), The Logic of Practice, Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press. Burnard, P. (2012), Musical Creativities in Practice, Oxford: Oxford University Press. Campbell, D.T. (1960), ‘Blind variation and selective retentions in creative thought as in other knowledge processes', Psychological Review, 67(6), 380-400. Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1996), Creativity: Flow and the Psychology of Discovery and Invention, New York: HarperCollins. Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1988), ‘Society, culture, and person: a systems view of creativity', in R. Sternberg (ed.), The Nature of Creativity: Contemporary Psychological Perspectives, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 325-339. Hennion, A. (1989), ‘An intermediary between production and consumption: The producer of popular music', Science, Technology & Human Values, 14(4), 400- 424. Kahneman, D. (2012), Thinking, Fast and Slow, London: Penguin. Mackinnon, D.W. (1963), ‘The identification of creativity', Applied Psychology, 12(1), 25-46. McIntyre, P. (2006), ‘Paul McCartney and the creation of “Yesterday”: the systems model in operation', Popular Music, 25(2), 201. McIntyre, P. (2008), ‘Creativity and cultural production: A study of contemporary Western popular music songwriting', Creativity Research Journal, 20(1), 40-52. McIntyre, P. (2001), ‘The domain of songwriters: Towards defining the term “song”', Perfect Beat: The Pacific Journal of Research into Contemporary Music and Popular Culture, 5(3), 100-111. Moore, A.F. (2012), Song Means: Analysing and Interpreting Recorded Popular Song, Farnham, Surrey; Burlington, VT: Ashgate. Negus, K. and Pickering, M. (2000), ‘Creativity and cultural production', International Journal of Cultural Policy, 6(2), 259-282. Pettijohn II, T.F. and Ahmed, S.F. (2010), ‘Songwriting loafing or creative collaboration? A comparison of individual and team-written Billboard hits in the USA', Journal of Articles in Support of the Null Hypothesis, 7(1), 2. QAA (2008), The framework for higher education qualifications in England, Wales and Northern Ireland (FHEQ), Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (UK). Available at:<http://www.qaa.ac.uk/publications/informationandguidance/pages/the framework-for-higher-education-qualifications-in-england-wales-and-northernireland.aspx> [accessed 27 March 2014]. Salley, K. (2011), ‘On the interaction of alliteration with rhythm and metre in popular music', Popular Music, 30(3), 409-432. Scruton, R. (2012), Schubert is needed now more than ever, Telegraph.co.uk, <http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/music/classicalmusic/9075810/Schubert-isneeded-now-more-than-ever.html> [accessed 20 March 2014]. Simonton, D.K. (2000), ‘Creative development as acquired expertise: Theoretical issues and an empirical test', Developmental Review, 20(2), 283-318. Sudnow, D. (1993), Ways of the Hand: The Organization of Improvised Conduct, Cambridge, Mass: MIT Press. Tagg, P. (2009), Everyday Tonality, New York & Montréal: Mass Media Scholars' Press (via tagg.org), 166. Tagg, P. and Clarida, R. (2006), Ten Little Title Tunes. Available from www.tagg.org
URI: http://researchspace.bathspa.ac.uk/id/eprint/1889
Request a change to this item or report an issue Request a change to this item or report an issue
Update item (repository staff only) Update item (repository staff only)