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The Sounds of LatinidadImmigrants Making Music and Creating Culture in a Southern City$
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Samuel K. Byrd

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781479859405

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479859405.001.0001

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Shifting Urban Genres

Shifting Urban Genres

(p.141) 6 Shifting Urban Genres
The Sounds of Latinidad

Samuel K. Byrd

NYU Press

This chapter examines the political history of Latin genre categories, showing how genre emerges out of the contested spaces of nationalism and ethnic identity formation in Latin America and the United States. A major part of the agency of Latino musicians and their audience is how they negotiate genre boundaries together in a dialectical process, often through direct feedback during performances but also through informal conversations and online social networking sites. By deploying and, at times, bending genre rules, musicians enact and embody the common circumstances they share with their audience; they claim ownership over a method of making music. Musicians justified these boundaries as necessary for distinguishing between diverse strains of latinidad, and this also shows a trend toward musicians collaborating across genre in an attempt to construct a pan-Latino vision of belonging to the city.

Keywords:   Latin genre categories, nationalism, ethnic identity formation, genre boundaries, latinidad, Latino musicians

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