A great inspiration, Nettl’s writings were accessible and engaging as well as wise, his perspectives always valuable. Alongside his rare overview of the global picture, he had a gift for explaining the nuts and bolts of musicking in particular societies—seting forth from his fieldwork among Native Americans, and in Iran and south India. His 1995 book Heartland excursions: ethnomusicological reflections on schools of music makes a fine complement to the ethnomusicological literature on WAM (see e.g. here, here, and here).
Posts on this blog inspired by his insights include:
- Ethnography: Geertz, Nettl
- Is music a universal language?
- Unpacking “improvisation”
- Das Land ohne Musik
- What is serious music?
- World music abolished!!!
- Society and soundscape
- Mozart for winds, and “genius”
- Heartland excursions.
DO read Nettl’s wonderful The study of ethnomusicology: thirty-three discussions—for anyone still not attuned to the importance of soundscape in society, in search of a mind-opening book, this is what we need!!!