CANCELED: Pop music lecture: Matt Sakakeeny on New Orleans jazz


Apr. 6, 2020, 7pm to 9pm

Campus Location

Office/Remote Location

Room 147
Matt Sakakeeny


Unfortunately, COVID-19 has inflicted its blow on us. The short version is that we are going to have to postpone --- note that I refuse to say "cancel"!
--- Professor James's lecture. UNLV's College of Fine Arts has suspended all on-campus activities through April 12, with the understanding that further cancellations may be necessary as we watch what happens with the COVID-19

Please watch our website and Facebook page for updates about our other lectures, and about the rescheduling of this one.

The Arnold Shaw Popular Music Center at UNLV is pleased to announce its 2020 lecture series. From February through April, six scholars will visit Las Vegas to discuss the history and future of pop, rock, punk, jazz, blues, and contemporary Christian music.

In the early 1980s, the music executive, composer/arranger, and writer/historian Arnold Shaw founded UNLV’s Popular Music Center. Shaw believed that Las Vegas rested its fame—and indeed its very existence—upon two main pillars: gaming and popular entertainment. He envisioned the Popular Music Center as a foundation that would stand alongside the UNLV Center for Gaming Research as uniquely opportune sites for study, archival work, and exchange in the cultural milieu of our city.

It is in this spirit that we now invite an exciting mixture of junior and senior scholars from diverse disciplines (English, Philosophy, Musicology, and Religious Studies) to share their expertise with the university and the Las Vegas public about the varied traditions of popular music making throughout history. These scholars will raise questions about the definition of popular music, the methods for understanding popular music and culture, and the political ramifications of this activity.

All of these events are free and open to the public.

Lecture 5:

MATT SAKAKEENY (Tulane University, New Orleans)
Making Music the New Orleans Way: From the Streets to the Classroom

[Beyoncé, marching band culture, New Orleans jazz traditions]

How do young people acquire musical knowledge? In New Orleans, children grow up surrounded by live music-making: jazz, rhythm & blues, funk and local African American parading traditions known as “jazz funerals” and “second lines.” The level of cultural immersion is unique to New Orleans, but my research shows that young people must also be introduced to music education in schools in order to become professional musicians. In this presentation I situate the Southern tradition of school marching bands (as featured in Beyoncé’s Homecoming) within a wide range of musical activities that young black New Orleanians encounter on their path to becoming performers.



Admission Information

Free and open to the public

Contact Information

Arnold Shaw Popular Music Center / School of Music
Jonathan Lee

More info on this event

External Sponsor

Arnold Shaw Popular Music Center (Jonathan Rhodes Lee, director), School of Music