Week 11: Music Listening Discussion, Part 2

Instructions: Write one page one to two paragraphs to answer the following questions listed below. Use Times New Roman 12 point font. Single Space.

So, what do you think? In general terms, who owns music? Can someone own a melody? A harmony? A performance technique? What parts of music can someone or some culture own? Are there some clear guidelines about ownership of intellectual property? Of collectively owned cultural property?

In your response to this week’s readings, argue for or against Shaw and Roomful of Teeth’s use of Inuit vocal style (and other cultures’ vocal styles for that matter). In doing so, be clear about your argument by referencing specifics from the reading and listening. Do the Inuit have a point? Yes or no, and why? Did Roomful of Teeth adequately respond to the Inuit’s critiques?

Also, think about how this situation could perhaps have been avoided. Could Shaw have been more thoughtful in their use of Inuit vocal style? Did they have a responsibility to do so? Why or why not?

In your posts, keep in mind that this is not really a legal issue. The broad critique is that Shaw and Roomful of Teeth appropriated a technique, not a specific piece. If this were taken to court for copyright infringement, Shaw and Roomful of Teeth would very likely win. Keep this in mind as you write your responses.

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