Burma's Pop Music Industry

November 2011
15 black and white, 6 line illustrations
234 pages
9x6 in
Eastman/Rochester Studies Ethnomusicology
Library eBook
University of Rochester Press
BISAC MUS015000, HIS048000

Burma's Pop Music Industry

Creators, Distributors, Censors

Heather MacLachlan

eBook for Handhelds
Drawing on extensive fieldwork, explores the contemporary pop music scene in this little understood Southeast Asian country.
Burma's Pop Music Industry is the first book to explore the contemporary pop music industry in a country that is little known or understood in the West. Based on years of fieldwork in Burma/Myanmar, Heather MacLachlan's work explores the ways in which aspiring musical artists are forging a place within the highly repressive social and political context that is Burma today. It deals sensitively with issues such as negotiating local and global styles, performance contexts and practices, and, more importantly, with ethical issues such as the anonymity of informants and the place of Western ethnomusicologists in countries outside the West. Drawn from interviews conducted from 2007 through 2009 with Burmese composers, performers, producers, concert promoters, journalists, recording engineers, radio station employees, music teachers, and censors in Yangon -- Burma's largest city and the locus of all pop music production -- Burma's Pop Music Industry represents a significant contribution both to popular music studies and to Southeast Asian studies.

Heather MacLachlan is Assistant Professor of Music, University of Dayton.

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Table of Contents

The Creators of Burmese Pop Music
The Sound of Burmese Pop Songs
Learning Music in Burma Today
Six Facets of the Burmese Pop Music Industry
Musicians and the Censors: The Negotiation of Power
Conclusion: The Significance of the Burmese Perspective


A major contribution on a number of fronts. . . drawing on thorough ethnographic work. . . Should figure in the research and teaching of popular music and culture in Asia. JOURNAL OF ASIAN STUDIES

Burma's Pop Music Industry is significant. . . MacLachlan's analysis is perfectly situated. JOURNAL OF POPULAR MUSIC STUDIES

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