Welcome to The International Association for the Study of Popular Music UK and Ireland Branch

A Century of Sound: Technology, Culture and Performance

Posted: November 19th, 2023 | Filed under: Calls for Papers | No Comments »

The 8th Global Reggae Conference
+ Sound System Outernational #10
+ UWI 75th Anniversary

The University of the West Indies, Mona Campus
14 – 17th February 2024

From the 1940s to present day, sound systems have rocked the world with word, sound and power. From Kingston’s streets to the world’s biggest festival stages, the Jamaican-born institution of the sound system has deeply influenced the way music is produced, performed, remixed and enjoyed all over the world. The 2024 edition of the Global Reggae Conference celebrates and investigates the culture and technology of Jamaica’s most famous musical instrument.

The triennial Global Reggae Conference extends its reach to engage academics within a wide field of scholastic orientations and practices for its 8th staging. In celebration of the cultural, technological and productive space created by the sound system, both locally and globally, the conference aims to bring together students, scholars, filmmakers, sound producers, researchers, writers, critics, music aficionados, and artists to share research findings, ideas and perspectives.

The conference comes as part of a larger project on music, popular culture and Reggae Studies from the Institute of Caribbean Studies and the Reggae Studies Unit. Over the last decade this has advanced the study of reggae and Jamaican popular culture and contributed to expanding scholarship and outreach through creative production, community engagement, research, experimentation, archive building, exhibitions and events. In the spirit of collaboration seen in previous conferences, the 2024 conference is being hosted in association with the European Research Council (ERC)-funded research project, Sonic Street Technologies (SST), and the research group Sound System Outernational, both based at Goldsmiths, University of London.

We welcome proposals for academic papers; innovative presentations and displays made through uses of media, music and technology; sound system films and videos for screening as part of the Sound System Outernational # 10 film programme; and presentations / interventions from musicians, artists and students on the following broad themes:

• Social Media & Scenes of Sound
• The Cultural Ecosystem of Sound
• Gendered Dimensions of Sound System
• Sound Systems and Musical Genres
• Fashion, Style and Sound Systems
• Sound Boys, Rude Boys and Aesthetics
• Dancehall Aesthetics and the Arts

Global Reach:
• Sound System Diasporas
• Sound Systems from Kingston to Birmingham
• Sound System Cultures Around the World: Picos (Columbia), Aparelhagens, Radiolas, Paredões (Brazil) and Sonideros (Mexico)
• Trade and the Global Sound Industry
• Sound System Festivals and Events

• The Recorded Format from Lacquer to Audio File
• Sound, Videolight and the Moving Image
• Sound, Medium and Message
• Equipment Construction, Maintenance and Archiving
• The Evolution of the Sound System Set

• The Performance of Recorded Music
• HiFis, Discos and Jugglers
• Performance, Sound and Method
• The DJ/DJAY Methods
• Performance Techniques

• Noise Regulation and Control
• Policing, Harassment and Criminalization
• Recognition and the Value of Popular Sound Cultures
• Institutional Support and Pushback
• Music and Sound as Liberation
• Autonomous Zones and DIY Aesthetics

Legacies and Futures:
• Icons of Sound – Promoters, Impresarios and Maestros
• Sound Systems and the Future of Musical Genres
• Sound Systems and the Inner-City
• Sound Professors, Dub Stations, Black Arks and Afro-Futurism
• Sound System Futures

Proposals for presentations should include an abstract and the following information: name of author/authors; email address/es; name of associated institution; and keywords of presentation. For panel proposals, please include one abstract for each presenter and a panel abstract.
Abstracts for individual or panel presentations of no more than 250 words supported by a short biography no longer than 150 words, should be submitted to the conference organizers for international peer review.

Proposals for film screenings including a synopsis and video link must be emailed to [email protected] with subject ‘GRC2024’


Selected papers will be peer-reviewed and published in themed volume. All paper submissions must conform to the UWI press style available here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1NW6ashBtzIRYSp7FmV4ANwEspG_tGTyW8jabe_5QnbQ/edit

Email presentation proposals to [email protected] with the subject heading “A Century of Sound”.

Email screening proposals to [email protected] with a subject heading “SSO#10 Screening Programme.”

Contact the Global Reggae Conference 2024 Secretariat with queries at:
Institute of Caribbean Studies & Reggae Studies Unit
University of the West Indies, Mona Campus
Kingston 7, Jamaica.
Email: [email protected]
Tel: 1 (876) 977 – 1951 Fax: 1 (876) 977-3430

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