Hollywood Studio Musicians: Their Work and Careers in the Recording Industry (Paperback)
  • Hollywood Studio Musicians: Their Work and Careers in the Recording Industry (Paperback)
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Hollywood Studio Musicians: Their Work and Careers in the Recording Industry (Paperback)

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£36.99
Paperback 233 Pages / Published: 30/08/2013
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When originally published in 1971, Hollywood Studio Musicians was the first detailed analysis of the work and careers of production personnel in an industry devoted to mass culture. Previously, most researchers overlooked mass-culture industries as work settings, preferring to focus on content rather than the artists who created it. This lucid and insightful book looks under the hood of the Hollywood film scoring and recording industry, focusing upon the careers and work of top-flight musicians. A new preface by Howard S. Becker highlights the study's historical context and importance.

Based upon in-depth interviews with freelance musicians, Faulkner provides original insights into how we conceptualize occupations as well as the highly stratified system of professional prestige that results in what we now call the "A-List." Faulkner develops a framework for discovering and exploring how rapidly changing and demanding freelance work induces status hierarchies, sustains and updates collegial reputations, tightens social networks between contractors, and musicians, and restricts access to upward career paths.

This volume is a gem, a masterpiece of field research combined with probing, theoretically informed analysis. Aside from the value of its own findings, the volume offers students of sociology, film, and other creative industries a prime example of how to do good social science research. In short, it is a model for investigators to turn to when their own research needs help, an exemplar of how research is done when it is done well.

Publisher: Taylor & Francis Inc
ISBN: 9781412852531
Number of pages: 233
Weight: 249 g
Dimensions: 216 x 140 x 12 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS

"Individual musicians don't make Hollywood music. Networks of musicians do. They link up and grok each other. Rob Faulkner's wonderful book takes us behind the scenes of Hollywood movie music magic."

--Barry Wellman, S. D. Clark Professor of Sociology, Netlab Director, Department of Sociology, University of Toronto


"Music is not popularly recognized as an important part of movie and television programming, except in musicals and in the few cases where themes have become famous. As a result, studio musicians have not become well known to more than a few people. . . . In this book, Robert R. Faulkner studies the work conditions and careers of studio musicians in Hollywood."

--Stephen F. Barsky, American Journal of Sociology

"[H]ere in Faulkner's book is a study not of romanticized careers but of the ways in which performing studio musicians work on motion picture and television film jobs, live and tape television, record dates and radio and television jingles."

--Lawrence H. Streicher, Contemporary Sociology

"While focused on musicians, this exemplary study is our clearest window onto the personal changes that artists of all sort go through as they adjust to the challenges of making it in Hollywood. The text repeatedly reveals the 'secret sociology' of Hollywood, or insiders know that outsiders cannot even guess at. Faulkner's study in Los Angeles is more relevant that ever, as the 'free-lance' world he studied has become the customary landscape for countless aspiring performers in the worldwide business of producing culture on an industrial scale."

--Jack Katz, Sociology, UCLA

"An in-depth study of commercial freelance musicians in Hollywood might seem like a local backstage look at otherwise 'invisible' actors. But what sets this book apart is that Faulkner's data and analyses provide nothing less than a microcosm of the human condition in general. This welcome reissue of Faulkner's early work examines the contingencies that are in play when competent musicians show up at recording sessions, instruments in hand, with no idea 'what they're going to throw at us, ' and with pressure to play whatever they're given without making an error. Faulkner builds out those local performance tensions into tensions we all experience, including those associated with stratification, competition, alternation between routine and crisis, identity, flexibility, and conflicts between efficiency and values such as self-respect. This book is a marvelous, insightful empirical look at what it means to 'be prepared for the uncertainty of any call.' The grounding is solid and accessible. The implications, profound."

--Karl E. Weick, Rensis Likert Distinguished University Professor, Emeritus, University of Michigan

"The new edition of Robert Faulkner's Hollywood Studio Musicians makes available one of the most influential works that links the sociology of culture and occupations. Now over forty years old, the work deserves its status as a classic, one of the earliest attempts of sociologists to recognize that artistic careers have important parallels to other professions. While Faulkner's logic is now the basis for numerous studies, it is thrilling to discover once again how new ideas are generated and how subtle empirical analysis provides a model for conceptual development."

--Gary Alan Fine, John Evans Professor of Sociology, Northwestern University and the author of Kitchens: The Culture of Restaurant Work

"It is wonderful that Faulkner's classic is being reissued, as its insights are as fresh now as they were when first published. I recommend the book to anyone who is serious about studying the production of culture, status hierarchies in markets, the tensions (and possibilities) at the intersection of commercial imperatives and creative labor, and the organization and dynamics of freelance careers. Most of all, I appreciate the book for the bright light it casts on how 'interpretive' workers adapt to conditions that are very different from those that their training imagines, a process that is much more nuanced than a simple accommodation to alienating circumstances. While it is the studio musician's job to 'make junk sound good, ' Faulkner helps us see how there is both skill and dignity in such work, as well as money."

--Ezra W. Zuckerman Sivan, MIT Sloan School of Management


"Music is not popularly recognized as an important part of movie and television programming, except in musicals and in the few cases where themes have become famous. As a result, studio musicians have not become well known to more than a few people. . . . In this book, Robert R. Faulkner studies the work conditions and careers of studio musicians in Hollywood."

--Stephen F. Barsky, American Journal of Sociology

"[H]ere in Faulkner's book is a study not of romanticized careers but of the ways in which performing studio musicians work on motion picture and television film jobs, live and tape television, record dates and radio and television jingles."

--Lawrence H. Streicher, Contemporary Sociology

"While focused on musicians, this exemplary study is our clearest window onto the personal changes that artists of all sort go through as they adjust to the challenges of making it in Hollywood. The text repeatedly reveals the 'secret sociology' of Hollywood, or insiders know that outsiders cannot even guess at. Faulkner's study in Los Angeles is more relevant that ever, as the 'free-lance' world he studied has become the customary landscape for countless aspiring performers in the worldwide business of producing culture on an industrial scale."

--Jack Katz, Sociology, UCLA

"An in-depth study of commercial freelance musicians in Hollywood might seem like a local backstage look at otherwise 'invisible' actors. But what sets this book apart is that Faulkner's data and analyses provide nothing less than a microcosm of the human condition in general. This welcome reissue of Faulkner's early work examines the contingencies that are in play when competent musicians show up at recording sessions, instruments in hand, with no idea 'what they're going to throw at us, ' and with pressure to play whatever they're given without making an error. Faulkner builds out those local performance tensions into tensions we all experience, including those associated with stratification, competition, alternation between routine and crisis, identity, flexibility, and conflicts between efficiency and values such as self-respect. This book is a marvelous, insightful empirical look at what it means to 'be prepared for the uncertainty of any call.' The grounding is solid and accessible. The implications, profound."

--Karl E. Weick, Rensis Likert Distinguished University Professor, Emeritus, University of Michigan

"The new edition of Robert Faulkner's Hollywood Studio Musicians makes available one of the most influential works that links the sociology of culture and occupations. Now over forty years old, the work deserves its status as a classic, one of the earliest attempts of sociologists to recognize that artistic careers have important parallels to other professions. While Faulkner's logic is now the basis for numerous studies, it is thrilling to discover once again how new ideas are generated and how subtle empirical analysis provides a model for conceptual development."

--Gary Alan Fine, John Evans Professor of Sociology, Northwestern University and the author of Kitchens: The Culture of Restaurant Work

"It is wonderful that Faulkner's classic is being reissued, as its insights are as fresh now as they were when first published. I recommend the book to anyone who is serious about studying the production of culture, status hierarchies in markets, the tensions (and possibilities) at the intersection of commercial imperatives and creative labor, and the organization and dynamics of freelance careers. Most of all, I appreciate the book for the bright light it casts on how 'interpretive' workers adapt to conditions that are very different from those that their training imagines, a process that is much more nuanced than a simple accommodation to alienating circumstances. While it is the studio musician's job to 'make junk sound good, ' Faulkner helps us see how there is both skill and dignity in such work, as well as money."

--Ezra W. Zuckerman Sivan, MIT Sloan School of Management


"Individual musicians don't make Hollywood music. Networks of musicians do. They link up and grok each other. Rob Faulkner's wonderful book takes us behind the scenes of Hollywood movie music magic."

--Barry Wellman, S. D. Clark Professor of Sociology, Netlab Director, Department of Sociology, University of Toronto


-Music is not popularly recognized as an important part of movie and television programming, except in musicals and in the few cases where themes have become famous. As a result, studio musicians have not become well known to more than a few people. . . . In this book, Robert R. Faulkner studies the work conditions and careers of studio musicians in Hollywood.-

--Stephen F. Barsky, American Journal of Sociology

-[H]ere in Faulkner's book is a study not of romanticized careers but of the ways in which performing studio musicians work on motion picture and television film jobs, live and tape television, record dates and radio and television jingles.-

--Lawrence H. Streicher, Contemporary Sociology

-While focused on musicians, this exemplary study is our clearest window onto the personal changes that artists of all sort go through as they adjust to the challenges of making it in Hollywood. The text repeatedly reveals the 'secret sociology' of Hollywood, or insiders know that outsiders cannot even guess at. Faulkner's study in Los Angeles is more relevant that ever, as the 'free-lance' world he studied has become the customary landscape for countless aspiring performers in the worldwide business of producing culture on an industrial scale.-

--Jack Katz, Sociology, UCLA

-An in-depth study of commercial freelance musicians in Hollywood might seem like a local backstage look at otherwise 'invisible' actors. But what sets this book apart is that Faulkner's data and analyses provide nothing less than a microcosm of the human condition in general. This welcome reissue of Faulkner's early work examines the contingencies that are in play when competent musicians show up at recording sessions, instruments in hand, with no idea 'what they're going to throw at us, ' and with pressure to play whatever they're given without making an error. Faulkner builds out those local performance tensions into tensions we all experience, including those associated with stratification, competition, alternation between routine and crisis, identity, flexibility, and conflicts between efficiency and values such as self-respect. This book is a marvelous, insightful empirical look at what it means to 'be prepared for the uncertainty of any call.' The grounding is solid and accessible. The implications, profound.-

--Karl E. Weick, Rensis Likert Distinguished University Professor, Emeritus, University of Michigan

-The new edition of Robert Faulkner's Hollywood Studio Musicians makes available one of the most influential works that links the sociology of culture and occupations. Now over forty years old, the work deserves its status as a classic, one of the earliest attempts of sociologists to recognize that artistic careers have important parallels to other professions. While Faulkner's logic is now the basis for numerous studies, it is thrilling to discover once again how new ideas are generated and how subtle empirical analysis provides a model for conceptual development.-

--Gary Alan Fine, John Evans Professor of Sociology, Northwestern University and the author of Kitchens: The Culture of Restaurant Work

-It is wonderful that Faulkner's classic is being reissued, as its insights are as fresh now as they were when first published. I recommend the book to anyone who is serious about studying the production of culture, status hierarchies in markets, the tensions (and possibilities) at the intersection of commercial imperatives and creative labor, and the organization and dynamics of freelance careers. Most of all, I appreciate the book for the bright light it casts on how 'interpretive' workers adapt to conditions that are very different from those that their training imagines, a process that is much more nuanced than a simple accommodation to alienating circumstances. While it is the studio musician's job to 'make junk sound good, ' Faulkner helps us see how there is both skill and dignity in such work, as well as money.-

--Ezra W. Zuckerman Sivan, MIT Sloan School of Management


-Individual musicians don't make Hollywood music. Networks of musicians do. They link up and grok each other. Rob Faulkner's wonderful book takes us behind the scenes of Hollywood movie music magic.-

--Barry Wellman, S. D. Clark Professor of Sociology, Netlab Director, Department of Sociology, University of Toronto

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