I just got back from my conference marathon. Starting in Mexico City I attended the biennial IASPM-conference. Yngvar Steinholt and Mark Yoffe and I organized a panel on Soviet- and Post-Soviet popular music. Due to different problems we ended up being a four person panel (Yngvar Steinholt, Sergio Mazzanti, Lena Kopylova and me) with five papers (on Televizor, DDT, Soviet Rock Opera, contemporary popular music in St. Petersburg and the use of folklore in (Post-) Soviet popular music). But it was very interesting and we discussed i.a. the role of popular music in the Soviet Union (against the regime or not? The solution probably lies in Alexei Yurchak’s book “Everything Was Forever, Until It Was No More: The Last Soviet Generation” and the concept of vne).
After Mexico and 1 1/2 days in Copenhagen I was of to Vienna and the world conference of ICTM where I gave a paper on aspects of identity in the music of Ruslana, Gaidamaki/Haidamaki and Svoboda). Even though there were no other papers on popular music from the Post Soviet area there were some participants doing research on popular music there covering Ruslana, Roma in the Ukraine and Baltic popular music. Now my hope is that they will submit abstracts for the special edition of popular music and society on Post-Soviet popular music (deadline is September 1st, 2007).