“This Is Our Music”: Italian Teen Pop Press and Genres in the 1960s

Jacopo Tomatis

Abstract


Popular music studies rarely consider genres as cultural concepts both historically and socially contingent. From a diachronic perspective, music journalistic discourse can be used to examine how music categories are created, named and negotiated between music industry, musicians, critics and fans, either for practical or aesthetic purposes. Italian teen pop magazines in the mid-1960s provide a valuable case study. This article will focus on two Italian teen publications, Ciao amici and Big, between 1964 and 1967, and will connect the rhetoric they used to the rise of youth community in the same period. The genre of musica nostra (music of our own) was introduced to describe the music teenagers were listening to, and suggested the pride of belonging to a community of peers. In the last section I will outline how such an ideology of youth community was connected to authenticity and to specific aesthetic values.

Keywords


teen pop press, Italian popular music, authenticity, genres, 1960s

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