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America on Record

America on Record
A History of Recorded Sound

2nd Edition


  • Date Published: March 2006
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9780521835152

£ 72.00

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About the Authors
  • With Thomas Edison's invention of the phonograph, the beautiful music that was the preserve of the wealthy became a mass-produced consumer good, cheap enough to be available to all. In 1877 Edison dreamed that one day there would be a talking machine in every home. America on Record: A History of Recorded Sound, first published in 2006, provides a history of sound recording from the first thin sheet of tinfoil that was manipulated into retaining sound to the home recordings of rappers in the 1980s and the high-tech studios of the 1990s. This book examines the important technical developments of acoustic, electric, and digital sound reproduction while outlining the cultural impact of recorded music and movies. This second edition updates the story, describing the digital revolution of sound recording with the rise of computers, Napster, DVD, MP3, and iPod.

    • Was the only book available which provides a history of sound recording from the acoustic phonograph to digital sound technology
    • Provides insight into the technical and economic factors behind the production of popular music and movies
    • Covers all major innovations of the digital era: hard drives, MP3, CD burners, DVD, Napster, iPod, etc.
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'This is an excellent advertisement for an American Studies approach to past attitudes and mores that a less focused approach would lose: cultural history at its best.' History

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    Product details

    • Edition: 2nd Edition
    • Date Published: March 2006
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9780521835152
    • length: 474 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 30 mm
    • weight: 0.86kg
    • contains: 51 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. The Acoustic Era:
    1. The inventors
    2. A phonograph in every home
    3. The international industry of recorded sound
    4. The music
    5. Recorded sound in the Jazz Age
    Part II. The Electrical Era:
    6. The machines
    7. Competing technologies
    8. Empires of sound
    9. Swing and the mass audience
    10. High fidelity at last
    11. Rock'n'roll and the revolution in music
    12. The record
    13. The studio
    14. Perfecting studio recording
    15. The cassette culture
    Part III. The Digital Era:
    16. The media conglomerates
    17. Into the digital era
    18. Consolidation and connectivity in the digital era.

  • Author

    Andre Millard, University of Alabama, Birmingham
    Andre Millard is Director of American Studies and Professor of History at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. He is the author of Edison and the Business of Innovation and a contributor to National Public Radio's 'Lost and Found Sound'.

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