Popular Music History, Vol 7, No 2 (2012)

You can make me whole again: popular music tributes embodying the reunion

Georgina Gregory
Issued Date: 18 Oct 2013


Within hierarchies of taste and value, popular music tributes tend to be dismissed as lowbrow. When they are discussed by the media, they are often depicted as humorous, opportunistic or of little serious value. Nevertheless, regardless of this lack of acclaim this article argues that they fulfil a useful role within the live entertainment industry where their presence is particularly valuable in the event of original band breakup or fission. The article demonstrates how their auspices go beyond the narrow function of filling in during the absence of the original artist. This involves a discussion of the ways in which popular music tributes can help to maintain interest in their archetype during periods of hiatus when a career is disrupted for whatever reason. Furthermore, in certain cases the tribute may even offer new and original music in the style of the original musicians.

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DOI: 10.1558/pomh.v7i2.211


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