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date: 22 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

The concept of place is integral to country music, a genre associated with geographic regions, rural landscapes, and community values. While the genre has traditionally been described as a product of rural communities of the US South, studies have demonstrated the role that urban communities played in the birth of country music and its prominent scenes. Despite the growing interest in the relationship between music and place, many studies overlooked the important role that place-themed songs play in constructing an artist’s persona. With Canadian alt-country artist Corb Lund as a case study, this study draws literature from musicology, literary studies, and cultural geography to demonstrate how the singer-songwriter describes life, work, and sociocultural issues in Alberta to create diverse conceptions of place. It develops a framework for considering how artists use music to negotiate relationships to place and construct elements of their “geo-cultural” identity.

Keywords: geo-cultural, artistic identity, sense of place, alt-country, working-class

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