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Hip Hop DJs and the Evolution of Technology

Cultural Exchange, Innovation, and Democratization


André Sirois

Using interviews with world-renowned and innovative hip-hop DJs, as well as technology manufacturers that cater to the market/culture, this book reveals stories behind some of the iconic DJ technologies that have helped shape the history and culture of DJing. More importantly, it explores how DJs have impacted the evolution of technology. By looking at the networks of innovation behind DJ technologies, this book problematizes the notion of the individual genius and the concept of invention. Developing a theory of «technocultural synergism,» this book attempts to detail the relationship between culture and industry through the manipulation, exchange, and rights associated with intellectual property. While the subject of hip-hop and intellectual property has already been well explored, this is the first time that hip-hop DJs have been conceptualized as intellectual property because of their role in the R&D and branding of DJ products. The book also addresses the impact of digital technology on the democratization of DJ culture, as well as how new digital DJ technology has affected the recorded music market.
Contents: Re-coding Sound Technology and the Vinyl Archive – Exchange and Rights in the DJ Product Industry: Technics and Vestax Corporation – Exchange and Rights in the DJ Product Industry: Rane Corporation and Serato Audio Research – The Hip-Hop DJ as Intellectual Property: Research and Development – The Hip-Hop DJ as Intellectual Property: Branding, Endorsement, and the Nature of Convergence – Scratching the Digital Itch and the Cultural Negotiation of DVS.