Music Book Plan

Music as Heritage and Tourism Resource in Japan

Edited by Philip Seaton


Philip Seaton: “Introduction: Music as Heritage and Tourism Resource”

(Preliminary short mission statement): This book discusses the relationships between music (any genre), people and place (primarily in Japan) centred on the keyword “identity”. The basic analytical framework is as follows:

Individuals divide into two broad groups, fans/audiences and musicians/producers, although these groups are not mutually exclusive and individuals may oscillate continuously between concurrent roles as producers/performers of music and consumers/listeners. Our first research question is how music impacts on the identities and lifestyles (particularly mobilities) of individuals as musicians (whether professional or amateur) and fans.

On a collective level, individual performers/fans gather together in groups, ensembles, or fandoms to engage in musical activities – whether online in social media networks or offline at music venues, festivals and so on. But another form of musical community is geographical in scope. In some places/spaces, music becomes a vital component of local identity and heritage – think Vienna, New Orleans, Takarazuka. Our second research question is how and under what circumstances does music come to be part of a place/space brand.

Using an adapted version of Yamamura’s (2015) model of contents tourism, our third research question concerns the nature of the relationships between three groups of actors: 1) fans/audiences, 2) musicians/producers, and 3) regions/communities. These actors are all joined in their common love and respect for music. The relationships analyzed are as follows:

The relationship between musicians/producers and fans/audiences: Interaction is triggered by the production and consumption of music, either in-person during live performance or in mediatized forms, such as listening to CDs/streams or communication on social media. Here the methodology is rooted in media and cultural studies.

The relationship between musicians/producers and regions/communities: In particular, this refers to music inspired by a particular location (from Dvorak’s “New World” Symphony to Penny Lane by the Beatles) or when the region becomes a particularly evocative/appropriate stage for music performance (Fuji Rock Festival).

The relationship between fans/audiences and regions/communities: This discusses how music shapes the fan imagination of a region, and in certain cases leads to music tourism, namely travel motivated by a desire to be bodily in a place connected to music. The methodology for this (and the previous category) is rooted in tourism studies (in which many of the authors have extensive past research activities of many chapter authors in contents tourism research)

At the intersection of all these relationships are issues of identity, history, and heritage. Most musicians and fans operate within the boundaries of established musical genres (new genres, whenever they are created, are usually off-shoots from an existing genre that are incremental rather than revolutionary in nature). Underpinning all the chapters, therefore, is a sense of how musical activities are building on an inherited (local and/or genre) musical heritage, but in some way taking it in a new musical direction as required by the expectations for musicians to make their own distinctive original contribution to their art form. In addition to media, cultural, and tourism studies, therefore, the book encompasses history, memory, and the past-present relationship in a truly interdisciplinary collection of essays.

The scope and framework of the book are represented in the diagram below, which is an adapted version of Yamamura’s (2015) contents tourism model. All chapters will explicitly engage one or more of the actors in the diagram, and discuss one or more of the relationships/themes indicated. There are 16 case study chapters, each of 5,000 to 5,500 words.

Section 1: Music, Heritage, Memory

1) Olga Przybylska: Music at Shinto Shrines

2) Nobuyuki Harada: Amami folk songs as pop music

3) Kyungjae Jang: Performing traditional Ainu music

4) Margaret Mehl: The introduction of classical music to Japan (and/or “Schlesvig”)

5) Yusuke Wajima: Osaka jazz

6) Yumi Notohara (TBC): Hiroshima/war in music


Section 2: Musicians and Creators

7) Toshiyuki Masubuchi (TBC): Sth on Shonan?

8) Nobuyuki Harada: Scandal and musician tours.

9) Philip Seaton: Regional orchestras and tourism

10) Ryo Koarai & Takayoshi Yamamura: SDF bands

11) Takayoshi Yamamura: The music of Heidi


Section 3: Travelling Fans

12) Akiko Sugawa-Shimada: Matsutoya Yumi fan tourism

13) Aleksandra Jaworowicz-Zimny: Tourism induced by Yorushika’s music

14) Sen Kin: Chinese K-pop fans in Japan

15) Wang-san (TBC): Festa in Taiwan

16) Elisabeth Scherer (TBC): Asadora tourism and Boogie Woogie


Philip: “Conclusions” (2000 words)