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Awards

Beginning in 2012, the Outstanding Publication Award from the Society for Music Theory's Popular Music Interest Group exists to acknowledge the best article, essay, or book involving the theory and/or analysis of popular music. Any work published within two years of the application deadline is eligible, and publications can be nominated both by the authors themselves and by other scholars.

The prize will be given at the Society for Music Theory conference each year during the PMIG business meeting, and it will be determined by a three-person Award Committee consisting of:
  • the PMIG chair
  • the previous year's winner
  • a volunteer scholar agreed upon at the PMIG business meeting
Additionally, the Adams Krims Award (first presented in 2013) exists to acknowledge an outstanding article, essay, or book by a junior scholar.


2016

The PMIG Outstanding Publication award went to Kyle Adams for his article, "What Did Danger Mouse Do? The Grey Album and Musical Composition in Configurable Culture." The committee commended this article for challenging the notions of authorship in popular music through an insightful investigation into the act of creating a musical mash up.

The Adam Krims Award for publication by a junior scholar went to Robin Attas for her article "Form as Process: The Buildup Introduction in Popular Music." The committee was impressed by how this study expands the analysis of meter in popular music, capturing in detail the experience of musical grooves using a process-based approach to musical meter.

The Adam Krims Award for publication by a junior scholar went to Robin Attas for her article "Form as Process: The Buildup Introduction in Popular Music." The committee was impressed by how this study expands the analysis of meter in popular music, capturing in detail the experience of musical grooves using a process-based approach to musical meter.

2015

The PMIG Outstanding Publication award, given to the best publication involving the theory or analysis of popular music written by a senior scholar was given to Mark Butler for his book Playing with Something That Runs: Technology, Improvisation, and Composition in DJ and Laptop Performance, which brings its culture to life for the reader by engaging methodologies as diverse as interview, ethnography, sound studies, and performance studies.

The PMIG Adam Krims Award, given to the best publication involving the theory or analysis of popular music written by a junior scholar, was this year given to Dave Easley for his article "Riff Schemes, Form, and the Genre of Early American Hardcore Punk" in Music Theory Online 21/1. The committee found that, in addition to its theoretical elegance, this article was commendable for its attention to the actual discourse used between the musicians themselves, as well as the fans of this music.

The committee was Brad Osborn (University of Kansas), Steven Rings (Chicago; last year's winner), and Nick Stoia (Duke University; last year's winner).

2014

The PMIG Outstanding Publication Award went to Steven Rings, "A Foreign Sound to Your Ear: Bob Dylan Performs 'It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding),' 1964-2009," Music Theory Online vol. 19, no. 4 (2013). The panel agreed that this article exhibits a depth of research seldom encountered in a single article, not only providing the kind of close reading needed for such an in-depth examination, but also a method of analysis that could be applied to other singers.

The Adam Krims Award for a publication by a junior scholar went to Nick Stoia, "The Common Stock of Schemes in Early Blues and Country Music," Music Theory Spectrum vol. 35, no. 2 (2013). The panel agreed that among the article's many contributions, the manner in which the author deconstructs what is supposedly a single formal structure for the genre, presenting instead a series of discrete formal processes, will likely lead to more nuanced views of the form and genre.

The committee was Robert Fink (last year's winner), Brad Osborn (last year's winner and PMIG Chair), and Lori Burns.

2013

The PMIG Outstanding Publication Award went to Robert Fink, "Goal Directed Soul: Analyzing Rhythmic Teleology in African American Popular Music," Journal of the American Musicological Society vol. 64, no. 1. The panel agreed that this article takes an intellectually broad, musically insightful approach, and has significant implications for our field as well as the broader spectrum of popular music studies.

The Adam Krims Award for a publication by a junior scholar went to Brad Osborn, "Subverting the Verse-Chorus Paradigm: Terminally Climactic Forms in Recent Rock Music," Music Theory Spectrum vol 35, no. 1. The panel agreed that this article introduces a significant new concept and demonstrates its usefulness across a broad range of recent rock.

The committee was Allan Moore (last year's winner), Joti Rockwell, and Anna Stephan-Robinson.

2012

The Popular Music Interest Group is pleased to announce the inaugural Popular Music Interest Group Publication Award, which goes to Allan Moore for his new book Song Means: Analysing and Interpreting Recorded Popular Song (Ashgate, 2012). The award committee consisted of Anna Stephan-Robinson (Chair), Nicole Biamonte, and, until his untimely death, Adam Krims.