[PAPER] Shazam Walks & voice notes: Soundscape, sociality & joy

2022 – GUERRA, Paula & SOUSA, Sofia (2022) (Eds.). Keep it Simple, Make it Fast! An approach to underground music scenes (vol. 5)Porto: Universidade do Porto – Faculdade de Letras [University of Porto. Faculty of Arts and Humanities].

Abstract

The global pandemic temporarily transformed the way music was listened to in East London. In the absence of licensed premises or large corporate music festivals, most of the music that was heard in public spaces was generated by the communities that live there. I propose that, rather than branding portable sonic expressions with pejorative and moralising terms such as ‘sodcasting’, we need to learn radical, empathetic listening that transcends taste and the perceived right to silence and develops an expanded sense of collective joy. East London has been experiencing increasing privatisation and homogenisation of space. When venues closed for lockdown, this highlighted what many residents instinctively know – that the creation of ad-hoc, temporary music spaces is a joyful aestheticisation of the city.

Keywords: gentrification, sodcasting, joy, sociality, soundscape, urbanism.