The concept of the music scene has served sociologists well in providing a template for studying the organization of various musical styles and the people who work together to create the musical experiences. Writers including Howard Becker, Richard Peterson, Andy Bennett, David Grazian, and Joseph Kotarba have explored music scenes ranging from jazz, blues and rock to country and Latino styles. Although there is no one consensual definition of music scene, the notion of place, in a physical, empirical, and geo-local sense, seems to be a universal concern in the literature. In this chapter, we will outline a more inclusive, interactionist-oriented, and updated concept of the music scene that is at once interactionist in tone and perspective, while sensitive to dramatic changes occurring both in the world of politics and in the world of digital media. Perhaps most importantly, the concept of music scene can provide insight into the historical fact that, in spite of technological advancements, the live music experience is still at the heart of musical experiences across communities and cultures.
Recommended citation: Joseph A. Kotarba, Nicolas J. LaLone , (2014), The Scene: A Conceptual Template for an Interactionist Approach to Contemporary Music, in Norman K. Denzin (ed.) Revisiting Symbolic Interaction in Music Studies and New Interpretive Works (Studies in Symbolic Interaction, Volume 42) Emerald Group Publishing Limited, pp.51 - 65.